I look forward to Strawberry Season every year and this salad is the main reason why. If you've been thinking that strawberries are just for desserts like Strawberries and Cream and Strawberry Cheesecake, this Strawberry and Rocket Salad is sure to make you reconsider. The familiar sweetness of the fresh strawberries takes on a new level of delicious complexity when mixed with peppery rocket/arugula, tangy red onions, creamy feta, and a thick syrupy balsamic dressing. Farro and sunflower seeds bring additional nutty flavour and ensure this salad will keep you full for a while.
🛒 What do I need to make this recipe?
- Farro - you could switch the farro for brown rice, pearled spelt or freekeh or remove it altogether if you are looking to reduce your carbs or serve the dish as a side salad.
- Red onion - has a more gentle flavour than white onion, but you can swap it for white onion or green/spring onion if you need to.
- Feta - can be swapped for goat's cheese. Its bold flavour will complement the fresh sweet flavour of the strawberries.
- Basil - adds an aromatic flavour to the salad. You can also add mint if you prefer.
- Sunflower seeds - pumpkin seeds or pine nuts will also add additional protein and crunch.
Tools & equipment:
- Small frying pan - for toasting the sunflower seeds
- Salad bowl - for tossing the salad together
- Small jug or bowl - for mixing the dressing ingredients
🧑🍳 How to make a Strawberry and Rocket Salad
1. Toast the sunflower seeds
Place a small frying pan on a medium to high heat and toast the sunflower seeds for a few minutes until they start to brown. Then remove them from the pan and set aside.
2. Make the dressing
Mix the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard and honey in a small jug or bowl.
3. Assemble the salad
Place the farro, rocket/arugula, strawberries, feta, onion and basil in a salad bowl, pour on the dressing and toss everything together. Serve in plates or bowls topped with the toasted sunflower seeds.
👍 Top tips for a perfect Strawberry and Rocket Salad
- Keep an eye on the sunflower seeds - they will go from brown to burnt quickly when you toast them so make sure you don't leave them unattended.
- Store the dressing and sunflower seeds separately if you are planning to have leftovers - the strawberry and rocket salad is great for meal-prepping. Just make sure you store the dressing and sunflower seeds separately from the other ingredients to avoid a soggy salad.
- Use high-quality balsamic vinegar in the dressing - purchase a high-quality balsamic vinegar if you can. Investing a little more in your balsamic will get you a much richer and sweeter balsamic. Higher-end balsamic vinegar also tends to have a thicker consistency so you might need to add a little water to get the dressing to a pourable consistency.
The salad will keep for up to 3 days in the fridge. Ensure you store the dressing and toasted sunflower seeds separately. This ensures it all stays fresh and avoids a soggy salad. This salad is not suitable for freezing.
Yes, you can. Freeze them on a baking sheet first so that they are not touching. Then transfer them to a freezer bag or container once they are frozen. Frozen strawberries are great for recipes where blended strawberries are required like smoothies, sauces, and ice cream. However, they do lose some of their texture and become moist. It's best to use fresh strawberries in recipes that require whole strawberries.
Strawberries are a great source of vitamin C and antioxidants. They also contain a number of other vitamins and minerals and are high in fibre.
Other easy salad recipes
- Spinach and Chickpea Salad
- Carrot, Cucumber & Mooli Salad
- Giant Couscous & Halloumi Salad
- Potato Salad with Spring Onions
Strawberry and Rocket Salad
- 3 tbsp sunflower seeds
- 600 g (4 cups) cooked farro or pearled spelt 200g uncooked
- 300 g (2 cups) strawberries washed and sliced into 0.5cm / ¼ inch pieces
- ½ red onion finely chopped
- 200 g (1.3 cups) feta crumbled
- 80 g (4 cups) rocket (arugula)
- A handful of torn basil leaves
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp mustard
- 1 tbsp water optional
- Place a frying pan on a medium to high heat and toast the sunflower seeds for a few minutes until they start to turn brown then remove them from the pan and set them aside.
- Mix the dressing ingredients in a small jug or bowl. The dressing should be of a thick but pourable consistency. You may need to add a little water if your balsamic is particularly viscose.
- Place the farro, strawberries, feta, red onion, basil and rocket/arugula in a salad bowl.
- Pour on the dressing and toss everything together.
- Serve on plates or in bowls topped with the toasted sunflower seeds