Salads in a jar have been popular for the last several years, and you might even be sick of looking at all of those recipes, pictures, and food videos on social media, but have you ever really given them a try? They’re healthy, portable, eco-friendly, inexpensive, long-lasting, and have built-in portion control. With so many benefits why haven't we!
Anna Helm Baxter, author of the book Salad in a Jar: 68 Recipes for Salads and Dressings, shares her best mason jar salad tips.
What’s the advantage of using a mason jar?
Mason jars are made of glass, and unlike many plastics, they are non toxic. They also have tight-fitting lids which maximizes the shelf life of your salads and means there are less likely to be leaks when transporting.
Is there a best way to store the dressing in a mason jar salad?
In a mason jar, of course! Second to that, any tight-sealing container will do. Most dressings will keep for a week or two, but dressings containing garlic, ginger or fresh herbs should be used within a couple of days.
Do you have a secret to layering salads in a jar?
Always start with the dressing; the second ingredient is going to sit in the dressing so should be anything that will marinate nicely in the dressing (onions and fennel are my favorites). After that, layer in order of weight, finishing up with lighter leaves. I don’t like to add fruits, meats, nuts and cheeses until the day I’m eating the salad. You can create a little moisture barrier using a small square of parchment paper to prevent hard cheeses and nuts from going soft.
What’s the best way to eat a mason jar salad?
If you have a wide-mouthed jar, then eating in the jar is the best way—plus there’s no extra clean up! You can also dump the salad into a bowl.
How tightly should you pack everything in there?
If you’re going to eat the salad in the jar rather than dumping it out, then you want a little breathing room so that you can shake up the ingredients once you’re ready to eat. However, the jars keep better when packed tightly because there’s less space for air. I pack the jars so there’s more salad to eat!
Roughly how long will mason jar salads keep?
If the ingredients that go into the jar are crisp, fresh and dry, the salads can last safely for a week, and often longer. If you plan to keep them this long, remember to add meats, cheeses, nuts and fruits the day you plan to eat them.
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