Recently I was at Whole Foods and saw a new salad in their deli case. The minute I tasted a sample I knew I wanted to recreate it at home. Recreating Whole Foods and Starbucks recipes is something I do when I need a challenge.
Their salad was a great jumping off point but mine tastes better and is more flavorful. Not that I’m partial.
It reminds me of this Twelve Superfoods Salad which is a reader favorite. There are so many wonderful textures and flavors in every bite of this hearty salad filled with superfoods. Spinach, blueberries, dried cranberries, almonds, and more.
It’s easy, satisfying, healthy, and most importantly – it tastes amazing.
The salad is incredibly flexible based on what you have on hand and enjoy. I used wheatberries but you can try quinoa, wild rice, couscous, barley, or mix and match the grains. I used dried cranberries and raisins but you can swap them for dried cherries or omit. I didn’t have basil on hand but had cilantro so in it went. Add green onions or red onions if you like. Skip the cheese and use agave rather than honey in the dressing if you want to keep it vegan rather than vegetarian.
For the dressing I used the same dressing I used in Apple, White Cheddar, and Grilled Chicken Salad which originally came from Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette. It’s light, tangy-yet-sweet from the apple cider vinegar, honey, and Dijon mustard gives it a little bite. The best part is you just shake it together in a jar and any extra will keep for a week in the fridge.
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- about 2 cups cooked grains (I used wheatberries; try quinoa, wild rice, couscous, barley, etc. and mix and match if desired)
- about 2 cups fresh spinach leaves, loosely packed
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
- 3/4 to 1 cup grated white cheese (I used goat gouda; aged white cheddar, crumbled feta, blue cheese, etc. may be substituted)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup raisins or dried cherries
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup fresh basil or cilantro, finely minced
Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 3/4 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
- Salad – To a large bowl add all ingredients in the order listed; set aside.
- Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette – To a small glass jar or container with a lid, add all ingredients, put the lid on and shake vigorously until combined; taste vinaigrette and tweak as necessary to taste. Drizzle about half the dressing over salad, toss to combine, and see if you prefer it moister and add more, to taste. If you don’t use all the vinaigrette, extra will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 1 week. Serve salad immediately or place into an airtight container, refrigerate, and serve chilled. The spinach wilts as time passes but the dried fruit softens and the flavors marry and I enjoy this salad for up to 3 days after preparing.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 555Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 742mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 7gSugar: 55gProtein: 13g
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