Happy New Year! Don’t let the word “healthier” in my title up there scare you away. The exact antipasto salad you see below👇🏻in the photo was made by me last summer on a date night, gone bad 😲. I’ll spill all the drama details, as long as you promise to give my “Healthier Antipasto Salad” a try. It was honestly the best salad we have had in a long time, and now I make it every week. I was so thankful I snapped a few photos of it that night.
Before I spill the olive oil, there’s a bonus at the end of this post. You’ll also be getting a quick tour of our “Living Room Exercise Lounge”, and I have 6 more salad recipes with my #1 weight loss tip along side 😊.
Drama in the House: Date Night Gone Bad
I’ve been blogging 10 years now 😲, so I think my subscribers know how much I adore my husband, because I talk about him all the time. I think they would also know that I’m joking about the drama, but I do have a fun story about our date night last summer 👇🏻.
You see…Rick and I don’t go out much because we really love our fires at home, and I enjoy cooking for us, while I sip a little vino, and just talk. You get the idea…but once in a while we get all dressed up, and head out for a romantic dinner taking our time with appetizers, etc. Well, the pandemic has definitely put a damper on this for us because our weather here in Michigan makes it almost impossible to eat outdoors, unless it is summer, not raining, or windy. This night had the perfect weather for outdoor dining, but the restaurant we had reservations for was too packed. Luckily, we remembered a nice quiet Italian pizza restaurant that had semi open exterior walls.
Unfortunately, the pizza place closed it’s open window walls 🙄, so we drove around getting really hangry for about 45 minutes trying to figure out where to go. Eventually I finally said, “Let’s just go home.” Rick agreed, and I started thinking about what I had on hand at home to make us. The kids were at school for their first week of dorming together, so this was really our first “empty nest date”. We were so crabby until Rick started a fire, and I started chopping up what you see in the photos. Our moods quickly changed, and we began to talk about how thankful we were to have our home, our food, and especially our love. We learned a lesson, and now we look back and giggle on our little 2 hour “drive” to home. Hey, maybe I should have saved this story for Valentine’s Day? ❤️
Use what you have for your healthier antipasto, don’t follow any rules…
Before I get to the recipe, I don’t want you to worry about having every-single-ingredient I used. Remember…this salad was made using just what I had on hand, and it turned out better than “perfect planned salads”. The dressing should probably be close to mine- to get the full effect, but please use what you have for your antipasto. For example, if you don’t have mozzarella, use cheddar. If you don’t have olives, use artichoke hearts. If you don’t have cucumber, use celery.
Here’s how the “same salad” looked a few weeks ago. You can see I added avocado, carrots, and I didn’t have any ham, or red onion. This baby was still so amazing with the same dressing below. By the way…Rick’s Italian bread recipe can be found here: Rick’s Italian Bread Recipe.
After printing the recipe, you can see our living room update, and more salads below…
Happy New Year, guys! I am always here if you need me ❤️
Print the Complete Healthier Antipasto Salad Recipe here…
- 3-4 cups Fresh "Bibb" Lettuce (Iceberg, Romaine, spinach work in combination and add nice texture)
- 3 medium fresh sliced tomatoes
- 1 cup thick sliced cucumber
- 16 large black olives (kalamata are my favorite)
- 1/2 cup sliced red onion
- 1/2 cup diced lean ham
- 12 turkey pepperoni slices
- 1/8 cup part skim shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup diced extra sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- garlic salt
- dried basil
- fresh cracked pepper
Wash lettuce and dry it very well with a salad spinner, or paper towels. Place in large bowl. I mean as big as you got!
Add all topping like photo, or do your own thing. I find it looks so pretty doing it in groups.
Make dressing separately in small bowl whisking very well before you drizzle it all over your gorgeous salad.
Add croutons, and/or serve with crusty Italian bread.
Bonus: Our Home Gym Lounge Tour & Best Healthy Weight Loss Tip
*** Some of the links in this post may contain affiliate links for your convenience. Read full disclosure policy here.
If interested in my exercise equipment here you go:
My Best Healthy Weight Loss Tip: Are you getting enough protein?
Protein is essential for strength, weight loss, and if you really want to know I believe it helps mental health as well. Protein not only keeps you fuller, longer, it repairs your muscles after a workout, and it keeps you feeling happier. Even if you go for a little walk outside to get the mail, you need protein to help your muscles work right-especially as you (we all) age.
This is not an advertisement, it’s just me inspiring you try to reach a good protein goal every day. For me, I calculated that I need 98 grams of protein per day 😲. One of the ways I get there is this protein shake from Costco. I will warn you, they are not cheap, however they taste AMAZING and I feel fantastic after having one. They come in chocolate, and several other flavors.