Easy recipe for a healthy chicken and spinach salad with strawberries and arugula. Dressed with a sweet and sour balsamic dressing.
Can you all feel the summer being on its way? OK, at least those of you in the northern hemisphere – I hope there are a few visitors from the other hemisphere also! The days are getting longer, the weather is getting warmer and the first strawberries have already appeared on the counters of the farmers’ markets!
Of course, there are plenty of delicious ways to enjoy some good strawberries, like a fruit salad or a low-fat yogurt panna cotta! But a gluten-free lunch salad with some greens and a few pieces of lean chicken breast is nor bad either!
This recipe is pretty simple and forward. If you have some cooked chicken breast lying around, you just cut everything up and mix it with the dressing.
Any type of cooked chicken will do (rotisserie included) but I prefer a pan-roasted one. If not, then you'll have to do some extra cooking, but nothing time-consuming. Just boil some water or heat a skillet and you're ready to go!
If you roast your chicken in a skillet, you can finish it in the oven (bake it for 10 minutes at 350°F /175°C just to be sure it’s cooked all the way through).
Many times I’ve heard people say you have to use your hands to tear the spinach or lettuce leaves instead of using a knife since this method is considered to prevent further oxidation of the greens. I suspect this is just a myth, so I’m going to leave you with the freedom to do as you please. See how nice I am? 🙂
The combination of the ingredients for this salad wasn’t something that needed much thought, and you’ve probably seen many similar recipes, but this salad was something I just wanted to have among my recipes. Why?
As you may already know, the iron from the spinach is better absorbed when combined with vitamin C. And strawberries are full of vitamin C!
Strawberries and balsamic go very well together, and this is a universal rule!
Also, strawberries and rocket (a.k.a arugula) go very well together, with the sweetness of the first being balanced by the bitterness of the later.
Chicken and almonds offer a considerable amount of protein, and along with the fiber from the greens make this salad very filling, meaning it's perfect for a light lunch!
Use roasted almonds, for maximum flavor.
Use some parmesan flakes (optional) to make it irresistible!
In salads it's best to use extra-virgin olive oil!
Chicken Spinach and Strawberry Salad with Arugula
- 2 cups spinach or baby spinach, chopped
- 2 cups rocket (arugula), chopped
- 1 large chicken breast half ( cooked and diced)
- 1 cup strawberries, sliced
- ¼ cup almonds, roasted and crushed
- ¼ cup cup parmesan flakes, optional
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons grape syrup (or maple syrup or honey)
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a shaker, combine the balsamic vinegar, the olive oil, the grape syrup, the salt and the pepper and shake well.
- In a large bowl combine the rest of the ingredients. Pour the dressing over them and mix well. Eat!
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