This Red Leaf Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette recipe is fresh, light and delicious. It is a simple salad that comes together quickly. I add the dressing right on the salad, in the bowl, no pre-mixing required!
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Red leaf salad was one of my grandmother’s favorite green salad recipes. She especially loved adding fresh dill to the lemon vinaigrette dressing. I love dill (my Polish roots I think!), and while I think fresh dill is amazing in this red leaf lettuce salad, I have used dry dill many times too.
I learned to make red leaf lettuce salad from my grandma when I was a girl. Over the years, my mom also made this same red leaf salad with easy lemon vinaigrette. And now, our little ones make this salad with us. This simple salad recipe has been a staple in our family. We eat it all year round.
Lettuce Salad Greens
My grandma always chose red leaf lettuce over other types of salad greens because she believed that red leaf was the healthiest. In reality, the most nutritious greens are spinach and kale, which go well with lemon dill vinaigrette, but are stronger in flavor. We do love kale too, and when we’re looking for a more hearty salad, we make Kale Quinoa Salad or Thai Quinoa Salad.
Other greens, equally as healthy as red leaf lettuce, work really well in this lemon vinaigrette salad. I love the interest that the color and texture of the red leaf lettuce adds, but have used most types of lettuce, including green leaf lettuce, spring mix salad, romaine lettuce and even a mix of lettuce.
Like me, my grandma always had a thing for zesty lemons because she loved the tart flavor and the color yellow. She always said that a simple lemon vinaigrette dressing was “to die for!” One of my other favorite recipes from my grandma is my easy lemon bars, and they too are a family treasure!
Healthiest Salad Greens for Red Leaf Salad With Lemon Vinaigrette
Red leaf lettuce makes a healthy salad, but they are not THE healthiest salad greens. Nothing beats the super-greens like spinach and kale, which are high in nutrients and vitamins like C, A and K. However, red leaf lettuce ranks up there with romaine, iceberg and green leaf salads. These nutrient-packed greens are high in C, A, K and some B vitamins with the added benefits of potassium, folate, and iron.
Things to Add to Salad
This red leaf lettuce salad includes dill, radishes, tomatoes and green onions. Salad add ins can really amp up a salad. We like to toss in:
- Dried fruits (cranberries)
- Seeds (sunflower, pepitas)
- Mandarin oranges
- Diced red peppers
If you prefer a light lemon vinaigrette salad dressing, substitute a light olive oil or vegetable oil in place of the extra virgin olive oil.
This fresh, light salad is perfect to serve alongside a pot roast dinner, Chicken Parmesan With Spaghetti Squash or Ham And Pea Pasta Bake with some No Knead Bread! If we’re looking for a light dinner, we have salad, Homemade Jalapeno Poppers and mini sausage crescents.
Red Leaf Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
- 1 head red leaf lettuce
- ½ long English cucumber
- 4-5 radishes one small bunch
- 1-2 cups grape tomatoes
- 1 green onion
- ¼-½ cup fresh dill including for garnish, tear from stalk, or chop if preferred
Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil extra virgin (or other vegetable oil)
- 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- ¼-½ teaspoon granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or to taste
- Wash and dry all produce. Tear lettuce into bite sized pieces. Chop cucumber, slice radishes, halve grape tomatoes, and chop green onion. Place all salad ingredients into a large bowl.
- In the order listed, add ingredients directly onto the salad. Toss salad. Taste and adjust to desired flavor by adding more lemon vinaigrette dressing ingredients as needed.
Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.
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