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Insider’s Viewpoint: Guide to Jar Salads

Shake up the ordinary bed of greens with the latest trend in make-ahead meals—jar salads! Eating a salad a day is an effortless way to knock out several veggie servings all in one meal. Follow these tips to build a jar salad from the bottom up that will remain fresh and delicious for up to four days.

How to Build a Jar Salad


START with a layer of your favorite salad dressing. Choose an oil- and vinegar-based dressing or make your own vinaigrette using the ratio of three parts oil to 1 part vinegar, along with fresh herbs, Dijon mustard, shallots and salt-free seasonings.

ADD hearty-textured vegetables like kale, celery, carrots, bell peppers, whole tomatoes, broccoli, edamame and cauliflower that will stay crisp when marinating in the dressing.

LAYER in the beans, cooked whole-grains like pasta, rice, quinoa, farro or wheat berries or nuts and seeds. All add texture, fiber and a boost of vitamins and minerals to the finished salad.

FOLLOW with soft vegetables like zucchini and mushrooms or fruits like berries and melon, cheese, roasted chicken and deli turkey or ham.

FINISH it off with tender mixed greens, baby arugula, red or green romaine or baby spinach, seal with a lid and refrigerate.

Shake It Up!
When ready to eat, just shake it up to disperse the dressing, grab a fork and dig in!

Tips & Tricks
When using delicate or aromatic ingredients like avocados, hard-boiled eggs or tuna, add them the day that you plan to eat the salad.


Balsamic Rotini Salad in a Jar
Makes: 4 salads


  • 4 (32-ounce) glass mason jars
  • 7 cups kale, stems removed and chopped
  • ½ cup balsamic vinaigrette, plus more to taste
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chick peas, drained, rinsed and patted dry
  • ¾ cup sliced carrots
  • 8 ounces cubed roasted turkey breast or chicken, seasoned with 2 tsp. Italian seasoning and 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 ½ cups cooked whole-grain pasta
  • 1 small yellow bell pepper, diced
  • ¾ cup sun-dried tomatoes (not in oil), chopped
  • ¼ cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced
  • 2 ounces shaved Parmesan cheese


  1. In a 32-ounce glass jar with a lid, layer kale, balsamic vinaigrette, chick peas, carrots, seasoned turkey, cooked pasta, bell pepper, sun-dried tomatoes, olives and Parmesan cheese.
  2. Repeat with remaining jars.
  3. Seal lid tightly and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  4. Before serving, shake jar well to disperse the dressing.


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