Creative Lentil Salads

Lentil salads are packed with healthful protein and store well in the fridge, so they're a good option for make-ahead packed lunches or picnics, and can be endlessly varied by changing accompanying vegetables and dressing.

mariacarmen combines cooked French lentils, hard-boiled eggs cut in eighths, sliced avocado, arugula, and a dressing of lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, Dijon mustard, minced shallot, and salt and pepper. "Very simple, very delightful," she says. "Something about the combo of textures and flavors make this a total hit anytime I bring it anywhere."

"The combo of lentils and string beans is divinely inspired," says mamachef, "especially if you lay it out on a bed of frisée/arugula and top it with a garlicky lemony vinaigrette and a shake of hot red pepper flakes." "I make a hot lentil dish that is also wonderful at room temperature," says biondanonima: Roast butternut squash, red onions, and fennel with some garlic, then toss with cooked lentils. Add slices or cubes of well-browned kielbasa and dress with a mixture of balsamic, sherry, and red wine vinegars, olive oil, the fat from the sausage, and lots of chopped fresh rosemary and thyme.

Rocky74 combines green lentils cooked in vegetable stock, steamed broccoli, and edamame with a dressing of sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, honey, and lime juice, and GilaB thinks these green lentils with roasted beets and preserved lemon are "amazing."

Discuss: Cold Lentil Salad Ideas

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