Spinach Salad with Maple Bacon Vinaigrette is a hearty, great tasting salad full of fall flavor.
Even though fall is settling in and the weather is cooling slightly, we are still craving salads. This Spinach Salad with Maple Bacon Vinaigrette is the perfect salad on a fall day. The unusual color combination of the eggs and the vegetables are sure to brighten any table. This salad is a favorite in our house and is easy to make as a quick weeknight meal when schedules get crazy.
Pickled eggs (or “purple eggs” as we call them) can always be found in our fridge because my daughters are huge fans of them. Here, they become the star of the show, adding color and flavor to an otherwise ordinary salad. I tried to take it a step further by creating a warm vinaigrette packed with my favorite fall flavors: maple syrup and smoked bacon. I remember I loved spinach as a kid, but I never dreamed of eating it raw. My mother always made it cooked as a side dish, drizzling it with white vinegar. Perhaps this salad is derived from that memory.
As an adult, I just don’t have the same liking for cooked spinach that I used to. However, I don’t mind it raw in a salad. It is a great way to enjoy all the nutritional benefits of this super food, and it is the perfect leafy green to hold a warm dressing. As for my kids, the first few times we made them this spinach salad we neglected to mention that it was spinach. We were afraid this would not go over well, that they would curl their noses up and refuse to try it. Once they began to enjoy it however, it seemed safe to tell them exactly what they ate. I guess what I’m trying to say is that this salad, at first glance, may look “too green” for picky palates, but one bite may just change that perception.
- 6 oz Fresh Spinach
- 3 hard cooked pickled eggs
- 8 strips bacon
- ¼ C maple syrup
- ¼ C red wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp green onions, diced
- ½ C dried cranberries
- ¼ C olive oil
- Salt and Pepper
- ½ C pecan halves
- Wash and de-stem the spinach.
- Place in serving bowl.
- Dice bacon and place in small sauce pan. Cook until crispy.
- Do not drain grease.
- Add syrup, green onions and vinegar and cook for 5 minutes over medium low heat.
- Add salt and pepper to taste
- Remove from heat and add oil slowly while whisking dressing.
- Chop ¼ C pecans and add to dressing.
- Set dressing aside until you build the salad
- To assemble salad, add tomatoes and sliced hard cooked eggs to spinach and top with dressing.
- Toss salad and serve immediately.