How Many Salads Do You Eat a Week?

Earlier this month, my 8-year-old son started playing me. You moms know how that goes, right? In this case, Kyle realized that if he focused on eating up all the fresh raw veggies in his salad, he might get away with NOT eating the casserole that was less appealing to him. In fact, at times he’d look at me with those big blue eyes and flutter his lashes and ask “Could I have more salad?”

I’m a compensated panelist for the Love Your Veggies campaign at Hidden Valley Ranch, so this kind of talk makes me beam. The whole reason that I wanted to be a part of the parent panel is because eating more veggies is important to me. I do want my kids to eat vegetables (and that goes for my husband and me too). But sometimes I get lazy or too much fast food or kid-friendly non-veggie cuisine like quesadillas creep nto the menu. So how can I say “no” to that request??

Whenever I’ve tracked my fruit and vegetable intake, during times when I was actively shooting for 8 – 10 servings a day, the only way I come anywhere close to that number is by eating a huge salad at least once a day.

My 13-year-old daughter has generally snacked her way up to dinnertime, so it’s all she can do to eat the main dish on her plate. She got tired of hearing me remind her  that she really should eat some salad, and the solution she offered was “I’ll take salad to school for lunch tomorrow.”

Well that worked for me! I packed up the leftovers into a large plastic container, put dressing in a separate small container, and lunch was ready for the next day. She’s taken salad several days this month. It’s economical and much healthier than what she’d eat if she bought her lunch, and even as compared to what I usually pack.

I much prefer fresh veggies to frozen or canned, and so our side dishes are usually a simple steamed vegetable, or increasingly a salad. The salad usually contains romaine lettuce, carrots, orange or red bell pepper, and grape tomatoes (for my son and me).

After Kyle began the “I love salad” routine at dinner, I learned that May was National Salad Month. With that in mind — as well as the receptiveness of my children to eating salads — I’ve made sure that they appear on my dinner table frequently. I don’t push it, and like I said, oftentimes the salad is ignored for the other dishes if certain family members aren’t as hungry, but I never mind leftovers. The hard work of washing and chopping is done and salad is ready for lunch the next day.

When I’m eating a salad for lunch, I generally add lots of protein in the form of canned beans (kidney or garbanzo), boiled egg, and/or chopped meat or cheese. If you like salads, but want some variety, be sure to check out the salad recipes in the Hidden Valley Ranch recipes section including one of my new favorites the Crunchy Pea Salad.

How many salads do you eat a week? Do salads make it to your dinner table or are they more of a lunchtime staple?



  1. says

    Great post Jen. Salad and high protein add-ons are the best. Sometimes, our kids love eating bell pepper as desert. Hey, it is better than sugary snacks.

    • says

      That’s a new one — bell peppers for dessert! I thought my kids were “weird” because they eat them at all!!

      After writing this up last night, I lived up to my words and had a great salad with the Laughing Cow cheese wedges mixed in. I’ve been on the go for the last month, so it was nice to have that good healthy lunch at home!

  2. martha c says

    That is just like going to the bookstore and the kids wanting books. Of course you can have a book, why would you ever say no to buying a book for your kid. I am refocusing on more veggies now that it is summer and I will be able to concentrate on it more! Go Salad!

  3. says

    Hello Jennifer,
    I enjoyed this post. The fact is that vegetables are really, really important for health, especially when you are a kid. But, I have to admit that i eat salads rarely. Somehow, meat is always my first choice, so, it seems that i just forget about this healthy part of meal. 10 servings a day is a mission impossible in my case.

    • says

      10 is a LOT, and even when I’m tracking them, I don’t know if I usually get to that, but if you make a big meal-size salad for lunch, that’s at least 3 – 4 servings with a cup of lettuce being one serving, and 1/2 cup of most other veggies, so that helps you get a lot closer!

  4. says

    I eat salad several times a week. But I discovered after wasting a lot of lettuce that I simply will not eat salad if I have to wash and cut up the lettuce first. Pre-washed, packaged lettuce has become my best friend. :-)

  5. says

    Twice a week at least, but when it’s harvest time for my lettuce, daily! There is no fixed schedule to eat salads, I am not really that conscious to have them in our diet except when I am reminded.

  6. says

    I used to serve a salad with every dinner, but have been lazy lately and have been mostly serving steamed brocolli. But, I should mix it up and get back to making some salads!

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