Forego the mayonnaise and trans-fat-rich typical sandwich salads for these better for you recipes.

Updated July 21, 2020
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Credit: Yunhee Kim

The classic sandwich "salads," such as egg, chicken, and tuna, may seem like indulgences reminiscent of go-to childhood lunches, but given a contemporary spin, the fillings—tucked between slices of nutritious bread—can form a square meal, says Nancy Murphy, a nutritionist and certified diabetes educator.

To make a healthier sandwich salad, Murphy says, scale back on egg yolks, mayonnaise, and creamy dressings in favor of egg whites, olive oil-based vinaigrettes, and dressings made with nonfat and low-fat yogurt. Further enhance fillings by introducing heart-healthy nuts or fiber-rich fruits and vegetables to the ingredients list. Finally, opt for whole-grain or multi-grain bread; one slice has at least two times the heart-protective fiber of a slice of white—not to mention full-bodied flavor and a hearty texture that satisfies taste buds. Spread on a reinvented filling and discover how nicely your new sandwich stacks up. Ahead, we're sharing some of our favorite lighter sandwich salad recipes to add to your lunchtime routine.

Chicken Salad Sandwiches

You can still enjoy a creamy chicken salad without mayonnaise (or just a little bit). Make our favorite Mayo-Free Chicken Salad. This recipe uses plain non-fat yogurt and mustard for a better for you, protein-packed meal. Or try our Chicken Waldorf Salad with Flaxseed-Oil Dressing—it's the perfect combination of salty and sweet, especially when eaten atop a toasted slice of multi-grain bread for an open-faced sandwich. Made with flaxseed oil, cider vinegar, olive oil, and honey, it's a healthier alternative to mayonnaise. Another favorite is our Curried Chicken Salad on Whole-Wheat Pitas. Touting lightly toasted almonds, Greek non-fat yogurt, and only a tablespoon of mayonnaise, it's full of protein and healthy fats.

Egg-Salad Sandwiches

Who doesn't love a bit of soft and salty egg salad? While we love classic iterations of the signature dish, there's something to be said for these better for you recipes. Swaps like light mayonnaise, avocado, and egg whites are just a few of the ingredient dupes we're making to ensure a healthier egg salad sandwich. Try our Egg White and Avocado Salad atop a piece of toasted whole wheat bread for a delicious option. As its name suggests, it comes together with creamy avocado, light mayonnaise, egg whites, and loads of herbs and spices for a hearty meal. Another salad sandwich idea that's sure to be a hit is Alexis's Light Egg Salad Sandwich. It uses whole-grain bread and a mixture of mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, and Madras curry powder that's sure to be a new favorite.

Tuna Salad Sandwiches

Forego mayonnaise-packed tuna salad sandwiches for lighter, healthier iterations like our Mediterranean Tuna Salad. Created with lemon juice, water-packed canned tuna, and extra-virgin olive oil, it'll definitely delight. Another option is our Tuna and Chickpea Salad, which combines the two salty flavors in one salad that becomes a tasty sandwich when placed between two slices of whole-wheat bread. Olive-oil packed tuna, red wine vinegar, and a dash of extra olive oil constitute the dressing in this briny creation. Or, if you're a fan of classic tuna salad but want something on the healthier side, try our Tuna-Salad Wraps, which use low-fat mayonnaise, tomato-based chili sauce, and lemon juice for a delicious meal. Or make our Salade Nicoise Sandwiches for a kitchen-sink style tuna salad sandwich, thanks to its long ingredient list, consisting of everything from green beans to tuna.

Vegetarian Salad Sandwiches

For those that are looking for a vegetable-full salad sandwich, or perhaps for the vegetarians at your table, we have options for you, too. Try our Roasted Eggplant, Zucchini, and Chickpea Wraps. Chock full of vegetables, herbs, and spices—they're sure to be a hit. Not to mention the ingredients, like eggplant and chickpeas, are full of soluble fiber, which has been shown to potentially reduce LDL cholesterol. For a kid-friendly option, make our Taco-Salad Wraps. It's made with beans, lettuce, olive oil, avocado, and mango for a dash of sweet flavor kids will devour.

Comments (1)

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