Spinach Salad with Warm Maple Dressing

Some of the first crops in season during springtime are maple syrup and fresh, crunchy greens. It was a very good maple syrup making season, so there will be plenty at the market. Try the versatility of a salad with spring greens and use maple syrup in the dressing.  You can make this salad a main dish by adding chicken or another source of protein.

Makes: 4 servings, about 2 cups each
Active Time: Total Time:


  • 2 tablespoons chopped pecans
  • 1 10-ounce package fresh spinach, torn, or 12 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup shredded smoked cheese, such as Gouda or Cheddar


  1. Toast pecans in a small dry skillet over low heat, stirring often, until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool.
  2. Toss spinach and cucumber in a salad bowl.
  3. Heat oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Add shallot and cook, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add vinegar and maple syrup and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Immediately pour the dressing over the spinach and cucumber. Toss well and sprinkle with cheese and toasted pecans.


Per serving: 163 calories; 12 g fat (2 g sat, 7 g mono); 7 mg cholesterol; 12 g carbohydrates; 4 g protein; 2 g fiber; 183 mg sodium; 531 mg potassium.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (130% daily value); Folate (37% dv), Vitamin C (35% dv).
Carbohydrate Servings: 1
Exchanges: 1/2 other carbohydrate, 1 vegetable, 1 1/2 fat


Diabetes appropriate | Low calorie | Low carbohydrate | Low cholesterol | Low sodium |Healthy weight | High potassium | Gluten free

From EatingWell:  January/February 1999, The Essential EatingWell Cookbook (2004)