Berry Balsamic Salad with Lightly Candied Walnuts & Creamy Balsamic Dressing

Berry Balsamic Salad with lightly candied walnuts and a creamy balsamic dressing! | A Hint of Garlic #spring #salad #easter

UPDATED MARCH 2018

A good salad can change your life.

I’m serious. I used to think salad was something that sad people eat when they want to lose weight. I’d force myself to eat it in high school, with as little dressing as possible. And with salty pretzels on the side.

I have no idea why, it was just my idea of healthy at the time.

But now I know that a simple, fresh salad can make for a really amazing meal. Its like a huge nutritional boost to your day! You get a big heap of fresh fruit and raw veggies, without feeling like you’re eating like a rabbit.

Berry Balsamic Salad with lightly candied walnuts and a creamy balsamic dressing! | A Hint of Garlic #spring #salad #easter

But in order to accomplish that, you have to do salad right. And that starts with a simple homemade dressing that you can drizzle allllll over that bowl of goodness.

Three words, my friends: Creamy Balsamic Dressing.

Creamy Balsamic Dressing Recipe! Dairy-free, so creamy, and the perfect simple homemade dressing for your spring salad. | A Hint of Garlic #spring #salad

Balsamic is one of those things that tends to overpower all other flavors. It can hit you in the back of the throat like nothing else. So I added a generous heap of organic coconut cream to mellow it out and make this dressing extra creamy, while also being dairy-free!

Just blend up all the dressing ingredients and it turns into a thick and velvety smooth balsamic dressing.

When I first shared this recipe, it was a super simple (and honestly, kinda sad) Strawberry Walnut Salad. Just fresh berries, raw walnuts, and feta.

But this Berry Balsamic Salad, mmm. Its putting that old worn out strawberry salad to shameee.

Berry Balsamic Salad with lightly candied walnuts and a creamy balsamic dressing! | A Hint of Garlic #spring #salad #easter

It doesn’t hurt that the walnuts are lightly candied. That means they’ll satisfy that sweet craving without being overly decadent!

They’re perfectly sweet little nuggets of goodness sprinkled throughout this otherwise healthy salad.

Ladies and gents, I think its time to eat.


Berry Balsamic Salad Recipe

Lightly candied walnuts and creamy goat cheese is the best combo in this spinach and arugula salad! Top it with creamy balsamic dressing, that also happens to be dairy free.

Servings: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 min
Total time: 10 min

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces organic spinach & arugula mix
  • 1 lb strawberries
  • 6 oz blackberries
  • 1 cup candied walnuts
  • 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup organic coconut cream*
  • 1/4 cup organic balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp raw local honey
  • 1 tbsp organic dijon mustard**
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of sea salt & pepper

Candied Walnuts Ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tbsp organic coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp each of cumin, curry, and cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Roast the walnuts. Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Whisk your egg white and *USE ONLY 1.5 TBSP of the whisked EGG WHITE! Toss the walnuts in the egg white and vanilla until coated. Mix together the coconut sugar, salt, and spices in a small bowl. Toss the coated nuts in the sugar mixture. Bake at 300 degrees for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through. Allow to cool.

  2. Blend all of the dressing ingredients together until well incorporated and smooth. Store in the fridge until ready to use.

  3. Rinse and dry your strawberries and blackberries. Cut off the tops of the strawberries and halve or quarter them. Toss together the berries, crumbled goat cheese, and cooled candied walnuts. Drizzle the salad with the creamy balsamic dressing and enjoy!

Notes

*Place a can of full-fat organic coconut milk in the fridge overnight to allow it to separate. Use the thick cream at the top of the can for this recipe. Reserve the rest for smoothies!

**I prefer to use a mild Dijon mustard. Publix and Whole Foods both have their own organic dijon that I love.


Berry Balsamic Salad with lightly candied walnuts and a creamy balsamic dressing! | A Hint of Garlic #spring #salad #easter

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