Surprise Salad

More to come later this week about my exciting trip to Seattle with my girlfriends (spoiler alert: it includes a peacock, Christian Gray and lots of green) but for now, here is a great salad recipe I made last weekend. Enjoy!

Last weekend, while trying to make the most of our current grocery situation and no meal plan in sight, I compiled a delicious salad that was a hit with both my husband and me. Because we were both going out of town the following weekend, I did not want to grocery shop so I could prevent wasting fresh items and figured we could dine out if needed. It’s always a sweet compliment when my husband requests one of my salad concoctions, but this one is definitely worth writing down and sharing how it came about:

The ingredients I had on hand for 2 weeks (or more):

A red bell pepper

Half an English cucumber

Frozen shrimp


Greek yogurt

White Wisconsin cheese

When I stopped in at Whole Foods on Thursday night after Flywheel to grab a hot bar meal (don’t you love how all the post-workout sweaty beasts flock there?) I bought a few items to round out the salad I was planning on the fly:

One avocado

Pre-washed mix greens

2 limes

When I began assembling/cooking, I wasn’t sure what salad dressing to use, and initially thought I would make my stand-by spicy mustard vinaigrette (it’s not spicy btw), but the thought struck me I could use the cucumber for the base of a Green Goddess dressing. After learning I didn’t have a few of the base ingredients (anchovies or sour cream) I decided to make it anyways, because I’m stubborn like that.  P.S. Did you know Green Goddess dressing was very popular in the 70s and 80s? I had no idea. Thanks, random Internet article.


Grilled Shrimp and Avocado Salad

  1. Heat grill pan to medium high. Slice red bell pepper in thin strips and drizzle two teaspoons of EVOO and a pinch of kosher salt on them. Grill for 7-10 minutes, turning once until the skins have blackened slightly. Remove from pan and set aside to cool.
  2. While the peppers cook, you can peel, de-vein, rinse and dry shrimp. Squeeze juice of one lime into a bowl and add shrimp to marinate.
  3. Roughly chop cheese into small bite size chunks, about ½”. You can use a shredded cheese, but I found the small bites to work better in this recipe because of the texture.
  4. Prepare salad dressing by combining chopped cucumber, 1 garlic clove peeled and smashed, 1/3 of a cup of Greek yogurt, half of the juice of one lime, 1/3 of a cup of mayonnaise, and a large pinch of kosher salt in a blender (or a bullet if you have one). Adjust salt to taste if needed.
  5. Then grill the shrimp for two minutes on each side. Discard lime juice.
  6. Slice the avocado in half, remove the seed, and then cut cross sections to create about 1” chunks. Empty each half into a bowl. Squeeze the other half of the lime  onto the avocado and shake garlic salt on top. (Sidenote: this is my absolute favorite way of eating avocado thanks to my mom! It’s even better on saltines for a snack. But in this case, I find the extra seasoning on just your avocado rather than over the salad greens makes them stand out so much in each bite).
  7. Put roughly three cups of mixed greens on a plate. Drizzle one tablespoon of dressing and combine to mix greens in dressing. Then, plate each with the red bell peppers, the avocado, shrimp and cheese. Drizzle one more tablespoon of dressing on top.


While I did not serve a grain with this meal, we both were fulfilled and had extra room for chocolate bars as dessert.

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