There's something about summertime that makes you wanna eat salads, isn't there? It's hot, no one really feels like cooking, and the grocery stores are bursting with delicious, in season produce! I am not going to lie here, but, I've eaten more spinach salad in the past few weeks than I care to admit to.
I'm not saying I'm Popeye, but I'm not saying my arms aren't starting to grow muscles they didn't earn either. haha
I, for one, welcome summer with open arms. After a winter that dragged on for ever, and a spring that rivalled Vancouver for precipitation, it was time a stretch of crazy hot weather showed up. My kids are so tanned, already, on the 3rd day of summer holidays, that they look dirty. HA
Have you ever done that? Given your kid grief for not washing their hands and face well enough before dinner only to realize that it's actually a sun tan and not dirt? I'm so glad it's not just me.
So here's the deal on this salad, my kids aren't huge spinach eaters, but they actually love this salad. Probably because it's brimming with yummy fruit and crunchy pecans. Who cares, they are eating raw spinach and that makes me happy!
Here's Why It's healthy:
Spinach has always been known as the vegetable that will make you strong. It’s true! Spinach is incredibly rich in iron, 1 cup of raw spinach carries a dose of nearly 2mg of iron, has some protein and a good amount of fibre. Spinach is also rich in vitamins A and C, and has a decent amount of vitamin E and folic acid. This wonder veggie also provides us with potassium, magnesium and calcium.
Strawberries have the highest amount vitamin C, iron, and potassium compared to other berries. They are also rich in manganese which is essential for bone health and metabolism. Strawberries get their colour from a flavonoid group called anthocyanins, these flavonoids often exhibit anti-oxidant and tissue supportive and protective properties.
Pecans are low in protein, but high in good fats, and while they contain modest amounts of vitamins A, C, E and some B vitamins, they are high in most minerals, including iron, zinc, selenium and magnesium. They also contain fair amounts of copper and calcium.
- 4 cups baby spinach
- 1 cup strawberries, sliced
- 1 peach, sliced
- 1/2 cup pecan halves
- 1/8 cup red onion, minced
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- Make dressing first, by combining all ingredients in a airtight container - I used a mason jar, and shaking well until well combined.
- Build salad - use 2 cups of spinach as a base and top with toppings. Drizzle dressing on top!