Salads are a delicious way to fit in some extra vegetables—and a heartier salad can actually be your main meal! We’ve rounded up some extra tasty salads you can serve for dinner or anytime.

salads for dinner ideas collage

Our Favorite Salad Ideas for Dinner

From a take on a traditional Waldorf Salad to a broccoli salad to an antipasto-inspired Italian pasta salad, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’re looking for a side to serve at a BBQ or want to make a bowl of salad your main attraction for dinner, read on for some of our favorite satisfying salad ideas you can put together tonight!

1. Waldorf Salad

A traditional Waldorf salad is packed with chopped apples, grapes, and is dressed with lemon juice and mayonnaise. Add grilled chicken to make a complete meal that’s delicious and fresh.

Waldorf Salad
Waldorf salad is a traditional favorite made with sweet fruits like apples, grapes, and raisins. Add chopped grilled chicken for a light meal.
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2. Summer Pasta Salad

Loaded with veggies like cherry tomatoes and artichockes, this pasta salad is filling enough to be your main dinner entree.

Summer Pasta Salad
This summer pasta salad is the perfect side dish for warm summer days! Crisp, fresh veggies, tangy artichoke hearts, and salty feta are tossed with rotini and Italian dressing for a light, easy summer pasta salad.
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3. Crusted Chicken Cobb Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing

This crusted chicken cobb salad is a one bowl meal! There’s enough vegetables to make you feel good, plus hard-boiled eggs for extra protein along with the chicken. It’s finished with an irresistible honey mustard dressing.

Crusted Chicken Cobb Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing
This Crusted Chicken Cobb Salad is absolutely packed with flavor! It’s a satisfying dinner with a variety of colors and textures, and the homemade honey mustard dressing is irresistible!
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4. Potato Salad

Potato salad is a great side dish, but when you pair it with a meat like ham or burgers it’s enough to round out your dinner plate. Plus, you can make it in advance and eat it whenever you want. It’s always a hit when you’re looking for a salad idea for dinner!

homemade potato salad
Potato Salad
This is literally the best potato salad recipe, ever. Packed full of flavor, you're going to love how simple this summer side dish recipe is.
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5. Ham Salad

Speaking of ham, this delicious ham salad is a great way to use up leftover ham. Toast a few slices of crusty French bread and serve ham salad toasts with a bowl of homemade soup for dinner.

Ham Salad
Ham salad is a deli favorite that’s easy to make at home! It’s perfect for school or work lunches and it’s a great way to use up leftover ham.
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6. Corn Salad

Fresh corn salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, avocado, and feta cheese makes the most of summer’s bounty. It’s light and delicious, especially served with fresh bread.

Corn Salad
This corn salad is the perfect summer side dish! Fresh corn is tossed with cherry tomatoes, crunchy cucumber, onions, avocado, tangy feta, and fresh herbs, all in a sweet-and-tangy red wine vinaigrette.
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7. Brussels Sprouts Salad

One of our favorite salad ideas for dinner in the fall! Loaded up with fall favorites like roasted butternut squash, apples, pumpkin seeds, pomegranate, and lots of Brussels Sprouts, this salad is packed with harvest season flavors.

brussels sprouts salad served in a white bowl
Brussels Sprouts Salad
This Brussels sprout salad is packed with flavor! With tender roasted butternut squash, Honeycrisp apple, pumpkin seeds, and pomegranate, you can see why I call this a fall harvest salad!
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8. Summer Cobb Salad

This delicious version of a Cobb Salad uses pre-cooked grilled chicken to keep prep a breeze. Top it with hard boiled eggs, blue cheese, raspberries, blackberries, avocado, and roasted almonds to make it a super satisfying dinner.

Summer Cobb Salad View Recipe

9. Kale Salad with Cheese Crisps

Looking for salad ideas for dinner that are super satisfying, but also easy? Take a bag of pre-washed baby kale and top it with some tasty homemade cheese crisps and and a simple balsamic vinaigrette—tonight’s dinner is easy, wholesome, and done!

Kale Salad with Cheese Crisps
A super simple and nourishing kale salad with homemade cheese crisps, oyster crackers, and bacon.
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10. Cucumber Salad

If you have cucumbers in the fridge you can make cucumber salad. Just a few ingredients come together with a sweet-sour dressing to make a delicious salad you can serve alongside pretty much anything.

Cucumber Salad
Cucumber Salad is the perfect refreshing summer side dish made with cucumbers, a vinegar and sugar dressing, along with fresh herbs for a classic recipe!
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11. Broccoli Salad

Raw broccoli meets broccoli, sunflower seeds, cheese, and bacon in this hearty salad. Our recipe below includes directions for a perfect mayo-based dressing to drizzle over the top.

broccoli salad with dressing, cheese, and bacon bits in a white bowl.
Broccoli Salad
This Broccoli Salad recipe is an amazing addition to your summer salad menu! Raw, crunchy broccoli, lots of salty bacon and cheddar cheese, and a creamy dressing will make this one a family favorite!
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12. Tuna Salad Sandwich

Yes, it’s still technically a salad! Our tuna salad sandwich recipe is so good you’ll want to serve it at dinnertime, too.

Tuna Salad Sandwich
This Simple Tuna Salad recipe is an underrated classic! It's light, simple to make, and great for a quick meal. Plus, it's versatile – serve it as a sandwich, on top of a salad, or in a wrap for instant lunch satisfaction.
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13. Antipasto Salad

Antipasto salad is often served before a meal but there’s so much goodness packed into one bowl that you could totally serve it for dinner alone. Veggies, meat, and cheese with a tangy dressing make this hard to resist.

Antipasto Salad
The Antipasto Salad is filled with bright veggies, loaded with meats, and flowing with cheese. It truly is the best addition to any meal!
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14. Italian Pasta Salad

Italian pasta salad is like antipasto salad, but with added pasta! It’s full of cooked pasta, black olives, peppers, tomatoes, red onions, meats like salami or pepperoni, and mozzarella or Parmesan cheese and dressed with zesty Italian dressing before serving. So good!

Italian Pasta Salad
Italian pasta salad is loaded with flavorful ingredients, tossed in a tangy dressing, and a cinch to make!
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15. Pea Salad

It may sound funny to use frozen peas in a salad, but trust me, this is a winner. The crunchy peas play off the salty bacon and cheddar cheese, and chopped red onions and a tangy sour cream dressing finish it off.

Pea Salad
Simple Pea Salad is a delicious southern side dish that is filled with frozen peas, bacon, chopped red onions, and cheddar cheese.
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16. Spaghetti Salad

Another one-dish meal, this spaghetti salad is full of veggies. You can add any vegetables or meat you like, and it is perfect served straight from the fridge. We love this at summertime BBQs!

Spaghetti Salad
This spaghetti salad is packed with big, bold flavors—and it’s oh-so-easy to make!
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More Salad Ideas for Dinner

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About Kasey Schwartz

For over 15 years, Kasey Schwartz, the mastermind behind All Things Mamma, has been the ultimate go-to for mouthwatering family recipes. Her work has been featured on, Buzz Feed, Better Homes and Gardens, and more, making her your go-to mom next door for all things delicious and family-friendly.

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