Avocado, Egg & Arugula Salad With Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette
This Avocado, Egg, and Arugula Salad with Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette is an unbelievably satisfying and tasty salad. It’s creamy, bright, tangy, and filling. Think the richness of avocados, hard boiled eggs, parmesan cheese, olive oil, and pine nuts against the brightness of arugula, lemon, and cucumber. Add a little balsamic vinegar for depth and hint of sweetness to round it out. What makes this salad even better? It is so easy to make from ingredients that you might have on hand at home. But the best part? It is a powerhouse nutritionally. It’s low carb and high in fat making it a perfect keto lunch or dinner. As one of my go-to (and most requested) quick weeknight dinners (usually with grilled salmon or shrimp on the side) I can’t recommend it enough!
This salad actually takes its inspiration from one that I used to have growing up. My parents are both good cooks and used to entertain a lot. When I was little my mom used to make dinner for us every night. It almost always included salad and at least a few other vegetables on the side. We would sit at the table and eat together after my dad got home from work. This must have been the start of my love of (obsession with) salad. I just don’t feel right if I don’t have salad with dinner, or at least a lot of vegetables.
Or it may have begun earlier… when I was 11 months old we moved from Wales to San Francisco in the middle of winter. My parents often tell the story about the dramatic contrast of the grey Welsh winter we left and the experience of walking into a market in California when we first arrived, with mountains of fruits and vegetables piled high in all the colors of the rainbow. Many of them they had never seen before.
In any event, salad… and more importantly, this Avocado, Egg, and Arugula Salad with Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette. I remember having a salad similar to this growing up. I have probably changed it a lot over the years, but the main elements have stayed the same.
For the body of the salad I usually use arugula, though in this version pictured I had some mustard greens growing (and blooming) in the garden so I mixed them in as well and they were equally delicious. Any other lettuces would be great, too. And while I love kale and spinach, they will give this a different feel and more structure, and I love how fresh and sharp the arugula is to balance the creamy decadence of the rest of the ingredients. I add some cucumber and scallions (my scallions were blooming too) keeping the vegetable elements pretty simple, fresh, and green.
*Update: As we are in the winter months right now, I recently made this with a mix of kale and spinach and I have to say it was equally delicious. I agree with my earlier self that it has more structure and is heartier, but I think that is welcome in the winter…
Next come the best parts, the avocado and hard boiled eggs. These take center stage and are the reason why this is such a nutritious meal filled with good fats and complete proteins. Add toasted pine nuts and parmesan cheese for layers of nutty, rich decadence. Then tie it all together with a tangy lemon balsamic dressing. This is were the magic starts.
This is a quick and easy salad to prepare. The most time consuming part will be hard boiling the eggs, which you should do first.
Start by placing the eggs in a saucepan and covering them with at least an inch of cold water. Heat the pot on high heat and bring the water to a full boil. Once boiling, cover the pan with a lid and turn off the heat. Let the pan sit, covered, for 12-15 minutes. With this salad you want the eggs to be more hard boiled with a drier yolk versus jammy eggs. After the 12-15 minutes, place the eggs in a bowl of cold water with a few ice cubes, to cool. Set aside.
While the eggs are in the pan boiling, toast the pine nuts in a small skillet on medium heat, moving them frequently. Keep your eye on them as they can burn very easily. (I frequently get distracted when toasting pine nuts. Needless to say the chipmunks in the backyard love me for it.) The pine nuts should be just lightly browned and starting to smell delicious. Remove from pan and set aside.
Next, wash and prep your veggies. Add the arugula, diced cucumber, and scallions to a large salad bowl. Slice the avocado. I like to keep it in larger chunks so that some bites are mostly avocado. The same goes with the hard boiled eggs, which you can peel, chop and add to the salad now as well. I usually slice these so that there are good sized chunks of egg.
Now it’s time to make the Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette. It’s very quick and simple. Mix the extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, and minced garlic clove until well mixed. It should be a little thin and quite lemony tart with a hint of sweetness from the balsamic.
Here is where the magic happens. Even though this looks so pretty all laid out in a bowl, the magic happens when you toss this salad, I promise. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad ingredients in the bowl and toss to coat everything well with the dressing. Next, add the parmesan cheese, the pine nuts, salt, and pepper and keep tossing well to combine. Don’t be gentle, breaking up avocado and egg is fine.
As you toss the salad, the lemon and balsamic combine with the egg yolks, avocado, and parmesan to create a creamy, tangy, delicious coating which is so good that I lick the salad servers after I have dished this out into bowls.
This Avocado, Egg, and Arugula salad with my Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette is an unbelievably satisfying and tasty salad. When you toss it all together it truly transforms into a rich, tangy, and filling meal. Every bite is delicious.
And it’s as nutritious as it is delicious! A well rounded mix of healthy fats and complete proteins, this salad is brimming with vitamins and minerals – Vitamin K, Folic Acid, the B Vitamins, and Magnesium to name a few. It makes an excellent easy and delicious meal which is low in carbs and high in fat and flavor – perfect for anyone – especially those on a Keto or low carb diet.
If you make this Avocado, Egg, And Arugula Salad be sure to leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you. And if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see!
How To Make: Avocado, Egg & Arugula Salad With Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette
|2 Hard Boiled Eggs
|3 Cups Arugula, Mustard Greens, Mesclun, Or Lettuces
|1/2 Cup Cucumber, Sliced
|2 Scallions, Diced
|1/8 Cup Pine Nuts, Toasted
|1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
|3 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
|2 Tbsp. Fresh Lemon Juice
|2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
|1/2 Tsp. Dijon Mustard
|1 Clove Garlic, Minced