Recipe Tips

Best Recipes Under 500 kcal

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This compilation of veggie low calorie salads has everything you need to level up your salad game.

Best Recipes Under 500 kcal

From refreshing summer salads to festive winter salads and beyond, these healthy recipes are perfect as full meals, side dishes or even post workout “snacks”.

You shouldn’t worry about your stomach growling an hour later as all these salads are packed with more than 10g of satiating protein, at least 5g of fiber and plenty of healthy fats.

You shouldn’t worry about gaining any extra weight either. This compilation is aiming between 250 to 500 calories per serving which is considered low calorie and safe for a weight loss diet.

If you want to know more about the benefits of a vegetarian diet for losing weight, check out our FREE 7-day weight loss meal plan (you’ll find some of these salads there).

Have fun scrolling through these amazing low calorie salads – btw, number 11 is my favourite!

Cooling Cantaloupe Summer Salad (High-Protein Recipe)

Check out the recipe here


Protein: 19g

Calories: 439kcal

Ready in:25 minutes

Bonus: full of vitamin-packed ingredients

With lime and mint providing mojito vibes, this summer cantaloupe salad will make you feel like you’re on holiday!

Bonus: the perfect lunch option for work or school

Fresh, easy and delicious vegetarian wedge salad with creamy cashew dressing makes a perfect high protein lunch in a jar.

Bonus: many recipe variations

A wholesome salad of bulgur, arugula, and creamy goat cheese, topped with golden nectarines; a delicious combination! It’s also very high in general vitamins and nutrients.

Bonus: can be made vegan and gluten free

After a salad recipe that actually fills you up? Try our Couscous & Pear Salad! It’s high protein, high fibre & low fat! If goat’s cheese isn’t your jam, you can try this pear salad with feta cheese, with blue cheese or with salad cheese.

Bonus: a good salad for weight loss goals and healthy eating

After something different for lunch? Try this avocado and citrus salad with feta – it’s sweet, sour & packs a punch with a variety of colors!

Bonus: a metabolism-boosting meal, high in fiber and vitamins

Want a salad that is more than just leaves? Try our delicious vegan Moroccan couscous salad – real fuel for a busy day!

Bonus: a hearty salad for lunch

Looking to up your salad game? Try this healthy egg salad recipe with quinoa and beets – the perfect weight loss lunch!

Bonus: packed with flavour from the fresh herbs and mustard sauce

This protein packed vegan lentil and potato salad with red onion, bell pepper and fresh parsley is a perfect weight loss recipe. It’s filling, healthy and nutritious, while still tasting amazing! Try it now 😉


  • 4 medium potato (500g / 17.5oz)
  • 1 cup brown lentils, cooked
  • ½ red onion
  • 1 handful parsley, fresh (dried will work in a push)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp vinegar (choose your favourite, all go well!)
  • 2 tbsp mustard
  • 1 tsp maple syrup (or honey for non-vegans)
  • 1 bell pepper (green or red)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Using a microwave: Set the microwave to 1000w. 4 medium potatoes will need roughly 10 minutes cooking. Depending on amount and size of the potatoes you’ll have to reduce or add a couple of minutes of microwaving. If you use the stove, cook the potatoes in salty boiling water for 20 minutes or until tender.

    4 medium potato

  • Dice up the onion and cut the bell pepper into small pieces. Add both to a salad bowl.

    ½ red onion, 1 bell pepper

  • Mix in the lentils (previously drained and rinsed; if you use dry lentils, cook according to package instructions first).

    1 cup brown lentils, cooked

  • Rip up the parsley and add it to the bowl as well.

    1 handful parsley, fresh

  • Now in with the vinegar, olive oil, mustard, maple syrupsalt and pepper and stir it all nicely.

    1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 tbsp mustard, 1 tsp maple syrup, Salt and pepper to taste

  • Now assemble the salad with the cooked potatoes. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

25 Low Calorie Salads: Best Recipes Under 500 kcal

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Bonus: easy to transport, budget friendly

Speedy White Bean Salad – this tangy take on the classic is super-quick and super-tasty. It’s time to make lunch a thing to look forward to again. It’s also a great way to get more fiber into your diet with white beans.

Bonus: versatile, high protein and tasty

This tangy tempeh salad is just the best – quick, tasty and packed with protein. And better yet – use whatever you have in the fridge!

Bonus: high in protein and low in carbs at the same time

Asian Tofu Salad, High in Protein, Low-carb and Vegan. A crunchy and colourful mix of delicious vegan foods that look great and taste even better!

Bonus: delicious sauce with extra protein

This quick take on the falafel salad is packed with protein – and adds even more with our peanut sauce! It’s quick, it’s easy and completely animal-friendly!

Watermelon and Feta Salad

Check out the recipe here


Protein: 15g

Calories: 368kcal

Ready in:10 minutes

Recipe by: Cristina Parés & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: a huge range of phytonutrients

Watermelon, feta, arugula, lemon, walnuts, mint and olive oil – simple enough, right? This exceptionally quick and easy watermelon and feta salad is also incredibly tasty – and we even include a guide to picking the right watermelon!

Vegan Chickpea Winter Salad – Ready in 15 mins

Check out the recipe here


Protein: 17g

Calories: 398kcal

Ready in:15 minutes

Recipe by: Jansen & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: extremely cheap and filling, will tickle your taste buds

An animal friendly, fresh and tangy winter salad with some serious health benefits. It’s fresh and new, but still prepped within 15 minutes – awesome!

Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad

Check out the recipe here


Protein: 14g

Calories: 428kcal

Ready in:25 minutes

Recipe by: Jansen

Bonus: broccoli and cauliflower – true nutrient beasts

Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad – forget fads and so-called superfoods, this is the real deal. Vegan, delicious and rammed with nutrients.

Bonus: a super delicious dressing

Turkish Lentil Salad with a honey mustard dressing. Easy and quick, ready in 7 minutes. Full of fiber, protein and vitamin K.

Bonus: essential amino acids and nutrients

High Protein White Bean Salad that’s healthy and vegan. High in fiber, vitamins A, C, E, B2 and B6 as well as iron and calcium. Takes less than 10 minutes.

Bonus: perfect side dish or after workout “snack” with vitamins C and K

Quick and delicious veggie side salad. High Protein, low carb, vegan and done within 10-12 minutes. In my opinion a must-have recipe.

Bonus: fresh vegetables, vitamins K, C, A, iron and folate

Colourful Tabbouleh Salad – bring Mediterranean flair to the table or into your lunch box! Ready in just 15 minutes, vegan and super tasty!

Bonus: crucial vitamins and plenty of fibre, light homemade dressing

Looking for a healthy vegan pasta salad that you can prep ahead for lunch? Try our Mediterranean pasta salad!

Bonus: healthy and great for weight loss

Looking for a salad that is filling, healthy and high in protein? Try this green lentil salad with a lemony greek yogurt dressing! It will keep you going all afternoon, without piling on excess calories.

Bonus: 259% of your vitamin A requirements and 97% of your Vitamin C requirements

Try our quinoa & Brussel sprouts salad this festive season. Christmas’s most infamous vegetable has never tasted so good!

Thai Quinoa Salad

Check out the recipe here


Protein: 16g

Calories: 469kcal

Ready in:20 minutes

Recipe by: Jansen & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: contains ‘healthy fats’ and is gluten-free

Thai Quinoa Salad – Tropical Vibes. A refreshingly light, tasty Asian super-dish with lots of protein, fiber and tropical flavour. Get your summer feeling here.

Bonus: little prep time, a good source of healthy fat

A chickpea avocado salad with an excellent plant-based protein source!? That’s elite level health right there. From just one serving you get 18 g fiber and 17 g protein!

Bonus: packs in looooads of protein, fiber, plenty of nutrients

Full of protein, fiber and loads of other nutrients this halloumi salad will keep you feeling full for hours – and you’ll secretly be looking forward to more!

Popular Questions

Want to learn more about low calories salads? Read on!

How many calories are in a salad?

A good, filling salad generally has up to 500 calories to be considered low calorie and healthy.

What salad is good for weight loss?

Low fat and low calorie salads with at least 15 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber are best for a weight loss diet.

You should watch out for any sneaky ingredients and wrong portion sizes.

Be especially careful with your salad dressing – better control the amount and go for some healthy homemade options.

How do you keep salads low in calories?

To keep your salad low calorie you should:

  • use a variety of vegetables
  • load up on leafy greens
  • control the amount and type of dressing
  • add high-quality proteins (boiled eggs, beans, legumes, low-fat cottage cheese etc.)
  • fill up on healthy fats (olives, avocados, nuts, and seeds)

What is the healthiest dressing for salad?

The healthiest dressing for a salad is simple and preferably homemade. Watch out for any unnecessary fats, sodium and sugar!

Check out this avocado salad dressing and vegan caesar dressing (with caesar salad recipe) for inspiration. They are the ideal versions of healthy salad dressings.

I hope you enjoyed this compilation of low calorie and healthy salad recipes! Let me know in the comments if you have any favorite salad ingredients or tips to make the best creamy dressings 😊


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