Keeping up with my (and probably many other's) New Years Resolution to eat healthier, I thought I would kick of my recipes for 2016 (woah, its weird. Its 2016 now...no more 15!) with something healthy. And what's more healthy than salad? Its basically a bowl full of veggies. Well the only thing healthier would be if it had fruit right? WELL IT DOES! Whaaattt. That’s right, an apple a day will keep the doctor away, so this salad with veggies AND apple slices should more than do the trick!
Now for most people the concept of putting fruits in with their salads is not a foreign one. Lots of people add fruits like apples and strawberries and clementine to their salads. These are the people I usually silently judged – I mean it’s a SALAD. All veggies. No fruits. Why are you ruining it?
But recently that all changed when I was forced to try a salad with apples at my work place's local bistro. I was running late on grabbing lunch, and at about 3 pm, you take whatever food they have left to sell to you. So I begrudgingly bought it, wrinkled my nose at it, and sat down to eat. And oh my god! I was very pleasantly surprised at how good it was! I was definitely not anticipating liking the sweetness of the apple in the salad (for me a salad is usually lemoney/garlicy/ savoury thing), but I really did! So much so I decided to come up with my own recipe. And so here it is: a healthy Apple Feta Cheese Spinach Salad!
Recipe Review: The best part about this salad is that it comes together real quick and easy and only needs a few ingredients. The rest of my family, like myself, were originally pretty skeptical of a fruity salad, but once they dug in they ate THE ENTIRE serving of it in one go! I would call that a success! The dressing is also really great as its not only really healthy, and fresh, and homemade, it's also pretty yummy. It’s got a nice balance of sourness and sweetness to counteract with the rest of the salad. We will definitely be making this a staple into our family's rotation.
Apple Feta Cheese Spinach Salad
10 oz bag of baby spinach (we used one of those fully big containers you get from Costco!)
2-3 apples, cored and thinly sliced (I used 1.5 as the family was still pretty skeptical ;) )
1 small red onion, sliced into thin strips
1/2 cup celery, thinly sliced
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, chopped up
5 oz feta cheese, chopped into tiny pieces
1/3 cup dried cranberries
Cider Honey Mustard Vinaigrette
1/3 cup olive oil
4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoons of mustard
2 tablespoons of honey
1-2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
- Toss together all of the salad ingredients. (yes it's that simple, it is just a salad after all! ;) ) **note: If you are using onions that happen to be very sharp (mine caused me to start crying a river with the first slice) you might want to run them under cold water for a few seconds to get rid of the bite. Usually I enjoy the bite of onion in my salad but since this one has fruit in it you might want to tone it down. Up to you though!
- For the Dressing: Whisk all the ingredients up together in a bowl and pour over your salad. Serve immediately. (If you plan on having your salad later, do what I do and make the dressing separately in a Tupperware container that seals well. Once ready to serve, just shake the Tupperware around to mix and pour on your salad. It's what I do for when I pack salad for lunch the next day!)
And as part of my new year's resolution to learn more about what I'm eating, heres the nutrition info for this salad! If you make it into 6 servings (I calculated it as 6 big plates worth of salad), each serving only has roughly 300 calories, 20 grams of carbs, more than 4 grams of Fibre, and approximately 8 grams of protein! This makes it a healthy low carb / low GI (glycemic index) salad. The extra health benefits: 1 serving gives you whooping 42% of your daily Vitamin A intake, roughly 30% of your Vitamin C, 18% of your calcium, and 14% of your daily Iron intake. *Average approximation as the exact brands of ingredients you use could be different. This is based on a 2000 calories/day diet.
Hope you guys found the nutrition info helpful! If so, let me know and I can continue to include them in my recipes :)