This healthy Summer Lentil Salad recipe is full of crisp cucumbers, sweet strawberries, crunchy almonds, and is marinated in a bright and herby dressing. On the table in 30 minutes!
Ahhhh… the humble lentil. The small round and flat legume that gets hidden in the back of the pantry only to be discovered on an exceptionally bleak I-really-need-to-go-to-the-grocery-store kind of day. I actually tend to hide my lentils in a spot outside my regular pantry; a cupboard where I forget there is even food stashed behind my vitamins, hand mixer, and a variety of other kitchen equipment.
But I am learning to love this humble legume more every day! Not only have I discovered that they are nutritious to boot, but I love the fact that they can go from dry disks to plump ready-to-eat rounds in just 20 minutes! No soaking overnight, no pressure cooker required, just you, some water and your lentils! This makes them especially handy for weeknight meals!
My love for lentils really blossomed when I learned the secret for packing them with flavor: marinating them in a dressing. That was the official meet cute. One bite in, I was hooked on these flavorful little legumes. And our Summer Lentil Salad has one flavorful marinade. It is full of orange, white balsamic, olive oil, and herbs. All of the flavors coat the warm lentils and soak right in, giving them incredible flavor.
The longer the marinade with the lentils, the more flavorful they get, making this weeknight meal a weekday leftover lunch win.
Then to our zippy marinated lentils, this Summer Lentil Salad gets some crunch from roasted almonds, some sweetness from strawberries, and a ton of crisp and fresh flavor from sliced cucumbers. Then to add one last pop of flavor, we shower the salad with some summer herbs. This Summer Lentil Salad calls for mint because of its fresh and bright flavor, but you can mix and match and herbs you would like. I just imagined a version with chives and I need to get back in the kitchen ASAP to make this flavor combo a reality!