For years, a group of girlfriends gathered in December to do a Christmas ornament party and it's alway a potluck. The salad I took to share came out so beautiful I wanted to share the recipe with you; my spinach salad with pomegranate dressed with a pomegranate vinaigrette.
Pomegranate Spinach Salad
A strawberry spinach salad is popular so this recipe swaps pomegranates seeds (arils) for berries for a nice twist. This salad has it all. Colorful ruby seeds, tender baby spinach leaves, walnuts, hard boiled egg, goat cheese crumbles, slivered red onion and crisp bacon.
Many spinach salad recipes use a hot bacon dressing. Instead, I dress it with an easy pomegranate vinaigrette for a fresh take. From a health standpoint, this salad is packed with nutrition and it tastes terrific.
Spinach Salad Ingredient Tips
- Spinach leaves - choose either the bagged or clamshell container of baby leaves. Usually spinach is pre-washed, but a quick wash at home is s good idea. I use Eat Cleaner to wash all my produce.
- Bacon - Choose either turkey or pork bacon that is uncured, organic, and nitrate-free. For vegetarians, just skip the bacon. To cook bacon in the oven, line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, top with a wire cooking rack, and top with raw bacon strips. Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes on each side, or until golden and crisp. Cool and crumble.
- Eggs - Hard boiled eggs take 15 minutes plus a dunk in ice water. Read here on how to make perfect hard boiled eggs.
- Pomegranate seeds - Many markets carry pomegranate seeds ready to enjoy in the refrigerated produce department. If you can't find them, buy a pomegranate and open it yourself. It's easy. For how to open a pomegranate, read here. Just be sure to wear an apron as those beautiful seeds really stain
- Goat cheese - If you are dairy-sensitive, obviously skip this ingredient or use a plant-based alternative.
How to Make Pomegranate Vinaigrette
The general rule for making vinaigrettes is one part of acid (vinegar) to three parts of fat (oil). I use pomegranate vinegar from Trader Joe's, extra virgin olive oil, a teaspoon of maple syrup and a little Dijon mustard to help the dressing hold together and make it a bit creamy. Here's a delicious vinegar option on Amazon.
Taste the vinaigrette and adjust for yourself. I added a little more vinegar for more tang. A little salt and pepper and you are good to go. If you can't find pomegranate vinegar, substitute red wine vinegar or other fruit vinegar, like cherry.
Individual Concerns With Spinach
For most people, spinach is a great add to your diet, but it is high in natural compounds called oxalates. If you suffer with kidney or gallbladder issues, check with your healthcare provider before consuming spinach. It's also high risk for people wit histamine intolerance.
Spinach Salad with Pomegranate
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2-3 teaspoons pomegranate vinegar substitute red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon real maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 2 pinches sea salt
- 2 pinches ground black pepper
- 6-8 ounces clean baby spinach leaves
- 4 ounces goat cheese crumbles
- ⅓ cup chopped walnut pieces about 2 ounces
- ⅓ cup pomegranate seeds
- 4-6 strips bacon (nitrate-free) cooked crisp, crumbled
- 2 hard boiled eggs peeled and chopped
- ¼ small red onion sliced thin
- Start by making the vinaigrette. Add the oil, vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, salt and pepper to a small bowl and whisk until smooth.
- Add spinach leaves to a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Scatter the cheese, walnuts, seeds, bacon, egg and onion over the top and toss again and serve family style or on four individual plates.