Salad nicoise has been around for a long time.These days it’s a staple of department store cafes, often featuring half-wilted greens and cheap canned olives. The key, always, is to use ingredients that really pop: fresh greens and beans, first-rate olives and a zingy homemade dressing. Lots of restaurants serve salad nicoise with grilled fresh tuna. If you want to do that, go ahead, but I still like the canned tuna best (and if it makes you feel better, Julia Child always insisted on using canned tuna in her version). One more thing: it’s best to buy canned light tuna rather than white albacore, due to mercury concerns. The bigger the fish, the more mercury. Who knew that tuna was so complicated! Okay, all that said, make the salad and enjoy it — it’s got a truly satisfying mix of greens, protein and low-glycemic carbs. (Just don’t forget that the recipe is for 2 servings.)

Recipe: Salad Nicoise with Mustard Tarragon Dressing


For the dressing:
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp finely chopped shallot
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp anchovy paste (optional)
  • 2 tsp finely chopped fresh tarragon
To serve:
  • fresh baby lettuce greens
  • 1 cup baby white or red potatoes, boiled until tender and sliced
  • 8 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 cup green beans, boiled in salted water and drained
  • good-quality black olives, without pits
  • 1 7-ounce can of light tuna, drained
  • 1 hard-boiled egg
  1. First, make the dressing: whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, shallot, dijon mustard, tarragon and anchovy paste. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. To serve: toss the lettuce with about a teaspoon of the vinaigrette and arrange on a plate. Toss the potatoes, tomatoes and green beans separately with the rest of the vinaigrette and set on top of the lettuce. Place the olives, tuna and egg on top. Note: olives have lots of salt, so you may not need to add any more.

This recipe makes 2 servings.
Nutrition for one serving is as follows:



21 g


23 g


22 g


3 g


620 mg


140 mg


Saturated Fat

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This entry was posted in Lunch.