By Carl Hanson
Pictured: Chicken Fiesta Salad | Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

Fresh summer veg + lean protein = perfectly balanced summer salads.

Summer's always the right time to elevate salad to main-dish status. Veggies and fruits are at their peak freshness -- and eating healthy just feels right. These top-rated salads are light and low-cal but substantial enough to satisfy you.

1. Chicken Berry Salad | 378 Calories

"This recipe uses three kinds of fresh berries and your choice of mixed salad greens, all tossed together with grilled chicken and a special honey mustard dressing," says KATIE MINES. "This is my favorite summer salad."

Photo by Ashley Geist

2. Chicken Fiesta Salad | 311 Calories

"This is an attractive and zesty all-in-one dish," says ANGL8277. "It's full of veggies and chicken, and loaded with flavor. If desired, top with shredded cheese and tortilla chips."

3. Caprese Salad with Grilled Flank Steak | 321 Calories

Top a simple Caprese salad with leftover grilled steak. "This is a fresh, healthy, easy-to-make salad with a twist," says cookinmama.

Photo by Nicolette

4. Salad Nicoise | 287 Calories

This classic French salad combines new potatoes, tuna, hard-cooked eggs, and fresh green beans with salad greens and roma tomatoes in a lively lemon vinaigrette. Says Bob Cody, "This French-inspired salad makes a delightful summer dish. You can dress it up with other garden vegetables like corn, blanched broccoli, cauliflower, and asparagus!"

5. Larb - Laotian Chicken Mince | 294 Calories

"A Vietnamese friend taught me how to make this dish that originates from Laos and Cambodia," says Baking Nana. "Pre-ground chicken, turkey or pork may be used instead of the chicken thigh meat. Serve with sticky rice or in lettuce cups."

Photo by Buckwheat Queen

6. Greek Flank Steak and Veggie Salad | 383 Calories

"Tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers roast along with the steak, creating a crunchy, juicy salad that just begs to be topped with feta," says Molly Gilbert.

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

7. Chicken and Melon Salad | 246 Calories

"A good use for leftover chicken," says Jen. "You can substitute other melons, papaya, pineapple, mushrooms, or water chestnuts for the grapes or the honeydew melon."

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

8. Warm Steak and Potato Salad | 359 Calories

It's steak and potatoes served on a bed of greens with tomatoes and a simple red wine vinaigrette. "Comfort food without the guilt," says frank11.

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

9. Grilled Chicken, Peach, and Arugula Salad

Chicken and fresh peaches are grilled and served on fresh arugula. This sensational summer salad is dressed with a simple homemade vinaigrette.

Photo by LilSnoo

Check out our complete collection of Summer Salad Recipes.

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