Strawberry Spinach Salad with Candied Pecans, Feta and Balsamic Vinaigrette


You know how I love my spinach salads, especially when there’s an abundance of fresh summer strawberries involved! And especially when it is National Salad Month! And better yet, in this salad there’s also a rich balsamic vinaigrette, salty, tangy feta and crunchy, sweet candied pecans involved as well. In other words this is one of the best summer salads! It just has the perfect blend of flavors and textures going on and is a perfect way to celebrate National Salad Month. I was loving every last bite and of course I was heading back for more.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Strawberry Spinach Salad

For these strawberries, I used Rubbermaid FreshWorks™ Produce Saver to extend their freshness. This product has brought me some new found sanity! I hate when I buy fresh produce and it goes bad before I have a chance to use it. And I’ve tried so many different things in attempts to extend the life of my fruit and greens but none of it has ever worked. And these really do! So far I’m out to day 7 from the day I purchased the strawberries (I’m writing this the day after pictures were taken and of course they are still looking great).

These Fresh Works Produce Savers use patented FreshVent™ technology that keeps produce fresher up to 80% longer than traditional produce packaging. Yes, really 80%! (*Based on strawberries in FreshWorks™ containers vs. store packaging. Results may vary depending upon produce and use.) I took some before and after shots of strawberries in the Produce Saver vs. not and I cannot believe the difference! Check them out below. I used a bunch of the strawberries here but I’m feeling confident the remaining strawberries will continue to stay fresh even longer! Simply remove the produce from the store packaging and place it, unwashed, in the Produce Saver and voilà – fresh fruit and leafy greens for days!


Want a set of your own? Here’s your chance to win! Simply comment below for your chance to be entered to win your own three-piece set! Rubbermaid will be giving away one set to one lucky reader :)!

Brownie Fruit Pizza

*Results may vary depending upon produce and use.

Strawberry Spinach SaladStrawberry Spinach SaladStrawberry Spinach Salad


Strawberry Spinach Salad with Candied Pecans Feta and Balsamic Vinaigrette

4.5 from 2 votes

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6



  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Candied pecans

  • 3/4 cup broken or roughly chopped pecans
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp butter


  • 10 oz baby spinach
  • 1 lb fresh strawberries , hulled and sliced
  • 5 oz . feta cheese , crumbled
  • 1/3 small red onion , thinly sliced


  1. For the vinaigrette:
  2. Add vinegar to a small saucepan, bring to a boil over medium heat and allow to boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Pour into a jar or bowl, add olive oil, dijon mustard, honey and whisk to blend while seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Thin with a little water if desired. Set aside.
  3. For the pecans:
  4. Add pecans, brown sugar and butter to a small non-stick skillet and cook over medium-heat, stirring constantly until sugar starts to melt and caramelize, about 2 - 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate in a single layer to cool.

  5. For the salad:
  6. In a salad bowl toss together spinach, strawberries, half of the feta, red onion and pecans. Drizzle about 1/3 of the dressing over salad then plate and drizzle remaining dressing over individual portions and top with remaining half of the feta. Serve immediately.
  7. Recipe source: Cooking Classy

This post is sponsored by Rubbermaid, however all thoughts and opinions are mine.



  • Annette: Thanks for this wonderful contest. I purchase strawberries weekly and this would be nice to keep them fresher a lot longer and stop having to throw so many away. Thank You and Rubbermaid. May 29, 2017 at 4:24am Reply

  • Terrilyn Hayward: This salad looks amazing! I love using homemade salad dressings instead of store bought so I’m really excited to try the balsamic vinaigrette. May 29, 2017 at 5:53am Reply

  • Darlene Shively: I must try these. am so tired of throwing food away that has gone bad after a few days. they would help saving on my food bil. May 29, 2017 at 6:08am Reply

  • Deborah Richards: This salad looks great, will get everything to make this salad this week. May 29, 2017 at 7:00am Reply

  • Deb: This salad looks so delicious and refreshing! And, it’s healthy! Yes! Just perfect for this time of the year! I’ve not seen the Rubbermaid Fresh Works containers and they would be just perfect in getting the most life out of fresh produce! Thanks for the recipe and offering the giveaway! :) May 29, 2017 at 7:01am Reply

  • HayleyDawnBlogs: Looks so bright and summery! May 29, 2017 at 7:13am Reply

  • Ashley Gregory: The salad looks awesome. I’ve been wanting to try the Rubbermaid containers. Glad to hear you liked them. May 29, 2017 at 7:17am Reply

  • Betty Sievert: Prolonging fruit and veggies is vital in a one person family like me. I hate to throw stuff out, so sometimes I just don’t buy fruit and veggies. I would like to try these products. May 29, 2017 at 7:31am Reply

  • Ilene: I just bought 1/2 flat of strawberries, so it’ll be a mad rush to eat them all before they go bad. These containers look like a great thing to win! (Or buy if I don’t win) May 29, 2017 at 8:12am Reply

  • Claudia: I’d love to try the Rubbermaid Freshworks. I am always frustrated at the infantesimal shelf life of strawberries! May 29, 2017 at 8:22am Reply

  • Patty Fowl: This salad just speaks “Summertime” to me. Looks delicious and love the recipe for Balsamic Vinaigrette also! Might try it with some blueberries also! Have a wonderful holiday Jacqueline! May 29, 2017 at 8:42am Reply

  • Vivian: I have used these Rubbermaid containers for the past three months and can really say I am amazed at their effectiveness. Mesclun salad mixes would only last two-three days in their store clamshell but with the Fresh Works it was fine for 8 days…right to the last leaf! I could absolutely use a second set. May 29, 2017 at 8:43am Reply

  • Daniela C: Those look awesome! May 29, 2017 at 8:51am Reply

  • Charlene Wurtz: Hi, Wow- thanks for the tip on the Rubbermaid Fresh Works – I know what you mean about strawberries not lasting- I am going to check these out. I cannot wait to try this salad – all my favorite ingredients rolled into one salad! Love your blog! May 29, 2017 at 9:29am Reply

  • Sara: I actually stared at the two strawberry photos for a minute totally shocked at the difference. Amazed how they can do that!

    So looking forward to making this salad for lunch today :) May 29, 2017 at 11:18am Reply

  • Audrey: Fresh Spinach and Strawberries—what could be better? I love salads and you have some great ones here on Cooking Classy. Thank you for sharing, Jaclyn. May 29, 2017 at 12:31pm Reply

  • Grace: This salad looks both incredibly delicious and gorgeous at the same time!! I’ll definitely be trying this one, Jacelyn. Pinned :) May 29, 2017 at 7:41pm Reply

  • Abby Spolin: Rubbermaid Fresh Works containers look very interesting. It would be great to keep berries from spoiling too quickly. May 29, 2017 at 9:55pm Reply

  • Nancy: I would love to try the Rubbermaid containers. I love strawberries but wish they lasted longer. Your sale looks delicious! May 29, 2017 at 10:51pm Reply

  • Anne: I’ve never heard of these containers, but sounds like just the thing to preserve produce. I will definitely be making that beautiful salad. Love feta in spinach salads with balsalmic vinegar and pine nuts, though your candied walnuts in this sound yummy too! May 30, 2017 at 12:01am Reply

  • Jo Derouin: Going to try recipe. Would also love the try containers May 30, 2017 at 3:01am Reply

  • Cindy A.: I have to try these containers! Soaking strawberries in a mix of vinegar and water help keep strawberries mold free. I imagine soaking and then storing the strawberries in the Fresh Works containers would be a perfect combination. Thank you so much for the chance to win. May 30, 2017 at 5:59am Reply

  • Angela Baker: That’s amazing! Would love to have a set of these! May 30, 2017 at 10:51am Reply

  • Eriana: I’d love to try these containers. Any help keeping produce fresh would be appreciated. May 30, 2017 at 11:53am Reply

  • S. Clark: I think the containers look like a great product! Nice contest. May 30, 2017 at 12:15pm Reply

  • Kristen Cochran: Can’t wait to try this salad… looks delicious! Thanks for the recipe and opportunity to win Rubbermaid Fresh Works! May 30, 2017 at 2:26pm Reply

  • Liz: This looks so yummy! Will have to try it this week!!! May 30, 2017 at 2:35pm Reply

  • Luba: WOW that’s amazing! Need to get those containers! And that salad looks delicious! May 30, 2017 at 3:22pm Reply

  • Alla Trontchinski: These containers sound like a fantastic solution to a very old problem and a wonderful idea for a gateway contest! We buy a lot when in season and I usually sort my strawberries every morning to make sure I remove the ones that are starting to go bad or are about to go bad, sometimes I end up throwing away quite a few! Very frustrating and wasteful! Thanks for the great recipe as well – this salad looks yummy and a must to try and we have all ingredients now :) May 30, 2017 at 7:58pm Reply

  • Susan Zelmer: Your salad looks mouth watering delicious. I just wanted to reach in through my computer screen with my fork and have a taste…mmmmm scrumptious!! These containers would absolutely be a plus to keep my food and salads fresher, crisp and last longer. BRAVO!! May 30, 2017 at 8:33pm Reply

  • Steven: HOPE i can win!!! May 30, 2017 at 9:16pm Reply

  • Christine: I can’t wait to try this salad! I’ve had the same struggle with trying to keep produce and would love to try these containers! Thank you! May 30, 2017 at 9:19pm Reply

  • Connie: What a money saver if these work!
    Would be great to win a set. May 31, 2017 at 6:08am Reply

  • Candace Weixel: Do you use walnuts or pecans in this beautiful salad? May 31, 2017 at 9:34am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Pecans :) June 1, 2017 at 12:54pm Reply

      • Lesa: The ingredients say pecans but the instructions say walnuts. Have you tried it with walnuts as well? July 28, 2017 at 5:57am Reply

  • sandra nestman: I’m a gadget kind of girl, and this looks like the perfect gadget needed to keep produce much fresher than my current method(s)! May 31, 2017 at 11:21am Reply

  • Jennai: I am going to have to pin this recipe! YUM. And I need those bowls — my strawberries always look just like the picture you showed after only one day out! June 3, 2017 at 4:38pm Reply

  • Kathy P.: This salad looks amazing. I always buy strawberries and only hope I get them used before they deteriorate. What a great device. June 6, 2017 at 7:43am Reply

  • Bianca T: omg i LOVE the sound of this salad!! the only thing that would make it even more amazing is some goat cheese :) June 14, 2017 at 3:55pm Reply

  • Deborah: Just what I need! Looking forward to trying them! July 4, 2017 at 9:10am Reply

  • Susan: How many servings does this make? July 9, 2017 at 8:30am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Sorry it was missing from a recent recipe plugin update, I’ve added it above. It’s about 6 servings. I hope you get a chance to try it! July 9, 2017 at 11:40am Reply

  • Myrna Gorton: My mouth is drooling for the spinach strawberry salad I would love to know that I could keep my strawberries more than a day July 13, 2017 at 7:54pm Reply

  • Margaret Norbury: These salads sounds & look so delicious I am anxious to try them. Having some storage containers I know i will be.more willing to buy strawberries. I buy just.a few because my whole family loves them and often I endup tossing some. July 22, 2017 at 8:24pm Reply

  • Jeni: How would spicey grilled shrimp work with this salad? September 17, 2017 at 8:18am Reply

  • Liz Collins: Served this at our anniversary party, fabulous! October 15, 2017 at 4:17pm Reply

  • rochelle haynes: Loving the salad lookinggood October 24, 2017 at 5:19am Reply

  • Teri Newhouser: Thank you so much for this recipe. It looks delicious like all of your other recipes!! I was not aware that Rubbermaid made this Freshworks container! Strawberries always go bad so quickly. Great idea! I hope I win!! November 25, 2017 at 9:00am Reply

  • Ralph: Is it walnuts or pecans? Recipe says pecans but directions say walnuts? February 27, 2018 at 1:39pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for the catch. It’s pecans – have corrected that now. March 15, 2018 at 10:33pm Reply

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