Marinated Vegetable Salad

This Italian Marinated Vegetable Salad is loaded with broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, and more, marinated in a simple Italian vinaigrette. It’s perfect for picnics, potlucks, and storing in the refrigerator to enjoy all week long.

marinated vegetable salad in a white bowl.

Looking for something that’s veggie packed AND tasty?

Overnight Marinated Vegetable Salad is packed with a variety of veggies (which you can customize) and tossed in an Italian vinaigrette. After the veggies marinate overnight in the dressing, each bite is loaded with Italian flavor.

This salad is perfect for meal prep—it can sit in the refrigerator all week, and it’s just as delicious on Friday as it is on Monday. It’s also great for potlucks, picnics, and outdoor gatherings since it’s delicious when it’s at room temperature.

The recipe is adapted from an old church cookbook. I personally love that it’s really customizable. You can use your favorite veggies and even add additional toppings (more on that below) to suit your tastes.

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Salad ingredients

vegetable salad ingredients in small bowls on a white table.

Raid your veggie drawer and grab what looks good! I used:

  • A small head of broccoli
  • Half of a small head of cauliflower
  • Grape tomatoes
  • About 1 cup of chopped baby carrots
  • 1 container of sliced mushrooms
  • A yellow onion, cut into rings
  • 1 small can of water chestnuts
  • 1 small can of sliced black olives

Vinaigrette ingredients

A homemade vinaigrette really does make all the difference in this salad!

vinaigrette ingredients on a white table.

You will need:

  • Vegetable oil
  • Red wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • A little granulated sugar to balance out the vinaigrette
  • Italian seasoning (if you don’t have a bottle of it, you can create your own with a mixture of dried thyme, rosemary, basil, oregano, and red pepper flakes)
  • Worcestershire sauce for umami flavor
  • Salt to season the veggies

To make the vinaigrette, add the ingredients to a jar with a tight-fitting lid.

measuring glass pouring oil into a mason jar full of vinaigrette.

Cover and shake until the vinaigrette is combined.

jar of Italian vinaigrette sitting on a white tea towel.

How to make overnight vegetable salad

This hardly requires any instruction! Chop all of the vegetables into bite size pieces, then toss everything together. Let it sit in the refrigerator overnight, or up to 5 days, so allow the flavors to marry and the vegetables to soften slightly.

vegetable salad in a white mixing bowl.

Customizing the salad

This salad is easy to customize. Just use your favorite veggies! Here are some ideas to get started:

  • Add chopped green pepper and/or diced celery for even more crunch
  • Use sliced green onions instead of a white onion
  • Use cherry tomatoes or chopped roma tomatoes instead of grape tomatoes
  • Leave out the mushrooms and/or olives if you don’t like them!
  • In the summer when it’s in season, add diced zucchini or yellow squash
  • Add fresh peas
  • Add crumbled bacon to the top!
  • Make this a meal by stirring in diced grilled chicken breast
  • Top with chopped toasted pecans or walnuts
  • Add cheese! Shredded cheddar would be delicious. Add it right before serving.

Meal prep

This salad gets so much more flavorful as it sits, making it great for meal prep. I like to portion individual servings at the beginning of the week so I can just grab one and go.

These glass containers are perfect individual servings, or this set of plastic ones are really nice, too.

small glass bowls with lids filled with veggie salad.

Time saving tips

To save time while you are prepping it, look for cans of pre-sliced olives and pre-sliced water chestnuts. Then you won’t have to chop those at all.

You can also often find pre-chopped broccoli and cauliflower in the produce section of your local grocery store. You may need to chop the veggies a little more to create bite-size pieces.

You can also use your favorite bottled Italian vinaigrette in place of a the homemade vinaigrette.

low bowl with a green design with marinated veggie salad inside.

Marinated Vegetable Salad: Frequently Asked Questions

Can I leave out the _____?

Yes! This salad is entirely customizable. If you don’t like something, just leave it out, or replace it with another veggie (see above under “customizing the salad” for more ideas).

How far in advance can I make this?

The veggies will soften a little as the salad sits, and the dressing infuses them with even more flavor. As a result, you can make this salad a few days in advance of when you want to eat it.

If I choose to add toppings, when should I add them?

For toppings like nuts and bacon, add those right before you plan to serve the salad. That’ll ensure that the toppings stay nice and crunchy.
Olives can be added when you initially make the salad, since they benefit from sitting in the Italian dressing.

How can I make my own Italian seasoning?

You can make your own Italian seasoning with a mixture of dried basil, rosemary, parsley, oregano, thyme, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder. Here’s a great recipe for it.

marinated vegetable salad in a green and white bowl next to a blue napkin.

Serving ideas

The salad can be enjoyed cold or at room temperature, which is perfect for a brown bag lunch, an office potluck, a picnic, or another gathering when a refrigerator can be hard to come by.

And, marinated veggies are a nice way to switch up the usual lettuce salad.

As a result, you can substitute this marinated vegetable salad in many places where you would serve a lettuce salad, such as with spaghetti & meatballs, pizza, or with any Italian foods, really!

It’s really versatile, and would pair so nicely with many non-Italian main dishes, too.

I personally like serve it with Slow Cooker Beef BBQ or Smothered Steak. It adds some great, fresh flavor to the meal!

If you’re on the hunt for more salads, don’t miss this 7 Layer Salad. It’s an old fashioned dish that’s perfect for a potluck!

Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and/or comment below!

📖 Recipe

marinated vegetable salad in a low decorative bowl.

Overnight Vegetable Salad

Published by Kate
This easy salad is packed with veggies, which soak up all the flavors of the Italian dressing marinade. It's great for picnics, potlucks, and meal prep!
4.48 from 63 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings
Calories 195 kcal


For the salad:

  • 1 small head broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
  • ½ small head cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets
  • 8 oz cherry tomatoes
  • 1 small red onion, cut into thin rings
  • 8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 12 baby carrots, diced (or substitute 2 large carrots)
  • 1 (8 oz) can water chestnuts, sliced
  • 1 (4 oz) can pitted black olives, sliced

For the vinaigrette:

  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • cup red wine vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning (or use a mixture of dried basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and red pepper flakes)
  • 2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Place broccoli, cauliflower, cherry tomatoes, red onion rings, mushrooms, carrots, water chestnuts, and black olives in a large bowl.
  • In a mason jar (or another jar with a tight-fitting lid), combine the Mazola® Corn Oil, red wine vinegar, minced garlic, sugar, Italian seasoning, worcestershire sauce, and salt. Place the lid on the jar, seal, and shake to combine.
  • Pour the vinaigrette over the vegetables and toss to combine. Refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to blend, then serve. The salad can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.



To save time, you can purchase water chestnuts and black olives already sliced, in cans. You can also often purchase chopped broccoli and cauliflower from your local grocery store. You may need to chop it more to create bite-size pieces. 
If you’d like to add toppings, crumbled bacon, hard boiled eggs, or toasted pecans would be delicious! Add them right before serving.


Calories: 195kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 3gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 388mgPotassium: 412mgFiber: 3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 1830IUVitamin C: 63mgCalcium: 49mgIron: 1mg
Keyword vegetable salad
Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a star rating and comment below!


    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for taking the time to write a review.

  1. 5 stars
    This is so good! Makes a lot which is perfect for serving lots of friends!

    1. I’m so glad that you enjoyed it! Thanks for taking the time to write a review.

  2. 5 stars
    I was looking for something different in a salad. I tried this recipe and loved it!

  3. How much corn oil? May I substitute canola/olive oil? If so, would measure be the same?

    1. Hi Janette, you need ¾ cup oil for the vinaigrette, and yes—you can substitute canola/olive oil in the same measurement.

    1. Hi Pat! Where are you putting in your email? I’ll see if I can troubleshoot—I’m sorry for any hassle!

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