Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges | www.floatingkitchen.net

Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges

This post was originally published here October 8, 2014. I’ve adjusted the recipe slightly. And I’ve updated the text and photographs to reflect those changes.

I know you’ve all been anxiously awaiting my first Big F*cking Salad recipe post of the year. And here she is!

Phew. We can all breathe a sigh of relief now.

If one of your goals is to incorporate a greater variety of fruits and vegetables into your life, then I humbly suggest you start making a BFS on the regular. Daily if you can. It’s been a life changing maneuver for me. Which I have to admit surprised me. Because I was already a person who was eating a lot of salads (or so I thought). But now, I find that I’m enjoying them even more!

I also really like saying BFS.

Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges | www.floatingkitchen.net

This Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges is easy to assemble for quick lunches and dinners. The only step that takes some planning is making sure you have the cooked and cooled quinoa ready to go. But I think once you start getting more into the routine of a daily BFS, you’ll find yourself preparing a large batch of quinoa (or whatever other grain(s) you like) at the start of your week to keep on hand in your refrigerator. This is what I do. And it definitely makes things very streamlined and simple. The less barriers between me and my BFS, the better!

Baby spinach makes up the bulk of this salad. It’s a green I find that I enjoy eating in the cooler months, because it has a bit more of a “chew” factor than some of the more tender mixed baby greens do. And that additional heartiness helps to keep me satisfied. This salad also has sliced pear, mandarin orange segments, chopped walnuts and crumbled blue or gorgonzola cheese.

Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges | www.floatingkitchen.net

But one of my favorite parts about this Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges is the homemade dressing. It has a couple tablespoons of orange marmalade mixed into it, so it’s sweet and delicious. And it helps to give each bite of this salad some citrusy goodness! If you’re really going to be serious about your BFS journey, then I highly recommend getting into a groove of making your own salad dressings. They don’t have to be complicated. Just a few pantry staple ingredients is all you usually need. And it’s typically a breeze to double or triple them. I store mine in mason jars in my refrigerator, so I can just shake them up and pour them on whenever a BFS craving strikes!



Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges

Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges

At a Glance:
Yield: Serves 2-4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes


For the Dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper

For the Salad:

  • 4 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa, cooled
  • 1 pear, cored and sliced
  • 2 mandarin oranges, peeled and segmented
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese or gorgonzola cheese


  1. Add all the ingredients for the dressing to a small bowl and stir until well combined. Set aside.
  2. Add the spinach and quinoa to a large bowl. Drizzle with a couple tablespoons of the dressing and toss until well coated. Then add the sliced pear, orange segments, walnuts and crumbled cheese. Toss gently to combine, drizzling in additional dressing if desired. Serve immediately.

19 comments on “Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Pears and Oranges”

  1. Love this dressing! Have a great time in your adventure today!

  2. Oooh, Montana! What a beautiful place to be right now 🙂 And this salad is absolutely gorgeous–loving that apricot dressing!

  3. Interesting salad! Yum!

  4. This is a beautiful salad, Liz! Loving pears right now. Enjoying following along on your trip, too 🙂

  5. Yum! I’ve been playing around with quinoa lately and love this take on a salad! Your trips sounds lovely….enjoy 🙂

  6. This salad looks amazing! I never know what flavor dressing would go with a certain salad so I always defer to something from a bottle, but this dressing sounds really delicious 🙂

    • Thanks, Trang. You should definitely start making your own salad dressings. It’s so easy to do and it’s fun to play around with the flavors. I hope you try it out!

  7. This salad has so many of my favourite things. Pears! Walnuts! Blue cheese! Quinoa! What an amazing combination! Thanks for the inspiration, and for the gorgeous recipe.

  8. Love fruit, nuts and cheese in salads – and adding apricot preserves to the dressing is a great idea. Looking forward to trying this.

  9. Pingback: 25 Perfect Pear Recipes for Fall - Glue Sticks and Gumdrops

  10. I’m lovin’ your BFS Liz! This one has all the things I love, including quinoa. Like you said, it’s easy to prep and have on hand to toss into salads. I’m SO with you on the chew of spinach (my favorite in winter too!). Those juicy orange wedges flip my switch!

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