Super Simple Salad
Yield: 1 serving (multiply as needed)*
The shortest list of basic ingredients comes together to create one of my all-time favorite salads. Add a protein of choice to make it a complete meal.


  • 3 ounces baby arugula (about 3 somewhat firmly packed cups or 3 big handfuls)
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) Favorite Balsamic Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
  • 1 rounded tablespoon crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 rounded tablespoon chopped toasted walnuts
  • Optional: 4-5 cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered; ¼ to ½ an avocado, chopped or sliced**
  • Make it a meal: Perfectly Broiled Salmon, Grilled or Pan-Seared Chicken, shrimp, tofu, sliced steak, or this pork!

For the Favorite Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  • 1 small garlic clove, minced (may sub ¼ teaspoon garlic powder)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon (27g) honey***
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons (90ml) balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup (112ml) olive oil (avocado oil also works well)


  1. For the vinaigrette: In a small bowl or jar with a tight-fitting lid, whisk together the garlic, salt, pepper, Dijon, honey, and balsamic vinegar.

    Drizzle the olive oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking as you go, until the dressing is emulsified. When using a jar, add the olive oil, screw the lid on tightly, and shake well.

    Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours to allow flavors to blend.

    For the salad: Add the arugula to a large bowl, and then drizzle with the vinaigrette and toss well. You want just enough to coat the arugula lightly but thoroughly. Sprinkle with the feta and walnuts and add the tomatoes and avocado, if using. Toss again, adding another drizzle of vinaigrette, if needed, and transfer to a plate or bowl for serving. Top with optional protein and enjoy!


*The yield for the homemade vinaigrette recipe is 1 cup – plenty for multiple salads over a several weeks.

**By all means, feel free to add other veggies like cucumbers, radishes, and bell pepper or vary the nuts, add seeds, etc. This is simply a combination that I return to again and again.

***This amount of honey provides widely appealing, balanced flavor but can be modified to taste: For a tangier vinaigrette, use 1 tablespoon of honey. For a sweeter dressing, add an additional teaspoon. For a vegan recipe, replace the honey with maple syrup or agave.

Storage: The vinaigrette will keep several weeks in the refrigerator. Allow it to come to room temperature before using, as the olive oil will separate and become firm (this is normal), and then shake well prior to using.

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