Easy Salad Ideas & Salad Dressings for Kids

Give children a choice of low-fat dressings in which to dip their carrot, celery, cucumber, and zucchini sticks.

  • Vary the look of your pasta salads with a combination of pastas: wagon wheels, shells, twists, and elbows, all in the same salad!
  • Instead of pasta salad, try a brown rice or barley salad.
  • To save time in making pasta salad, use thawed frozen vegetables.  (There’s no need to cook; they’re blanched already).
  • Try an antipasto lunch.  Arrange on a small plate: chunks of tuna, wedge of hard cooked egg, slices of beet, halved cherry tomatoes, cooked green beans, cooked potato slices.  Include a small cup with low-fat or fat-free Italian dressing.
  • Add color and extra vitamins to coleslaw with red cabbage (as well as white), green pepper dices, and grated carrot.

Salad Dressings

If you do not have packets of ready-made salad dressing to offer, some easy ways to prepare salad dressing are offered below!

  • Make a quick Russian dressing with low-fat/fat-free mayonnaise and catsup, and­ serve it over cut-up lettuce.
  • Use lemon juice instead of vinegar when making a homemade Italian dressing.  It tastes less harsh to children.
  • Make a quick and tasty French dressing in the blender with tomato soup, onion, sugar, vinegar, and oil.
  • Bottled low-fat coleslaw dressing makes a great-tasting white French dressing.
  • Make a quick ranch dressing: 1 cup each of low-fat/fat-free mayonnaise, low-fat/fat-free yogurt, low-fat buttermilk; flavor with oregano and dried parsley.
  • Make a honey dressing for pieces of fruit or to drizzle over a fruit salad: mix low-fat/fat-free yogurt and honey, and add orange juice concentrate for flavor.