- Chopped salads are an easy and versatile meal packed with vitamins and minerals, dietitian Sammi Brondo said.
- Brondo likes to include tomato and avocado in her salad for fiber and healthy fats.
- She said mozzarella is a great way to add protein to a salad without cooking meat.
Chopped salads are an easy and nutritious meal to make that don’t require cooking, which can help keep the home cool during hot summer months, dietitian Sammi Brondo told Insider.
Brondo said that her chopped salad recipe includes foods like tomatoes, cucumbers, and avocado, and is packed with fiber, protein, and healthy fats.
She said she likes chopped salad because she feels refreshed and full after eating it, and the recipe is versatile so she can swap out ingredients with whatever she has available in her fridge.
Brondo said her salad recipe was inspired by TikTok videos
Brondo told Insider that she first saw chopped salad recipes with scooping chips on TikTok, and then decided to create her own version with tomatoes, mozzarella, and avocado.
Her standard recipe is:
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 2 mini cucumbers
- 1 red bell pepper
- 2 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 avocado
- 1 tablespoon pesto
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Pita chips
- Chop cherry tomatoes into quarters. Cut the cucumbers in half lengthwise and then into thin slices.
- Finely chop the bell pepper. Cut the mozzarella cheese into small cubes. Dice the avocado.
- In a bowl, add the chopped vegetables, mozzarella cheese and avocado. Add pesto and drizzle olive oil on top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Mix everything together well. Add pita chips to the bowl and use them to scoop the salad.
This salad is particularly good for the summer months, Brondo said, because it’s packed with hydrating vegetables like cucumbers and tomatoes. Summer is peak time to eat tomatoes too, since they are in season.
If you don’t want to cook meat, Brondo recommends adding mozzarella cheese to the salad for protein. She also said fiber from the vegetables and chips can keep you feeling fuller for longer. Fiber helps regulate appetite and blood sugar levels by feeding the microbes that live in our large intestine, dietitian Jo Cunningham previously told Insider.
The salad also includes healthy fats, like olive oil and avocado, which help us absorb the nutrients from the vegetables better, according to Brondo. Both olive oil and avocados primarily contain monounsaturated fats, which the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends over saturated fats because they promote “good” cholesterol in the body.