Spanish Mixed Green Salad (Ensalada Mixta)

Mixed green salad
Rick Lew/Photodisc/Getty Images
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
251 Calories
13g Fat
23g Carbs
15g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 251
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 13g 17%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 74mg 25%
Sodium 747mg 32%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 10g 36%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 15g
Vitamin C 63mg 313%
Calcium 111mg 9%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 1065mg 23%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

A green salad is almost always on the table at mealtime in Spain. Whether dining out at a restaurant or preparing a special meal at home, an ensalada mixta (mixed salad) is served on a large platter in the center of the table for all to enjoy. During the warm summer months, Spaniards often enjoy a salad as a light lunch while dining al fresco.

This colorful, mixed green salad usually includes a combination of ingredients that Americans are familiar with—tomatoes and onions—and others they might find surprising, such as olives, tuna, white asparagus, and artichoke hearts. Easy to prepare, it is as tasty as it is attractive.

You can follow this recipe to the letter or improvise as you like.


  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 head romaine, or iceberg lettuce

  • 2 medium tomatoes

  • 1 medium cucumber

  • 1 medium red or yellow bell pepper

  • 1/4 to 1/2 medium yellow or red onion

  • 1 medium carrot

  • 1 (6-ounce) can tuna

  • 1 (15-ounce) can white asparagus

  • 1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts​ packed in water

  • 1/2 cup green olives, preferably stuffed with anchovies

  • 1 (15-ounce) can baby corn, drained, optional

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, preferably Spanish

  • 1 tablespoon red-wine or sherry vinegar

  • Salt, to taste

  • 1 loaf artisan bread, optional, for serving

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Hard boil the eggs. Allow them to cool in cold water. Peel and cut the eggs into quarters or thick slices and set aside.

  3. Cut the lettuce head in half. Rinse the lettuce under cold water and allow to drain. While it is draining, prepare the vegetables.

  4. Quarter the tomatoes. Peel and thinly slice the cucumber. Slice the peppers into long, thin strips. Thinly slice the onion and grate the carrot.

  5. Drain the cans of tuna, white asparagus, and artichoke hearts.

  6. Tear the lettuce into bite-size pieces and arrange as a bed on a large platter.

  7. On top of the bed, arrange the tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, peppers, and carrots.

  8. Spread the tuna around the bed of lettuce, breaking it up into small chunks with a fork.

  9. Place the reserved egg slices, asparagus, artichoke hearts, olives, and baby corn, if using, on top.

  10. Dress with oil and vinegar and sprinkle with salt to taste.

  11. Serve cold with crispy artisan bread if you like.

Make It Your Own

This is one of those recipes that is absolutely open to interpretation—don't worry if you are missing one or more of the ingredients. Each family in Spain has its own version of ensalada mixta, so it is slightly different in every household. Feel free to add your own fresh ingredients from your kitchen or garden and give it a unique spin as well.

If you are looking for some inspiration, other popular ingredients you can add are anchovies, avocados, black olives, potatoes, and scallions. For the dressing, some people prefer a sherry vinaigrette while others like mixing lemon juice and chopped cilantro into the olive oil.

When you add French green beans (haricot verts), ensalada mixta becomes a salade niçoise, which originated in Nice, France.