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Chicken Spinach Salad

This Chicken Spinach Salad is topped with seasoned chicken breast, sweet strawberries, juicy oranges, tart blueberries, sliced toasted almonds, and a sprinkle of feta cheese. The salad is dressed in a simple four-ingredient balsamic vinaigrette.
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword Chicken Spinach Salad
Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Calories 452kcal
Cost $5.81

Ingredients

  • 1 large (8.5 oz; 250g) boneless skinless chicken breast (plus olive oil, salt, pepper, and seasoning blend such as Mrs. Dash chicken grilling blends seasoning) (See Note 1)
  • 4 cups (88g) baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup (77g) fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup (70g) fresh strawberries
  • 1/2 cup (88g) clementine or mandarin oranges (~1 clementine)
  • 2-3 tablespoons feta cheese
  • 2-3 tablespoons sliced almonds (See Note 2)
  • Salt and pepper

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup (50g) olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons honey

Instructions

  • PREP: Prepare the fruit by washing and drying. If any ingredients are still wet, the dressing won't adhere very well. Remove strawberry stems and thinly slice. Peel clementine oranges. If desired, remove large stems on the spinach (I also tear the spinach leaves if they are large).
  • CHICKEN: (See Note 1) Remove fat from chicken and slice the breast in half width-wise. Dab chicken with paper towels to dry. Drizzle olive oil over both sides of the chicken pieces and then generously sprinkle both sides of the chicken with salt, pepper, and chicken grilling blends. Drizzle 2-3 teaspoons olive oil over a large pan or grill pan.
  • CHICKEN CONT.: Preheat the skillet over medium-high heat. Place the chicken in the skillet and then reduce the heat to medium and cook until the meat is no longer pink and the juices run clear, about 4-5 minutes per side, flipping once at the halfway mark. If the chicken is browning too quickly, slightly reduce the heat. Once the chicken is cooked through (juices run clear or it registers 165 degrees F), remove from heat and cover with foil. Let slightly cool for 5-10 minutes and then thinly slice or chop.
  • DRESSING: Combine all of the dressing ingredients (olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, and honey) in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Add some salt to taste (I use 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper). Close and shake until well combined.
  • SALAD ASSEMBLY: Add spinach to a large bowl. Toss with a few tablespoons of the dressing. Then add in the strawberries, blueberries, and oranges. Add in the slightly cooled chopped chicken. Add almonds and feta cheese. Drizzle remaining dressing on top and toss to combine. Enjoy immediately.
  • STORAGE: This salad doesn't sit well with the dressing, so only dress what will be enjoyed same day. Store any leftover salad and dressing separately. Almonds and cheese should also be stored separately.

Video

Notes

Note 1: I grill a chicken breast in a grill pan for this chicken spinach salad, but there are a few different options for preparing the chicken, so pick what’s easiest for you:
  • Quickest option – rotisserie chicken: Get a fresh and hot rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and chop it up for this salad. Or for an even quicker prep time, see if your grocery store offers rotisserie chicken meat that has already been pulled from the bones and shredded.
  • Leftover chicken: If you’re already making chicken during the week, make some extra and save it for this salad! I’d recommend making a double batch of this grilled chicken marinade; it’s our favorite.
  • Fresh grilled chicken: If fixing chicken fresh for this salad, I recommend drizzling olive oil and adding a generous amount of salt, pepper, and lemon pepper seasoning. Grill until cooked through, about 4-6 minutes per side (or until chicken juices run clear and internal temperatures register 165 degrees F).
  • Fresh sautéed chicken: Halve thick chicken breasts and drizzle olive oil on both sides. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt, pepper, and lemon pepper seasoning. Cook in a hot skillet (or grill pan) for about 4-6 minutes per side (or until chicken juices run clear and internal temperatures register 165 degrees F).
Note 2: Toast the almonds, if desired, by placing the almonds in a single layer in a dry, heavy skillet (you don’t need to add oil) and stir them around on medium-low heat. It only takes about 2-3 minutes (sometimes less depending on how much heat they are getting) until they are toasted and smelling quite fragrant. Just make sure you are stirring them around and watching constantly so they don’t have a chance to burn! 

Nutrition

Serving: 2servings | Calories: 452kcal | Carbohydrates: 23.9g | Protein: 29.9g | Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 86.9mg | Fiber: 4.5g | Sugar: 16.9g