This refreshing spinach strawberry salad with feta is loaded with baby spinach leaves, sweet strawberries, salty feta cheese, avocado, and a delicious balsamic sesame honey dressing. Perfect as a side or topped with your favorite proteins such as grilled chicken or shrimp for a nutrient protein-packed meal.
It’s great on its own and a perfect side dish that pairs with just about any main dish!
You can have a delicious healthy salad ready in minutes - 15 minutes to be precise.
There are so many of you, different readers, here at the Yummy Bowl - some of you like to get straight to the recipe ingredients and instructions, and some of you love reading the full information with tips and tricks that I provide for the recipe.
There is a skip to recipe button in the top left corner along with a clickable table of contents list (just below) that will quickly take you to the part you are more interested in. Enjoy!
My few comments on the ingredients + don't forget to read the Tips section!
The full recipe and ingredients can be found in the recipe card below this post.
If you're into healthy salads, this is a great opportunity to shop at your local farmer's market for fresh ingredients that are organically grown and without GMOs.
The grocery store is convenient but supporting our local artisans and shop owners is a great way to boost our local economies and also take better care of our environment.
And of course, it's best to choose ingredients that are in season.
- Fresh spinach - Spinach is usually my go-to because I always have it in my fridge but mixing things a bit once in a while is always good for the overall nutrition. For easy lettuce, handling doesn’t forget to use Salad Spinner. I also like a combination of 2-3 lettuce variations that works the best in terms of flavor and adds a nice crunch and bulk to the salad. My favorite leafy greens besides spinach are kale, frisée, romaine lettuce, butter lettuce, and crunchy iceberg lettuce.
- Strawberries - Slice the strawberries in quarters or into thinner slices. Keep the tops, you can do so much more with these later! (I provide some info about this at the bottom of the post). If you are a beginner on this, this tutorial will help: How to cut strawberries. Strawberries are not only a strong carrier of iron but they act as an active iron absorber. Most of the berries are a naturally good source of vitamin C which helps to absorb non-heme iron. Other sweet berries are also packed with vitamins and can be used in place of strawberries: raspberries, blueberries, or blackberries. All of these pair well with the honey dressing and chicken.
- Limes - fresh lime juice is preferred, bottled juice will not be the same and may ruin the freshness of the salad. Other acids such as apple cider vinegar, and sherry vinegar could work here too. Also for the dressing, a little drizzle of Balsamic dressing on top will add a lot of flavors that go well with both fruit and vegetable salads. Try my homemade Balsamic Glaze for this!
- Salty Feta - Feta adds creaminess and saltiness that just can't be beaten with anything. I suggest getting a block of feta and crumbling it yourself rather than buying store-bought or any similar cheese cubes. The flavor and freshness of a fresh block of cheese are very different from already packaged crumbled feta. My other favorite cheese alternatives include goat cheese, camembert, brie, and blue cheese.
- Avocado - I used a very large avocado from my farmer’s market (my preferred choice as large avocados tend to be perfectly ripe and with firm flesh inside that is easy to cut and not mushy on the edges). If avocados are rare on your menu, I highly recommend incorporating them into the daily menu as they are nutritious and lower the cholesterol levels in your body. This is also very useful for beginner avocado aficionados: How to cut avocado.
Prepare the dressing by mixing it in a small bowl or a tightly sealed mason jar. Stir/shake well until all combined. Set aside for 15-30 minutes to chill in the fridge.
Assemble the salad. In a large bowl add spinach, strawberries, and avocado, and add feta cheese crumbles.
Drizzle with the dressing (assess the amount of the dressing, we want this salad to be tossed in the dressing lightly without the ingredients swimming in the liquid), serve the salad with the remaining dressing on the side or keep it in the fridge for later.
Season the salad with salt (crushed sea salt flakes) and black pepper (you only need a little but it enhances all the flavors!).
For more flavor and texture add crunchy almonds or walnuts. Enjoy right away!
- Chill the ingredients - For the best flavor, keep the strawberries, feta cheese, and avocado in the fridge before cutting. This spinach strawberry salad with feta does honestly taste better when the ingredients are chilled.
- To prevent the avocado from browning fast, drizzle with lime or lemon juice as soon as you cut it.
- Serving the salad. Combine all the ingredients and dress only if you are ready to serve the salad. The juices from the strawberry and cucumber will be released so we don't want the salad to stand out for long and become too watery.
- To make this salad into a more substantial meal, top it up with grilled shrimp or chicken. Any cooked gluten-free grains are a big plus (think quinoa, gluten-free couscous, gluten-free croutons (especially with parmesan), crunchy nuts, and seeds.
- To make this salad further nutritious, I recommend adding chopped toasted nuts (pecans, sunflower seeds, walnut, almonds). How to make toasted nuts: Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven to 350 Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes or until they become fragrant and golden brown. These will burn quickly so make sure to keep an eye on the nuts, especially during the last minutes.
- You can use the dressing described in the recipe or for a little twist try Strawberry Poppyseed Salad Dressing or drizzling this spinach strawberry salad with feta with homemade Balsamic glaze, or Greek Yogurt Dressing.
- Honey has a sweetening effect but you can barely feel its flavor. Maple syrup is also great with avocados and strawberries but it has a more intense caramel flavor.
- Strawberries are not only a strong carrier of iron but they act as an active iron absorber. Most of the berries are a naturally good source of vitamin C which helps to absorb non-heme iron. Slice the strawberries in quarters or into thinner slices. How to cut strawberries.
- When buying spinach either go for your trusted local farmer’s market or buy bagged lettuce that has already been washed. Washing the bagged leaves again is not a good idea.
- More spinach salad topping ideas: poppy seeds, chia seeds, candied or toasted nuts. Red onion pairs well with these ingredients too and adds that necessary zing to the salad! To make the onion flavor less harsh, soak the sliced red onion in clean cold water for 15 minutes before adding it to the salad.
- Fresh strawberries are great fruit but can lose their fresh look fast. Add the strawberries to the salad last and any remaining fruit store refrigerated in a box lined with paper towels in between the strawberry layers. For the salad, prep wash the berries only as much as you need and the rest keep out of moisture stored as mentioned above.
Freezing And Storing Instructions
Store the leftover dressed salad in the fridge and consume it within 1 day (same day). Undressed salad will taste fine if stored in the fridge for 1 day but for best results (and fresh flavor). I highly recommend combining everything right before serving.
Make ahead. Salad dressing can be mixed in advance for up to 4-5 days and tightly stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
What to do with Strawberry tops
Don’t throw away the strawberry tops!
Here’s what you can use strawberry tops for:
- Make strawberry-infused water. Or Strawberry Agua Fresca.
- Don’t have a plan to use those tops right now? Place them in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to a few days, or in the freezer for a few months, then pull them out when you’re ready to use them.
- Another great way to use them is to infuse your favorite spirit with them (I usually keep them in rum for a few days and then it's the cocktail time!).
- Add the tops to your favorite smoothies to get a little pink hue and a hint of strawberries.
Yes and no. If you are going to consume the salad on the same day as slicing the fruit then I'd say yes go for it. But pack the berries properly in an airtight container and store them in the fridge.
I recommend storing the spinach in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. The container should be a really good one, with a strong vacuum seal which doesn’t allow any air inside. Also don’t open the container too often, this way the spinach will last for even longer than a week. If needed, store the spinach leaves in multiple separate containers and open only when ready to use. Once the spinach is added to the salad and drizzled with dressing, it should be consumed on the same day. The flavor and texture will change after that and spinach will start to wilt.
No, it is not safe to eat slimy spinach. If you open the store-bought bag and some leaves are wilted and slimy it means it has passed its expiry date and has signs of decay.
Easy Strawberry Recipes
For more easy summer salad recipes please have a look at the ALL SALAD recipe index.
I hope you'll enjoy this Spinach Strawberry Salad With Feta, please leave a rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo of your food and tag me on Instagram @theyummy_bowl. I love seeing your creations!
Thank you for reading,
Easy Strawberry Spinach Feta Salad
For The Salad
- 3 cups baby spinach washed and dried
- 2 cups fresh strawberries hulled, sliced thin or quartered
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 large avocado or 2-3 small sliced medium thick
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil good quality
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 12 teaspoon dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon salt to taste
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper or to taste
- Prepare the dressing by mixing it in a small bowl or a tightly sealed mason jar. Stir/shake well until all combined. Set aside for 15-30 minutes to chill in the fridge.
- Assemble the salad. In a large bowl add spinach, strawberries, and avocado, and add feta cheese crumbles.
- Drizzle with the dressing (assess the amount of the dressing, we want this salad to be tossed in the dressing lightly without the ingredients swimming in the liquid), serve the salad with the remaining dressing on the side or keep it in the fridge for later.
- Season the salad with salt (crushed sea salt flakes) and black pepper (you only need a little but it enhances all the flavors!). For more flavor and texture add crunchy almonds or walnuts. Enjoy right away!