Spinach Salad with Chicken and Berries
with almonds / avocados
If you're up for grilling, the combination of a lemony marinade and a smoky grill will give this summery salad maximum flavor (but cooking the chicken on the stove will work great as well!). The warm chicken with sweet berries, crisp almonds and creamy avocado gives these dinner salads great color and texture.
Grilled Lemon Chicken:
- Garlic - 2 cloves , chopped
- Oil, olive - 1/4 cup
- Lemon juice - 2 Tbsp
- Oregano, dried - 1 tsp
- Vinegar, red or white wine - 1 Tbsp
- Chicken breasts, boneless and skinless - 1 lb
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
Spinach Salad with Chicken and Berries:
- Grilled lemon chicken (ingredients listed separately) - ~1 lb , sliced
- Berries (use any combination of blueberries, raspberries or strawberries) - 2 cups
- Baby spinach - 10 oz
- Avocados - 1 , chopped
- Almonds, sliced or slivered - 1/4 cup
Honey Lemon Vinaigrette:
- Lemon juice - 2 tsp
- Lemon zest - 1/2 tsp
- Mustard, Dijon - 1 tsp
- Honey - 1 tsp
- Oil, olive - 3 Tbsp
- Marinate chicken - Chop garlic. Combine garlic with olive oil (portion for the chicken), lemon juice (portion for the chicken), oregano and vinegar. Pour over chicken and marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to two days ahead. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)
- Berries - If using berries that need to be sliced (like strawberries), slice.
- Avocados - Chop avocados.
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- If using a grill: Preheat grill to 400F (163C) degrees, keeping one section on higher heat and another section on lower heat. Clean and oil grates. Remove chicken from marinade and place over high heat. Season with some salt and pepper as it cooks. Sear chicken for 2 to 3 minutes on each side and transfer to lower heat. Cook until internal temperature reaches 165F (74C) degrees, an additional 2 to 3 minutes.
- If using the stovetop: Place a grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush pan with oil and sear chicken on both sides for 2 to 3 minutes. Season chicken with some salt and pepper as it cooks. Lower heat to medium, cover with foil, and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 165F (74C) degrees.
- While chicken cooks, whisk together lemon juice (portion for the vinaigrette), zest, mustard and honey. Add the portion of the olive oil for the vinaigrette while whisking.
- Slice chicken.
- Assemble salads by tossing spinach with berries, avocados and almonds. Top with sliced chicken and vinaigrette. Enjoy!