Celebrate Spring with this simply delicious Spring Mix Salad featuring fresh Spring greens and a healthy, yet flavourful Green Goddess dressing.
This quick and easy spring mix salad makes the perfect side dish to any barbecue or fish. Try it alongside or topped with shredded leftover Brined Applewood Smoked Chicken Thighs or with Cast Iron Salmon for a light, yet satisfying dinner.
Spring Mix Salad
When I’m craving salad, I want one that checks all the boxes. Is it fresh? Is it flavourful? Does it have interesting additions? Lastly, but certainly not the least, does it have an appetizing dressing? This Spring Mix Salad contains all of these, and more. It’s very easy to whip up and takes very little effort (which is perfection in my books).
This Spring Mix Salad recipe begins with a colourful mix of fresh baby greens. Not only are they tasty, they add important texture and visual components to the salad. Then there’s the crunch and nutty sweetness of roasted cashews, the luxurious avocado, along with bright acidity from the mandarin oranges.
Pour the perfectly tangy, herbal Green Goddess dressing over all of that goodness and this salad is a winner. Oh, and you are too.
The ingredients of this easy salad are entirely open to personal interpretation. It’s your salad. However, this flavour combination of sweet cashews with bright acidity of the mandarins, creamy avocados and green goddess dressing is one to love time and time again.
- Mixed Salad Greens
- Mandarin Oranges
- Greek Yogurt
- Olive oil
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Lemon Juice
- Green Onions
- Salt and Pepper
Through the wonders of modern technology and transport you can find mandarin oranges year round, either fresh or canned mandarins will work in this recipe. Feel free to substitute navel oranges if you prefer.
Raw or freshly roasted unsalted cashews are preferred for this recipe, especially if you roast them yourself. Feel free to substitute other nuts, such as almonds, walnuts or pecans in place of the cashews. Seeds are also delicious in salads. Try adding pumpkin, poppy, or sunflower seeds.
Since the aim is for a delicious fresh salad and Green Goddess dressing, do not substitute dried herbs for the basil and parsley.
Mixed Salad Greens
Grabbing a pre-mix greens pack from the grocery store is one of the easiest beginnings to a great salad. I always pay close attention to the ‘best by’ date and to the appearance of the greens inside. If you see one slimy brown leaf, there’s sure to be more in the package.
Greens should be brightly coloured and crisp leaves, never wilted. Store them in your fridge crisper and use within a few days of purchasing. Never store greens at the back of the fridge as they are highly susceptible to freezing.
Lastly, if you grow your own lettuce, try planting a mixed greens seed pack for more variety. Cut the lettuce early in the morning as it tends to wilt in the heat of the day. Perk it up in a sinkful of cold ice water then give it a few spins in a salad spinner before eating.
There are a huge variety of mixed greens available but some of my personal favourites are Boston, Bibb or Butter lettuce mixed with a red leaf of green loose leaf lettuce and either baby arugula, mizuna, or frisée. It’s nice to have a variety of flavours, textures, and colours in a Spring Mix Salad.
Green Goddess Salad Dressing
You may have heard of this herby creamy salad dressing before. Green Goddess has been around for almost a hundred years in various forms. The original recipes often include mayonnaise, sour cream and anchovies amongst a selection of fresh herbs, green onions, and lemon juice.
Most modern recipes tend to be more healthful yogurt-based concoctions, usually vegetarian. The green onions and fresh herbs mix into the yogurt canvas, creating an appealing green dressing with flecks of fresh green herbs.
While this absolutely delicious dressing recipe contains fresh basil and parsley only, there are many other soft green herbs that work just as well. You can sub in tarragon, watercress, chervil, mint, dill, chives, or cilantro for the basil and parsley.
How to Make Green Goddess Salad Dressing
I highly suggest that you use a food processor or blender to make Green Goddess Dressing. If you do, your homemade salad dressing will be ready in less than a minute. Simply add the ingredients to the bowl of a food processor and blitz it up until it reaches the desired consistency. Add water by the teaspoon-full to thin it out or leave it thick and use it as a dip.
You can make this dressing by hand. To do so, place everything except the fresh herbs and green onions in a mason jar. Chop the green onions and herbs as finely as you can, then add them to the mason jar. Shake the dressing well and thin as desired.
How to Make Spring Mix Salad
Guys, this is the best part! This salad is so easy to make. Arrange the mixed greens and salad toppings in a large salad bowl. Pour as much of the dressing over the salad and mix gently. Serve immediately.
It’s best to dress the salad just before you intend to eat it and dress more if you want another portion. This salad will not keep well as leftovers.
Other Great Toppings for Spring Mix Salad
While I love the original combination of flavours on this simple salad, here are some great alternative ingredients for when you want to switch it up a bit.
Vegetables – Substitute or add in slivers of red bell pepper, tomatoes, cucumber, edamame, chopped red onion, blanched green beans or broccoli, snap peas, radishes, matchstick carrots, or mushrooms.
Fruit – I am a huge fan of fruit in salads (and fruit salads!). Instead of the mandarin oranges, you can use grapefruit or navel orange segments, strawberries, berries, grapes, or sliced stone fruit.
Proteins – Make it a whole meal by adding a protein. I love adding hard boiled eggs, bacon, leftover salmon, grilled shrimp or chicken to this salad. For vegetarian protein options you can add baked tofu or cooked lentils. Or just switch out the cashews with other nuts.
Cheese – While the original recipe doesn’t contain any cheese at all, any salad is delicious when you add cheese. I think Feta cheese would be tasty as would grilled halloumi.
Dressing – This salad would also be delicious with a balsamic vinaigrette.
Storing Leftover Salad
Mixed green salads are generally not great the next day. The greens will lose their crispness and become wilty. If you aren’t serving a large group of salad eaters, dress half of the salad only then dress more as needed in order to prevent waste.
However, if you refrigerate the salad (minus the nuts) and dressing separately, they will be good for a few days. The dressing will separate if left overnight in the fridge. Just give it a good shake and it will be good to use again.
If you make this Spring Mix Salad recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Pinterest for my latest recipes. Also, if you do make this recipe please tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see what you guys are making! Thank you so much for reading my blog.
FOR THE SALAD
- 4 cups Spring Salad Mix (a mixture of greens)
- 3-4 Mandarin oranges; peeled and separated
- 1/2 cup cashews; chopped
- 1 avocado; thinly sliced
FOR THE GREEN GODDESS DRESSING
- 1 cup plain Greek Yogurt
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 cup fresh basil; roughly chopped
- 1 cup fresh parsley; freshly chopped
- 1/4 cup green onion; chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Combine the mixed salad greens and toppings in a large bowl.
- Add the dressing ingredients to the bowl of a high speed food processor and process until smooth. Thin dressing 1/2 Tablespoon of water at a time, as needed.
- Pour the dressing over salad ingredients and toss gently.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 212mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 4gSugar: 12gProtein: 6g
Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.