It’s the most wonder-ful time of the year…
Now, I know what you must be thinking: clearly, it isn’t the holidays.
No, it’s not the holidays. But it IS strawberry season and that’s pretty much the same thing, right? Plus, there’s more sunshine so, perhaps, strawberry season truly IS the most wonderful time of the year? After you try this roasted strawberry salad you can be the judge. 😉
Strawberries are finally back in season in the Pacific Northwest and I feel like I’m going to explode with happiness. The only thing better than consuming fresh strawberries is enjoying them roasted. Roasting brings out their natural sweetness, but transforms them into even more tender bites of deliciousness. That’s the only way I can describe it.
This salad starts with a bed of seasonal greens and roasted strawberries topped with fresh cucumber, avocado slices, and a tangy balsamic vinaigrette. It’s truly my idea of food heaven. If possible, you should definitely eat it while sitting in the sun, sipping iced tea, and enjoying a good book.
- If you want your strawberries to be a bit sweeter, add 1 tablespoon of maple syrup prior to roasting.
- I added cashews and hemp seeds to the salad for a bit of plant-based protein, but you can also omit these items or subsitute other nuts and seeds of choice if desired.
- To make the salad heartier, you can also add a protein source of choice. Quinoa works great on this salad for a vegan/vegetarian option, or you can also add grilled chicken or steak for a paleo option.
- 1 pound strawberries, hulled and sliced in half
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)
- Sea salt
- 5 ounces spinach
- 1 medium cucumber, sliced
- 1 avocado, pitted and sliced
- ⅓ cup cashews
- 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon brown mustard
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Toss strawberries with coconut oil and maple syrup (if using). Sprinkle with a small pinch of sea salt.
- Lay a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet and top with the strawberries. Roast for 20 minutes, until berries are tender.
- Once berries are roasted, assemble the salads. Divide the spinach between four bowls and top with the berries, cucumber, avocado, cashews, and hemp seeds.
- Mix the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and mustard. Drizzle dressing over the salads and serve immediately.