Happy New Year … It’s Time for a Salad

Ahhh, January … a new, fresh start to healthy eating habits. We’ve gotten through the holidays, added an extra 5-10 pounds, and are looking to get back into shape. What better way to do it than by working a salad into the mix? Here are some of the best Little Rock has to offer. Granted, some of these aren’t overly healthy, but hey, at least they have “salad” in their name.

Rose’s Creole Soaked Salad at The Faded Rose ($5.95-Large)
I could eat a bucket of this salad. It’s comprised of lettuce, chopped tomatoes and green olives, all tossed in TFR’s garlicky, oily, tangy and salty vinaigrette dressing. A visit to The Faded Rose without ordering Rose’s Creole soaked salad is a mistake.

Pistachio Encrusted Ahi Tuna Salad at Afterthought Bistro ($12)
This well-composed salad includes a bold, vibrant blood orange vinaigrette and seared, perfectly rare Ahi tuna, along with capers, grapefruit and roasted fennel. It’s healthy, it’s beautiful, and … it’s delicious!

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Roasted Chicken Caesar Salad at ZAZA Fine Salad + Wood-Oven Pizza Co. ($9.75)
ZAZA’s has numerous salad options but the roasted chicken salad with crispy, Romaine lettuce, huge chunks of chicken, shaved Parm and croutons seems to suit me the best. To make things slightly healthier, requests a “lite” amount of dressing.

Chopped Romaine at South on Main ($10-Full)
On paper, there’s nothing about this salad that “wows” you, but what I enjoy most is its wonderful balance of ingredients and flavors. Nothing is over-the-top … just an ample bowl of items, including chopped Romaine, grilled chicken, hardboiled egg, garlic croutons, fried onions and creamy pepper dressing.

Salpicao at Café Bossa Nova ($15.99)
OK, this one is really stretching it, as the Salpicao is technically not a salad. But it eats kind of like one and even has Bossa Nova’s mista salad on the same plate, so we’ll count it. The dish is highlighted by shredded chicken breasts with Fuji apples and bevy of other ingredients over bed of white rice.

Grilled Romaine Hearts at The Pantry ($8.95)
This salad is so damn good that I’ve actually attempted to re-create it at home … successfully, might I add. The beauty is in its simplicity—a grilled, halved Romaine heart is  covered in Caesar dressing and shaved Parmesan. It took me forever to order the dish, but once I did, it’s now a must-get.

Chef Salad at Vino’s ($6.25)
Do not rest on the salads at Vino’s! With great pizzas and calzones, it’s quite easy to do so. But you’d be making a mistake. The chef salad is a large bowl of mixed greens topped with all the great pizza toppings—onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, black olives, green peppers, mozzarella cheese and your choice of ham, chicken or turkey.

Other Great Ones…
Carrot Slaw Salad at Three Fold, Chicken Salad at Scallions, Tomato Cucumber Salad at Desi Den, Caprese at Big Orange (seasonal)

Reader Response…

Jason S.: “Smoked Turkey Salad at Burge’s Hickory Smoked Turkeys & Hams.”
Marie C.: “A quick but healthy option Jason’s Deli – Nutty Mixed-up Salad! Yummy!”
Cristina R.: “Salad Supreme at US Pizza.”
Julie V.: “Tilapia Salad at Layla’s.”
Chris H.: “Grilled Chicken Santa Fe Salad at Reno’s Argenta Cafe is on the top of my list for sure.”
Jamie B.: “The tuna salad at ZAZA Fine Salad + Wood-Oven Pizza Co or the gyro salad at Layla’s. Yummmmmm.”
Jennifer B.: “I’m not even gonna lie, I do love that US Pizza salad supreme.”
John K.: “The Greek Salad at Vesuvio is the best salad I’ve had in years.”
Leslie K.: “Steak salad at Cheers in the Heights!”
Holly H.: “Warm goat cheese salad at Copper Grill! My fav!”
Diane W.: “US Pizza supreme salad, Zaza Cobb salad with no tomatoes, add blueberries & grapes.”
Jim P.: “Best Impressions at the arts center. Great salads and they make their dressings fresh everyday. Strawberry spinach with candied walnuts is really good and you can get it with grilled fish or chicken on top.”
Jay M.: “The salads at Kiyens are all good and different. And…they come with homemade French Toast made with in house baked bread. Yum!”
Capi P.: “Gotta mention Peck’s Special Salad served for over 60 years by my family…Leaf and Romaine lettuce, roasted chicken breast, bacon, toasted almond, the original tarragon vinaigrette from the hotel Sam Peck.”
Amy B.: “I’m really a huge fan of the beet & pecan salad, but everyone around here is crazy for the chicken livers.”
Ben B.: “Thai Chop at Big Orange.”

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Happy New Year … It’s Time for a Salad