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Salad bar

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Bar of Salad Bar

A salad bar is a buffet-style table or bar where customers can create their own salad plates from salad components.[1] Salad bars are commonly found in restaurants, food markets, and school or college cafeterias.

Salad bars are a popular dining option in many countries around the world, but they are applied in different ways depending on the local culture and cuisine. This is how Salad Bar applied in each country.

In Japan, salad bars are often used as a way to introduce people to new and exotic foods. For example, some Japanese salad bars offer items such as seaweed salad, edamame salad, and tofu salad.

In China, salad bars are often used as a way to socialize and enjoy a meal with friends and family. For example, it is common for Chinese families to go to a salad bar for a Sunday lunch.

In Brazil, salad bars are often used as a way to sample a variety of Brazilian dishes. For example, some Brazilian salad bars offer items such as feijoada (a black bean stew), farofa (a toasted manioc flour dish), and vaca atolada (a beef stew).[2]


Swedish smörgåsbord buffet

The origins of the salad bar are unclear, but it is thought that the idea may have been sparked by the Swedish smörgåsbord that was featured at the 1938 World's Fair in New York. Norman Brinker, of casual-dining businesses like Chili's and Bennigan's, featured salad bars at his Steak and Ale restaurants in the late 1960s to keep guests pleased and active while they waited for their entrées.[3]

Salad bars have evolved in recent years to meet the need for healthier, more diverse meal options. Plant-based proteins, grain-based salads, and globally inspired toppings are increasingly available in many restaurants. Technology has also had an effect, with some salad bars allowing customers to order and modify their salads via smartphone apps or kiosks.


The three main types of salad bars are:

  • Restaurant salad bars: The most extensive, offering a wide variety of ingredients and often all-you-can-eat.
  • Supermarket salad bars: Smaller than restaurant salad bars, but still offer a good variety of ingredients and are a convenient option for people who want to buy a salad to go or assemble a salad at home.
  • Self-made salad bars: Created by individuals using ingredients that they have on hand, and the most flexible option as people can choose whatever ingredients they like and control the portion size.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "salad bar". Academic Dictionaries and Encyclopedias. Retrieved 2023-11-26.
  2. ^ Lizet (2019-04-22). "Feijoada (Brazilian Black Bean Stew) Recipe • Curious Cuisiniere". Curious Cuisiniere. Retrieved 2023-11-06.
  3. ^ Sciortino, D. G. (2023-06-02). "Restaurant Chain Salad Bars Ranked". Mashed. Retrieved 2023-11-06.