Strawberries, fresh spinach and romaine make a great salad, but it’s even better when you add pickled onions to the mix. Whisk together a delicious poppyseed vinaigrette dressing and you’ll have a go to salad that will go with any meal.
The cool Spring weather didn’t destroy all of the strawberries in our area so it’s the perfect time to grab some fresh strawberries and combine them with baby spinach for a great tasting strawberry spinach salad.
What makes this recipe just a bit more interesting is the red onions that are soaked in part of the dressing. The pickled onions and romaine lettuce transform a traditional spinach salad.
Now when someone asks you to bring a salad to the next pot luck or cook out, you’ve got a salad that everyone will be raving about. Light and fresh, it will compliment any meal, and it’s anything but boring.
If you need a more substantial side salad, try a cucumber and corn salad with a delicious yogurt dressing, or you can’t go wrong with a traditional broccoli salad.
Why you’ll love it
- The vinaigrette dressing makes the salad stand out
- Pickling the red onion adds so much flavor to each bite
- Strawberries make any salad better
- It’s a light and fresh addition to any meal
What you’ll need
- Strawberries – find the sweetest juiciest ones around. Here are some tips for choosing the ripest strawberries.
- Baby spinach – you can find baby spinach in the farmers markets starting in early spring, and it’s available in the grocery all year. Baby spinach is more tender and tastes better in a salad.
- Romaine lettuce – adding a mixture of greens is better than just spinach. You could also add some arugula.
- Red onion – you will pickle these for a sweet and sour crunch
- Red wine vinegar – you could also use balsamic vinegar
- Poppy seeds – these add a nice texture to the salad
- Sliced almonds – when roasted, these are magical
- Vegetable oil, sugar, dry mustard, salt and pepper
How do you make a strawberry spinach salad
Heat up a little vinegar and sugar in the microwave and add part of the warm mixture to sliced red onions. The onions will soak up the dressing for 30 minutes or so. When added to the salad, the pickled onions add a great punch.
To the remaining sweetened vinegar you’ll add oil and seasonings to make a simple vinaigrette poppyseed dressing to pour over a mixture of spinach and romaine.
Add some toasted almonds on top along with some fresh strawberries and you have a beautiful fresh salad for dinner or maybe it will be warm enough to have a cook-out this weekend. It looks like the warmer weather is finally coming to the Carolinas.
What’s the best way to toast almonds
By toasting the almonds before adding them to the salad you get a more intense flavor and a little more crunch. It will take the dressing longer to make them soggy if they’re toasted. To toast almonds, just put them in a metal pan in the toaster oven or regular oven and stand right there watching to keep them from burning.
Don’t get distracted, I set a timer for 2 minutes, just in case. You can also toast them on the stove but I prefer the toaster oven. It will only take about two minutes.
Pro tip: Sometimes spinach salad can have a weird texture because the spinach leaves stick to each other when you add dressing, they can feel a little slimy. Adding a mixture of greens makes for a more interesting salad, romaine works perfect. It’s still great if you just use spinach.
How long do strawberries last in the fridge
Did you pick up some fresh strawberries and don’t want them to turn moldy before you can eat them? Then read on for information about how long strawberries last in the fridge and steps you can take to make them last longer!
FAQs and tips
To make a homemade vinaigrette dressing, you just add all the ingredients to a jar and shake. The dry mustard keeps the vinegar and oil from separating.
A mixture of greens makes a spinach salad more interesting. Add some romaine to the spinach for different textures and flavor. Throw in some arugula for a little spice.
Blueberries or blackberries are great in this salad. Raspberries get a little mushy.
More summertime salads
Extra STRAWBERRIES, try out some of these recipes
Strawberry Spinach Salad with Vinaigrette Dressing
- ½ cup red wine vinegar
- ⅓ cup sugar
- salt and pepper
- ½ red onion sliced very thin
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- ½ cup sliced almonds Toasted
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 lb strawberries 2 ½ cups sliced
- 6 ounces romaine lettuce hearts torn into bite size pieces
- 6 ounces baby spinach
- Whisk the vinegar, sugar and ¾ teaspoon salt together. Place ¼ cup in a microwave safe bowl and microwave about 1 minute. Add onions, stir and let sit for 30 minutes.
- Whisk oil, mustard, poppy seeds, and ½ teaspoon pepper into the remaining vinegar mixture.
- In a large bowl, combine lettuce, spinach, almonds and strawberries. Remove onions from vinegar mixture with a fork and add to the salad. Pour dressing over the salad and season with salt and pepper. Top with additional almonds.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- To toast almonds, just put them in a metal pan in the toaster oven and stand right there watching to keep them from burning. They won’t get soggy quickly in the salad if they’re toasted.
- Try adding some arugula to the mixture.
- If you want to make this in advance, wait to add the dressing until right before serving.
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