How to Make a Mason Jar Salad

Mason jars are the best way to pack a salad for lunch! Not only are they super quick and easy but you don’t have to worry about your lettuce getting soggy or bringing a separate container for dressing! Check out this post for all my mason jar salad tips.

Ever since Mason Jar Salad Week, I wanted to share an actual ‘how to’ resource for building salads in a jar! They’re so fun to make and a great for taking on-the-go. Any salad can be prepped in a mason jar – have fun with creating your own but use this guide to make sure you keep your salad nice and fresh!

The one thing to remember about salad in a jar is that your dressing goes on the bottom and you should only use things that do well “marinating” in dressing (like hearty veggies, tofu, beans, etc.) for the next layer as it’s going to be touching the dressing. The rest is pretty easy, but here’s a quick guide on how I made my salads in a jar. The most important thing to remember = put your dressing at the bottom! This prevents #soggysalad because nobody likes that…

  1. Start by putting 2 Tablespoons of dressing into the bottom of the jar.
  2. Add items that will respond well to marinating in the dressing:
    • cucumbers
    • squash
    • mushrooms
    • carrots
    • beets
  3. Add your remaining veggies, legumes, and greens.
    • tomatoes
    • red bell pepper
    • broccoli
    • broccoli slaw
    • avocado sprinkled with lemon juice to prevent browning
    • chickpeas
    • spring mix (lots of this – you can really pack it in)
  4. Add remaining ingredients.
    • grains
    • protein
    • nuts
    • fruit

A few bonus tips:

  • The quart sized mason jars make one big, meal sized salad. You could probably split it between two people if it were being served as a side salad.
  • I recommend using wide-mouth Ball jars instead of ones with the regular size mouth. It’s just easier to get the ingredients in and out of the jars when using the wide-mouth.
  • Have fun experimenting with different dressings, veggies, protein, and toppings!
  • Leave a little room at the top of the jar so that you can shake it up right before serving. It helps make sure all parts of the salad have some dressing.
  • You can totally eat the salad out of the jar, but they are a little deep for forks so I like pouring the salad into a dish.

Want some mason jar salad inspiration? Check out these recipes!

Here are a few Healthy Homemade Salad Dressings you can try.

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    1. Patrice
      July 30, 2015 AT 9:43 am

      I love, love, love this post. Thank you for inspiring me to eat healthier lunches.

    2. Kelly
      January 29, 2015 AT 3:24 pm

      You wanted to add chicken, where would you put it?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        January 30, 2015 AT 10:34 am

        I’d add it right before the spring mix on top of all the veggies.

    3. Farmers Fridge
      May 8, 2014 AT 2:55 am

      Assemble this salad in your mason jar for a quick gra and go lunch option. I love it

    4. Liz
      February 18, 2014 AT 7:09 pm

      You don’t need to use a glass canning jar. I have done this many times using the Ziploc or rubbermaid containers. The dressing spreads on the bottom and the other vegetables keep the lettuce from touching the dressing. Easy to toss all ingredients and can eat from the same container.

    5. Raspberry ketones
      September 12, 2013 AT 2:35 pm

      Very good post! We will be linking to this great content on
      our website. Keep up the great writing.

    6. Matthew Bader
      July 30, 2013 AT 6:53 pm

      Hi nice idea – would you get any different results if you prepared them the same way in advance in a Tupperware bowls?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        July 31, 2013 AT 12:35 pm

        Hey Matthew. It might work, but not as well because if you added the dressing to the bottom of a tupperware bowl, most of the lettuce would touch it and wilt. The reason mason jars work so well is they give the height to keep the dressing separate. Also, salad ingredients stay fresher in glass jars.

    7. Sandra
      May 14, 2013 AT 10:36 am

      I need to try this! Looks so good.

    8. Susan
      May 2, 2013 AT 5:41 pm

      We have tried this using all the same ingredients, putting the tom, cukes, etc on the bottom, then the lettuce but we don’t add any dressing. We did this for a sewing group and just brought different dressings for the people to add their favorite and then top with croutons. A great idea serve with a fresh roll, garlic bread, etc.
      We did not use vacuum jars, saved large jars that we had it and worked fine.

    9. christina dendy
      March 6, 2013 AT 2:52 pm

      do you vacuum seal the jars? if not, how long do they keep?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 6, 2013 AT 5:56 pm

        Hi Christina. I didn’t vacuum seal them and they lasted about 5 days.

    10. christocc
      August 10, 2012 AT 12:38 pm

      There’s no way to transport these without the dressing sogging up the salad. Instead, carry TWO jars, one with the salad, and a smaller one with the dressing!

    11. joanne k
      July 31, 2012 AT 10:23 pm

      Thank you so much for the inspiration! The middle shelf of our fridge now has salad in a jar at all times. So quick and easy and prepared a week in advance.

    12. Corrie Anne
      July 21, 2012 AT 11:04 pm

      Yum!! I love those salads although I haven’t tried preparing them ahead of time. That’s awesome.

    13. janicedale
      July 21, 2012 AT 3:20 am

      I really like your idea that you put the salad onto jar . I am always looking for a different idea since I love eating salad but more on from the restaurant. I wanted to try salad on my own and when I saw your article, I was impressed and probably tomorrow, I will do this for my lunch and dinner.

      Cooking Recipes for One

    14. Donna
      July 20, 2012 AT 5:14 pm

      If I made 5 will it last without welting for the week?

    15. Katie
      July 20, 2012 AT 12:51 pm

      Such an awesome idea!!!! I’m gonna make these for lunch next week!

    16. terry givens
      July 20, 2012 AT 11:01 am

      Fabulous idea. Simple, easy, and looks delicious. I only wish I had thought of it.

    17. terry
      July 20, 2012 AT 10:59 am

      Amazing idea. I only wish I had thought of it.

    18. TheProDiva
      July 19, 2012 AT 8:38 pm

      I am officially in love with your blog! This is such a great idea. I am always trying to find ways to jazz up my salads. Not only does this give me options, but it is also a great way to transport my lunch! Thanks for the suggestion. I am going to check out the rest of your blog now!

    19. janet @ the taste space
      July 19, 2012 AT 12:51 pm

      This was totally on my to-do list when I went through my salad craze last week but I forgot! Have no fear, there will be plenty more salads to try this out next week! 😉

    20. Tiffany
      July 19, 2012 AT 12:24 pm

      Thanks for sharing a great idea! I can’t wait to try this when I start school this fall!

      By the way I made your overnight oats recipe (oats and almond milk) and I LOVED it! I prefer this one over the one with yogurt and chia. I also made your Berry Hot flax cereal yesterday morning…it was delicious!

      Hope you have a great day 🙂

    21. Beks
      July 19, 2012 AT 10:22 am

      This is fantastic. I need to do this ASAP.

    22. Brenda Perkins
      July 19, 2012 AT 10:00 am

      A great idea, my husband and I have a salad with lunch and a salad with supper and occassionally as supper. I will be making these tonight! Thanks for sharing!

    23. Lisa @ Exercise Eat Repeat
      July 19, 2012 AT 7:26 am

      What a fab idea and they look so tasty. Will look for jars this weekend. Just wondered how long salad will last in them as they are ideal for work lunches. Thank you for sharing.

    24. Scott @ The Healthy Eating Guide
      July 18, 2012 AT 10:08 pm

      What a great idea … thanks for sharing, and I know what I’m doing for lunch tomorrow!

    25. Sara @ sarasmiles
      July 18, 2012 AT 7:07 pm

      This is the first time I have seen this, but you should have seen my facial expression when I first started reading! What a great idea, I can’t wait to try it…my tupperware salad containers are such a drag

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