Main Dish Salads Vegetarian

Spinach Walnut Power Salad

August 21, 2014

According to Pinterest, I pinned this salad 47 weeks ago. FORTY-SEVEN. Not only is Pinterest a time suck, it’s also where recipes go to die, lol. It’s supposed to be your virtual spot of reminders to interesting things on the web, but for me it ends up being a way for me to pin and forget. I should set a weekly date for me and Pinterest where I review pins and get to eating! I finally made a slightly adapted version of this salad and renamed it Spinach Walnut Power Salad. Now I’m kicking myself that I let all that time pass without this salad in my life. So let me save you some guilt and tell you to make this salad right now! Pin it, but don’t forget it!

Spinach Walnut Power Salad

So, how’s it taste?

I’m ooing and aahing over salad, y’all. This isn’t your average boring-lettuce-with-some-veggies-drowning-in-dressing meal. It’s all I want to eat. Everyday. All day. Except one serving packs such a powerful punch (get it, power salad, har har) that you’ll be completely satisfied and so full you’ll just have to resort to counting down the hours until your stomach has space for another one.

Spinach Walnut Power Salad

There’s so much texture going on, plus it’s savory and sweet…and healthy. It starts with caramelizing onions and combining them with your cooked bulgur and edamame. Once this mixture cools (I prefer mine super cold, right out of the fridge) add the dressing. It’s the simplest of dressings, but OMG rocks my world! The original recipe uses only honey, but I think taking it a step further with a full-on dressing makes this spectacular. It toned down the sweet and brought a few new flavor elements to the dish that I really enjoyed. The bulgur soaks up the dressing and there’s just enough left over for when you add the spinach, it wilts just perfectly. Next are sweet, juicy grapes, crunchy walnuts, and the piΓ¨ce de rΓ©sistance (I’m so fancy)…crumbled blue cheese!

Spinach Walnut Power Salad

Be still my beating heart. Do you know how good blue cheese is with walnuts and sweet grapes? The flavor profile sort of reminds me of these Gorgonzola Date and Walnut Tartlets. I do a happy dance every time I get to add blue cheese. This salad makes six servings, but if you store the cooked onions, bulgur, and edamame together in the fridge, you can easily make one salad at a time. For the dressing, I just make it individually when I want this salad. I’ve made it so much lately that I just eyeball the ingredients.

Yield: 6 servings

Spinach Walnut Power Salad

Ingredients:

Salad
2 tbsp. butter
small yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 cup quick cooking bulgur
2 cups cold water
2 cups edamame
fresh baby spinach (add as much or as little as you want)
2 cups seedless red grapes, washed and cut in half
3/4 cup walnuts
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese

Dressing
6 tbsp. olive oil
3 tsp. dijon mustard
3 tsp. balsamic vinegar
3 tsp. honey
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onions and saute about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft and golden brown.

2. Meanwhile, add the bulgur and water to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; cover and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes or until tender. Drain off any access liquid. Stir in edamame, caramelized onions, and any butter drippings left in pan. Set aside to cool. (I preferred this mixture to be cold from the fridge in my salad rather than just letting it cool, but try it at both temperatures and see what you like.) At this point, you can store the bulgur mixture in the fridge and scoop out what you need if you want to make individual salads instead of one big salad for six.

3. For the dressing, mix all the dressing ingredients and whisk until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Add the dressing to your cooled bulgur mixture. Next stir in the spinach. Just eyeball how much you want in your salad. It's healthy so it's up to you how much or how little you want. It will slightly wilt down due to the dressing. Gently stir in the grapes, walnuts, and blue cheese. Serve immediately.

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  • mary @ minutes per mile August 21, 2014 at 11:20 am

    caremlized onions are the secret to salad success! cool idea to add bulgur. haven’t tried that one yet — but will add it to my soon-to-make list πŸ™‚

  • Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy August 21, 2014 at 11:23 am

    This sound amazing! I have only just started adding nuts to my salads, but I have been missing out.

  • Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice August 21, 2014 at 12:21 pm

    Pinterest is definitely a time suck! I’m addicted to it, but I will probably never try half of the recipes that I’ve pinned on there! This salad sounds amazing! Reminds me of my favorite spinach powerhouse salad at Panera.

  • Geraldine | Green Valley Kitchen August 21, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    This is such a pretty salad. Love the idea of grapes, walnuts and cheese in a salad. Pinning for future reference (hopefully it won’t get lost in the pinterest vortex!). Thanks!

  • Thalia @ butter and brioche August 21, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    awesome salad idea! definitely need to make the recipe, i always love trying new salad combinations.

  • cheri August 21, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    What a great salad Leah, love the dressing. It does seem like recipes once pinned are forgotten, thats a good idea to review them once a week.

  • Judit + Corina @ Glamorous Bite August 22, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    This salad looks so vibrant and walnuts and blue cheese are such a tasty combo!

  • Jess @ whatjessicabakednext August 24, 2014 at 4:07 am

    Love power salads- this recipe sounds amazing! Love the walnuts and spinach!

  • Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic August 24, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    I will ooh and ahh over this salad too! Love all the texture and flavors here!

  • Olivia - Primavera Kitchen August 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    Wow what a great salad!!! So fresh, delicious and healthy too!!
    Your pictures looks awesome!!

  • Maggie August 25, 2014 at 8:39 am

    The salad looks so healthy and yummy! I’m not a big fun of blue cheese though. Will replace it with some ricotta cheese or mozzarella and hope it will taste as good as yours! πŸ™‚

  • Kelly - Life Made Sweeter August 26, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    I love a great power salad! This one sounds amazing jam packed with all that spinach, bulgar, edamame and walnuts! Such a tasty and healthy combo πŸ™‚