Monday, January 21, 2013

Spinach Salad with Beets, Bacon, Walnuts and Goat Cheese

Spinach Salad with Beets, Bacon, Walnuts and Goat Cheese

We're big salad eaters in our house but an ordinary plate of lettuce and tomatoes won't do.  We like our salads complex and, as Brian is fond of saying, with a lot of "stuff" in them.  To own the truth, Brian has made me a much better salad maker over the years with his insistence that salads mustn't be simple.  Many times during the first year we dated, I'd serve him a salad and he'd say it was good but wonder what else can we put in it.  And in my attempts to please him, I realized how much better salads could be.

Spinach Salad with Beets, Bacon, Walnuts and Goat Cheese
All that being said, spinach salads are not new and hardly my invention.  But their complex natures lend themselves well to the way we like to eat.  You'll often see these salads served with warm bacon dressings but I find those too oily so I substituted a creamy vinaigrette.  I'm not sure when the original recipe appeared or what exactly it contained.  But I see no reason why I can't tailor this classic to suit our tastes so this, then, is my version of a spinach salad.  Enjoy!

2 Cups baby spinach, washed
1 Beet
1/4 Cup walnuts
1/4 Red onion, thinly sliced
3 Slices thick cut bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled
2 oz. Goat cheese, crumbled

Creamy Vinaigrette:
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon mayonnaise (I used low fat)
1/4 Teaspoon sugar
Salt & pepper to taste

Wrap the beet in aluminum foil and bake in a 400 degree oven for 1 - 1 1/2 hours until a small knife can go through easily.  Cool, peel and slice thinly.  While the beet is cooking, toast the walnuts lightly in a dry pan on the stove top.  This will only take a couple of minutes so stir them and be careful that they don't burn.  Set aside to cool.

In a bowl, whisk together the vinaigrette and begin to compose the salad.  Place the spinach on a plate followed by the red onion and the sliced beets.  Add the crumbled bacon, walnuts and cheese and pour on the vinaigrette.  Makes 2 servings.


  1. Bacon AND goat cheese? Yes, my dear, this is a fabulous salad!

  2. I do agree, that is a pretty excellent salad you've made there!

  3. Oh, Anita,
    That salad sounds amazing with spinach, bacon, beets, and walnuts. I can;t wait to make this. My hubby makes pickled beets from fresh beets all the time, but I'll be roasting one now:)

  4., are you open on Mondays? How hard is it to get a reservation? :) This looks wonderful with all kinds of my favorite "stuff" in it!

  5. Complex salads are my favorite. My husband hates a salad of any kind. If I make a salad to go with dinner I always feel like I am eating two dinners because I eat all the salad along with an entree. These flavors work so well together. I love beets and spinach.

  6. You had me at bacon :) Looks amazing. I am now going to fix myself a salad for lunch!

  7. Such a scrumptious looking salad, Anita! Love the flavors you added to it! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Oh, man...I need to add beets to my grocery list! What a magnificent salad, Anita!!

  9. I love all of the "stuff" in this salad, especially the beets and crumbled goat cheese. It looks amazing.

  10. Thank you for sharing this salad recipe, it was truly amazingly tasty. My family loved it, even the ones that don't love veggies. I didn't have bacon at hand and it was still so tasty. The flavors, the crunchy ness of the apples, walnuts, the dressing pulls it all together. WOW.. i have not gotten excited about a salad EVER until now! :) so thank you.


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