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Chopped Salad

July 6, 2011

♫ Summertime, and the living is easy….and it just doesn’t get any easier than this Chopped Salad! I made a large salad to take to a 4th of July party, but you can make a small salad just for yourself in a very few minutes.

I headed to a local store that has a great selection of organic produce and shopped for the best-looking vegetables in a variety of colors. I came home with cauliflower, jicama, grape tomatoes, radishes, a yellow pepper, carrots, corn, and sugar snap peas.  The bulk olive section had pitted Niçoise olives, so I bought some of them as well. Kalamata olives, which are probably more available, would make a good substitution.

At home I already had jarred pickled red peppers (Mama Lil’s, to add a bit of spice) and some spinach. I thought the spinach would hold up better than lettuce for a potluck salad.

The vegetables I chose are merely suggestions. You can use whatever appeals to you. My goal was to make a vegetable salad that would withstand sitting on the table for a few hours without having any ingredients spoil or wilt. If I were serving it right away, I might add chopped lettuce, cucumbers, and/or avocados.

For the dressing, I adapted Mark Bittman’s basic Lemon Vinaigrette from his How to Cook Everything cookbook. I wanted something simple that would spotlight the vegetables without overpowering them. It was a perfect match.

Simply add your favorite protein for a fantastic one-dish summertime meal!


This photo was one of Foodbuzz’ Top 9 for July 8, 2011! :)


Chopped Salad


(print recipe)



An assortment of chopped fresh vegetables (8 – 10 cups for a large salad, less if serving fewer people) Suggested vegetables: Cauliflower, jicama, grape tomatoes, radishes, carrots, sugar snap peas, corn, yellow pepper

Pickled red peppers, to taste

Pitted Niçoise or kalamata olives

Chopped spinach or lettuce


1. Chop everything into bite-sized pieces and put in a large bowl. I like to thinly slice the cauliflower.


Carrots, white and yellow corn, sugar snap peas, and radishes



Added to the bowl: Niçoise olives, yellow pepper, jicama (peeled and chopped), grape tomatoes (quartered), cauliflower (thinly sliced) and Mama Lil’s Peppers


2. Toss with some Lemon Rosemary Vinaigrette (recipe below).

3. Taste for seasoning. Add salt and pepper if needed.

4. Toss in some chopped spinach or lettuce, if desired.



Lemon Rosemary Vinaigrette

(Adapted from Mark Bittman’s vinaigrette recipe in How to Cook Everything)

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon minced rosemary

¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (I needed 2 lemons)

1 clove garlic, pressed

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1. Mix the zest, salt, rosemary and juice. While whisking constantly, slowly add the oil in a stream until emulsion forms. (Or do as I did, and put everything in a Blender Bottle and shake!)

2. Taste to adjust salt.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2011 10:13 am

    This looks fantastic and I can’t wait to try your lemon rosemary vinaigrette, sounds amazing!!! :)

  2. July 6, 2011 11:30 am

    Mmm! This is a gorgeous salad that is super tasty and nutritious! What an homage to summertime :-)

  3. July 6, 2011 12:01 pm

    Your salad looks so delish! What a great idea on a hot day like today. Thanks for the recipe.

  4. July 6, 2011 1:13 pm

    Your salad looks incredible!!! Thanks so much for sharing your recipe! :D

  5. July 6, 2011 9:56 pm

    Looks amazing and refreshing…I can’t wait to try the dressing recipe! Thanks for a great summer idea!

  6. July 7, 2011 3:14 am

    I love salads like this…so much goodness here! The vinaigrette sounds great too…I’m sure that it’s delicious with the lemon zest and rosemary!

  7. July 7, 2011 8:59 am

    Looks so summery and delicious. I love the lemon vinaigrette to keep it really light. Thanks for sharing, you gave me an idea for dinner.

  8. July 7, 2011 7:52 pm

    That salad screams summer! It’s gorgeous!

  9. July 8, 2011 11:21 am

    I love chopped salads. This looks beautiful and delicious!

  10. July 10, 2011 8:10 am

    what a positively gorgeous chopped salad! This would be a wonderful accompaniment to any meal! I love the olives in it!

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