A Warm Salad Recipe For Brunch

Note: This post may contain affiliate links. Thanks for supporting COOKtheSTORY!

BrunchWeek continues with even more delicious recipes. Today I’m bringing you a warm salad recipe that you can serve for brunch (or anytime!). I’ve shared the basic warm salad recipe below as well as two interesting (and extra-delicious) ways to serve it up for brunch. But first, how The Simpsons led me to make a warm salad in the first place….

A warm salad topped with a fried egg for brunch or a light vegetarian entree - recipe by @cookthestory

I haven’t seen a lot of The Simpsons episodes. Sure, I watched back when I was 12 and it was the new rage. I think I even had a Bart “Don’t have a cow, man” t-shirt.

Maybe also a pencil.

And a pencil case.

But as an adult, I’ve rarely watched the show. Or thought about it.

Except for one episode that had a catchy little tune. I saw the episode during my first year of college and that song has stuck with me. That silly stupid song. I swear it’s in my head every time I’m making a salad for friends.

“You don’t win friends with Saalad! You don’t win friends with Saalad!”


You see, when we’re having people over and I decide to do a salad as the vegetable, I worry a bit. What if they don’t like salad? What if they would have preferred a nice warm cooked vegetable? What if Homer and Bart were right???

And then the song is stuck in my head and I find myself tossing my boring salad while shuffling a conga along the kitchen floor.

This warm salad recipe came from my Bart-and-Homer-induced salad insecurity. One night I was going to do a basic salad and then started conga-ing around the kitchen (“la-la la la-la laaa”) and thought,

“Hmmm…what if the salad was disguised somehow? What if it was warm? What if I heat up some garlic in oil, sizzle some onions and tomatoes in it and then toss it with the greens? That’s more exciting than a basic salad. Much more exciting. That kind of salad might even be able to win friends!”

It worked! I’ve done a warm salad for every single guest who’s come through our door in the past 6 months, including two groups of people that I didn’t know (in person) before the night when they ate my salad. In both cases, they left my house still liking me.

A warm salad recipe by @cookthestory - perfect for brunch, a side dish, or as a light vegetarian entree.

And so, I now have proof that you can win friends with salad, it just has to be a warm salad, one that might even be good enough to convince Homer and Bart.

The basic warm salad recipe is below. Top that salad with a fried egg (like pictured above) and serve it with my Sausage and Onion Bread and you’ve got yourself a brunch entree.

Take it one friend-winning step further: Put the salad onto the bread, top it all with cheese and broil until melted. Soooooo good. (The bread in the picture is the Sausage and Onion Bread again. The cheese is aged cheddar). Note that you can even make this sandwich leftovers from the warm salad. The leaves are a bit limp the next day (because they were wilted by the heat) but that wiltedness is what you want in a broiled sandwich anyhow, right?

A warm salad piled onto Sausage & Onion Bread, topped with cheese and broiled. Recipe by @cookthestory

My recipes is coming. I promise. First, here are the recipes from the other Brunch Weekers for today:

Brunch Recipes with Eggs

Asparagus and Leek Frittata by Rachel Cooks
Baked Ham and Egg Cups by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Deviled Egg Spread with Home Rolled Crackers by Vanilla Lemonade
Veggie Quiche Cups by Take A Bite Out of Boca
Asparagus and Eggs in Mornay Sauce by Noshing With The Nolands

Brunch Recipes with Potatoes

Traditional Home Fries by Sarcastic Cooking

Meat, Poultry and Fish Brunch Recipes

Chicken Pockets by Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
Turkey Dill Crepes by Kokocooks

Breads, Grains, Cereals and Pancake-type Yums

Cherry Coconut Granola by Katie’s Cucina
Brioche by poet in the pantry by poet in the pantry
Gold Goddess Steel Cut Oats by The Vintage Cook
Quick and Easy Early Morning Parfaits by Cravings of a Lunatic
Caramelized Onion & Bacon Croque Monsieur by The Kitchen Prep
Belgian Liege Waffles by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

Fruit and Vegetable Brunch Recipes

Warm Salad Three Ways by Cook the Story

Spreads for Brunch

Black & Blue Thyme Jam by Cooking In Stilettos

Brunch Dessert Recipes

Crumb-Top Blueberry Muffins by Love and Confections
Banana Walnut Scone (Gluten Free/Dairy Free) by Around My Family Table
Croissant & Chocolate Bread Pudding by White Lights on Wednesday
Honey Poached Pear “Sundae” by Amanda’s Apron
Strawberries and Cream Muffins by The Domestic Mama & The Village Cook
Lemon Poke Cake by Real Housemoms

And now here’s my recipe for a basic warm salad.

Top with a fried egg for a simple brunch dish or slide the warm salad onto bread and top with cheese and broil to make a spectacular open-faced sandwich.

Oh, and if you enjoy serving (and eating!) salads for brunch, you should also check out my recipe for loaded baked potato salad.

Quick and Easy Loaded Baked Potato Salad Recipe


Basic Warm Salad for Brunch

For this salad I use one of those mixes that is sold in a clear box. The mix I like is of baby kale and other dark greens. But you can use straight-up spinach or any other dark salad green.


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced thin
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 of a red onion, thinly sliced
  • 5 oz of mixed dark greens (featuring baby kale, if possible)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp coarse black pepper
  • the juice of 1/2 of a lemon
  • 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese shavings (use a potato peeler to scrape them off of a wedge of cheese)


  1. In a big pot (I use my Dutch oven) combine the olive oil and garlic. Warm it over medium-low heat until it really smells like garlic but hasn't browned, about 3-5 minutes.
  2. Turn the heat up to medium-high and add the grape tomatoes and red onion. Use tongs to toss it all around just until the tomatoes are heated through, 2-3 minutes.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and add the mixed dark greens, the salt, pepper and lemon juice. Quickly use the tongs to toss it all around, coating the greens with all that good flavor and then immediately transfer it all to a serving platter.
  4. Sprinkle the Parmesan shavings over top and serve.

24 Responses to “A Warm Salad Recipe For Brunch”

  1. phyllis — May 22, 2013 @ 3:44 pm (#)

    I forgot to add that I loved the Simpson’s video. Made me laugh.

    • Christine Pittman — May 28, 2013 @ 9:39 am (#)

      So so funny, right? I get that song in my head allllll the time!

  2. phyllis — May 22, 2013 @ 3:43 pm (#)

    The salad looks so good, but the bread salad with smothered cheese made me want to reach into the computer, grab it and wolf it down. The pictures are wonderful.

    • Christine Pittman — May 28, 2013 @ 9:40 am (#)

      Thanks mom!

  3. Amanda — May 11, 2013 @ 2:57 pm (#)

    Such a great, unique idea, Christine!

  4. [email protected]'s Recipes — May 10, 2013 @ 9:47 am (#)

    I am a huge fan of all sorts of salads! This is so delightful and delicious.

  5. Eugenie — May 9, 2013 @ 4:08 pm (#)

    This is such a simple and healthy recipe.

  6. Kim Beaulieu — May 8, 2013 @ 11:14 pm (#)

    Christine this is simply lovely. I think this would go over really well here. It looks scrumptious.

  7. Tara — May 8, 2013 @ 4:52 pm (#)

    Yum, yum, yum!! All of them look great!! I am a huge salad fan so any which way is great with me!!

  8. Allison (Spontaneous Tomato) — May 8, 2013 @ 11:57 am (#)

    Christine, I love that you put a salad onto bread and melted cheese on top and still called it a salad! I think you are my hero now.

    Your warm salad on its own and with an egg on top both sound great to me, too. I *love* slightly (or very) roasted cherry tomatoes. I usually make them to toss on top of pasta dishes, but I will have to try them on a salad sometime soon too!

  9. Samantha — May 8, 2013 @ 11:36 am (#)

    I could really get into the salad on bread thing…….

  10. Suzanne — May 8, 2013 @ 10:23 am (#)

    Ooh, I definitely would go for that cheesy version of the salad on top of bread. I was in high school when the Simpsons started airing. Shows you how old I am.

  11. Adventuresindinner — May 8, 2013 @ 10:19 am (#)

    Oh! I can just imagine that gorgeous egg oozing onto my salad.


  1. Banana Walnut Scones - Around My Family Table — August 6, 2017
  2. Veggie Quiche Cups — January 5, 2015
  3. #Brunch Week Recipes | {i love} my disorganized life — October 26, 2013
  4. Honey Poached Pear Sundae {+ a giveaway} | Amanda's Apron — May 12, 2013
  5. Quick and Easy Early Morning Parfaits #BrunchWeek | Cravings of a Lunatic — May 8, 2013
  6. Asparagus and Eggs in Mornay Sauce #BrunchWeek | Noshing With The Nolands — May 8, 2013
  7. Croissant & Chocolate Bread Pudding #BrunchWeek - White Lights on Wednesday — May 8, 2013
  8. Belgian Liege Waffles #brunchweek - The Girl in the Little Red KitchenThe Girl in the Little Red Kitchen — May 8, 2013
  9. Brunch Week: Chicken Pocket Pies — May 8, 2013
  10. Gold Goddess Steel Cut Oats | Lanie Smith | The Vintage Cook — May 8, 2013
  11. Lemon Poke Cake | Real Housemoms — May 8, 2013

Leave a Comment

Fill your busy life with great food!

Sign up to get my quick recipes and useful tips by email and receive my slow cooker ecookbook as a free thank you gift.