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Spinach, Avocado, and Feta Salad with DIY Balsamic Vinagrette
The Best Summer Salad
This Spinach Salad is without a doubt my favorite salad to make, especially in the summer. It is fresh, delicious, and extremely filling. The nuts and feta provide a healthy dose of protein; the avocado and olive oil give you essential Omega-3 fatty acids; the spinach is full of iron, and all the other vegetables give you all the vitamins and minerals you need to be happy and healthy.
This is a great version of the classic Spinach Salad, but also a great way to use cranberries. Although I prefer to use dried cranberries, you can certainly use regular ones instead.
Also enjoy my Italian Dressing Recipe. This dressing, I have to admit, is about 60% of the delicious taste that this Spinach Salad has. It's so quick and easy to make but most importantly tastes amazing!!! The dressing is sure to make an impression on guests you are having at your house, as it often has for me or, perhaps more importantly, it will make you very happy with your salad when you are having it at lunch. I like to make the dressing in big batches and store it in a bottle. This dressing does not need to be refrigerated. I like to keep a bottle at work and just bring in my ingredients dry in a bowl, and then just add dressing for a quick lunch. The measurements in this recipe make one cup of dressing.
Also, I'm a vegetarian, so I don't add any meat to this salad. I try to make it as hearty as possible with the nuts and cheese, but if you want some meat in there too, bacon is a fantastic choice that fits the rest of the salad extremely well.
Salad IngredientsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Salad and Dressing Ingredients
- 1/2 avocado, chopped
- 2 cups baby spinach, rinsed and dried
- 1/2 white onion, chopped
- 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 carrot, julienned
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic
- Wash spinach leaves (if not already done), and chop vegetables. Carrots should be julienned which can be easily done with a carrot peeler, and other vegetables can be cut into medium sized pieces.
- Put all the vegetables with the spinach.
- After adding vegetables, mix together the nuts, feta, and dried cranberries in a seperate smaller bowl.
- Make dressing: mince the garlic and mix with olive oil and vinegar. You can mix these in a bowl or put them all in a bottle and shake. I like to double the recipe for the dressing so that I have a full bottle. The measurements in this recipe make enough dressing for roughly three salads.
- Put dressing on the vegetables, and then add the topping mixture from the other bowl. Toss until well mixed.
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