Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

I’m all about Plain Jane meals.

I mean, who doesn’t love a simple salad?

It’s kinda like that feeling when you have been away from your kitchen for too long… traveling or on vacation… and all you wanna do is get into your own kitchen to enjoy a clean, fresh salad.

Am I right?

You know, it’s the simple plain Jane salad that we all love – but this time with a bit of a twist with a fancy poppy seed dressing.

So, go ahead and say hello to my new favorite lunch.

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.I can’t believe I’ve never made homemade poppy tahini dressing before. It’s insanely easy to make and oh, how delicious!

Lately, I’ve been inspired by using seeds and nuts in my salad dressings. I’ve always used them to toss into my salads but I thought, well why not use them in the dressing instead?

I’d like to say I’d serve this dressing in a few different ways – which is all the more reason to whip up a batch so you can use it for the week on your other favorite dishes…

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

As a marinade for your chicken or tofu.

As a dip for your gluten-free crackers and crudités.

Or just served as a dressing atop grilled veggies.

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

This beautifully dressed salad is perfect for the summertime, which is right around the corner. Yea.

I just served it last week to my clients with cute little tooth picks and a platter of freshly sliced apples and jicama. Let’s just say they were beyond ecstatic.

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

Yes, you heard me correct. They were ecstatic over fruit and dip.

I mean, fruit n’ dip is comforting for a reason. Next time I may add some cilantro, too… I think it may add a sweet jolt to the overall dish, but this dressing alone is lick-your-plate good.

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

Plus, does eating a fresh simple salad with a fabulous dressing make anyone else feel like a goddess?

Mmmm. I thought so.

Salad bowl filled with sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion.

"Plain Jane" Salad with Poppy Tahini Dressing
Serves: 4
Gluten-Free and Vegan
Author: Amie Valpone
Recipe type: Entree






  1. Arrange all salad ingredients in a large serving bowl. Place into the refrigerator until ready to serve.


  1. Place all ingredients in a blender; pulse until smooth. Transfer to a sealed container. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

  2. Pour dressing over salad right before serving. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
"Plain Jane" Salad with Poppy Tahini Dressing
Amount Per Serving
Calories 223 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Sodium 100mg4%
Potassium 527mg15%
Carbohydrates 16g5%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 4351IU87%
Vitamin C 13mg16%
Calcium 82mg8%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

I’m off to Chicago for the weekend to speak at the Gluten-Free Expo. Hope to see you there!

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  1. I enjoy your positive spirit and attitude.

    But alas, my days of reading healthy living and food blogs are coming to a close. I am not a “good” eater like all you bloggers.
    I eat too much, too everything, too compulsive…and too unwilling to change at this point of my life (if ever…life is too short and I can’t worry over my shortcomings so much as I do).

    So, keep up your lovely spirit. I plan to read blogs now at much less frequency.
    I’d rather eat my chocolate and bread and muffins nightly without seeing all you “good ” eaters putting me to shame 🙂

    Take care.

    1. Than you Elise; nice to hear from you. Believe me, if I could eat those foods I would too, however I am still healing and unable to eat any of that food. You’re lucky you can enjoy it. Have a wonderful night!

      1. Elise it’s not easy to eat healthy. It does take more work and determination in my opinion. Support groups are a great place to start. Surround yourself with people who struggle with the same issues to help each other out. I love to look at other blogs to keep me on track and get ideas of what to cook. I am not always able to eat healthy all the time but all I can do is try. Hope you do the same.