Strawberry Basil Salad with Toasted Walnut Dressing

toastedwalnutSpring greens topped with sliced strawberries and fresh basil tossed in a rich toasted walnut balsamic dressing. If you’ve never tried strawberries and basil together, they are a match made in heaven. To the point that I may start using them in place of tomatoes in Caprese salad ;)

All aboard the strawberry Caprese train. It’s going to be the new thing.

toastedwalnut2This salad is perfect for the spring and summer months. It’s light, refreshing and ideal for a cook out or fancy dinner in. I like serving this salad as a starter or side, however if you’d like to add a little protein and serve it as the main course, thinly sliced steak or grilled chicken would be excellent toppers.

I am one of those add-everything-but-the-kitchen-sink-salad kind of people. I will literally browse through my refrigerator and add unthinkable things to salads. To a point where it shouldn’t even be called a salad any longer. Just a bowl-o-stuff.

But out of all the bizarre things I add to salads, fruit is almost always a must. I will grill just about any fruit, add cheese and nuts and it always comes out delicious. You just cannot go wrong with that combo.

toastedwalnut3I toasted these walnuts in coconut oil, however you could sub for butter if need be. If that’s the case, I would add a tbsp of extra virgin olive oil to add to the overall volume of the dressing.

A good quality balsamic is a must. Quality truly makes all the difference in a balsamic vinegar. A cheap balsamic will taste like straight vinegar, however a quality balsamic will be sweet, silky and pack the perfect punch of pungency (whew, what a mouthful).

Top this salad with mozzarella, gouda, goat cheese or whatever your cheesy preference is. Bon appetit!

Strawberry Basil Salad with Toasted Walnut Dressing

Makes four large salads prepared. Serving size: 1 salad (ingredients divided)

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces (1 bag) of spring mix
  • 1/2 cup halved walnuts
  • 1/2 cup sliced strawberries (~6-8 whole, depending on size)
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: Grated cheese for topping

Directions

  • Heat coconut oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add walnuts and toast for ~5 minutes, stirring frequently. They easily burn!
  • Once walnuts are toasted, remove from heat and add balsamic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Let cool.
  • In the meantime, arrange greens on a plate, add sliced strawberries and fresh basil. Spoon walnut dressing over greens and toss. Top with cheese if desired. Serve immediately.

Nutrition facts per serving (1 salad with ingredients divided)

Calories: 140; Total Fat: 11.5 gm; Saturated Fat: 3.5 gm; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 120 mg; Carbohydrates: 7 gm; Fiber: 1.5 gm; Sugar: 3 gm; Protein: 3 gm

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4 Thoughts on “Strawberry Basil Salad with Toasted Walnut Dressing

  1. Olivia on March 31, 2014 at 9:54 am said:

    This looks delicious! The strawberries probably give it the ‘perfect’ touch :) Strawberries on salad= yum!! God bless :D

  2. hillary on March 30, 2014 at 1:14 pm said:

    yummm! i love strawberries in my salads!

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