Workday lunches are supposed to be a little respite from your day — but too often, they feel like a burden. Coming up with a meal that will stand up all morning (or, if you like to batch-cook, all week) without getting soggy, slimy, or dry, that will taste good and fill you up, and that you'll want to eat week after week is a tall order. But can we remind you about mason-jar salads? That's right — many people have forgotten about the pre-pandemic lunchtime trend, but salad mason jar recipes aren't something to sleep on.
The idea behind salad jar recipes is simple: rather than stuffing your salad mix-ins into a Tupperware, you layer them into a mason jar, with the dressing and heartiest, liquid-proof ingredients at the bottom (think: beans, tomatoes, bell peppers, carrots), and the more sliminess-prone ingredients toward the top (your lettuces and croutons). Not only does layering your favorite mix-ins and dressings keep your meal from getting soggy and save you on having to clean several different containers after you eat; there are also dozens and dozens of variations you can make, keeping lunchtime exciting (and beautiful to boot).
You can make almost every salad you already love into a mason-jar salad recipe — but we've got some ideas to start you off. Whether you prefer a hearty and sweet salad with grains or a refreshing mix that features the flavors of zesty guacamole, these 16 mason-jar salad recipes will help you step up your lunches good.
— Additional reporting by Nicole Perry