8 Fresh & Filling Salad Recipes Perfect For A Bariatric Diet

By Derek

If You’re On A Bariatric Diet You Need To Try These 8 Delicious Salad Recipes That Satisfy!

Salads are boring, right? Lettuce, some veggies and a tasteless buffet-staple dressing and you’re in for a real treat… Not quite – this is not a list of your average “salad recipes.”

These take the best aspects of a salad (healthy, low calorie and nutritious) and make them something you will turn to again and again after bariatric surgery. The key to success and staying on track after bariatric surgery is to find recipes and meals that you love while staying within your nutrition goals.

What fun is enjoying your new life and new you if you can’t enjoy your meals? After all, the vast majority of our social lives revolve around food in one way or another. Check out these salad recipes and give them a try!

1. Cucumber, Black-Bean, Corn, Tomato and Avocado Salad

This salad combines a wealth of ingredients that bring healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and protein altogether. Reduce the avocado to only 1/2 to reduce fat. The recipe is great as-is (after reducing avocado) for a bariatric patient on maintenance; however, if you are still enjoying your journey to your goal weight reduce the corn to 1/4 of a cup to 1/2 cup to cut out much of the carbohydrates.

Typically you should shoot for 60 grams of carbohydrates while you are working toward your goal weight after bariatric surgery.


274 calories | 22 g carbs | 11.3 (6 if reducing avocado) g fat | 10 g protein

Makes 4 servings


  • 1 English cucumber, diced
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 1/4 cups corn
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 lime
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

2. Rainbow Power Salad with Roasted Chickpeas

Veggies can provide so many nutrients in our diet. But what about a more superficial benefit? Color! Seeing a beautifully colored meal in front of you makes the experience that much better. This recipe will please your eyes as much as it will you taste buds.

The recipe nutrition is only for the salad. The creator of this salad adds a special, homemade dressing that packs a whopping 20 grams of (healthy) fat per serving. Skip that recipe and just add a nice fat-free balsamic vinaigrette.


262 calories | 37 g carbs | 10 g fat | 10 g protein

Makes 2 servings


  • 3 large tri-color carrots
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, cut into ribbons
  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

3. Grilled Steak with Baby Arugula and Parmesan Salad

Adding a protein to a salad is a great way to transform a bowl of leafy greens. Adding healthy grilled steak brings flavor nothing else can compete with! If you’ve never used arugula for the greens in your salad you are in for a treat. It is not just regular lettuce, the texture and peppery flavor really set this salad apart.


258 calories | 4 g carbs | 16 g fat | 25 g protein

Makes 4 Servings


  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 4 (4-ounce) flat-iron steaks
  • 2 lemons, halved
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 cups loosely packed baby arugula
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) shaved fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

4. BLT Salad with Avocado

The BLT – bacon lettuce and tomato. This combination has stood the test of time and remains a staple in kitchens everywhere. If you are a fan of bacon then you will love this low-calorie variation on a classic. Adding some avocado provides a great texture to compliment the crunch from the bacon.


204 calories | 31 g carbs | 14 g fat | 10 g protein

Makes 4 Servings


  • 12 slices lean, center-cut bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh black pepper, to taste
  • 6 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
  • 1 medium (about 4 ounces) Hass avocado, diced

5. Herbed Shrimp with Tomato-Spinach Salad

Shrimp is one of the leanest protein sources you can come by. It’s not too fishy so most can enjoy it (unless you are allergic to shellfish). It can take on so many great flavors and can be adapted for any taste you’re in the mood for. This relatively simple salad is sure to amaze and delight. One thing about shrimp is that it is naturally high in cholesterol – just FYI.


212 calories | 8 g carbs | 11.4 g fat | 19 g protein

Makes 4 Servings


  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 cup heirloom grape tomatoes, halved
  • Cooking spray
  • 4 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced radicchio
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fennel bulb
  • 1/4 cup torn mint leaves
  • 2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)

6. Chicken, Red Potato, and Green Bean Salad

A salad with chicken and tomatoes may not jump out at you, but the dressing that goes along with this meal really makes it special. Make sure you don’t choose any dijon mustard or yellow mustard. The whole grain mustard has a special flavor and texture that is an integral piece of the recipe.

If you are feeling lazy or are running short on time, don’t worry about cooking your own chicken and dicing it. Check out pre-grilled and cubed frozen chicken in the freezer section of your grocery store to make this recipe super easy.


269 calories | 26.1 g carbs | 8.8 g fat | 22.4 g protein

Makes 4 Servings



  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced


  • 1 pound small red potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 pound diagonally cut green beans
  • 2 cups cubed cooked chicken (about 8 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 1 (10-ounce) package gourmet salad greens (about 6 cups)

7. Grilled Chicken and Wheat-Berry Salad

Wheat berries are the kernel that gets ground into whole wheat flour. You just learned something new… maybe? Wheat berry has a great texture and flavor that provides some variance from the all-popular brown rice and quinoa. These take a little while to cook so you will need to plan ahead a bit for this recipe. It’s worth it, though!


332 calories | 30 g carbs | 12 g fat | 29 g protein

Makes 16 Servings


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup hard winter wheat berries, rinsed and drained
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves, divided
  • 1 cup green apple, peeled and cut into julienne strips
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoons
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 (4-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion

8. Balsamic Watermelon Chicken Salad

Adding fruit to your salads is a great way to get your daily recommended servings of both fruits and vegetables. But we’ve never tried watermelon as the guest of honor. The sweetness of the watermelon and balsamic glaze combined with the light sprinkling of bleu cheese is something worth trying.

Extend summer by adding watermelon to your salad! We reduced the olive oil and blue cheese crumbles to cut back on unnecessary fats to Avoid dumping syndrome! Reducing the oil and blue cheese to 1 tsp and 3 tablespoons cuts out almost 6 grams of fat per serving!


300 calories | 18 g carbs | 9 g fat | 28 g protein

Makes 4 Servings


  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 teaspoons all purpose seasoning (I used a spice mix I got at a specialty food store)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 4 cups baby spinach or greens
  • cups cubed watermelon
  • 3 tablespoons blue cheese crumbles
  • ¼ cup sliced or crushed almonds

What are your thoughts on these recipes? Let us know in the comments below!


More Bariatric Articles

Gastric Sleeve vs Gastric Bypass: A Side-by-Side Comparison 

What is the gastric sleeve?  The sleeve gastrectomy or “gastric sleeve” is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of about 80% of the stomach. The remaining portion of the stomach will be shaped into a tube-like structure or a “sleeve” that is about the size of a banana. The gastric sleeve works by: What […]

Gastric Sleeve Pain After Eating

Gastric sleeve surgery is a popular weight loss surgery that involves removing a portion of the stomach to reduce the amount of food you can eat. While it can be an effective way to lose weight and improve related health conditions, it is also a major surgery that can cause pain and discomfort after the […]

What are your tips and tricks to post-bariatric success?

Share your thoughts or questions in the comments below – we want to hear from you!


  1. My daughter and my DIL are both bariactic patients and have made amazing changes in their lives and I want to support them.

  2. Thank you for the great salad recipes. I’m always looking for new ideas for healthy protein rich recipes. You definitely delivered …..Can’t wait to try them.
    Thank you
    P.S. I am enjoying receiving all your articles….very helpful hints

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *