A healthy alternative to the classic Wedge salad

I recently wrote about six salads that are loaded with calories, fat and sodium. Now I’d like to provide you with a recipe for healthy salad. It’s a spin on the classic Wedge salad.

Per serving, this version of the Wedge salad contains only 111 calories, 8 grams of fat and 481 mg of sodium. Compare that to Taco Bells’ Chipotle Steak Fully Loaded salad, which comes in at 900 calories, 57 grams of fat and 1,700 mg of sodium and this fresh take on the Wedge salad becomes even more appealing.

How can the Wedge salad, which is normally smothered in blue cheese crumbles, bacon and blue cheese dressing slim down to a meager 111 calories? Easy. Lose the blue cheese dressing. Also, replacing the iceburg lettuce with romaine lettuce provides an added nutritional boost too. While both types of lettuce are low in calories, each having less than 10 calories per cup, the darker romaine lettuce provides better nutrition.  Romaine lettuce contains antioxidants, folate, a B vitamin and vitamin K. The healthy rule of thumb: always choose the darkest lettuce possible when making your salads.

Replacing the sinfully delicious blue cheese dressing accounts for most of the reduction in calories. Instead, this salad calls for a simple, homemade Buttermilk ranch dressing. Per tablespoon, this healthy buttermilk ranch dressing has only 16 calories. Blue cheese salad dressing contains 75 calories per tablespoon.

Here’s what you need to make this healthy Wedge salad in about 15 minutes:

Ingredients

2 hearts of romaine, quartered lengthwise with cores removed
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
2 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
2 ounces crumbled blue cheese
1/2 cup Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

Directions

Place 2 romaine quarters on each of 4 salad plates
Sprinkle with chives, bacon and blue cheese
Drizzle with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

You still get the bacon, the blue cheese crumbles and a tasty, creamy dressing and this recipe counts as 1 vegetable and ½ high-fat meat if you’re into Exchanges. Per serving, this Wedge contains:

  • 111 calories
  • 8 g fat ( 3 g sat , 2 g mono )
  • 17 mg cholesterol
  • 5 g carbohydrates
  • 6 g protein
  • 1 g fiber
  • 481 mg sodium
  • 97 mg potassium

There you have it. A healthy Wedge salad. I know what I’m making for dinner tonight!

Photo credit: I Believe I Can Fry

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