Strawberries in Salad

Strawberries are my favorite fruit. I love all fruits but strawberries have a special place in my heart. I love everything about them. Growing up, my heart would skip a beat every time I saw them in our fridge- thanks, Mom! They are definitely one little sweet treat that you don’t need to feel guilty about getting your hands on.

They are full of antioxidants, anti-aging properties, and all those other healthy shenanigans that you want for your body. Fun fact that I learned some time in my youth: the average strawberry has ~200 seeds in it! Craziness- right?

Did you also know that turtles LOVE strawberries? I didn’t either until today but apparently they do! Now go google some images of turtles eating strawberries for me.

Anyway, usually I stick to eating my strawberries in ways that enhance their sweetness- straight from the container, in overnight oats, with greek yogurt, over frozen yogurt, with other desserts, in tropical beverages, smoothies, etc. But lately I’ve been on a more savory kick and have been loving on them being in my salads

It all started when I saw that Pleasant Pops had brought out some new menu items and one of them was a Spring Salad: spring mix greens, local goat cheese from Firefly Farms (MD), strawberries, almonds, sunflower seeds & house-made poppyseed vinaigrette. YUM. I didn’t have time to go grocery shopping when I got back from Miami before starting my week so for dinner on Monday- this guy was the star.

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If you were curious, I also had a half a sandwich on the side also made by Pleasant Pops- garlic hummus, bell pepper, olives, sunflower seeds, and cucumbers on multi-grain. Heavenly.

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After a sweaty spin session Monday night, this salad was wicked refreshing.

And then, when May hit on Wednesday, Sweetgreen announced their seasonal salad and guess what was included? You got it. Strawberries. I was amped. Bring on the strawberries! Sweetgreen and Pleasant Pops are apparently on the same page because both of their salads use sunflower seeds. But Sweetgreen (and salad creator Chef Alli Sosna) utilized some other fun ingredients like cranberries and mint.

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When I think of cheeses that are good with strawberries- I immediately think goat cheese. I was intrigued when I saw that Sweetgreen was using feta. One of my favorite things about buying salads out is seeing what flavor combos they try out and broadening my horizons. I probably wouldn’t have used feta and strawberries otherwise.

Both of the salads are relatively simple but the strawberries just added that extra exciting Spring kick that made them wow-za material. After coming back from a weekend of paradise in Miami where I was eating fruit on fruit on fruit, it was great to have juicy fresh strawberries as a focus of my meals this week.

Let’s just say I was inspired by these salads and this inspiration led me to buy two pounds of them at Trader Joes. Yup. The woman at the checkout doubted my ability to eat them all by myself this week… she clearly doesn’t know me too well. Last week I also bought two pounds of strawberries and the checkout woman had the same reaction. They should know by now that I’m a veggie and fruit consuming machine.

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I used to keep my fruits out of my salad, but lately I’ve been loving on the sweet/savory combination that fruits and greens can bring. Last week I was all about my blueberry, shrimp, and artichoke salad– this week strawberry and goat cheese salads are going to be what I’m living for. I enjoy supporting businesses that rock like Sweetgreen and Pleasant Pops- but I also enjoy making my own salads based on their creations 😉

One of my favorite things about Fridays- my day off from work- is taking the time to make my lunch at home. During the week I’m always eating on the go. I make and prepare my food ahead of time to take to work and convenience takes priority. But on Fridays, I absolutely love being able to take the time to cut every thing up, put lots of thought into what I’m putting together, and mix up my lunch with some extra added love. Not being pressed for time is always a good thing.

Another one of my Friday favorites? What Not to Wear is on from 12-1pm. I’m all about it. Killer homemade lunch + sassy Stacey and Clinton = happy Allison. It’s basically my version of a lunchtime power hour.

So yesterday- with the two pounds of strawberries sitting in my fridge not going anywhere- I got to making a kickass salad.

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strawberries, duh.

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I threw in broccolini, cucumber, mushrooms, green bell pepper, goat cheese, and some shakes of basil.

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I mixed it all up with spinach, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. I ate the big ol’ salad with some mashed avocado on whole grain toast (avocado toast is divine).

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time for a close up! no makeup or doctoring needed for this beauty.

If you haven’t tried strawberries in your salads- get on that for me. I promise you won’t regret it. Strawberries are perfect warmer weather material and as we head straight into spring and before we know it- summer- they’re everything you need and more.

And if strawberries aren’t your thing- we are no longer friends. Just kidding. If they aren’t your thing- try experimenting with your favorite fruits and greens! Apples, oranges, pears, other berries- pick your poison!

I’m off to enjoy the weekend- I hope you all have lovely Saturdays!

Keep it wicked healthy xoxo

http://www.chefallisosna.com/

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6 thoughts on “Strawberries in Salad

  1. I am making salad with strawberries this week… thanks for the inspiration.
    Also – I have never been to sweetgreen (even though i live next to it!) but I am thinking i may try it out with the may salad!

    • Do it to it, girl! Anytime I can provide food inspiration to anyone I feel accomplished haha. Strawberries are so good. But you know what’s not good? The fact that you have never been to Sweetgreen. That is RIDICULOUS. WHAT ARE YOU DOING. GO THERE STAT.

  2. I too bought strawberries this past week and have been eating them a couple at a time for snack with cheddar cheese slices, so good and refreshing! Hope you’ve had a good weekend! Love you!

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