If you’re ready to ride the detox salad train, you’ll need to arm yourself with a number of go-to recipes that you can keep on hand that don’t use a lot of off-the-wall ingredients. You want to be able to quickly assemble these salads before you get the chance to talk yourself out of it and eat something less healthy. While many salads can have a detoxifying effect, the ones you find below were especially chosen for their ability to clean you out a bit.
The Concept of the Detox Salad
A detox salad is simply a mixture of ingredients that have detoxifying properties on the body. Many times these ingredients are finely chopped, which makes them easier to chew up and digest. You may find that the ingredients will be high in fiber, encouraging your digestive system to do its job. Some ingredients may help to cleanse the liver or kidneys. Still others may simply be nutrient dense to help the body restock on key vitamins and nutrients. Each detox salad is different, with its own unique approach to helping the body.
Photo: Dinner with Aura
1. Rainbow Salad with Roasted Squash– Aside from being pretty to look at, this detox salad has you roasting squash and then combining it with a colorful array of vegetables that are sure to keep you satisfied for a long time, while also providing massive benefits to many parts of your body. The broccoli and mixed greens alone have you covered, but the squash puts things over the top, with a healthy portion of fiber. Notice how you’re leaving the skin on the squash so you’re getting the extra nutrients. Don’t worry, the roasting process will soften it up so it’s al dente.
2. Simple Detox Salad– This might look like an ordinary salad at first glance, but all of its component ingredients will be hard at work giving your body the TLC it needs, and a cleanse it may be overdue for. The biggest mover and shaker on your plate would likely be the Brussels sprouts, delivering fiber as well as vitamins and nutrients and helping the body to purge itself of toxins. To balance things nicely, there is fresh avocado added to the top. This gives the body antioxidants, healthy fats, potassium, and additional fiber. This salad will definitely help you feel good!
3. Winter Detox Salad– Specifically designed for those winter months when it’s a little more gray outside, colder, and your body tends to switch to “retain” mode. You want to encourage it to keep a healthy digestive flow going so you don’t accumulate a lot of toxins. Chances are you’ll be more sedentary during these months, will get less fresh air, and could stand the chance of being a haven for various toxic substances. The kale is an amazing vegetable and tastes great while offering plenty of positive benefits. Paired with items like pomegranate arils and parsley, you’re doing right by your body.
4. Quinoa, Apple and Almond Salad– Here’s an interesting concept for a detoxifying salad. You don’t always need to use vegetables to produce a cleansing effect in the body. Take the goodness of quinoa, apples, and almonds on their own and you’re doing pretty good. Get them all in one meal and you’re doing great. The quinoa will help to fill you up, the apple has its own reputation for being a nutrient-dense food and is also a superfood, along with almonds. In fact, all three of the main ingredients are located on our ultimate list of superfoods. Bonus!
5. Broccoli and Cauliflower Detox Salad– Since broccoli and cauliflower are in the same family of cruciferous vegetables, they have similar benefits to the body while tasting somewhat different from each other. This gives your taste buds a bit of complexity, and means a double serving of vitamins and nutrients. Carrots and poppy seeds help to round things out, and there are also some ingredients like cranberries that you can skip if you don’t have any on hand. You don’t disrupt the healthy nature of this salad and will still be getting a powerful kick to your system.
Photo: The Sweets Life
6. Shredded Vegetable Detox Salad– Here’s a salad that shreds everything up so that it’s all mixed together and easier to chew. When you’re talking about things like broccoli and cauliflower, that’s a good things as these veggies are notorious for taking a lot of crunching power. The recommendation of making a big batch and eating on it for the next few days is a good one, and to overcome the dryness they suggest drizzling olive oil and lemon juice, two additional ingredients that will help the detox cause, not hurt it. Overall this salad makes a great food item to have around anytime you need a pick me up.
7. Gluten-Free Detox Salad– If you’re following a gluten-free diet it’s essential to make sure that you choose detoxing options that stay true to this goal. Many of the salads on our list are gluten-free, but sometimes they do manage to put a gluten item in the mix. This recipe is also a good one for vegans, and doesn’t use any animal byproducts. The main ingredients being used here are broccoli and cauliflower, and as you’ll come to see these are two popular ingredients for detox salads. Broccoli is a powerful cleanser, and cauliflower is right behind it. To make sure this tastes good they’ve added wild blueberries. Yum!
8. Crave-Worthy Kale Salad– Perhaps you’ve been telling yourself to eat more kale, but have been short on ways for how to get more of it in to your system. Here’s a recipes that features kale as the star attraction, with a supporting cast of edamame and cucumber. Cucumber is a great addition because it’s one of the most hydrating foods on the planet, and balances out the taste of the kale as well. To top it all off they’ve included avocado, so you’re getting a nice flavor combination for your taste buds, but also additional nutrients and healthy fats.
9. Lemony Asparagus & Tomato Salad– We tend to think that a salad needs to have several ingredients in order to qualify as a salad. But some of the fancier salads out there rely on only a select few ingredients that are meant to combine well together. In the case of this detox salad, it’s using asparagus as the main ingredient, with tomatoes backing it up. Olive oil and lemon keep it simple but also add additional nutrition, and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese can be omitted if you want to keep this vegan and dairy free.
10. Detox Salad with Roasted Beets and Pumpkin Seeds– The roasted beets is what’s doing the trick with this detoxer. Beets are gaining in mainstream popularity due to their healthy nature, but the key is that you have to buy raw beets and then cook them, don’t use the pickled variety that is so common. Pumpkin seeds are also a wonderful food, and since it’s all sitting on a bed of greens you’re getting added nutrition and fiber. You could even serve this to guests as a regular salad, it looks so nice. The goat’s cheese can be omitted if you’d like, as it’s not the most detoxifying of foods.
Photo: Eats Well with Others
11. Garlic-Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale Wheatberry Salad– This is one salad that has a lot going on, and all of it is great for the body. The combination of squash and kale is nice, and the way that each ingredient is individually prepared gives this the taste that you’re really going to appreciate. For example, the squash is prepared with additional detoxifying ingredients like sea salt, olive oil, and garlic. The kale gets a sprinkling of lemon juice. It’s also incorporating pomegranate arils into the mix, which have plenty of antioxidants. This salad does a great job of breaking the monotony of greens and veggies.
12. Berry Salad with Honey Poppyseed Dressing– The berries in this salad are a great addition to any detox program because they are high in fiber, low in sugar, and contain a great deal of antioxidants to help you flush toxins. This salad also has avocado and pineapple over a bed of greens, so you get the best of both worlds by adding fruits and veggies to your diet. You can even throw this one in a mason jar for an easy salad that you can take to lunch the next day. Prepare the dressing a head of time and you’re good to go!
13. Everyday Detox Salad– Detoxing doesn’t have to be a one-time event, you can take steps to feed your body what it needs on a daily basis. They’ve concocted a fresh-tasting ginger tahini dressing for this salad that will make it something that your taste buds will ask you for daily. They’re using kale to form the foundation of the salad itself, a smart choice considering it’s one of the most nutrient-dense veggies around. Brussels sprouts and carrots only add to the equation and provide additional flavor to boot.
14. Happy Salad– The name says it all on this one, and you’ll be working to make your body happy as well.T his salad boasts and impressive mix of ingredients, and the way they’re suggesting you prepare this means that you’ll have more energy and more regularity, which can really work wonders on your mood. Try it and see if it really does make a difference in how you feel. Compared to many other foods billed as good mood food this one really might help you have a more positive outlook on life.
15. Day After Detox Salad– This is a salad that was designed to be eaten after a big night of celebrating, or after an event where you overindulged, perhaps at a wedding or other big happening. In this case it was for the day after Thanksgiving, so the creator must have overeaten and wanted something to get back on track. It’s a pretty standard detox salad, but it does contain a unique ingredient that we rarely found in our research: apple cider vinegar. This would provide not only a tart taste, but will serve to help create healthy intestinal flora.
Photo: Running to the Kitchen
16. Pumped Up Kale Salad with Hummus Dressing– Here’s another detox recipe that has kale as the base. It’s not surprising, since kale has been gaining traction on spinach for being widely regarded as the healthiest green food you can eat. It’s one of the few salads on our list that is using dressing, but they’ve created it in a way that keeps to the goal of detoxing the body. By making it a hummus dressing you are getting the goodness of chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, and pepper. It serves the purpose of dressing by adding serious flavor, without the guilt.
17. Hot Spinach Salad– Who says a salad has to be cold? Here’s a salad that pushes the boundaries of conventional salad wisdom and has you heating up spinach. Now, we all know spinach likes to wilt and shrink if you overdo it, so be sure to just add a bit of warmth to it without actually cooking it down. Pine nuts always go good with spinach, and they have it so you’re getting tartness from dried cranberries, and a delicious balsamic dressing to go with it. This requires you to use a bunch of spinach, since no matter how careful you are it’s going to shrink down.
18. Citrus, Greens and Seeds Salad– Citrus fruits have a natural cleansing reaction for the body, and it’s no wonder that they take center stage in this offering. In fact all of the ingredients featured here will do your body good, and they’re really adding to the mix by giving you walnuts to crunch on. The contrast between the crunchy, poppy seed dressing, and the soft and sour citrus means that your taste buds will be left guessing what’s next. If you’re not really a fan of leafy greens, this is a way to sneak them in as the taste of the fruit trumps the taste of the greens.
19. Detox Slaw– Here’s a slaw that thinks it’s a salad, or a salad that things it’s a slaw. Either way you’re getting a plentiful amount of veggies including two different kinds of cabbage. Slaw is a great way to get your cabbage intake up, and this is one veggie that you simply must start getting more of. A bona fide superfood, cabbage consistently ranks in most top ten lists for healthy foods. As far as appearances go, they haven’t shredded this up as much as you’re probably used to seeing in a slaw. The ingredients are left rather large so your teeth have some work to do.
20. Easy Tabbouleh Salad– Here’s a nice intro to making Tabbouleh, although they’ve taken some artistic license with it and it’s not exactly up to traditional standards. But as far as a fast and fun way to make something that looks and tastes like Tabbouleh, this is it. The best part is that it’s using healthy ingredients like tomatoes, onions, and parsley, and helping your digestive system with a natural fiber source from black eyed peas. Overall your body is getting plenty of vitamins and minerals, and you’re not sacrificing taste so you’ll be more likely to eat it more often.
You may also be interested in our list of 20 detoxifying foods.
Photo: Good Food
21. Raw Detox Salad– When you make things raw you tend to keep it simple, and that’s what’s going on here with this detox salad that uses only a few choice ingredients, but contains everything you need for a burst of vitamins and nutrients. Pay extra attention to the raw beets being used. Don’t skimp and just by the canned or jarred beets. Those have been picked and preserved and don’t have the essential nutrients that their raw counterparts contain. To help it all go down they’ve included olive oil as a sort of dressing so you can enjoy this and feel the benefits of raw foods.
22. Beet Salad– So somebody must have realized how healthy beets are and decided to push things to the max and make an entire salad with that as the base. The addition of cucumbers is a great idea, because these are mostly water, so it will help to keep this salad moist and delicious. Notice they’re not using pickled beets, but they do give a nice tip on how you can buy pre-cooked beets without going through the hassle of buying them raw and cooking them yourself. We always love when they add avocado to a salad, as it provides a delicate and subtle flavor enhancement and amazing nutrients and fats.
23. Seriously Delicious Detox Salad– This is one detox salad you’ll want to share with your family and friends. It’s a veritable smorgasbord of veggies, and your body will be thank you for the onslaught of nutrients and minerals it needs for proper functioning. Kale, cilantro, and red cabbage really round out this salad both in terms of flavor, and nutritional punch. They suggest a carrot ginger dressing to go with this, but you may want to simply use a little olive oil to moisten things up.
24. From Farm to Table Detox Salad– This recipe suggests using the freshest ingredients you can find, and for them it meant buying them right from the farm. If you don’t have that luxury available maybe you can wait for a farmer’s market to come to town. Barring that you can buy the ingredients from the organic section of your supermarket, and opt for the ones that are locally grown if possible. The salad itself is simple enough, big leafy greens form the base layer, and you’ve got some fruit added for a sweet and sour kick. The use of walnuts gives it a crunch and some healthy fats.
25. Broccoli, Cashew, Apple and Pear Salad– Here’s an attractive mix of a fruit and a vegetable both in terms of how it looks, and what it does for your health. We all know we should be eating more broccoli, but sometimes it can be hard coming up with ways that entire us to eat it. By pairing with with a pear, you’re helping it taste better, and since the broccoli is raw you’re also adding some necessary juice to the mix so that it’s easy to eat. And the pear is no nutritional slacker, so you’re getting a compounded nutritional benefit here.
Photo: Food Wine Thyme
26. Best Detox Salad With Lemon-Ginger Dressing– For those that don’t want to give up their sweets while detoxing, here’s a way to have natural sugar work for you. This salad does a nice job of mixing in just enough fruits with veggies so that you’re still getting phytonutrients from the greens, and you’re getting antioxidants and natural sugars from the fruit. When paired with a lemon-ginger dressing, this salad is one that’s sure to flush toxins right out of the body!
27. Raw Cauliflower “Couscous” Salad– Be sure to do the air quotes when you mention this salad, because there isn’t actually any couscous in it. The creator of it noticed that the shredded cauliflower in it resembles and feels like couscous when you eat it. Not that there’s anything wrong with couscous, but if you’re trying to detox cauliflower is the better way to go. Olives, and capers, and hemp seeds, oh my! This salad has such a unique assortment of wonderful foods that your mouth and your body will say thank you and you’ll surely be returning to this as your go-to detoxing meal.
28. Inner Goddess Detox Salad– Guys, you don’t have to be turned away by the name of this salad, you can eat it too and reap just as many benefits. The way they’re keeping everything fresh and raw makes this one good looking salad, and also a big boost of nutrients for the body. Even though it may look simple they’re using a comprehensive approach to what your body really craves on a cellular level, including raw almonds for healthy fats, and fresh kale for it’s unique flavor and list of health benefits.
29. Shaved Apple, Fennel and Celery Salad– The presentation on this is amazing, and if you have five-star tastes then you might get a kick out of eating this. By shaving the apple you completely change its appearance, and also make it easier to chomp up and swallow down. The addition of fennel and celery is pure genius, and this is one recipe that you can try if you typically shy away from fennel. Celery has hydrating benefits for the body, the apple has its own host of benefits, and the fennel is like the icing on the cake.
30. Winter Detox Salad– Even though it’s been tagged as a wintertime salad you can really enjoy this any time of the year, and you may want to once you see what it contains. This is such a unique assortment of ingredients, each bite should be a different taste sensation. You’ve got pomegranate, which serves as a nice contrast to the kale that’s in here. It also contains quinoa, which has been making the news as a superfood on its own. The use of walnuts gives you a good dose of healthy fats to help absorb your fat-soluble vitamins.
Photo: Turntable Kitchen
31. Watermelon, Ricotta Salata and Sumac Salad– You don’t often see watermelon used in a traditional leafy salad like this, and it’s sort of a hybrid between a fruit salad and a regular green salad. Watermelon has tons of benefits for the body, and is a hydrating food with all of the water it gets from its namesake. This also means that you’ll be getting a fair bit of sugar from it, but the phytonutrients from the leafy greens should balance things out. You can lose the ricotta if you’re also dieting, but it won’t hamper your detoxing efforts much.
32. Roasted Pumpkin Pomegranate Salad– It’s interesting to note that you don’t really need a pumkin for this recipe, although it makes a great choice if you can get your hands on one. You can sub out butternut squash if you want. If you do get a pumpkin be sure to save its seeds because there are plenty of recipes on this list that incorporate pumpkin seeds. The smell of roasting pumpkin may make a believer out of you, and putting it together with pomegranates is a wise choice that provides you with healthy amounts of fiber and antioxidants.
33. Roasted Squash and Asparagus Salad– Here is a nice pairing of squash and asparagus that will wondering if you are actually detoxing. But the fiber contained in the squash, and the astringent effects of the asparagus mean that you’ll be covering your nutritional bases in addition to having something that tastes great to eat. The soft nature of well-roasted squash is a nice counter to the crunchy and rough asparagus spears. The avocado rounds things off with its unique texture, flavor, and healthy attributes.
34. Back to Square One Detox Salad– The beauty of this salad is that it’s not a very rigid recipe, and she encourages you to use your own creation along with the special dressing she’s devised. Although you may want to take a page out of her notebook when it comes to salad making, since they ended up using kale, apples, and mushrooms, all of which help the body to remove impurities. The secret is in the sauce, as they say, and this one is a nice gingery carrot combo that will wake up your taste buds and distract them from all the nutrients being consumed.
35. Strawberry Mache Salad– This is using mâche as the base ingredient, commonly known as corn salad. This is a green that provides it’s own amount of nutrients, and they’ve gone ahead and added strawberries to the mix. We don’t typically think of strawberries as being a nutrition powerhouse, but as long as you’re getting the real thing, not adding a bunch of sugar to it, and keeping your portion sizes in check, strawberries have a good amount of nutrients and antioxidants and can’t be overlooked just because it’s one of the more common artificial flavors and candies.
Key Points to Remember When Making a Detox Salad
These recipes can serve as idea spawners, and you can feel free to play around with ingredients as you see fit. The thing that you’ll want to stick to is not to dilute these nutritious vegetables by putting anything that will serve to detox you on the salad. Resist the urge to drown it in salad dressing, or add things to it that don’t have any health benefit to the body. As long as you stick to using natural ingredients from the Earth that are as unprocessed as possible, you really can’t go wrong.