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35 Bright Salad Ideas for Spring

Irresistible spring salad recipes go way beyond lettuce. Think avocados, snap peas, cucumbers, asparagus and a rainbow of fruits.

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Balsamic Green Bean Salad

Serve up those green beans in a whole new way–with a green bean salad recipe! The tangy flavors and crunch of these balsamic green beans complement any special meal or holiday potluck. —Megan Spencer, Farmington Hills, Michigan

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Strawberry Arugula Salad With Feta Exps Cwam19 49059 B01 04 8b

Strawberry Arugula Salad with Feta

The combination of peppery arugula, sweet strawberries and robust feta cheese may sound unusual, but one bite wins over taste buds.—Carala Horne, Meridian, Mississippi
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Apricot Fluff

When we were young mothers, I asked my best friend if she had a recipe for an easy ambrosia salad that I could take to a cookout later that evening. She shared this recipe with me and it's become a must-have at every barbecue I attend. It's sublime with peaches and peach gelatin, too. —Melissa Meinke, Fawn Grove, Pennsylvania
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Kansas Cucumber Salad

Cucumbers are my very favorite garden vegetable, so I use this recipe often. I got it from a friend years ago. I've heard this refreshing dish keeps very well in the refrigerator, but it goes so fast around our house, I've never found out for myself. —Karen Ann Bland, Gove, Kansas
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Strawberry-Blue Cheese Steak Salad

At lunch one day, a friend told me about a steak salad she'd had at a party. It sounded so fantastic I had to try it for myself. My family would eat it nonstop if we could. Can't seem to get enough of that tangy dressing! —Alma Winberry, Great Falls, Montana
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Spring Pea & Radish Salad

Winters can be very long here in New Hampshire. I always look forward to the first veggies of spring and making some lighter dishes like this fresh salad. —Jolene Martinelli, Derry, New Hampshire
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Creamy Grape Salad

Everyone raves when I bring this refreshing, creamy grape salad to potlucks. For a special finishing touch, sprinkle it with brown sugar and pecans. —Marge Elling, Jenison, Michigan
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Shrimp Avocado Salad

This salad can be served as a cool and satisfying dinner or lunch. The delicious taste and smooth texture of avocados mixed with the crisp shrimp salad is heavenly. —Teri Rasey, Cadillac, Michigan
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Garden Fresh Chef Salad Exps100711 Sd143204b12 04 2bc Rms 1

Garden-Fresh Chef Salad

For much of the year, I can use my garden's produce when I make this cool salad. In spring, the salad mix and radishes come from my crop. In summer, I use the tomatoes, cabbage and carrots. What a good feeling! —Evelyn Gubernath, Bucyrus, Ohio
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Red Potato Salad Dijon

My mother made the best warm potato salad, and now it's a tradition at all of our tables. Sometimes I use Yukon Gold potatoes to make it even prettier. —Patricia Swart, Galloway, New Jersey
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Colorful Cornbread Salad

When my garden comes in, I harvest the veggies for potluck dishes. I live in the South, and we think bacon and cornbread make everything better, even salad! —Rebecca Clark, Warrior, Alabama
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Chicken & Onion Caesar Salad

My Caesar with grilled chicken is a healthier alternative to heavy meat and potatoes dishes. After grilling the kabobs, we serve them family style. —Melissa Adams, Tooele, Utah
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Citrus-Tarragon Asparagus Salad

I created this colorful salad when I was invited to a friend's Easter egg hunt and potluck picnic. The guests were begging to get my recipe. Let the flavors infuse overnight for the best taste. —Cheryl Magnuson, Apple Valley, California
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Grilled Vegetable Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

My Italian-style grilled veggies have a wonderful sweet and sour dressing. Best of all, I pick the fresh veggies and herbs from my garden. —Laura Mast, Defiance, Ohio
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Romaine & Cherry Tomato Salad

My mother made this tasty salad for me as a child, and it was my favorite. Now we serve it as a sunny appetizer or entree. —Blythe Twiggs, Buford, Georgia
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Asparagus Nicoise Salad

I’ve used my Nicoise as an appetizer or a main-dish salad, and it’s a winner every time I put it on the table. Here’s to a colorful, make-ahead salad! —Jan Meyer, St. Paul, Minnesota
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Strawberry Salad With Poppy Seed Dressing Exps Sdam17 43225 D12 07 5b 9

Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

My family is always happy to see this fruit and veggie salad on the table. If strawberries aren’t available, substitute mandarin oranges and dried cranberries. —Irene Keller, Kalamazoo, Michigan
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Kale Slaw Spring Salad Exps Bmz19 197793 E11 30 8b 5

Kale Slaw Spring Salad

My parents and in-laws are retired and like to spend winters in Florida. This tangy spring salad welcomes the snowbirds back for our Easter celebration! —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan
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Citrus Avocado Spinach Salad

Tossing this salad together with creamy avocado and tangy citrus is so simple, and it practically makes a meal of itself. —Karole Friemann, Kimberling City, Missouri
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Fresh Sugar Snap Pea Salad

We found fresh sugar snap peas at our town's farmers market. They make a cheerful salad with a tangy dressing. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas
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Quick Nicoise Salad

Like the French, I pack my classic Nicoise salad with veggies, potatoes, tuna and eggs. Cooking the potatoes and beans together helps the dish come together fast. —Valerie Belley, St. Louis, Missouri
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Fresh Fruit Bowl

The glorious colors of the fruit make this a festive salad. Slightly sweet and chilled, it makes a nice accompaniment to a grilled entree. —Marlon Kirst, Troy, Michigan
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Pina Colada Carrot Salad

This carrot salad with pina colada yogurt, green grapes and macadamia nuts has a tropical theme. Just mix and chill out. —Emily Tyra, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Broccoli Slaw with Lemon Dressing

Our family absolutely loves broccoli, so I'm so happy there's finally a slaw mix in stores that uses broccoli stems. I like this slaw best after 20 minutes or so to allow the flavors to meld. —Donna Marie Ryan, Topsfield, Massachusetts
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Avocado Fruit Salad with Tangerine Vinaigrette

On long summer days when we just want to relax, I make a cool salad with avocado, berries and mint. The tangerine dressing is refreshingly different. —Carole Resnick, Cleveland, Ohio
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Tzatziki Potato Salad

My son has an egg allergy, so this potato salad is perfect for him. For extra color, add radishes, apple and garlic dill pickles. —Cindy Romberg, Mississauga, Ontario
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Peas & Pepper Pasta Salad

I often serve a pasta salad for a buffet. That way, there’s no need for a side salad. Any leftover pasta salad is fantastic stuffed in halved and cored plum tomatoes. —Ann Sheehy, Lawrence, Massachusetts
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Garlic Shrimp Orzo Salad Exps168762 Cw132791b04 23 1b Rms 4

Garlic Shrimp & Orzo Salad

I enjoy cold pasta salads and rice salads, so I decided to make one with orzo, a rice-shaped pasta. Feel free to add other favorite veggies—like asparagus and green beans—and serve with rolls or pita bread.—Valonda Seward, Coarsegold, California
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Fresh Broccoli Salad with Lemon

The slightly sweet flavor of this salad's dressing is a great contrast to the rich bacon. You can substitute cauliflower for the broccoli if you prefer. —Janet Roth, Tempe, Arizona
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Honey-Pecan Kiwi Salad

This dish won second place in a summer salad recipe feature published in our local newspaper. But it takes first place with my family, always happy to try my new creations. —Marla Arbet, Kenosha, Wisconsin
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Cioppino-Mixed Green Salad

Living in California, the "salad bowl" of the United States, I’m inspired to cook nutritious meals like cioppino. Whenever my friends and I get together, this salad—a spin on the classic seafood stew—is the top request. —Cleo Gonske, Redding, California
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Strawberry Pasta Salad

Bow tie pasta with strawberries makes a refreshing salad, especially with a little chopped mint. I multiply it for brunches, potlucks, even tailgates. —Barbara Lento, Houston, Pennsylvania
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Italian Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

For an Italian twist on salad, I mix greens with red onion, mushrooms, olives, pepperoncini, lemon juice and Italian seasoning. Add tomatoes and carrots if you like. —Deborah Loop, Clinton Township, Michigan
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Cashew-Curry Chicken Salad

My husband and I fell hard for the curried chicken salad from our grocery store deli, and I knew I could find a way to make something similar. This greek yogurt chicken salad has become one of our favorites to take on trips to the beach. —Janine Cooper-Moren, Portland, Oregon
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Grilled Southwestern Potato Salad

This salad is great with a grilled steak for a Tex-Mex meal, and most of it can even be prepared out in the backyard. Poblanos and cayenne make it pop. —Johnna Johnson, Scottsdale, Arizona

Nicole Doster
Nicole is a writer, editor and lover of Italian food. In her spare time, you’ll find her thumbing through vintage cookbooks or testing out recipes in her tiny kitchen.

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