Rainbow Salad

A fresh, colorful salad is perfect for spring, and is one of the best ways to eat every color of the rainbow in one meal. Recent studies show that a diverse diet promotes a diverse microbiome – one of the most important microbial characteristics for long-term health. When assembling your rainbow salad, go for variety and add tastes and colors that are missing from your diet. Prepare a large salad on Sundays and enjoy tastes of the rainbow every day of the week!



Red fruits and vegetables: red pepper, tomato, rhubarb, berries, pomegranate seeds, red onion, pink grapefruit, beets, radishes


Orange/yellow fruits and vegetables: carrots, orange pepper, pumpkin, papaya, apricots, squash, pineapple, sweet corn, sweet potato, mango


Green fruits and vegetables: celery, romaine lettuce, arugula, kale, dandelion greens, spinach, mixed greens, sprouts, broccoli, roasted Brussels sprouts, zucchini, green onions, peas, avocado


Black/purple fruits and vegetables: roasted eggplant, purple cabbage, figs, plums, blueberries, blackberries


White fruits and vegetables: cauliflower, jicama, ginger root, mushrooms, garlic, onions, scallions


Heart-healthy oils: These oils add in “good” fats (flax, walnut, olive or avocado)


Fresh herbs: (parsley, cilantro, basil, oregano)


Protein: Plant-based protein (legumes, nuts, and/or seeds) or animal-based protein (chicken breast, turkey breast, fish, shellfish, lean meat)



Assemble all ingredients in a large bowl (a glass bowl is fun, so you can enjoy all the colors). Be creative! Season the salad with fresh herbs and homemade vinaigrette. This salad can be stored undressed in a well-sealed container in the fridge for several days. You can use handfuls at a time in different ways, including: toss in cooked lentils; drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar; stuff into a corn tortilla; or wilt into a breakfast omelet.


Recipe by Elise Museles of Kale and Chocolate. First appeared in Gutbliss (Penguin 2013).