Salads can usually be a good healthy low points, low calorie, and low fat option, and provide at least a serving or two of required daily fruits and vegetables. But, I tend to find most salads — except the good fattening ones — quite boring and uninspiring. Consequently, I try to avoid them as a main course when I am on Weight Watchers. In order to enjoy higher point dinners and an evening cocktail with my husband, I know that I have to keep my lunches really low in points when I am sticking to Weight Watchers. So, if I want to be successful on the plan, I can’t rule out salads anymore.
I was thrilled to come across this wonderful salad, a Cooking Light recipe, on MyRecipes.com. In addition to the beautiful vibrant colors (definitely not boring) of all those healthy vegetables, the recipe includes a leaner version of one of my favorite condiments — a spicy Thai peanut sauce. Just that sauce alone provided sufficient motivation to try this recipe (I’ve never made my own salad dressing before). If the peanut sauce turned out good, I could easily use it with a chicken satay or spring rolls, two dishes that by themselves are low in points, but whose sauces usually cause me to pass them by when I am on Weight Watchers.
So, I gave this salad a try for lunch on my very first day back on Weight Watchers, Monday, January 4th, and it was really good. Both the salad and the dressing tasted just as fresh when I had the leftovers for lunch a couple days later. The peanut sauce? Fantastic! A total keeper. I totally scored on my first attempt at making a salad dressing. Even my husband loved it.
I made just the sauce a couple weekends ago to accompany homemade spring rolls. Next time, I might add some grilled chicken to “beef” it up a bit more for a dinner salad. And we still need to try that satay.
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon chopped green onions
- 1 tablespoon reduced-fat peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha (hot chile sauce, such as Huy Fong)
- 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons dry-roasted peanuts
- 2 cups mixed baby salad greens
- ½ cup fresh bean sprouts
- 2 tablespoons vertically sliced red onion
- 2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
- 6 baby carrots, peeled
- 4 cherry tomatoes, quartered
- To prepare dressing, combine the first 8 ingredients in a blender; cover and process until smooth. Add peanuts; process 10 seconds.
- To prepare salad, divide greens and remaining ingredients evenly between 2 serving plates. Drizzle each salad with ¼ cup dressing.