Everyday Side Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

side salad with balsamic vinaigrette

This is my essential, everyday side salad—the side that goes with absolutely everything—and a mainstay on my dinner table (125 calories or 1 WW point). It’s so simple that it almost doesn’t merit a recipe, but that’s never stopped me before, so: The base is made strictly with fresh veggies—a crispy, crunchy, cool mix of iceberg lettuce, cucumber, tomato, grated carrot, red onion, and a small batch of zesty balsamic vinaigrette, leaving you plenty of room for variations.

You can double the recipe, cut it in half, make it more of a meal by adding chicken, steak, fish, or beans, or dress it up with croutons, cheese, and nuts. You can swap out the dressing for whatever you prefer. You can even make it a day ahead. In short, you can’t screw it up!

side salad with balsamic vinaigrette

The balsamic vinaigrette recipe makes a small batch—1/4 cup—enough to dress the whole salad. If you’d rather serve the dressing on the side, I’d suggest doubling or tripling the vinaigrette recipe (maintaining this ratio: 1 part balsamic vinegar to 2 parts olive oil) to allow each person to have a 2-tablespoon serving.



Everyday Side Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • Author: Andie Mitchell
  • Prep Time: 7 minutes
  • Total Time: 7 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Category: Salads


Balsamic Vinaigrette:
1 ½ to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Pinch salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper

4 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
½ medium cucumber, sliced
1 roma tomato, chopped
1 medium carrot, grated
¼ medium red onion, thinly sliced


In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar (start with 1 ½ tablespoons vinegar and add more—up to another 1/2 tablespoon) if desired), oil, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, toss all the veggies. Cover and refrigerate if not serving right away. When you’re ready to serve, toss the veggies gently with the vinaigrette.


1 serving salad with vinaigrette (1/4 of entire recipe): 1 WW Freestyle point

1 serving salad *without* vinaigrette: 0 WW Freestyle points
30 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat fat, 0mg cholesterol, 24mg sodium, 7g carbs, 4g sugar, 2g fiber, 1g protein


  • Calories: 125
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Sodium: 33mg
  • Fat: 11g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 1g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

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