This Chopped Spinach Winter Salad is so flavorful, a good way to eat healthy, and makes a great side dish. It'll jazz up your holiday table too! You will especially love the freshly made cranberry and orange vinaigrette. It really is the star of the show!
If you are like me, you probably enjoy the holidays because you can indulgence in some of your favorite treats that might only come around once a year. It is totally fine to do that - you have my permission, well, not that you need it, right? I admit that I have some favorite recipes I like to make and enjoy this time of year. Tis the season and all that but I also like to make sure I have some healthier food too. That is where this chopped spinach winter salad comes into play. It is loaded with fresh spinach, vitamin packed quinoa, dried cranberries, sweet mandarin oranges, colorful pomegranate seeds, tangy blue cheese and a bit of crunch with some pecans. Did your taste buds just wake up?
While all the 'stuff' in the salad is great, I especially love how it comes together with the fresh cranberry and orange vinaigrette. Those combo of ingredients are one of my favorites and it really adds some zippy-ness that definitely gets the attention of those taste buds. We enjoyed it as a side dish but just increase the ingredients and you will have a fantastic one dish meal!
As with any salad, you can always change up the ingredients to your liking - about anything you want can be swapped. I have made some other salads we've enjoyed like this Crunchy Apple Salad with a Poppy Seed dressing and Fresh Fruit with Quinoa and Arugula - both are yummy!
So remember to eat healthy so you can also enjoy your favorite treats!
I really loved this dressing!!
- ½ cup quinoa, cooked to directions
- 3 cups spinach, chopped
- ⅓ cup pomegranate seeds
- 11 oz. canned mandarin oranges, drained
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup blue cheese, crumbled
- ⅛ cup pecans, chopped
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- ⅓ cup fresh cranberries
- 1 mandarin orange zested
- juice from one mandarin orange
- 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Cook quinoa according to package directions (about 15 minutes); drain and cool about 15 minutes
- While cooking quinoa, chop spinach (I removed stems)
- To make dressing, combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until really smooth
- Divide spinach on 4 plates and divide other ingredients by fourths on each plate
- Drizzle with the dressing (you will probably have some leftover)
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 424Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 403mgCarbohydrates: 68gFiber: 9gSugar: 50gProtein: 9g
Nutritional information provided is computer-generated and only an estimate. You may want to do your own research with the ingredients listed if you have concerns about health or specific diets.
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