Lentil and Spinach Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

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Nutritionally, this salad is a powerhouse. Luckily, it tastes great too.

  • Author: Veg Girl RD
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Salad


  • 8 ounces Le Puy green lentils (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (I use 1 cube Rapunzel Vegetable Bouillon with Sea Salt, prepared according to package directions, dissolved in 2 cups water)
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1 1/2 lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 ounces candied or caramelized walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 4 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Rinse lentils and drain. Add to medium saucepan with broth. Cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 25 minutes or until tender but still whole. Set aside to partially cool. (I spread mine out on a large plate to speed this up a bit.)
  2. In small jar, mix together lemon juice and olive oil for the dressing.
  3. Divide spinach and basil equally among four plates. Top each with 3/4 cup cooked lentils. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the lemon vinaigrette.
  4. To each salad add 1 tablespoon raisins, 1/2 ounce candied walnuts, and 1 ounce cheddar cubes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.


You can certainly make your own candied walnuts if you have a favorite technique. I found them ready-made at Trader Joe’s (walnuts, sugar, canola oil, salt) and Whole Foods (walnuts, sugar, sunflower oil).

Not yet convinced to try lentils in a salad? Take a peek at these additional nutrition facts: 70%DV vitamin A, 30% DV vitamin C, 25%DV calcium, 30%DV iron.