Spinach salad is one of those classic salads that most people have either eaten or at least heard of. Spinach is always the base, but the other toppings range from sliced red onion, mushrooms, and hard-cooked eggs to strawberries, pecans, and bacon. Moreover, when you make a spinach salad at home, the variations for a nourishing, delicious salad are endless.
When I brought home some fresh spinach and strawberries last week I knew a salad was in order. After rummaging around in my fridge, I found some red onion, two slices of prosciutto, and fresh rhubarb – all of which ended up in this salad along with some creamy goat cheese.
The vinaigrette came first. I took a small portion each of the rhubarb and strawberries and stewed them together to make a sauce. After that cooled, I added balsamic vinegar, fresh basil, honey, olive oil, and a little fresh ground pepper to make a strawberry-rhubarb vinaigrette.
The salad is made with a base of fresh spinach, sliced red onion, and strawberries. To add a little crunch and extra flavor I topped it with prosciutto that I crisped in the oven. Creamy goat cheese complemented the saltiness of the prosciutto and sweetness of the strawberries, drawing everything together into a delectable spring salad.
Taste isn’t the only reason to try this salad. It’s nourishing as well. Dark, leafy green spinach is loaded with vitamins and minerals like folate, Vitamin A, iron, magnesium, manganese, and Vitamin K to name a few. Strawberries are a great source of Vitamin C and fiber. And while prosciutto is high in sodium (just don’t eat it every day) it does provide protein, along with the goat cheese, helping you stay full longer after eating.
There are many other healthy foods you can add to spinach salad. How about some toasted pecans, cranberries, almonds, or cucumbers? The choices are endless. Do you have a variation of spinach salad that you love? Tell me about it in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!
Strawberry Spinach Salad with Crispy Proscuitto
For the Strawberry Rhubarb Vinaigrette
- 3/4 c. sliced rhubarb about 1 stalk
- 3/4 c. sliced strawberries
- 1/4 c. water
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 4 fresh basil leaves slightly torn
- 1 tsp. honey
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 Pinch of fresh ground pepper
For the Salad
- 2 thin slices prosciutto
- 4 c. spinach
- 1/2 c. sliced red onion
- 1 c. sliced strawberries
- 1 oz. plain goat cheese cut in small chunks
- Make the vinaigrette first by stewing together the rhubarb, 3/4 c. sliced strawberries, and water. Cook over medium heat 5-10 minutes until rhubarb is softened. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Pour 1/3 cup of the cooled rhubarb mixture into a small bowl and add balsamic vinegar, basil leaves, honey, olive oil, and pepper. Blend together using a stick blender or regular blender. Set aside.
- Crisp the prosciutto: Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper and lay prosciutto slices flat onto the paper. Bake in hot oven 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. Prosciutto will turn crispier as it cools.
- Make the salad by tossing together the spinach and red onion and dividing it onto two large plates. Top with sliced strawberries, goat cheese, and crumbled prosciutto. Drizzle Strawberry-Rhubarb Vinaigrette on top. Enjoy!