3 Primal Kitchen Mason Jar Salads with the Paleo Cowgirl!
Want to know a secret? I like simple.
And by that, of course, I mean simple labor in the kitchen while cooking. Because, if we are being honest, who actually has time to cook every single meal, every single day. For those that do, please tell me your secret! I’m a working mother of three growing girls and a wife to a cowboy who loves his fulfilling meals. Trying to feed them all each meal, while trying to choose the best ingredients can be tough! Which is why I love mason jar salads. They’re ridiculously quick and easy to make. Stack them in your fridge, or throw them in your bag or backpack and out the door you go! That simple!
Here’s the thing…even though I try to eat as healthy as possible while also trying to provide my family with the best ingredients that fuels their body for the better- when our fridge or pantry doesn’t have the healthier option, poor food choices are made, and the convenience monster wins. I’m guilty of it myself! This is why Mason Jar Salads helps me solve just that — glorious healthy and already prepared food sitting in our fridge, just waiting to be devoured. Yum!
First off, I love mason jars! In Texas, we use them to drink water, iced coffee, and of course, tea. I have come to find that they are also great for storing leftovers in the fridge and most recently, my favorite uses for Mason Jars- meal prep! So visually appealing. They just look tasty. Even better, the freshness and flavor within each salad is simply amazing!
Mason Jar Salads combine just about everything I love. This solution is cute, functional, and helps me keep my portions under control.
This week, I made three different salads with some of my favorite ingredients. When prepping for the salads, I always try to mix textures and flavors by choosing a smart combo of ingredients. Ideally, I have a filling protein, something salty and crunchy, and something sweet and/or tangy in my jar. See for yourself!
Let’s Check Out the Salads:
- Bacon & Avocado Oil Salad
This salad combines Pederson’s Farms No Sugar Bacon with apple, cucumber, celery, romaine, almonds, lemon juice and a couple of teaspoons of one of my favorite toppings: Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil. Trust me, this salad packs plenty of flavor all on its own and is perfect for any weekday meal.
2. Classic Tomato Meal Maker & Greek Salad
What’s better than a Greek Salad? An on-the-go Greek salad. This jar is jam-packed with deliciousness in the form of Primal Kitchen Greek Dressing, cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers, Greek olives, red onion, romaine lettuce, and one of my most favorite Pederson’s products, Chef Tara’s Classic Tomato Meal Makers. If you haven’t heard of Chef Tara Anderson’s Meal Makers from Pederson’s Farms, be on the lookout. They are game changers!
3. Bacon Meal Maker Salad with Ranch Dressing
On Sunday nights, I’m usually prepping for a busy week. I scan over my calendar and realize that I won’t be seeing a nice and relaxing sit down lunch the next day, so I whip up the combo of Pederson’s No Sugar Bacon, eggs, tomatoes, spinach, lemon juice, Primal Kitchen Ranch Dressing with Avocado Oil, and Chef Tara’s Brazed Uncured Bacon Meal Maker. Filling, satisfying, and extremely tasty! Best part – it’s ready whenever and wherever I am come that busy Monday!
As you can see, the ingredients are key to building the salads. But take it from me, ingredients can only go so far if they aren’t strategically placed while prepping. From experience:
The secret to a perfect and tasty Mason Jar Salad is all in the order.
The dressing goes in first. Trust me. This is so important! This guarantees that the salad ingredients don’t get soggy. Because who likes a soggy salad? Not this cowgirl!
You can use any type of dressing you like. I personally enjoy all of Primal Kitchen’s collection of dressings. Here, I have chosen to use Primal Kitchen’s Greek Dressing, Avocado Oil, and Ranch for the three salads. As expected, any vinaigrette dressing comes out of the jar easier. When I use the ranch dressing, I have to give the jar a good shake, but it’s still just as good! I use between 2-3 tablespoons of dressing as the base of my Mason Jar.
The next layer is very important because it is used to shield the dressing from the lettuce and other ingredients. I personally like to go with something big and chunky. Vegetables I used in the three recipes here are tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, celery, and bell-peppers. If you’re ready to jump right in like I do, go ahead and add in the bacon and Meal Makers following the vegetables.
Next comes the fixings! This layer is added as another defense between the dressing and lettuce. Here, the layer doesn’t necessarily need to be marinating in the dressing, but it’s totally okay for some of these ingredients to hang out in lower places.
In the next layer, I place the eggs and additional meats, such as BACON! I try not to have the meat touching directly with the dressing, but it’s okay if it does.
The last layer includes the ingredients that will wilt or become soft and soggy if exposed to the dressing too soon. This means any type of lettuce or green. The reasoning? If I am wanting to eat the salad out of a bowl, and I turn the mason jar over, the green will make the salad bed.
That’s it! Before I tighten the top of the mason jar, I top the greens with a few additional nuts. This gives the salad the extra mid-day crunch I’m needing!
And there you have it. A few of my favorite Mason Jar Salads with some of my favorite ingredients. After I tighten the lid, I always like to step back and admire the salads because, as great as they look from the outside, I am certain that what’s inside tastes even better. Which is a double win for this girl!
I store the salads in the fridge overnight and continue with my Sunday activities. Come the next morning, I grab my Monday choice of salad as I walk out the door for a busy day ahead. When I’m ready to eat the salad, I just dump all the ingredients into a big bowl, and toss them gently. Or if I don’t have an additional bowl on hand, I give the jar a good shake and dive right into the deliciousness with a fork. It’s super convenient and incredibly fresh!
I’d love to know what kind of Mason Jar Salad you try with Pederson’s Farms products! I’m thinking Kielbasa next time. What do you think?