I eat a lot of salad.

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One question I get over and over again on this blog is: Does a salad really fill you up?

And the answer is unequivocally, yes. But not just any old salad. To tame an appetite like mine, it must have certain things. Here are my filing salad must-haves

1. Size: large – that tub up there was my lunch today. You know those plastic containers that hold something like 5lbs of spinach leaves, that is my bowlA salad in a cereal bowl? That wouldn’t even put a dent in my appetite.

2. More than lettuce – lettuce is fine. But 10lbs of lettuce is like what…10 calories? It needs to have bulk. A few of my favorites:

  • avocados
  • peppers
  • raisins
  • roasted vegetables
  • sweet potatoes (any squash, really)
  • cucumbers
  • chickpeas
  • potatoes
  • nuts
  • seeds
  • croutons

3. Dressing – oil and vinegar just don’t cut it for me. I need a lot of flavor and some heartiness. I usually add almond butter or peanut butter to my salad dressings because I love the taste and it bumps up that bulk factor.

4. Make is special – I think part of the hurdle (for me) in getting  a salad to fill me up is mental. It can easily feel like I’m depriving myself if I don’t make it special. Things like a hunk of bread on the side, roasted almonds, wonton strips, homemade croutons – I need these special items to make a salad feel like a meal. Otherwise my brain tells me to eat a piece of pie afterwards.

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So there you have it. Make it big, make it bulky, and make it special.

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