Mason Jar Salad
Mason jars and reused glass jars have so many uses—from storing all of your produce, soups and sauces to keeping all of your nuts and bolts organized. Mason jars give the old saying “from soup to nuts” a whole new meaning, and this blog post will provide you with yet another use for these versatile, iconic containers: a salad jar.
Wide-mouth Mason jars work best for making a layered salad by utilizing all of your fresh garden harvest. It’s the perfect pack-and-go container that keeps everything fresh until you are ready to chow it down. When packed properly and sealed these can easily last 5-7 days in the refrigerator. So go ahead and plan out a whole week’s worth of lunches.
Here is a rundown of how to layer your jar (feel free to add and experiment on your own with whatever you have fresh in your garden come spring). The general rule with these salads is to keep your wet ingredients on the bottom (dressings, wetter veggies and fruits such as tomatoes, strawberries and currants) and to keep your dryer ingredients up top.
Start with a clean jar and then add your dressing and wet vegetables (e.g. tomato, sliced fruits) to the bottom. Next add some dryer veggies such as radishes, sliced cucumbers, broccoli, beets, onions, carrots or peppers. These can absorb some of the moisture on the bottom of the jar. Pasta and grains fit nicely on the next layer if you choose to add them. The next layer can be some protein: cooked chicken, tuna fish or hard-boiled eggs. Finally, fill out the jar with some chopped nuts and cheese, and last but not least, pack in your salad greens. Just make sure you keep the jars upright to keep the greens dry and fresh.
When you are ready to eat, just give the jar a good hard shake and then mix everything around with your fork. Allowing more headspace at the top of the container makes the mixing/shaking process much easier. The mixture can be dumped into a bowl to mix it evenly, but less cleanup is always a good thing so eating right out of the jar also works.