Jennifer Garner ‘Big’ Salad

Author: Sarah Cobacho

Published: February 5, 2024

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Jennifer Garner Trending Big Salad Recipe in a wooden serving bowl

Women’s Health recently posted an interview with Jennifer Garner on YouTube titled “Jennifer Garner’s Weekly Routine to Stay Fit & Fuel Mom Life” where Jennifer described the salad she has every day for lunch inspired by Elaine from Seinfeld’s “Big Salad”. Everything she described sounded like something we would love so we had to give it a go! Of course, as a nutritionist, I couldn’t help but add a few extra ingredients to make it SUPER nourishing. Hopefully, Jen would approve!

When she mentioned a hearty veggie, I instantly thought of cauliflower, and because the oven was already on for the sweet potatoes, I decided to roast it.

Then she said put anything in there; it’s big, it’s hearty so I added some lentils because if you’ve been here for a minute, you know we won’t have a salad without a good source of plant protein in there and also added some fresh dill which really made the whole salad pop.

As Jennifer didn’t mention the dressing, I decided to make my absolute go-to dressing with balsamic vinegar and Dijon mustard. It goes with everything and is so easy to make.

So what do you think? Will you give this salad a go? For me, it’s a big yes; I was in the moment I heard ‘big fat salad.’

Why This Recipe Works

  • Rich in Plant Protein: Packed with lentils, this salad keeps you fueled for hours.
  • Nutrient-Dense: Features a mix of veggies like sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli.
  • Flavorful Dressing: The balsamic vinegar and Dijon mustard dressing adds a zesty punch.
  • Easy to Make: Simple, straightforward steps.
  • Customizable: Easy to swap ingredients based on what’s in your pantry.

Step-By-Step Instructions

Begin by heating your oven for the perfect roast. Mix the sweet potatoes with olive oil and seasoning, then bake until golden. Roast the cauliflower with similar seasoning for a slightly shorter time. Cook the broccoli and green beans briefly, then cool in cold water. Whisk together the dressing ingredients for a tangy finish. Combine all the prepared ingredients in a large bowl, toss them with the dressing, and adjust the seasoning to taste. There you have it, a salad that’s as satisfying as it is nourishing!

Ingredient Notes

  • Sweet Potatoes: A great source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Substitute with butternut squash for a different flavor.
  • Lentils: Excellent plant protein source. Feel free to use any type of lentil you have on hand; each variety brings its own texture and taste.
  • Plant-based Feta: Adds a creamy texture and tangy taste. If unavailable, nutritional yeast flakes can offer a cheesy flavor.
  • Dill: Fresh dill elevates the salad with its unique aromatic quality. Substitute with parsley for a different but equally delightful flavor profile.


  • Is this recipe gluten-free? Yes, it’s naturally gluten-free.
  • Can I use canned lentils? Absolutely, just ensure they are rinsed and drained well.
  • Is this salad good for meal prep? Yes, it keeps well in the fridge for up to 3 days. Keep the dressing apart until ready to eat.
  • How can I make this salad nut-free? Simply skip the nuts or use seeds like pumpkin seeds for a crunch.
  • What other dressings can I use? Feel free to experiment with your favorites. A lemon tahini dressing also pairs wonderfully.

Variations and Tips

To keep things exciting, try roasting different vegetables or adding various herbs for new flavors. Always aim for a rainbow of colors in your salad to ensure a range of nutrients. For an extra crunch, sprinkle in some homemade croutons or seeds. Remember, the key to a perfect salad is in the dressing, so taste and adjust as you go. And if you’re looking to bulk it up, quinoa or wild rice make great additions.

Why You’ll Love Jennifer Garner’s Big Salad

  • Protein & Fiber-Rich
  • Nutrient-Dense
  • Zesty
  • Easy
  • Versatile
Jennifer Garner Trending Big Salad Recipe in a wooden serving bowl

Jennifer Garner ‘Big Salad’

4.8 from 10 votes
A hearty, nutritious salad inspired by Jennifer Garner’s daily lunch. It features roasted sweet potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, green beans, arugula, cashews, pistachios, plant-based feta, beluga lentils, and a tangy Dijon mustard dressing.
Sarah Cobacho (
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time45 minutes


Servings 2 servings


  • 2 cups sweet potatoes (diced in small cubes)
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1.5 cups cauliflower (chopped into florets)
  • 1 cup broccoli (chopped into florets)
  • 1 cup green beans (ends removed, chopped in half)
  • 3 cups arugula (rocket)
  • 1 tbsp cashews (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp pistachios (chopped)
  • 30 g plant-based feta
  • 1 cup beluga lentils (cooked)
  • ¼ cup dill


  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1.5 tbsp fresh lemon juice


  • Preheat the oven to 390 °F. Toss the sweet potatoes with 1 tsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and bake for 35 minutes.
  • In a separate tray, toss the cauliflower with 1 tsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and bake for 25 minutes.
  • Boil the broccoli and green beans for 2 minutes. Immediately transfer to cold water to cool down, then drain.
  • Whisk together the Dijon mustard, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and lemon juice to make the dressing.
  • In a large bowl, combine the broccoli, green beans, sweet potato, cauliflower, arugula, cashews, pistachios, feta, lentils, dill, and dressing. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy your nutritious and hearty salad!

Per Serving

Calories 611kcalCarbohydrates 101gProtein 22gFat 16gSodium 640mgFiber 23gVitamin A 1975IUVitamin C 102mgCalcium 209mgIron 4mg
CUISINE American-Inspired
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4.80 from 10 votes (10 ratings without comment)

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