I’m not usually in to salads too much. Well, let me clarify that. I actually love salads – when they’re done right. Too often I find restaurants serve up a dish of limp iceberg lettuce (which, I think we can all agree is the worst lettuce that ever lettuced) with one or two veggies tossed on it and then drown it in some sort of bottled salad dressing. Hard pass. But this mixed green salad with blackberry basil vinaigrette is everything right. It brings hope to a limp-leaf world.
I will never stop fighting against bottled salad dressing. It is one of the bane’s of my existence, along with white chocolate (apparently I have a few). Y’all, we can say no to bottled salad dressing. It takes just a few minutes to pull together just about any salad dressing, including this yummy blackberry basil vinaigrette. You can do it. I believe in all of us.
And once you try this mixed green salad with blackberry basil vinaigrette, you too will be ready to kick those bottled salad dressings to 👏 the 👏 curb 👏.
In fact, when Lane and I first started dating I had him over to my apartment and cooked dinner for him. I spend all day preparing a roasted chicken, veggies, homemade rolls, and a yummy cake – all homemade. At the last minute I whipped together a salad and some dressing. Throughout the whole meal all Lane could talk about was the salad 🤣.
At first, I was a little annoyed, because – hello! – I had spent all day making an elaborate meal and had literally thrown the salad together in a few minutes. But, hey if his favorite part was the salad that’s cool too. And now he is our family’s official salad-finisher because we just don’t save leftover salad that has already been dressed (it gets super soggy 😟).
But whenever I make this mixed green salad with blackberry basil vinaigrette he is usually out of a job because we all eat big helpings of it. And since it’s mostly fruits and veggies, it’s zero calories…er…right?
Alright, let’s talk meal prep because you know I’m going to help you learn how to make this ahead of time…
- First, make the dressing on the weekend and store it in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. This recipe actually makes more dressing than you will need for this particular salad, so go ahead and enjoy it on all the things.
- Second, toast your almonds ahead of time. Again, these can be toasted on the weekend and stored in the fridge for up to 1 week – or you can toast them the night before. Either way you win because your almonds will have plenty of time to cool so they won’t wilt your lettuce when you put them on the salad
- Finally, you can also crumble up your goat cheese ahead of time and store it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks
- I wouldn’t chop up the apple or slice the strawberries ahead of time because the apple will turn brown and the strawberries will get a little mushy, plus how much time does it really take to chop up an apple, slice some strawberries and toss them on some lettuce? Pull out those fruit ninja skills!
Mixed Greens with Blackberry Basil Vinaigrette
- 1 1/2 c blackberries divided
- 1/2 c water
- 1/4 c basil roughly chopped
- 1 T basalmic vinegar
- 1 T avocado oil
- 1 t honey mustard
- 1 T honey
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 apple (we use gala) chopped
- 1/2 c strawberries sliced
- 2 oz goat cheese honey goat cheese is super delicious, but plain works too
- 1/2 c almonds roughly chopped and lightly toasted
- 2 c mixed spring greens
- In a small saucepan combine 1 c. of blackberries, water, and basil. Cook over high heat until mixture comes to a boil. Turn heat down to medium-low and cook for 5 minutes, smushing the blackberries with the back of a large wooden spoon to release the juices. Set aside for 15 minutes.
- While dressing base is resting, begin chopping and combining your salad ingredients: apples, strawberries, reamining 1/2 c. of blackberries, goat cheese, and almonds in a large salad bowl. Set aside.
- Once blackberry mixture has rested and cooled, strain completely. In a glass jar combine the blackberry mixture, basalmic vinegar, avocado oil, honey mustard, honey, and salt and pepper. Taste and adjust to preferences.
- Don't dress the salad until you are ready to serve it. Salad dressing can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- NOTE: To make this salad vegan simply leave out the goat cheese and swap in agave syrup for the honey.
A berry delicious treat (I couldn’t resist…).
If you make this mixed green salad with blackberry basil vinaigrette…
Please share your results – leave a comment below and post a photo on Instagram with #braisedinakitch