Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Spinach Strawberry Salad + Video

This spinach strawberry salad will rock your world! Combine fresh spinach, sweet berries, avocado, and candied nuts into the best salad ever.

Salads are especially delicious in the warmer months, but it’s also a fun way to add extra flavor to any meal.

This divine recipe starts with baby spinach, fresh berries, and thinly sliced red onion. Buttery avocado and tangy blue cheese crumbles add so much incredible flavor.

Finish it all off with a Dijon mustard dressing - I dare you not to go back for seconds!

The candied pecans are especially tasty. I usually make a double batch and save half for later. They’re great for snacking or sprinkling over homemade ice cream.

spinach strawberry salad in a clear bowl

Spinach Strawberry Salad - Tips and Tricks

  • Hull berries easily. Use this handy tool to save some time (and your fingers)! You can also push a large straw through the bottom of each berry to remove the stem and leaves in one go.
  • Add some protein! Grill and slice up some chicken breasts to turn this spinach strawberry salad into a full meal!
  • Not a fan of blue cheese? Mozzarella, feta, or goat cheese are all fantastic substitutions.
  • Reduce the sugar. Swap the candied nuts with plain pecans or walnuts. You can also eliminate the sugar from the dressing.
  • Try a different oil. I love the mild flavor of extra light tasting olive oil, but extra virgin tastes just as great. Avocado or sunflower oil are great options as well.

spinach salad with strawberries ingredients

Video‌: Spinach Salad with Strawberries

To‌ ‌see‌ ‌us‌ ‌make‌ ‌this‌ ‌from‌ ‌start‌ ‌to‌ ‌finish,‌ ‌watch‌ ‌the‌ ‌video‌ ‌in ‌this‌ ‌post.‌ ‌

spinach salad with strawberries going in the bowl

Serving Suggestions

Serve spinach salad with strawberries alongside grilled steak or chicken for a simple, delicious meal.

It also tastes great with any holiday meal and is a lighter option to more popular side dishes.

spinach salad with blueberries going in the bowl

Kitchen‌ ‌Tools‌ ‌You‌ ‌Will‌ ‌Need‌

  • Skillet for making the candied pecans
  • Silpat Mat - There are so many uses! Roll out doughs, cut out cookies and biscuits, or make other desserts. It even provides a non-slip surface for transporting pots and pans.
  • Large Glass Bowl - Allows your spinach strawberry salad to be the star of the show!
  • Salad Tongs - These bamboo hands help to toss everything gently and are attractive enough for serving as well.

spinach salad with blue cheese going in the bowl

FAQ‌ ‌-‌ ‌Common‌ ‌Recipe‌ ‌Questions‌ ‌

How do you mellow out red onions?

The vinegar in the dressing will help draw out their natural sweetness. You could also soak the slices in ice water for 20 to 30 minutes first. Be sure to pat them dry before adding them to the bowl.

spinach salad with candied pecans going in the bowl

Can I make spinach salad with strawberries ahead of time?

While it’s best served fresh, you could certainly prep the ingredients in advance! Then, throw it all together before taking it to the table.

Candy the nuts, then cool and store at room temp in an airtight container. The berries and sliced onions can be refrigerated in separate containers, along with the jar of dressing.

I do recommend slicing the avocado at the last minute so it doesn’t brown. If the dressing has solidified, just give it a good shake!

spinach strawberry salad pouring dressing on top

Enjoy!

With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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spinach strawberry salad wide photo




Yield: 6
Author: Donna Elick
Spinach Strawberry Salad

Spinach Strawberry Salad

This spinach strawberry salad will rock your world! Combine fresh spinach, sweet berries, avocado, and candied nuts into the best salad ever.
Prep time: 25 MinCook time: 5 MinTotal time: 30 Min

Ingredients

Candied Pecans
  • 1 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecan halves
  • pinch salt
Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup extra light tasting olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
Salad
  • 10 ounces fresh baby spinach - rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1/4 small red onion, sliced
  • 1 quart fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 avocado, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 (5 ounce) package blue cheese crumbles

Instructions

  1. Place a silpat mat or a sheet of parchment paper on the counter top to dry the pecans.
  2. In a small skillet over medium heat melt butter. Add pecans, sugar and salt. Stir until pecans are well coated. Stir until the sugar caramelizes, about 3-5 minutes.
  3. Spread onto silpat or parchment paper. Separate pecans. Allow to cool.
  4. Meanwhile: in a pint size mason jar combine dressing ingredients. Seal and shake until well combined. Set aside on the counter.
  5. In a large bowl combine the spinach, onions, strawberries and blueberries. Pour about 1/2 of dressing over salad, and toss. Top with avocado, cheese and candied nuts. Serve remaining dressing on the side.
  6. Refrigerate for 15 minutes before serving (or serve immediately).
  7. Serve with the remaining dressing on the side. Enjoy!
DONNA'S NOTES
  1. I love to snack on the candied pecans and they are great on ice cream so I double the candied pecan recipe and save 1/2 for later. The recipe as written will allow about 5 candied pecans per serving.
  2. The dressing may solidify in the refrigerator. It is best to allow dressing to sit on the counter. Shake well before using.
  3. If you are making the salad ahead. Prep the salad ingredients and refrigerate. Then dress the salad about 15 minutes before serving. This will help keep the spinach from wilting.
  4. Mozzarella, feta or goat cheese are also amazing on this salad.
  5. Lighten it up by subbing plain pecans for the candied ones and eliminate the sugar from the dressing.
  6. Add sliced grilled chicken for a fabulous summer meal.

spinach strawberry salad closeup

Originally published May 2016, updated and republished February 2022

https://amzn.to/2npi3zd

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41 comments:

  1. Looks so good, have to try this one

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  2. I bet this is great with grilled fresh salmon...

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  3. Yes it is .. The best ever!!!! Love it. Thank you

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  4. So good!!! Thanks

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  5. Yum ,will make soon ,will share my results. Thank you

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  6. The Best Ever Strawberry Spinach Salad was amazing! I am recommending it to others! Shared on Facebook, too! I added chicken to mine.

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    1. I just fixed this salad too with a few modifications (what I had available) and plain pecans. Awesome! But more importantly, the dressing was fabulous. I normally would not eat Dijon mustard but I had some Stone Ground in refrigerator for my husband and used it. That will be a staple for me from now on.

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    2. It all sounds yummy! Just wondering if I can use EXTRA VIRGIN Olive Oil (which I have on hand), instead of EXTRA light Olive Oil? Will that make a difference?

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    3. Yes! I use the extra light tasting olive oil because it has a mild flavor. You could use extra virgin, but it will have a stronger taste in the dressing. Enjoy!

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    4. We added orange juice! Made the dressing pop!

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    5. Really good! And pretty! I have already shared the link to this recipe a few times. I printed this recipe to make sure I keep it.

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  7. how long does the dressing last

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  8. Looks amazing. Do we have a nutrition breakdown for this? Seems heavy on the sugars.

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  9. Earlier in article, you mentioned that the dressing had sun dried tomatoes in it. I don't see them listed as an ingredient. Is this a different dressing?

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    Replies
    1. That was a salad her s-i-l made. Can't believe you didn't get a response from Donna.

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  10. Everything looks so yummy. Have to try these.

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  11. Every recipe looks yummy. Will try them.

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  12. This salad was so good! We had it with grilled boneless chicken thighs and it was perfect. Thank you for the recipe. It is being added to my favorites list. :-)

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  13. I used honey in place of sugar in the dressing. It turned out just as good as when my mom made it. Also if you have either an immersion blender or standard blender. I recommend adding all ingredients blending a minute then slowly add the olive oil, this will emulsify the dressing and it won't separate.

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  14. What kind of cheese could I use instead of Blue Cheese?
    Can't eat it due to allergies :(

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  15. Maybe Feta cheese

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  16. Tried feta cheese & my husband & I loved it! Thank u for sharing this delicious dressing. I shared the recipe to my sis & cant wait to make it for my mom.

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    1. Holli@TheSlowRoastedItalianOctober 23, 2017 at 7:23 AM

      Thanks, Kris!!We are so happy you enjoyed it!

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  17. My husband absolutely adored this salad. Thanks for sharing!

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  18. I made this...so beautiful and delicious. The dressing is a perfect compliment to the fruit and greens. Made double the amount of nuts...used walnuts instead of pecans. This is the perfect salad. I used it as the only side for Chicken and Dumplings. Now that is a beautiful Sunday lunch...fun to share with friends. Thanks for this forever salad beauty.

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    1. Holli@TheSlowRoastedItalianOctober 23, 2017 at 7:22 AM

      Thanks so much, Connie!!! We are so happy you enjoyed it!!

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  19. What would be a good alternative to Blue cheese?

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  20. Would using honey in place of sugar for the dressing work ?

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    Replies
    1. I am sure that would be fabulous. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.

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    2. Totally! I will use bee honey instead :D

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  21. On a previous post dated May 4, 2017 someone tried the salad with honey in place of the sugar and said it turned out great.

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  22. I plan on making this salad,however,I cannot have the mustard,or the bleu cheese.I'm wondering what to substitute in the dressing,and intend to use feta cheese.My issues with these two ingredients are life threatening.

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  23. This was amazing!!!! Everyone LOVED it and making it for a graduation party!

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  24. This is the best dressing recipe... simply perfection

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  25. My friend made the salad,I made the dressing to accompany chicken and potatoes another friend made. Great evening and this salad was a HUGE hit with nothing left from triple batch! I made it again for family gathering,everyone was turning their noses up at berries in a salad (they were thinking ranch dressing). When they ate it with the amazing dressing they were immediately in love with this salad. My friend has also made it for a church meals,it's almost a fight between front of the line and back of the line folks,it goes VERY quickly. I'm back for the recipe yet again and will do it without sugar for keto diet. 2 couples and my husband and I are going to share dishes weekly. They cook a meal or two,we cook and all exchange dishes. I am going to make Creamy Chicken and mushroom soup from Damn Delicious, this salad (sugar free) and cloud bread,I think I'll win best low carb meal this week! I think sharing dishe will make food life changes a lot more fun and much easier than cooking every day. Thanks for a great recipe, this salad will be a once a month dish for me!

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  26. AAHHHMAZING!!!! My hubby just loved this! Made recipe as stated, but left out onions per personal preference. Thank you for sharing this company worthy salad!!

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  27. This salad is sooooo good! I made it again tonight and I added grilled chicken to it. Yum, yum, yum! Thank you for sharing your recipe. :-)

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  28. This salad looks delicious! I would love to know the nutritional information for it.

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