A Salad for Every Season

by Mary Beth Wallace

You won’t find iceberg lettuce or Ranch dressing (unless it’s homemade, of course) in these locals’ salad creations. Taking advantage of seasonal produce, they’ve crafted colorful, nourishing bowls that make eating your veggies a treat. Winter, spring, summer, fall – in this feature, there’s a salad for all.
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Morgan Howard Hixson

Morgan Howard, Hixson


Fresh Zoodle Salad

Serves 6-8


Salad ingredients

  • 3 cups spiralized zucchini (about 2 medium zucchini)
  • 2 ears corn, shucked and clean
  • 1 peach, pitted and quartered
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 1 ball of burrata cheese
  • 2 sprigs basil leaves (about 15 leaves)
  • 3 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper

Dressing Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. honey


Salt zucchini noodles (about 2 tsp. of salt) and squeeze out the excess liquid. Let them sit in a colander for about 20 minutes while you prep everything else. Light an indoor or outdoor grill to medium high. Grill peaches and corn about 3-5 minutes per side – just long enough to get some good grill marks. While the peaches and corn cool, cut your tomatoes into wedges. Cut the corn off the cob, and slice peaches into thin slices. Then begin to assemble your salad: Put the zoodles, corn, peaches, and tomatoes in a large bowl; tear burrata into pieces and add to the salad. Tear or slice basil leaves and add them on top. Add about 1 tsp. of salt and pepper to the salad. Whisk dressing ingredients together and pour on top of salad. Toss and serve!

Fresh mozzarella cheese is an acceptable substitute for the burrata. In fact, burrata cheese is made from mozzarella and cream.

Use heirloom, or garden grown, tomatoes for the best flavor.

Zucchini has a high water content – salting can rid the vegetable of its excess liquid.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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Michele Reneau Signal Mountain

Michele Reneau, Signal Mountain


Roasted Beet Salad

Serves 2


Salad ingredients

  • 2 small (or medium) beets
  • 3 oz. baby arugula and/or baby spinach
  • 1 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/8 cup candied pecans

Dressing ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive Chattanooga Lemon Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper


Scrub beets clean and wrap in foil. Roast in a 400° oven for 1 hour – they should be fork tender. When cool, peel the beets and slice into bite-size pieces. Put the dressing ingredients together in a jar and shake to combine. Plate your arugula, then add the chopped beets, crumbled goat cheese, and pecans. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and enjoy!

You can find candied pecans at most grocery stores, or make your own at home with cinnamon and sugar.

If you don’t have Olive Chattanooga Lemon Balsamic Vinegar on hand, use 1 Tbsp. lemon juice combined with 1/2 tsp. sugar.

You can boil the beets in hot water until tender, but roasting makes them taste sweeter.

(above) photos by Karen Culp

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Starr Card NorthShore

Starr Card, Northshore


Warm Pear, Walnut, and Parmesan Cheese Salad

Serves 4-5


Salad ingredients

  • 4 pears, cored and sliced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 8 cups spring mix
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese to taste

Dressing ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper


Combine the vinegar, honey, mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Whisk and set aside. Lightly spray a nonstick pan with olive oil and sauté the pears over medium-high heat until they are slightly caramelized but still firm. Set aside. Add walnuts to the pan and toss until warm and slightly toasted. Toss the salad greens in enough vinaigrette to coat. Plate the greens and top with the pears and walnuts. Add shaved Parmesan to the top. Enjoy! 

Create your own cheese shavings using a block of Parmesan and a vegetable peeler. Peel the cheese almost like you’d peel a carrot.

Instead of olive oil, you can sauté the pears in butter for a richer flavor.

You can add a pinch of sugar to the vinaigrette, if you prefer.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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Kelsey Vasileff Downtown Chattanooga

Kelsey Vasileff, Downtown Chattanooga


Vegan Caesar Salad

Serves 1


Salad ingredients

  • 2 cups romaine lettuce
  • 1/4 red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup peas
  • 3 sun-dried tomatoes, cut into strips
  • 1 heart of palm, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 avocado
  • Fresh black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup quinoa, cooked

Dressing Ingredients

  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup alkaline water
  • 2 Tbsp. raw pumpkin seeds
  • 4 Tbsp. dulse seaweed
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut aminos
  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • Celtic sea salt and black pepper to taste


To make the dressing, pulse the ingredients in a high-speed blender until combined. Prepare your salad ingredients (excluding the quinoa) and toss together with the dressing. Serve the salad over a bed of quinoa.

Make a big batch of the salad dressing to have on hand throughout the week. The dressing keeps for up to two weeks!

You can sub sunflower seeds for pumpkin seeds, if you prefer.

Instead of (or in addition to) sun-dried tomatoes, you can add fresh tomatoes for some extra color.

(above) photos by Emily Long

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