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Fresh baby spinach salad with strawberries, red onion, pecans, avocado and a soft cheese like feta or a dairy-free alternative coated with a light strawberry balsamic vinaigrette dressing. 

Strawberry spinach salad with red onions, pecans, strawberries, avocado and feta in a white salad bowl. This beautiful salad is dressed with a homemade strawberry balsamic vinaigrette.

Every year when May comes around I switch up my usual salads for this one. Strawberries are in season, and when I have more than we can eat, I love to make a strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing.

Strawberry spinach salad is always a crowd pleaser and I highly recommend this salad for Memorial Day and all your other summer gatherings. Spinach, strawberries, balsamic, pecans, and basil all taste so delicious together it’s like they were made for each other. Don’t let strawberry season pass you by without trying this strawberry spinach salad.

How to Make Strawberry Vinaigrette

Fresh whole strawberries in a blender to make homemade strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing.

This fresh strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing is so easy to make with a few everyday ingredients. When my girls were in preschool they had a wonderful teacher who made this dressing with them. It was wonderful to see so many 3-5 year olds gobbling up their salads greens with strawberry dressing. I make strawberry vinaigrette by placing 6 or 7 fresh strawberries into the blender along with a splash of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, balsamic, and maple syrup.

A Vitamix blender filled with homemade strawberry balsamic vinaigrette.

After a minute or two of blending the strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing is done and ready to go on your favorite salad greens.

Homemade strawberry balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing in a Weck jar.

Oh hi, you cute little jar of strawberry dressing. My favorite salad greens to use this vinaigrette on are baby spinach, arugula, or kale.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

The ingredients for a strawberry spinach salad on a grey countertop. Strawberries, avocado, pecans, cheese and a bowl of baby spinach sit next to a jar of strawberry dressing.

These ingredients go so amazingly well together. I use slightly sweet crunchy pecans from Trader Joe’s, a bag of baby spinach, more fresh strawberries, creamy avocado, savory red onion, and salty soft cheese. Feta or goat cheese is the best choice here. I’ve use a dairy-free version made with cashews or almonds. Brands I like are Kite Hill, Treeline, and HeidiHo.

A bowl of baby spinach gets dressed with homemade strawberry vinaigrette salad dressing.

I like to dress my spinach with the strawberry vinaigrette before adding the other ingredients. This way softer ingredients like avocado don’t get smashed. It may not be ladylike, but the best way to dress a salad is with your hands. You can coat all those leaves much more evenly that way.

A close-up photo of a beautiful strawberry spinach salad with basil, avocado, pecans, and feta.

Adding the other ingredients after dressing the spinach also allows us to arrange them like this. Isn’t this the prettiest salad?! Those little purple flowers are borage from my garden. Of course not necessary, I’ve added them here for your viewing pleasure.

Strawberry spinach salad with red onions, avocado, feta, and pecans gets an extra drizzle of homemade strawberry vinaigrette.

A bit more strawberry dressing drizzled over the top never hurts. This strawberry spinach salad can be made up to 3 hours in advance and refrigerated, but leave the avocado off until just before serving so it doesn’t turn brown.

More Favorite Summer Salads

Strawberry Spinach Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

Baby spinach salad with strawberries, pecans, avocado and a soft cheese like feta or a vegan alternative. Don’t miss this easy strawberry balsamic vinaigrette dressing. This gorgeous summer strawberry spinach salad is always a crowd-pleaser.

Ingredients:

For the Strawberry Vinaigrette Dressing

  • 6 strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper

For the Spinach Salad

  • 5 oz. baby spinach
  • 1 cup candied pecans (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 1/2 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado, peeled and sliced
  • 5 fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 cup crumbled soft cheese such as feta or chevre (I used a vegan soft cheese)
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, whole or torn

Directions:

  1. Place all the ingredients for the vinaigrette in a blender. Puree until smooth.
  2. Add the baby spinach to a salad bowl. Dress with the strawberry vinaigrette. I used about half of the vinaigrette we made. Refrigerate the remaining dressing for later.
  3. Arrange the pecans, onion, avocado, strawberries, cheese, and basil on top of the spinach. Refrigerate until ready to eat.