A salad isn’t the first dish that springs to mind when I think of family-friendly foods, but if done right, kids can be crazy about them. Chopped salads, built up with crunchy lettuce, diced vegetables, and little extras such as croutons and crumbled bacon go over well in our house. For main dish eating, though, I usually opt for composed salads, whereby all the different elements are arranged separately on a plate instead of tossed together. The French classic, the Nicoise (pictured above) is a perfect example, and provides an opportunity to pack some serious protein into a meal. Composed salads not only make for a pretty presentation, they’re often received more enthusiastically by kids who don’t necessarily like their food tossed all together.
For a little guidance on pulling together a successful composed salad, check out this step-by-step tutorial from Cooking Light. The suggested measurements are for adult, main-dish salads, so you may need to scale back for kid portions. You might also try serving this Grilled Chicken Salad recipe as a composed salad rather than a tossed one. However you do up your salad, my Easy Everyday Vinaigrette may come in handy.