Edit: This recipe was originally posted in June 2018 and we are reposting today because well, life is busy, recipes sometimes don’t work out like planned, and mostly because this salad is just so darn good. Spring is finally on it’s way here in MN and I am craving all of the fresh veggies and fruit and this yummy salad combines the best of spring into one easy little package. Read on for the more info!!
Friends, I have an important announcement to make: it’s time to toss out all of those bottles of store bought salad dressing. What kind of crazy talk is this? Hear me out. I know those bottles seem convenient and there are a million flavor options, but most are loaded with less than ideal ingredients, are expensive, and don’t ultimately taste that great. I promise you that with a few simple ingredients and less than five minutes, you can absolutely make a batch of homemade salad dressing that will taste twenty times better and elevate an everyday salad into something totally out of this world. Today’s recipe for Spinach Salad with Maple Dijon Dressing is the perfect place to start.
The dressing for this Spinach Salad with Maple Dijon Dressing is absolutely one of my go to recipes these days. I came up with this recipe last month when we were hosting an impromptu dinner for some friends and family. I had a big container of fresh, organic spinach and wanted a simple dressing to serve with it. Digging around in my pantry, I pulled out a few ingredients, threw them into a blender and hit the recipe jackpot. Since that day, I’ve made a batch just about every week to keep in the fridge. I put it on all kinds of salad, dip fresh veggies in it, and have even put it on chicken as a marinade/sauce. It’s just that versatile.
The dressing starts out like a simple vinaigrette: olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and some shallot. I added dijon mustard for flavor and creaminess, and then a touch of maple syrup to give it a hint of sweet. Blending it all together in my Blendtec (*affiliate link), turns these simple ingredients into a velvety, creamy dressing in a matter of seconds. Now, if you don’t have a high powered blender, you can absolutely just whisk the ingredients together in a bowl. It will be a little less thick and creamy but it will still taste fantastic. This dressing is definitely on the thick side, so if you want something a little thinner, just increase the amount of olive oil slightly. The dressing will keep in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for about a week.
I first came up with this salad recipe during the recent romaine lettuce crisis. With my go to greens out of circulation, we started buying big containers of organic spinach. I have found that with spinach salads, you really need to have some added texture to avoid a bland feeling when eating it. Here, I added shelled, roasted pistachios and a bit of fresh shallot for texture and bright, savory pops. These contrast so beautifully with the creamy goat cheese crumbles and the bright bursts of blueberry. I think it wold also be great with fresh blueberries or almond slivers! If you want to try a more traditional vinaigrette, it would also be fantastic with our White Balsamic Vinaigrette. The beauty of salads is that you really can make them your own with simple little switches. This salad is gorgeous when served in a cream or white bowl. It would also look fantastic in a classic wooden salad bowl set! (*affiliate link)
Do you make your own salad dressings or do you buy them? What are your go to salad combinations? Let us know on our Facebook page, Instagram, or in the comments. As always, we love to hear from you!
Spinach Salad with Maple Dijon Dressing
An easy, nutritious salad with homemade maple dijon dressing.
For the Salad:
- 1 small container baby spinach
- 6 ounces goat cheese
- 1/4 cup shelled pistachios
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup dried blueberries
- 1 recipe Maple Dijon Dressing (see below)
For the Dressing
- 6 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 Tablespoon minced shallot
For the Dressing
In the bowl of a high speed blender, combine all the ingredients and blend until light and creamy.
Option: for a less creamy/thick version, whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl and allow flavors to combine for 15-20 minutes before serving.
For the Salad:
In a large bowl, gently mix the spinach, shallot, blueberries, and pistachios.
Add enough dressing to lightly coat, and toss to combine.
Top with goat cheese crumbles and serve immediately.