Easy | Servings: 4 | Ready In: 10 minutes | Yield: 6 cups salad + 1 ½ cups dressing
Sweet dried figs, peppery arugula, and toasted walnuts create a delicious mixture of flavors and textures in this easy salad recipe. The oil-free balsamic dressing is a must-have for your healthy, plant-based repertoire. Serve with Asparagus Tarragon Pea Soup, Italian Winter Vegetable Barley Soup, or Farro Italian Vegetable Soup for a hearty dinner.
Oil-Free Fig Walnut Balsamic Dressing
- ¼ cup (1 ounce) chopped walnuts
- 4 dried Calimyrna figs
- 1 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
- ½ cup water, as needed
- Salt and pepper, to taste
For the Arugula Walnut Salad
- ½ cup (2 ounces) chopped walnuts
- 1 bunch rainbow carrots
- 1 (5-ounce) container Baby Arugula
How it’s Done
Preheat your oven to 350F.
To make the Fig Walnut Balsamic Dressing: Place all of the walnuts (the total ¾ cup that you’ll need for both the dressing and the salad) in a baking dish. Toast in the oven until golden brown, 7-8 minutes. Reserve ¼ cup of the walnuts for the salad. Transfer the remaining ½ cup walnuts to a high-speed blender. Add the figs, balsamic vinegar, water, salt, and pepper. Puree. Add more water, as needed, to get a smooth, pourable consistency. Taste to adjust seasoning. Set aside.
While the walnuts toast, you can prepare you salad ingredients. Peel the carrots and cut in ¼-inch thick half-moon slices. Wash the arugula, if needed.
To make the Arugula Walnut Salad with Fig Walnut Balsamic Dressing: In a large bowl, combine the arugula, sliced carrots, ¼ cup toasted walnuts, and the Fig Walnut Balsamic Dressing. Toss well, evenly coating all of the arugula with the dressing. Taste to adjust seasoning. Serve and enjoy!
Chef Katie’s Tips:
Get Your Greens: You can use any salad greens for this recipe. If you’re not a fan of the peppery flavor of arugula, baby spinach is a bit sweeter. Baby kale, mesclun mix, or other baby greens would also work.
Make it Raw: For a raw version of this, skip the step of toasting the walnuts.
Extra Dressing: Make a big batch of the dressing and freeze extras. Besides salads, it also works great over other vegetables like fresh-sliced tomatoes, roasted mushrooms, or grilled onions.
Oil-Free: I’m on a mission to get rid of empty calories, and oil is one of the biggest culprits. This oil-free dressing uses the healthy fat of whole walnuts for a rich, creamy flavor. The walnuts have other key nutrients (like calcium and iron) while oil is just fat.
Watch to Learn More:
|Amount Per Serving|
|% Daily Value *|
|Total Fat 10 g||16 %|
|Saturated Fat 1 g||5 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 1 g|
|Polyunsaturated Fat 7 g|
|Trans Fat 0 g|
|Cholesterol 0 mg||0 %|
|Sodium 141 mg||6 %|
|Potassium 527 mg||15 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 21 g||7 %|
|Dietary Fiber 5 g||18 %|
|Sugars 13 g|
|Protein 4 g||9 %|
|Vitamin A||269 %|
|Vitamin C||15 %|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|