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40 Vegetarian Picnic Salads Perfect for Summer

Don't worry about digging into salami chunks or bacon bits—these tasty vegetarian salads are meat-free.

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Sweet Macaroni Salad

A sweet out-of-the-ordinary dressing makes this homemade macaroni salad special. My aunt gave me the recipe and it has become one of my favorites. I occasionally leave out the green pepper if I know that people don’t like it … and it still tastes great. —Idalee Scholz, Cocoa Beach, Florida

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Honey Mustard Red Potato SaladTaste of Home

Honey Mustard Red Potato Salad

This summer cookout star is crunchy-delicious with a brilliant zesty dressing. —Brittany Allyn, Mesa, Arizona

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Mandarin Broccoli SaladTaste of Home

Mandarin Broccoli Salad

Sweet, crunchy and colorful, this salad has a fresh mix of textures and flavors. It tastes even better when you chill it overnight, if you can wait that long. —Margaret Allen, Abingdon, Virginia

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Mama's Potato SaladTaste of Home

Mama's Potato Salad

This old-fashioned potato salad recipe doesn't have many ingredients, so it isn't as colorful as many that you find nowadays. But Mama made it the way her mother did, and that's the way I still make it today. Try it and see if it isn't one of the best-tasting potato salads you have ever eaten! —Sandra Anderson, New York, New York

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Colorful Spiral Pasta SaladTaste of Home

Colorful Spiral Pasta Salad

Tackle gatherings to go with a bright pasta salad. This tricolor toss-up with broccoli, tomatoes, olives and a hardworking dressing is the easiest one you could take. —Amanda Cable, Boxford, Massachusetts

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Pennsylvania Dutch ColeslawTaste of Home

Pennsylvania Dutch Coleslaw

My mother used to make this salad on holidays. With all the cabbage that is grown here in the Northwest, the recipe is a real natural for us! —Deb Darr, Falls City, Oregon

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Grilled Firecracker Potato SaladTaste of Home

Grilled Firecracker Potato Salad

I can eat potato salad like crazy. A little spice is nice, so I use cayenne and paprika in this grilled salad that comes with its own fireworks. —Ashley Armstrong, Kingsland, Georgia

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Watermelon Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Watermelon Tomato Salad

Watermelon and tomatoes may seem an unlikely pair, but they team up to make a winning combination in this eye-catching salad. —Matthew Denton, Seattle, Washington

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Creamy Grape SaladTaste of Home

Creamy Grape Salad

Everyone raves when I bring this refreshing, creamy salad to potlucks. For a special finishing touch, sprinkle it with brown sugar and pecans. —Marge Elling, Jenison, Michigan

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Summertime Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Summertime Tomato Salad

My crazy good salad has cherry tomatoes, squash and blueberries together in one bowl. Then I layer on the flavor with fresh corn, red onion and mint. —Thomas Faglon, Somerset, New Jersey

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Candy Bar Apple SaladTaste of Home

Candy Bar Apple Salad

This creamy, sweet snickers salad with crisp apple crunch is a real people-pleaser. It makes a lot, which is good, because it will go fast! —Cyndi Fynaardt, Oskaloosa, Iowa

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Kale Slaw Spring SaladTaste of Home

Kale Slaw Spring Salad

My parents and in-laws are retired and like to spend winters in Florida. This tangy spring salad welcomes the snowbirds back for our Easter celebration! —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan

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Grandma's Potato SaladTaste of Home

Grandma's Potato Salad

Our Fourth of July feast wouldn't be complete without this chilled old-fashioned potato salad. It's my grandma's treasured recipe. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin

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Mexican Layered SaladTaste of Home

Mexican Layered Salad

Here’s another popular dish I like to prepare in advance, adding the cheese and chips just before serving. It’s a slightly different version of the traditional layered salad.—Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, Texas

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Marinated Cauliflower SaladTaste of Home

Marinated Cauliflower Salad

I often serve this as an appetizer alongside a meat and cheese tray. But it can also be a side dish. —Stephanie Hase, Lyons, Colorado

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Blood Orange Avocado SaladTaste of Home

Blood Orange Avocado Salad

My refreshing side salad is such a nice addition to our calorie-loaded Thanksgiving dinner. Use regular oranges if you can't find blood oranges. Finely chopped walnuts work well in place of the pomegranate seeds, too. —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, Nevada

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Minty Watermelon-Cucumber SaladTaste of Home

Minty Watermelon-Cucumber Salad

Capturing the fantastic flavors of summer, this refreshing, beautiful watermelon-cucumber salad will be the talk of any picnic or potluck. —Roblynn Hunnisett, Guelph, Ontario

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Herb-Vinaigrette Potato SaladTaste of Home

Herb-Vinaigrette Potato Salad

This is a great way to celebrate early produce from the garden. To add some more crunch, sprinkle with croutons. —Debra Keil, Owasso, Oklahoma

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Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed DressingTaste of Home

Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

My family is always happy to see this fruit and veggie salad on the table. If strawberries aren’t available, substitute mandarin oranges and dried cranberries. —Irene Keller, Kalamazoo, Michigan

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Judy's Macaroni SaladTaste of Home

Judy's Macaroni Salad

After finding this vintage macaroni salad recipe years ago, I tweaked the flavor and bumped up the pickles. Tuck this dill pickle pasta salad inside your picnic basket. —Elizabeth Kirchgatter, Maysville, Kentucky

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Sweet Corn-Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Sweet Corn-Tomato Salad

I always make this for family events and parties. It reminds me of all the fun barbecues and picnics over the years. Fresh corn and basil make a huge difference in this recipe. —Jessica Kleinbaum, Plant City, Florida

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Fruit Salad with Apricot DressingTaste of Home

Fruit Salad with Apricot Dressing

When I serve this lovely refreshing salad for picnics and holidays, the bowl empties fast. —Carol Lambert, El Dorado, Arkansas

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Mexican Roasted Potato SaladTaste of Home

Mexican Roasted Potato Salad

My husband is the No. 1 fan of this south-of-the-border potato salad. The leftovers make an awesome late-night snack, straight from the fridge. —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah

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Aunt Marion's Fruit Salad DessertTaste of Home

Aunt Marion's Fruit Salad Dessert

Aunt Marion, my namesake, is like a grandma to me. She gave me this luscious salad recipe, which goes to all our family reunions, hunt club suppers and snowmobile club picnics...and I go home with no leftovers! —Marion LaTourette, Honesdale, Pennsylvania

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Vibrant Black-Eyed Pea SaladTaste of Home

Vibrant Black-Eyed Pea Salad

My black-eyed pea salad reminds me of a southern cooking class my husband and I took while visiting Savannah, Georgia. People go nuts for it at picnics and potlucks. —Danielle Lee, Sewickley, Pennsylvania

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Tangy Watermelon SaladTaste of Home

Tangy Watermelon Salad

The refreshing blend of watermelon, red onions and a splash of citrus always does me proud at picnics and potlucks. I like to prepare it a day ahead so the flavors have a chance to blend, and I use the rind as a colorful serving bowl. If you're short on time, simply substitute any bottled citrus vinaigrette. —Alisha Duncan, Blanchard, Oklahoma

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Dilly Potato & Egg SaladTaste of Home

Dilly Potato & Egg Salad

Everyone has a favorite potato salad, and this is mine. As a young bride, I was eager to learn how to cook and make things that my husband would love. I combined my mom's and his mom's recipes, and this is the delicious result. —Angela Leinenbach, Mechanicsville, Virginia

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Green Bean-Cherry Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Green Bean-Cherry Tomato Salad

My grandmother made a cold green bean salad with potatoes for every family barbecue. Now I bring my own version of the recipe to parties. With added color and taste from the cherry tomatoes, this classic favorite is even better. —Angela Lemoine, Howell, New Jersey

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Favorite Fruit SaladTaste of Home

Favorite Fruit Salad

I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, especially when our four children and nine grandchildren come to visit. They always ask for this salad when they're here for dinner. —Doris Dion, Lake Ozark, Missouri

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Strawberry Pasta SaladTaste of Home

Strawberry Pasta Salad

Bow tie pasta with strawberries makes a refreshing salad, especially with a little chopped mint. I multiply it for brunches, potlucks, even tailgates. —Barbara Lento, Houston, Pennsylvania

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Israeli Pepper Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Israeli Pepper Tomato Salad

This Israeli salad, which is traditionally eaten at breakfast, lends itself to endless variety…you can add foods like olives, beets or potatoes. — Sandy Long, Lees Summit, Missouri

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Spectacular Overnight SlawTaste of Home

Spectacular Overnight Slaw

To come up with this dish, I used a number of different recipes, plus some ideas of my own. It's great for a potluck because it's made the night before and the flavor keeps getting better. Whenever I serve it, I'm inundated with recipe requests. —Ruth Lovett, Bay City, Texas

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Summer OrzoTaste of Home

Summer Orzo

I’m always looking for fun ways to use the fresh veggies that come in my Community Supported Agriculture box, and this salad is one of my favorite creations. I like to improvise with whatever I have on hand, feel free to do the same here! —Shayna Marmar, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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Macaroni ColeslawTaste of Home

Macaroni Coleslaw

My friend Peggy brought this coleslaw to one of our picnics, and everyone liked it so much, we all had to have the recipe. —Sandra Matteson, Westhope, North Dakota

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Tzatziki Potato SaladTaste of Home

Tzatziki Potato Salad

My son has an egg allergy, so this potato salad is perfect for him. For extra color, add radishes, apple and garlic dill pickles. —Cindy Romberg, Mississauga, Ontario

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Balsamic Green Bean SaladTaste of Home

Balsamic Green Bean Salad

Serve up those green beans in a whole new way–with a green bean salad recipe! The tangy flavors and crunch of these balsamic green beans complement any special meal or holiday potluck. —Megan Spencer, Farmington Hills, Michigan

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Sliced Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Sliced Tomato Salad

I got this recipe from my grandmother. It's a perfect platter to serve with burgers or hot sandwiches. —Kendal Tangedal, Plentywood, Montana

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Mediterranean Bulgur SaladTaste of Home

Mediterranean Bulgur Salad

Whether it's nutritioin or taste you're after, it doesn't get any better than this. Bulgur, beans, tomatoes, pine nuts and olive oil team up in this vegetarian main dish salad. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Pineapple & Coconut Carrot SaladTaste of Home

Pineapple & Coconut Carrot Salad

I enjoyed a salad like this at a tropical-inspired restaurant. I tried to get the staff to give me the recipe but had no luck. So I went home and created my own! I will sometimes drain a can of mandarin orange slices and toss those in as well. —Shirley Turpin, Williams, Minnesota

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Layered Garden Bean SaladTaste of Home

Layered Garden Bean Salad

For easy entertaining, cover and refrigerate the salad a few hours before guests arrive so you don't have to bother with last-minute assembly. Turn it into a light lunch by adding sliced rotisserie chicken, salmon or tuna. —Melissa Wharton, Cincinnati, Ohio

Katie Bandurski
Katie is an Associate Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in writing and email newsletters. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.