Are you looking for a new, portable lunch option? Mason jar salads are the way to go. The concept involves layering all the ingredients of a salad into a Mason jar, and then storing them in your fridge until you're ready to eat. However, assembling the salads can get a little tricky.
If they aren't put together correctly, Mason jar salads can turn soggy quickly. By the same token, if you make them properly, they can last for days in the fridge. Take Sunday night to assemble multiple salads, and you'll have a week's worth of convenient grab-and-go meals in pre-packed containers.
So, take your favorite ingredients, grab some empty jars, and check out our tips for how to make a mason jar salad that lasts.
- To make a mason jar salad, you'll need a mason jar, salad dressing and your favorite salad ingredients. We used a wide-mouth, quart-size jar, which will produce a large salad. For a smaller salad, used a pint-size jar.
- Slice, dice and prep your favorite salad items. You can use a mix of fruits, vegetables, seeds, grains, croutons and more. Be creative!
- Start by placing your salad dressing at the bottom of the jar.
- Pour in as little or as much as you usually put in your salads.
- The dressing should sit at the bottom (pictured above)
- The next layer should be comprised of heartier vegetables. These will hold up when submerged in the dressing, and depending on how long you leave them in the fridge, some may even come out with a light pickled effect. Carrots, beans, cucumbers and radishes are good choices.
- Keep layering the heavier veggies. This will separate your leafy greens from the dressing, preventing them from getting soggy.
- The next layer will be your lettuce, which takes up most of the space in the jar. It's okay to stuff them in; just don't push down too hard, as leafy greens are delicate.
- Your final layer should be the lighter items. We used corn here, but you can go with nuts, seeds, croutons or dried fruit.
- Finally, twist the lid on tight. When you're ready to eat, simply pour out into a bowl and toss gently. You can store these salads for 4-5 days and they will stay as fresh as the day you made them.
This article is part of Mix It Up, an editorial series created in collaboration with AOL's Kitchen Daily and Huffington Post. It is dedicated to making the lives of mothers easier through articles, videos and slideshows focused on simple and creative solutions to everyday challenges. From healthy recipes to exciting ideas for a more balanced lifestyle, this section aims to become a resource for moms everywhere.