Spinach Salad recipes with bacon come in so many varieties, but this is my absolute favorite. I’ve been eating it since I was a kid and I never get tired of it. Imagine a delicious spicy-sweet honey and black pepper dressing coating a hearty salad of spinach, bacon, avocado, hard-boiled egg, mushroom, shallot and tomato. Sounds amazing, right!? Promise me you’ll try it.
My mom clipped this spinach salad recipe from an electric bill in 1971. I’m not kidding. It was the year before I was born and she and my dad were living in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. Growing up, this was the go-to spinach salad in our house. One of those little gems that you can wow dinner guests with or use to stoke your ego at a potluck when someone says, “Have you tried this salad? It’s amazing!”
I have a photocopy of the heirloom recipe. But I’ve made a few changes and suggest you do the same: skip the croutons, swap in olive oil for mayonnaise and, for heaven’s sake, use real bacon or pork belly.
This main-dish salad stands on its own beautifully, but makes a fantastic side dish too! I love to serve it with Roasted Lamb Chops in the fall and winter months and Carne Asada and Grilled Shrimp during the summer. The recipe serves 6 people as a main course and 10 as a side.
Spinach Salad with Honey Black Pepper Dressing
Spinach Salad recipes come in so many varieties, but this is my absolute favorite. I've been eating it since I was a kid and I never get tired of it. Imagine a delicious spicy-sweet honey and black pepper dressing coating a hearty salad of spinach, bacon, avocado, hard-boiled egg, mushroom, shallot and tomato. Sounds amazing, right!? Promise me you'll try it.
For the dressing:
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the salad
- 12 ounces baby spinach
- 2 tomatoes cut into wedges
- 2 avocados cubed
- 8 ounces mushrooms thinly sliced
- 1 medium shallot thinly sliced
- 4 strips bacon cooked until crisp and coarsely chopped
- 3 hard boiled eggs cut into wedges
To make the dressing, add garlic, honey, vinegar, pepper and salt to a blender pitcher. Blend for a few seconds until combined and then slowly drizzle in olive oil. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Add spinach to a large serving bowl (large enough to toss salad with dressing. Drizzle dressing over spinach and toss to coat. Don't overdress, you'll be surprised how a little dressing will coat all of the spinach. Add next 4 ingredients, tomatoes through shallot, and a bit more dressing; gently toss to coat. (You'll likely have dressing left over.) Arrange hard boiled egg wedges and sprinkle bacon evenly over salad. Serve immediately.