In recent years I’ve noticed that nuts have really come to play a starring role in salads. In many cases they’ve replaced croutons altogether as the go-to crunchy topping. I personally am ecstatic about this because nuts are full of vitamins and have more flavor than toasted chunks of bread. Sometimes nuts are candied for a little sweet touch, and sometimes they are roasted and salted for a savory touch. There are also many cases where they are just lightly toasted and scattered into the salad because they taste so good as they are. No matter how you prefer to enjoy them, here are some delicious salads that are perfect for spring and feature lots of healthy nuts.
Fresh Blueberry Chicken Salad with Almonds 1 of 15
This fresh chicken salad with almonds is a fun new twist on the everyday chicken salad we all know and love. Whip it up for an easy meal on a spring night or serve it for a lunch with friends.
Photo: Angie McGowan
Apple Cheese and Pecan Salad with Apple Vinaigrette 2 of 15
For an easy lunch, slice up apples, tomatoes, and cheese and toss them with lettuce and pecans. The sweet pecans are the best pairing for the salty cheese. The apples and apple vinaigrette provide a natural sweetness without being over the top.
Photo: Aggie Goodman
Pear Salad with Walnuts & Feta 3 of 15
This leafy green salad is ideal for the start of spring. Pears are in season and available all over; here they get the best kind flavor contrast with the meaty walnuts. Toss it together to make an easy and satisfying meal.
Photo: Angie McGowan
Strawberry Salad with Candied Almonds and Strawberry Vinaigrette 4 of 15
This bright seasonal salad gets a sweet makeover from both the strawberry dressing and loads of sliced berries. Fancy up the crunch by sweetening the almonds. It is the best kind of healthy, easy dinner salad for the family!
Photo: Jaime Richardson
Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Pine Nuts 5 of 15
This easy roasted root vegetable salad will make for a perfect light spring dinner or side dish. It is also a great way to eat cauliflower if you are looking for a new way to prepare it!
Photo: Brooklyn Supper
Curried Carrot Salad with Almonds 6 of 15
This simple salad is tossed with a light curry dressing and topped with crunchy almonds. It makes a great side dish or light lunch!
Photo: Everyday Maven
Spinach, Raspberry & Roasted Garlic Salad with Cashews 7 of 15
This bright green salad is packed with flavor from the roasted garlic and sweet raspberries. The cashews lend unexpected flavor and crunch and are the perfect way to round out the sweet, salty, tart flavor trifecta.
Watercress Salad with Pears, Radishes and Marcona Almonds 8 of 15
This unique watercress salad starts with dressing on the bottom. Then the watercress, pears, and radishes on layered on top, with Marcona almonds providing the perfect salad crunch.
Sunshine Salad with Pecans 9 of 15
This sunshine salad gets its name from the variety of sweet and sunny flavors in each forkful. It is especially good in the summer when tomatoes and blueberries are in season. The sweet pecans provide the perfect contrast to the soft tangy goat cheese.
Photo: Poet in the Pantry
Kale Salad with Pickled Beets, Mandarins & Spicy Pecans 10 of 15
This incredible salad is filled with fresh flavor and textures. The pecans get an extra kick from the addition of spices, the best way to compliment the pickled beets.
Photo: Cooking on the Weekends
Summer Salad with Blackberry Vinaigrette & Pecan Crusted Goat Cheese 11 of 15
Nuts can be used in so many interesting ways in salads. Roll goat cheese in chopped pecans to make these tasty balls that are perfect on top of a fruity salad with greens.
Photo: Cooking on the Front Burner
Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad 12 of 15
This creamy chicken salad is perfect for an al fresco spring lunch. Serve it over lettuce or on a roll for a filling meal. You'll love how the familiar chicken flavor is given a boost by the crunchy walnuts.
Photo: An Edible Mosaic
Bulgur Salad with Walnuts and Pomegranate 13 of 15
This bulgur wheat salad makes a terrific side dish for lunch or dinner. It features all kinds of earthy flavors from the bulgur wheat to the crunchy walnuts. The sweet pomegranate seeds provide a welcome sweet contrast.
Photo: An Edible Mosaic
Thai Chopped Chicken Salad 14 of 15
Thai food is known for using lots of chopped peanuts and this salad does just that. It is filled with healthy greens and vegetables and topped with lots of salty crunchy nuts to make a truly satisfying meal.
Photo: Taste and Tell
Red Quinoa and Beet Salad with Pistachios 15 of 15
This salad is packed with protein and lots of healthy vitamins and minerals. For a crunchy twist pistachios are stirred in. This unexpected nut lends a sweet meaty flavor to the tangy and sharp dish.
Photo: Amy Kritzer