This healthy Mediterranean salmon salad combines romaine lettuce, quinoa, tomatoes, red onion and feta cheese all tossed in a light lemon vinaigrette dressing and topped with a salmon filet. It’s perfect for lunch or a light dinner.
I love finding inspiration from restaurants and it’s always so exciting when I figure out how to recreate my favorite meal in my own home. One of my favorite local restaurants here in Richmond called The Daily, used to make a salmon salad that I was obsessed with, so this recipe is my recreation of it!
Why You’ll Love This Salad
It’s a perfect meal-sized salad that is filling enough to be served for dinner, but also perfect for lunchtime.
This recipe is loaded with flavor and packed full of protein thanks to the addition of quinoa and salmon.
It’s the perfect recipe for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. From start to finish this recipe comes together in under 25 minutes!
Components For Meal-Sized Salads
This Mediterranean salmon salad is absolutely delicious and has all the components I look for when building a meal-sized salad (ps: check out my full guide for how to build a healthy meal-sized salad):
lots of veggies – romaine, onion and tomatoes.
a good source of protein – salmon and quinoa.
smart carbs – quinoa is mixed into this salad. You can check out my round up of quinoa salad recipes.
healthy fats – olives, almonds and feta cheese for some healthy fat and added creaminess.
satisfaction factor – lots of flavor, different textures and a large serving size!
Here’s What You Need
salmon – we’re coating the salmon with olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and pepper and baking it until nice and flakey.
romaine lettuce – the base of this salad! Romaine is a super mild green that pairs well with the rest of the ingredients but you can swap for any leafy green you have on hand if needed.
quinoa – add extra protein, flavor and healthy carbohydrates with cooked quinoa! Check out my full post on how to cook quinoa. Instead of quinoa, you can totally swap in another grain like farro or rice.
red onion – add a little zest and crunch with sliced red onion!
grape tomatoes – cherry tomatoes work as well! I love the sweet flavor explosion that small tomatoes add to this salad.
feta cheese – the feta adds a bit of creaminess to the salad and gives it a little tang as well. I recommend using vegan feta to make this salad dairy-free and vegan, if needed! You could omit it, but you’ll lose a lot of flavor.
kalamataolives – the olives add a nice saltiness and some healthy fats. Pepper stuffed green olives are also delicious!
almonds – add more healthy fats and a nice crunch factor to the salad. You can keep this raw or toast them for extra flavor.
dressing – a mixture of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, maple syrup (honey), salt, and pepper.
How to Make Mediterranean Salmon Salad
Step 1: The first step is to cook your salmon. Rub the salmon fillet with olive oil and season both sides with salt and pepper. Place the fillet skin side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and pour the lemon juice over the top of the fish. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until just cooked through.
Step 2: While your salmon is cooking, whisk together all of the salad ingredients and prep the rest of your salad ingredients. Chop the romaine and add to a large salad bowl, top with cooked quinoa, red onion, tomatoes, olives, feta and chopped almonds.
Step 3: When the salmon is cooked through, let it cool for 1-2 minutes then place salmon on top of each salad and enjoy!
Customize Your Salad
This salad is completely customizable! Here are some suggestions for variations and substitutions:
Switch up the greens – if you’re not a romaine fan, feel free to use your favorite leafy green instead.
Make this dairy-free and vegan – simply skip the feta cheese (or use a vegan option).
Use different veggies – Have different veggies on hand? Toss them in! Cucumber or bell peppers would be delicious additions.
Swap your grains – Not a fan of quinoa? Swap it for rice or farro to make this a heartier salad.
Use a different protein – swap the salmon with chicken or if you want to make this salad vegetarian swap in tempeh, tofu or beans!
Swap the nuts for seeds – if you have a nut allergy or if you just prefer seeds you can swap the almonds for sunflower seeds or pepitas.
Add fresh herbs – I love adding fresh herbs to my salads. Fresh oregano or fresh dill would both be delicious in this salad.
Prepping This Salad Ahead of Time
This salad is super simple to throw together, but you can also prep it in advance! Here’s what I recommend:
Add romaine mix to a large container with an airtight lid.
Slice onions, chop grape tomatoes and kalamata olives. Add to the container with lettuce.
Cook your quinoa and once cooked add to container.
Crumble feta cheese on top with your almond slices.
Store dressing in a separate container.
Cook salmon and once cooled store in a separate container.
When you’re ready to serve, drizzle dressing over top with salmon and mix to combine.
You want to make sure you mix in the dressing as close to serving as possible. If you don’t plan to eat the full salad, only add dressing to the portion you plan to eat and store the rest in the fridge.
This healthy Mediterranean salmon salad combines romaine lettuce, quinoa, tomatoes, red onion and feta cheese all tossed in a light lemon vinaigrette dressing and topped with a salmon filet. It's perfect for lunch or a light dinner.
2Tablespoonschopped kalamata olives, (pepper stuffed green olives also work)
2Tablespoonsextra virgin olive oil
2Tablespoonsfresh lemon juice
1teaspoonmaple syrup or honey
salt and cracked pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Make dressing by whisking together all the ingredients.
Rub the salmon with olive oil and season both sides with salt and pepper. Place filets skin-side down on a greased baking dish, pour the lemon juice over top and bake for 10-12 minutes or until just cooked through. Time will vary based on the size of your salmon. Watch it carefully as you don’t want to overcook it.
While salmon is cooking, prep salad by adding chopped romaine to a large salad bowl. Top with quinoa, red onion, tomatoes, feta cheese, olives and sliced almonds.
Add dressing and toss to combine.
Once salmon is cooked through, remove from the oven and allow to rest for 1-2 minutes. Place salmon on top of each salad and enjoy!