Liven Up Your Lunch With This Salad in a Jar


Here’s the situation—it’s 11:55 and you’re hungry. Starving, even.

You cannot stop thinking about lunch. Temptations abound; the takeout place around the corner is calling out its siren song of french fries and pizza by the slice.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to ignore that takeout siren song?

It’s easy to do if you’ve already packed a lunch that is not only nutrient dense, healthy, and delicious, but is also the prettiest lunch on the block!

These salads in jars are not only tasty and customizable to your preferences, they are also excellent make-ahead lunches.

They last about three days in the refrigerator, and once the quinoa is cooked and cooled, they take very little time to put together.

Go ahead and make a few, and turn your back on takeout temptations!


1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon dill
6-10 white mushrooms, sliced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 medium zucchini, chopped
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1-5 ounce package mixed baby greens, washed and patted dry


  • In a large saucepan, bring quinoa and water to boiling. Cover and reduce heat, simmering until liquid is all absorbed. Allow quinoa to cool completely. (NOTE: this can be done a day in advance.)
  • Whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, lemon juice, and dill. Divide vinaigrette among mason jars.
  • Add quinoa to the mason jars; next add the mushrooms and zucchini. Layer the chopped pepper and tomato on top. Finish with the greens at the very top—ensure the greens and vinaigrette are as far apart as possible.
  • This salad lasts up to three days in the fridge, so make ahead and enjoy your lunch to-go!

Yield: 4 large salads


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