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What You're Eating: Best Summer Salads

Oak Grill Watermelon & Beet Salad (2) 610 header
(credit: Oak Grill)

Summer means a bountiful harvest of delicious fruits and delicate vegetables. Make the most of the season by indulging in a fresh and light summer salad; with much less guilt than an ice-cream cone, these Orange County salads scream summertime at its best.

tender greens salad
(credit: Katie Bodell)

The Harvest Salad
Tender Greens
Irvine Spectrum
31 Fortune Drive
Irvine, CA 92618
(949) 679-9135

Fine dining and quality food, with all local, fresh, and sustainable ingredients await at Tender Greens, a farmer's market inspired, relaxed restaurant. Offering a variety of fresh, summertime salads, including daily features with the most seasonally fresh ingredients, allow for plenty of options. Current favorites include the Grilled Thai Octopus Salad, with green papaya, thai basil, citrus peanuts, coriander, chili lime vinaigrette, and the Harvest Salad (pictured) featuring organic fruit, artisan cheese, local nuts, scarborough farms lettuces, and a delicious golden balsamic vinaigrette, served atop a goat milk yogurt.

lazy dog salad
(credit: Katie Bodell)

Golden Beets & Goat Cheese Salad
Lazy Dog Cafe
240 S State College Blvd.
Brea CA 92821
(714) 529-9300
(four additional OC locations)

This SoCal chain features a surprising dedication to local sourcing, fresh ingredients, and house-made dishes. Gluten-free and allergy friendly options are available for every diner, and the well-rounded restaurant is perfect for the whole family (mom and dad get unique, high quality food, kids are pampered with a great menu and fun surprises!) Their seasonal Golden Beets and Goat Cheese salad is a must-try with roasted golden beets, spring greens, candied walnuts, Laura Chenel Goat cheese, edible flowers, and a red wine vinaigrette.

bungalow salad
(credit: The Bungalow)

Grilled Lime Chicken Salad
The Bungalow
2441 E. Coast Hwy
Corona del Mar, CA 92625
(949) 673-6585

Located in Corona del Mar, this institution began serving lunch this June and is currently featuring a tasty summertime salad for a mid-day break. Their Grilled Lime Chicken Salad features mixed greens, lime marinated chicken, chopped grilled vegetables, cherry tomatoes, avocado, and a citrus dressing that is light, citrusy and perfect for a summertime meal.

Deconstructed Cobb Salad
(credit: Watertable)

Deconstructed Cobb Salad
21500 Pacific Coast Hwy.
Huntington Beach, CA 92648
(714) 845-4776

The Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach's signature restaurant, Watertable, is serving up a unique twist on the Cobb Salad for the perfect summer lunch. Their Deconstructed Cobb Salad is served as the name implies, deconstructed on a plate filled with bacon jam, smoked egg yolk spread, avocado, blue cheese, tomato, and lemon-dijon dressing.

true food kitchen salad
(credit: True Food Kitchen)

Summer Market Salad
True Food Kitchen
451 Newport Center Dr.
Newport Beach, California 92660
(949) 644-2400

True Food Kitchen, known for serving both tasty and nutritious, anti-inflammatory dishes with only the best-for-your-body ingredients, is currently serving up a delicious Summer Market Salad. This gluten-free, vegetarian salad features the following fresh, seasonal ingredients: purslane, corn, almond, cucumber, avocado, goat cheese, and blueberry, topped with a tomato and herb vinaigrette.

tamarind of london Quinoa Salad
(credit: Tamarind of London)

Summer Quinoa Salad
Tamarind of London
7862 E Pacific Coast Hwy
Newport Beach, CA 92657
(949) 715-8338

Tamarind of London, the first Indian restaurant in the world to receive a Michelin star, continues to shine with their summer Quinoa Salad. Blending both cultural authenticity and mainstream accessiblity, this salad boasts unique Indian flavors, coupled with some of Southern Calfornia's best seasonal ingredients. The Quinoa Salad is served with avocado, beets, cilantro, and an orange coriander dressing made with reduced orange juice, roasted coriander, cumin, Kashmiri chili flakes, and chaat masala.

Heirloom tomato salad[1] credit: Paul Martin's American Grill
(credit: Paul Martin's American Grill)

Heirloom Tomatoes and Burrata Cheese Salad
Paul Martin's American Grill
31 Fortune Dr
Irvine, CA 92618
(949) 453-1144

At Paul Martin's American Grill, "Seasonal and Delicious" fare is always in order. The Heirloom Tomatoes and Burrata Cheese Salad is gluten-free, heart-friendly, and features only locally sourced ingredients. Plump and full-of-flavor heirloom tomatoes are topped with sweet basil, extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, burrata cheese, and a balsamic glaze. Pair this salad with a glass of wine from their deep selection for the perfect complement to this light summer meal.

Quinoa salad at Souplantation
(credit: Souplantation)

Summer Quinoa & Feta Salad
1555 Adams Ave
Costa Mesa, CA
(714) 556-1903
Additional Locations Around Orange County

Known for their varieties of soups and salads that change with the season, the August Souplantation menu features three specialty summer salads perfect for summer, in addition to their fresh salad bar where guests can make their own creations. The summer Quinoa & Feta Salad includes red and white quinoa, feta cheese, corn, cilantro, parsley, red wine vinegar, white sugar, Dijon mustard, kosher salt, black pepper, and an oil and vegetable base. Buffet lunches start at $9.

Oak Grill Watermelon & Beet Salad (1)
(credit: Oak Grill)

Summer Watermelon & Roast Beet Salad
Oak Grill and Aqua Lounge
690 Newport Center Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 760-4920

Located just steps from Fashion Island, the newly opened Oak Grill features an open air dining option for a perfect summer meal out. Executive Chef Marc Johnson's Summer Watermelon & Roast Beet Salad, tossed with Mache, Drake Farms Chevre, Strawberries, and Meyer Lemon Marmalade is full of summertime flavors. Light, sweet, and full of rich cheese flavor, the salad satisfies the palate in a unique and fresh way.

(credit: Antonello Ristorante)

Insalata Antonello
Antonello Ristorante
3800 Plaza Drive
Santa Ana, CA
(714) 751-7153

A Santa Ana Italian tradition since 1979, Antonello Ristorante features authentic Cucina Nostalgica Italiana - new Italian cuisine. Their Insalata Antonello features Bibb lettuce, Truffelbert Farms hazelnuts, gorgonzola cheese, hardboiled egg, apple, pancetta, Ligurian olive oil, and imported red wine vinegar. Closed Sundays.

What are your favorite salads? Share in the comments below!

Katie Bodell is the Blog Editor for Trekaroo, the largest family travel website in the U.S. She is also a freelance writer, a happy wife to her best friend, and a mom to three sweet California girls. See more on: Trekaroo | CheapOair | Google+ | Twitter.

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