This strawberry walnut salad is the perfect side salad or light lunch for spring and summer. Juicy strawberries, crunchy walnuts, and crumbled feta cheese are tossed with fresh greens and arugula, then drizzled in a simple homemade dressing.
Make a strawberry walnut salad this spring! It's eye catching and easy to prepare - perfect for a light lunch or dinner side salad.
Sweet strawberries, arugula, and green leaf lettuce are most nutritious and flavorful in the spring. Walnuts and red onion add crunch and flavor, and feta cheese adds a salty and creamy element. The from-scratch balsamic vinaigrette adds a perfect tangy, slightly sweet finishing touch.
Serve strawberry walnut salad as a light lunch - it's filled with plenty of nutritious ingredients that won't leave you feeling heavy. Or, serve smaller portions as a side salad for your next meal. It's perfect for spring holidays like Easter.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Leafy greens - I used a combination of arugula and green leaf lettuce, but feel free to use your favorite leafy greens. Spinach would make a great addition.
- Strawberries - Fresh, in season strawberries add the best flavor to this salad.
- Feta cheese - Can be substituted with goat cheese or mozzarella.
- Walnuts - Can be substituted with pecans.
- Red onion - Adds flavor and color to your salad.
- Extra virgin olive oil - Serves as the base of your dressing.
- Balsamic vinegar - Red wine vinegar would work as a substitute, adding a slightly different flavor to your dressing.
- Dijon mustard - Both adds flavor and works as an emulsifier, which makes your dressing creamy and cohesive.
- Maple syrup - Adds a hint of sweetness to your dressing.
- Salt and pepper - Enhance the flavor of your dressing.
This recipe makes a standard balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Feel free to substitute with your favorite store bought dressing if desired.
Want to prepare your salad ahead of a big event or party? Chop up your ingredients and store them separately in the refrigerator (walnuts can be stored at room temperature). Prepare your vinaigrette dressing and store it separately from your salad ingredients. Give the dressing another whisk just before serving.
Once your salad ingredients have been dressed, they should be served immediately. Leafy greens, especially delicate greens like arugula, wilt over time and do not store well.
What to serve with strawberry walnut salad
Strawberry walnut salad is a light, refreshing salad that pairs well with main courses like chicken, fish, and pasta. Here are a few of our favorites:
- Panko crusted salmon
- Grilled lemon pepper chicken sandwich
- Grilled chicken tenders
- Sautéed garlic butter shrimp
- Spaghetti aglio e olio
- Creamy lemon chicken pasta
Strawberry Walnut Salad
- 5 ounces (142 g) leaf lettuce, chopped
- 4 ounces (113 g) arugula
- 16 ounces (454 g) strawberries, sliced
- 4 ounces (113 g) crumbled feta cheese
- ½ small red onion, thin sliced
- 1 cup (113 g) chopped walnuts
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- In a large bowl (or small side salad bowls) add chopped leaf lettuce and arugula. Top with sliced strawberries, feta cheese, onion, and walnuts.
- In a bowl, add olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, salt, and pepper. Whisk to combine.
- Just before ready to serve, toss salad in dressing until evenly coated. Serve immediately. Or, serve dressing on the side.
- Recipe makes 8 side salads or 4 large lunch salads.
- If making ahead, store salad ingredients separately and assemble just before serving.
- If you plan to have leftover salad, I recommend serving dressing to the side. Once the greens have been dressed, salad will begin to wilt and does not store well.