Saturday, September 21, 2013

Share the Love: Honey Balsamic Harvest Steak Salad {$50 Whole Foods Giveaway}

One of my joys in life is creating meals that my family and our friends delight in when they eat it.

But it doesn't come easy in this house ... at least with the kids it doesn't.

I don't know about your kids, but mine consider things like macaroni and cheese {which has its place in life} the king of all feasts.

And sometimes -- like when I made super delicious apple-cider braised purple cabbage and apple-chicken sausage for dinner -- I hear their protest cries. Loudly.

We parents have a lot going against us when the rest of the free world seems to taut chocolate cookies as the touchdown of all snacks and schools serve low-fat but high-sugar chocolate milk with snacks and lunches.

Now I'm not anti-treat or anti-mac and cheese or anti-chocolate milk, but, darn it, those things sure give vegetables a run for their money when it comes to choosing.

This is why I so appreciate the initiatives made by the Whole Kids Foundation, a nonprofit committed to improving childhood nutrition by increasing the availability and consumption of fruits and vegetables, both at schools and at home.

The foundation just kicked off its annual fundraiser to support school salad bar and garden grant programs and nutrition education classes for teachers, and in doing so, Whole Foods Deerfield has asked me to help spread the word about the importance of including a hearty heaping of veggies into our families' diets by creating a salad recipe the whole family will enjoy.

Well. Twist my arm.

So John and I set out to make a salad that our whole family, a friend and a friend's whole family would enjoy -- which translates to one baby, four kids and five adults, three of which are gluten-free and one who is dairy-free.

We decided to make two main dishes: a Honey Balsamic Harvest Steak Salad and Mini Tomato Salads {aimed at appealing to the minis}.

Honey Balsamic Harvest Steak Salad Recipe:
{fed five adults and four kids with leftovers}

Steak Marinade:
-Your choice of steak -- we used 1.2 pounds of flank steak
- 6 T of gluten-free soy sauce
- 2 T brown sugar
- 1/2 t dry mustard
- 1/2 t of ginger
- 1/2 t of onion powder

Let steak marinate over night.

Salad Ingredients:
- 1 Green Pepper
- 1 Avocado
- your favorite harvest tomatoes
- 1 pound of cremini mushrooms
- a heaping handful of pecans
- a container of sheep's milk {or cow's milk} feta
- two heads of romaine lettuce {you'll likely use 1.5}

Dressing Ingredients:
- 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 1/8 of honey

Stir ingredients to blend well.

Grill the steak. While the steak is grilling, sauté mushrooms in butter or coconut oil and add a tablespoon of balsamic to the pan. Chop all of the veggies. Toss veggies, mushrooms, steak, lettuce and dressing together. Top with pecans and feta.

Mini Tomato Salads Recipe 

- about 25 cherry tomatoes
- one to two balls of fresh mozzarella
- handful of basil leaves
- toothpicks

Slice cherry tomatoes in half. Slice mozzarella into bit sizes. Place tomato, basil leaf and mozzarella chunk on each toothpick. Serve with balsamic vinegar and olive oil blend.

Here's how it panned out: 

-The adults raved about both salads.

-Three kiddos gave the Honey Balsamic Harvest Steak Salad a thumbs up. My oldest said, "Well, I'm shocked. This is actually good." {Thanks, kid.}

-One kiddo thought the Mini Tomato Salad was awesome, but they all tried it. Quote: "Wow. I really like those."

So want to make your own salad creation or recreate one of these salads? Whole Foods Market Deerfield is giving away a $50 gift certificate for Whole Foods Market!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclosure: Whole Foods Market Deerfield provided me with a $50 gift card to make these salad creations. 


  1. My kids and I like broccoli the most.

  2. Our son will always eat broccoli, corn, asparagus, green beans, peas and raw carrots. He likes the taste of other veg like onions and peppers, but doesn't care for the texture. I'm happy to have a very NON picky eater :)

    1. VERY happy, indeed! My oldest is not nearly as picky as my youngest. He's our challenger of getting veggies into the most unsuspecting of meals!

  3. potato - as in fries! or even mashed! I make them healthy, though! with skin, not hardly any oil. Also stuffed potatoes go over good. I'm into sneaking purees, I got a chuckle out of your post about your kids preferences, no surprise, but you tell it so funny!!!

    1. Stuffed potatoes? Do share that recipe please!

  4. My son really like sweet peas


    1. My oldest son loves sweet peas, too! My younger one calls them soccer balls and he "kicks" them all over his plate. ha!

  5. My kids love sweet potato (in fry form especially)

    1. I am with you all the way on that! When I need to get veggies into a meal, I always make sweet potato french fries with cinnamon and a little chili powder and some coconut oil. They never turn those down!

  6. Probably sweet peas

  7. Steak! lol - we like avocado, raw broccoli, fresh corn, tomatoes . . . baby carrots

    1. Oh yes! Corn! That's always a winner here for both boys, too!

  8. Steak! lol - we like avocado, raw broccoli, fresh corn, tomatoes . . . baby carrots

  9. We love carrots!
    Entered the rafflecopter as "Wild orchid"

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

  10. Broccoli is my kids' favorite veggie, which is interesting because I don't like broccoli and never think to buy it so they actually have to ask me for it when we see it at the store.

  11. one year old throws a fit if you don't share salad. 4 yr old says pea pods, close runner up frozen green beans...7 yr old carrots.

  12. I looove fresh kale and chard, cooked up in bacon drippings from Farmer Nick's bacon. Yum! Little dude is fond of broccoli with butter, salt n' pepper. Also yum!

  13. We don't have kids, but it's often very hard for me to get my guy to eat his veggies. I like green beans with almonds and we leave the almonds off of his portion.

  14. The family favorite vegetable is the potato. Unfortunately the potato is usually in french fry form. If not, it would probably lose it's preferred status.


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