Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Everyone needs a go to salad. One that's fancy enough to serve at a dinner party but one that your kids will still eat too. No matter how many times I make this salad, I never get sick of it. I love it's versatility. There are a million ways to get creative with it and still have it taste equally as delicious. For me, it's the balsamic dressing that makes it though. Yes, it's homemade but so so easy. It even tastes good drizzled on chicken breasts.

~ Balsamic Spinach Salad ~

Ingredients for Salad:
2 packages of fresh Spinach leaves
3/4 cup pre-chopped nut of your choice - Toasted Pecans, Walnuts, Almonds or Pine nuts are best.
3/4 cup dried Cranberries - Craisins work great and if you don't like Craisins, you could omit for Dates or Raisins.
1/2 cup crumbled cheese of your choice - Goat, Feta, Gorgonzola or Blue. I prefer Feta.
Optional: Apples, Grapes, Rasberries, Pears, Celery, Cucumber, Red Onions, Croutons.

Ingredients for Dressing:
2/3 cup Olive Oil
6 TBS. Sugar
4 TBS. Balsamic or Red Wine Vinegar - I love Balsamic Vinegar so much that in all my times of making this, I've never used Red Wine Vinegar.
2 TBS. Sour Cream - Low fat or fat free taste equally as good.
1 tsp. Dijon or Honey Mustard


In a bowl, combine all Salad ingredients. In a jar with a tight fitting lid, combine the Dressing ingredients; shake well. Drizzle over salad and toss. Serve immediately.

Caution - Once the dressing is on the salad, it does not save well. I advice if you are only having the salad alone, to put the desired spinach amount in a bowl and drizzle the dressing over that one serving. Then save the salad and dressing for another day. The dressing stays good for a few days in the refrigerator. It will get hard but all you have to do is shake it and let it sit at room temp. for a few minutes.

If I were to make this salad tonight, I would make it as follows: Spinach, no nuts, Dates, crumbled Feta cheese, Celery, Pears, and Herb Garlic Croutons with Balsamic Dressing. Yummmm!


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