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Delicious Vegan and Vegetarian Make Ahead Salads!

March 25th, 2016

As always, I had a wonderful time on Better Kansas City on KCTV 5!  For this show, I made delicious vegan and vegetarian salads that would be perfect for your Easter celebration or any celebration for that matter!  If there is anything I have learned while prepping for parties, it’s to make as many dishes ahead of time as possible.  I can’t tell you how much easier it makes things on the day of the event.  These salads are perfect for just that!  Each one is made from delicious ancient grains that are rich, filling, and good for you.  And if the fact that they are delicious and healthy is not enough for you,  what if I told you that the longer they stayed in the refrigerator, the better they taste?!  So now you see why I LOVE these salads and hope you will too!

Lisa Teachman and Arina Lanis

Lisa and I after our segment. Love her!!!

Quinoa, Barley, and Orzo salads

Santa Fe Quinoa Salad (lowest bowl), Mint and Green Beans Barley Salad (middle bowl), and Feta and Mint Orzo salads (top bowl) (all are on the left) and Santa Fe Quinoa Salsa with chips and bread (right)


Santa Fe Quinoa Salad 
You can't get more perfect than Quinoa, With its mild flavor, light crunch
and impressive protein content, quinoa is the perfect gluten-free and
non-GMO substitute for pasta, rice or couscous. The below salad is fabulous
for any party and can be prepared ahead and stored for up to three days or

Serves 6-8 

Six cups of cooked Quinoa
1 can of black beans
1 cup of cilantro 
1 cup of frozen corn or one can of canned corn
1 cup of red pepper (chopped)
1/4 cup of chopped red onion
1 cup of chopped tomatoes
1 avocado

1/2 cup Olive oil
2 Garlic Cloves Minced
1 teaspoon of cumin
2 tblsp of lime juice
1 tsp honey
salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl combine your black beans, red pepper, corn, onion, cilantro, and
cooked quinoa.

Whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, garlic, cumin, pepper and honey
together and toss over bean and corn mixture.

Refrigerator for at least 15-20 minutes

When ready to serve, add your tomato, cilantro, and avocado. Gently toss and
combine well.

If you plan on refrigerating this salad for a couple of day, leave out the
tomatoes and avocados until right before serving.

You can serve this just as a salad or add just a bit of quinoa and instead
serve the "salad" with crackers or chips, more like a dip. 

Orzo and Feta Salad with Lemon and Mint

Orzo is a delicious pasta which takes this spring and summer salad to a
whole new level.  Orzo is simple to prepare, is small in size, and has a
wonderful ability to soak in flavors from other ingredients.  It's a perfect
addition to soups, pilafs, and SALADS!!

Serves 2-4

4 cups of cooked orzo
1 cup finely diced yellow bell pepper
2 finely diced large cucumbers (remove seeds)
4-6 oz of Feta cheese
4 tbsp minced fresh mint leaves

1/3 cup of minced shallots
1/4 cup of Olive oil
3 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
1 minced garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon of finely grated lemon zest
salt and pepper to taste

Combine the ingredients for the dressing... olive oil, shallots, lemon
juice, garlic, lemon zest and salt and pepper.  Mix until well blended.

For the salad combine cooked orzo, yellow bell pepper, cucumbers, mint, and
feta cheese.

Pour salad dressing over salad and toss well.  You can serve immediately or
for an even more intense flavor, let sit for 1-2 hours at room temperature.

If you plan on making this salad a few days before eating, leave the mint
off until right before serving.

Spring and Summer Barley Salad with Mint and Green Beans

Whole grain barley is a healthy high-fiber, high-protein whole grain
boasting numerous health benefits. When cooked, barley has a chewy texture
and nutty flavor, similar to brown rice. Although soup is the most popular
way to eat barley, it was wonderful for salads as well.  

4 cups of cooked barley
1 cup of green beans (steamed and cut into one inch pieces)
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 shallots (minced)
3 (about 1 cup) ounces white mushrooms (stems discarded and sliced thin).
2 fresh lemons (juiced)
2 tbsp minced fresh mint
2 tbsp minced fresh flat leaf parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Heat 3 tbsp of olive oi in a small pan and cook the shallots unitl softened.
Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until mushrooms have given off their
liquid and it has evaporated. Add lemon juice and parsley. Salt and pepper
to taste and let cool.

When mixture is cool, pour over the barley and set aside.  Whisk together
the remaining olive oil with the juice from one lemon. Pour the mixture over
barley and toss everything until well blended.

Artichoke and Prosciutto Salad

October 29th, 2015


Delicious and unique! This salad is a great treat for brunch, lunch, or dinner!


  • 1 can/jar Marinated Artichoke Hearts
  • 4 small tomatoes (yellow, red, or both)
  • 2 oz Prosciutto
  • 1 large handful of basil leaves
  • 1-2 cups Mixed greens
  • Dressing
  • 3 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove crushed
  • 1/2 tsp mild mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
  • salt and pepper to taste


Thoroughly drain and cut the artichoke hearts into quarters and place in a serving bowl. Cut the tomatoes into wedges and cut prosciutto into thin strips. Place a bed of greens in a bowl and add the tomatoes, artichokes and prosciutto. Keeping a few basil springs whole for garnishing, tear the remainder of the leaves into small pieces and add to the bowl containing the other salad ingredients.To make dressing, place all the ingredients in a screw top jar and shake vigorously until they are well blended. Pour over salad, garnish with basil and enjoy with crusty bread!


Smoked Chicken and Cranberry Arugula Salad

October 26th, 2015
This salad is perfect for anytime. It is bursting with flavor and a treat for anyone who likes a salad bidding to be a meal!


  • 1 medium smoked chicken (available at any grocery store)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 head lettuce
  • 1 bag arugula
  • To Make Dressing
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp walnut oil
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh mixed herbs (a mixture of fresh herbs such as parsley, lemon thyme, mint, etc.)
  • Salt and Pepper


Divide and carve the chicken cutting to make bite sized pieces for the salad. Cover the divided and cut chicken and store in refrigerator.Put the cranberries in a bowl of water and let stand, covered, for 30-45 minutes.

Meanwhile, blanche the frozen peas and refresh them under cold water.

Slice or cube the avocados and squeeze lemon juice on them to prevent discoloration.

Combine the lettuce and arugula and toss with avocados and peas. Add the chicken.

Combine all the dressing ingredients and shake well. Add salt and pepper to taste and shake well again until all the ingredients are well blended and taste the way you want.

Drain the cranberries and mix them with the dressing, then pour over salad and serve immediately.

Simple Tossed Salad

September 30th, 2015


Simplicity is key… mixed greens, cucumbers, tomatoes, and shredded carrots make this salad a quick and easy combination that everyone will love!

  • 1 cucumber (sliced)
  • 2 cups mixed greens
  • 12 grape tomatoes (yellow or red)
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots


Place the bed of mixed greens in a bowl, add sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and shredded carrots. Salt well and set aside for five minutes. Then, drizzle olive oil and toss. Your salad is finished!!!

Melon, Turkey Sausage & Artichoke Salad

September 28th, 2015


If you are looking for a salad that has a combination of interesting and delicious ingredients, this salad is FOR YOU!!  This Melon, Turkey Sausage & Artichoke Salad, is a perfect blend of hearty, fruity, and salty!  The addition of the Terragon is a wonderful little surprise at the end.  If you love all these ingredients, don’t hesitate for a minute to combine them!


  • 1 can/jar Marinated artichokes
  • 2 tbso Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cantaloupe
  • 1 pkg turkey sausage
  • fresh tarragon
  • Dressing
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp prepared mustard


To prepare lemon, cut in half and scoop the seeds out with a spoon. Cut the flesh into cubes and set aside. Remove the marinated artichoke hearts from jar and drain. Remove sausage from package and slice. Heat olive oil in a pan and add sausage. Fry until sausage is ready and allow to cool a few minutes. In a bowl, combine artichokes with melon, and sausage. Sprinkle with a generous amount of tarragon. For dressing place all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together. Pour dressing over the prepared salad and toss well. Garnish with more tarragon and enjoy.



Simple Greek Salad

September 25th, 2015



  • 1 cucumbers
  • 1/2 cup black olives
  • 1/2 cup green olives
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes
  • 4-5 oz feta cheese
  • 1 stalk celery
  • Dressing
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp White wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove chopped
  • pinch of red pepper
  • pinch of dried oregano


Cut cucumbers in half and spoon out the seeds. Slice both halves of cucumbers. Slice celery. In a bowl, combine cucumber slices, celery, black olives, green olives, tomatoes, and feta cheese. Set aside.Prepare dressing. Combine all ingredients in small bowl and whisk to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) You can also use ready-made Italian dressing. Toss dressing and salad in a bowl and serve. Can be refrigerated for up to one day.

Cucumber Tomato and Basil Salad

September 24th, 2015
You don’t need a lot of ingredients or fancy dressings to make a delicious salad. And you certainly don’t always need mixed greens! Here is a great 3 ingredient salad which you sprinkle with salt and olive oil and enjoy… without the hassle of complicated ingredients and store-bought dressing!


  • 1 Cucumber (sliced)
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes (sliced in half)
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil
  • Dressing
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil


In a bowl, add cucumber and tomato slices. Salt well and set aside for 5-10 minutes. Then sprinkle generously with olive oil, toss and enjoy!

Colorful Green Bean Salad

September 23rd, 2015


This colorful salad is easy to throw together and delicious!!


  • 1 lb green beans
  • 1/2 cup radish slices
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes (yellow and red)
  • 3 oz feta cheese
  • Dressing
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


Trim beans but leave them whole. Cook for 3-4 minutes in salted boiling water. Drain well, refresh under cold running water and drain. Slice tomatoes in half and add to salad. Add radishes and sprinkle feta all over salad. Drizzle a bit of olive oil on top of the salad, then some balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Also delicious if you mix a little bit of honey with your balsamic vinegar and drizzle on top.

Avocado Caprese Salad

September 20th, 2015
avocadocapresesaladIf you like Caprese salads, you will love this!


  • 2 cups mixed greens
  • 1/2 cup sliced red grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sliced yellow grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup avocados
  • 1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese Pearls
  • Dressing
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper


Create a bed of mixed greens in your plate. In sections, add the cheese, avocado, red tomatoes and yellow tomatoes. Sprinkle with extra virgin olive oil and then balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste and either toss or leave as is and enjoy!

Citrus Caprese Salad

September 20th, 2015
This salad is absolutely incredible!! It’s wonderful anytime of the year and even better  with salmon or chicken. It is the PERFECT party salad!


  • 1 medium onion
  • 4 large oranges
  • 4 medium tomatoes
  • 1 pound buffalo mozzarella cheese
  • 1 bunch Cilantro
  • 6 tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Peel onion and slice it into thin rings. Place in a bowl and squeeze the juice of one orange and one lemon into the bowl. leave to marinate for 30 minutes.Remove the skin and pith from the remaining 3 oranges and slice into six or eight wheels. Remove all seeds.

Slice the tomatoes into 6-8 wheels as well.

Slice the mozzarella cheese into 6-8 wheels

Assemble the salad by alternating the orange, onion, cheese, and tomato.

Sprinkle cilantro all over the salad, drizzle olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.