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Hellooo there! I come to you with good news. I have a salad recipe for you without…… lettuce. Yay for lettuce free salads, the best kind! I’ve made this recipe really easy for you too because all you need for the sauce is your favorite store bought guacamole. What? Yes. I’m guessing that I have your attention now, because who wouldn’t want a fantastic salad covered in guac? My second favorite ingredient in this whimsical dish is crispy tofu, which is perfect pan fried. I didn’t press the tofu, but I did drain the block by wrapping it in paper towels and setting it in a strainer on top of a bowl for an hour. As for the grain, well, I used barley because it’s chewy texture sort of emulates pasta, and it has lots of fiber. Carrots add a sweet crunch, kalamata olives infuse the salad with the perfect amount of saltiness, and red onions blast the salad with flavor. Ah, and then we have creamy cannellini beans. These gems are great because they’re mild in flavor and add fiber + protein. Topping my dishes with an herb is always a necessity for me and my herb of choice usually happens to be parsley. What an enjoyable and light salad that will leave you feeling satisfied. Veggie and Barley Summer Salad is a perfect side dish for dinner out on the patio. I consider a recipe successful if it’s wholesome and nutritious but also feels like comfort food. This dish accomplishes all of that.  

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How yummy does this look!? I made the salad for a family dinner and served it at room temperature. We ate the salad almost right after I made it because I didn’t want the sauce to turn brown before serving it (thanks a lot avocados). Summer food perfection!

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Veggie and Barley Summer Salad
Serves 6
A wholesome summer salad side dish packed with barley, veggies, beans, and guacamole. Yum!
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Ingredients
  1. 1 and 1/3 cups cooked barley
  2. 2 cups chopped carrots
  3. 12 oz extra firm tofu drained and cut into small cubes
  4. 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil for pan frying tofu
  5. 1/3 cup chopped red onions
  6. 1/4 cup pitted and chopped kalamata olives
  7. 1 can cannellini beans rinsed and drained
  8. 1 cup guacamole ( I bought my favorite brand premade)
  9. Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Cook barley according to package directions.
  2. Pan fry the tofu over medium heat in olive oil for 6 to 8 minutes.
  3. Stir often so that tofu is lightly browned on all sides.
  4. Then, transfer the tofu to a bowl with the cooked barley, vegetables, and beans.
  5. Add 1 cup of store bought guacamole and mix with the other ingredients until fully combined.
  6. Taste and add salt & pepper if needed.
  7. Top with parsley if wanted, serve, and enjoy!
UpBeet and Kaleing It http://upbeetandkaleingit.com/