Bright Spring Salad

I'll be making this spring salad recipe all season long! Simple, bright, and delicious, it's the perfect way to showcase the season's best produce.

Spring salad

When the weather warms up in the spring, there’s nothing I crave more than this spring salad. Light, bright, and packed with spring’s best produce, it’s a perfect example of why eating seasonally is so exciting. This spring salad recipe is almost entirely veggies, but because each one is at its snappiest, sweetest, or softest right now, you don’t have to do much to turn them into a tasty dish. Toss them with a zesty dressing, sprinkle on a little cheese, and add a handful of nuts for crunch. With just a few minutes of effort, you’ll have made a spring salad that’s bursting with texture and flavor. It’s so simple and delicious, and I think you’re going to love it.

Asparagus

Spring Salad Recipe Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make this spring salad recipe:

  • Asparagus – I blanch it until it’s crisp-tender but still bright green.
  • Peas – Their sweet flavor is delicious in this spring green salad! I almost always use thawed frozen peas, but blanched fresh peas would be equally tasty.
  • Radishes – For crunch and a pop of pink! I like to use a mix of watermelon radishes and red radishes, but just one variety would work fine too.
  • Feta cheese – It adds delicious tangy flavor.
  • Toasted pistachios and roasted chickpeas – They add protein, nutty flavor, and crunch.
  • Avocado – A rich and creamy contrast to the crisp veggies and crunchy chickpeas.
  • Fresh herbs – Choose one or use a mix! I love to make this spring green salad with a blend of basil, mint, and chives.
  • Salad greens – Any tender spring greens would be good. Butterhead and red leaf lettuce, mesclun, and arugula are some of my favorites.
  • And a bright, herb-flecked dressing – I toss this zippy mix of lemon juice, white wine vinegar, olive oil, and basil with the asparagus and peas first. Then, I drizzle more dressing over the entire salad when I assemble it. Yum!

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

Spring salad recipe dressing

Variations

A good salad recipe is always flexible, and this spring salad is no exception. Here are a few of my favorite ways to change it up:

  • Swap the cheese, or skip it. Use soft goat cheese or mini mozzarella balls instead of feta, or skip the cheese to make this asparagus salad vegan.
  • Mix up the veggies. Use whatever looks good at the farmers market or grocery store! If you can’t find radishes, shaved kohlrabi or Japanese turnips would be a great substitute. I also like to make this spring pea salad with blanched sugar snaps or green beans instead of the asparagus.
  • Try a different nut or seed. Toasted almonds, walnuts, or pepitas would be fantastic.
  • Switch the dressing. If you happen to have pesto on hand, it makes a delicious dressing for this spring salad! If your pesto is thick, thin it out with extra olive oil or lemon juice.
  • Make a spinach salad. If you can get your hands on tender baby spinach, this asparagus, pea, and radish salad is a perfect way to use it.
  • Add an extra pop of pink. Top the salad with a few pickled red onions.

Let me know what variations you try!

Spring salad recipe ingredients

Spring Salad Serving Suggestions

Thanks to the chickpeas, feta, and avocado, this spring salad recipe makes a light, satisfying meal on its own. Pair it with a slice of crusty bread, homemade focaccia, or avocado toast to make it heartier, and enjoy it for lunch!

This tasty salad is also one of my favorite spring side dishes. Serve it with a frittata for an easy dinner or brunch, with veggie burgers or portobello mushroom burgers for a spring cookout, or with slices of Margherita pizza for a fun homemade pizza night! It would also be delicious with any of these pasta recipes:

Spring Mix Salad

More Favorite Salad Recipes

If you love this spring salad recipe, try one of these fresh salads next:

Bright Spring Salad

rate this recipe:
4.84 from 6 votes
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 1 min
Serves 4
This spring salad recipe is a perfect light meal or side dish. Filled with fresh veggies, herbs, and a zippy vinaigrette, it's simple, bright, and delicious.

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch asparagus, tender parts, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • ½ cup frozen peas, thawed
  • A few handfuls of salad greens
  • 2 radishes, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • ½ avocado, pitted and diced
  • ¼ cup chopped, toasted pistachios
  • ½ cup roasted chickpeas
  • Fresh herbs, for garnish (basil, mint and/or chives)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Dressing

  • ¼ cup fresh basil or a mix of basil and mint
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, plus ½ teaspoon zest
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, more as desired
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and set a bowl of ice water nearby. Blanch the asparagus for about 1 minute, until tender but still bright green. Transfer to the ice water for 1 minute, then drain. Allow the asparagus to dry and transfer it back to the bowl and add the peas.
  • Make the dressing: In a food processor, pulse together the herbs, garlic, lemon juice, zest, vinegar, olive oil, and salt.
  • Add half of the dressing to the bowl with the asparagus and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Assemble the salad. Arrange the salad greens on a platter, then layer the asparagus/pea mixture, the radishes, feta, avocado, pistachios, chickpeas, and herbs. Drizzle with remaining dressing, season to taste with more salt and pepper, and serve.

52 comments

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  1. Isadora from shelikesfood.com
    05.01.2014

    That is so funny, before I even started reading the post I was thinking how beautiful that bowl was, and I was wondering where you had gotten it from! Mystery solved! This salad looks so springy and fresh and I love your basil mint oil 🙂

  2. Ileana from alittlesaffron.com
    05.01.2014

    Blue and white is just such a beautiful color combination for anything kitchen related!

  3. This looks positively dreamy. I wonder if it’d be good with a dollop of hummus in place of the chickpeas. Nothing gets on my nerves like trying to eat a chickpea with a fork.

    • jeanine
      05.01.2014

      you can leave the chickpeas out :). Sub in another protein or whatever you like!

  4. Ugh I’m already addicted to kitchenware so being introduced to a new place is such bad news…the basil and mint oil dressing sounds intriguing!

  5. Debra from bowl-me-over.com
    05.01.2014

    The perfect summer salad, yes indeed! You had me at asparagus, though I love the addition of pistachios also, yum!

  6. This looks great! I love green peas in my salad – they’re my favorite addition! Yum!

  7. This salad make me miss summer in Aussie. Those bright green and blues of that beautiful plate makes this the perfect salad.

  8. What fun patterned plates. And I’m loving your basil and mint oil and pistachio addition. I never think of making salads ahead but this really is the perfect one for it.

    • jeanine
      05.02.2014

      thanks Katie! I don’t normally either but the leftovers on day 2 were so delicious 🙂

  9. I love how green this salad is. Just today, I picked up a whole load of asparagus in literally every color so this will be fun. I also love the addition of prep wine, my kinda lady 😉

    • jeanine
      05.01.2014

      ha, I was waiting for someone to notice the prep wine 🙂

  10. Love this salad and am going to make it next week!! Thank you!

    • jeanine
      05.02.2014

      I’m obsessed with salads (good hearty ones)!

  11. The look and color of this salad go perfectly well with the plate. A very nice choice of recipe. I am a big fan of crunchy asparagus and aromatic herbs. This dish sounds amazing to me. 🙂

  12. Jade from wehavethisnow.wordpress.com
    05.01.2014

    Such Spring perfection, my heart sings! Very excited about that dressing too, what a wonderful idea!

  13. I love all of these colors. I am pretty sure I would feel super healthy after eating a bowl of this salad.

  14. Kristin from blog.kristinfleming.com
    05.01.2014

    Love peas in salad. This look so good.

  15. This is simply salad perfection. Love the pictures and the salad looks really beautiful on that dish. So great, thanks!

  16. Rosie from theporridgepot.com
    05.02.2014

    This is my kind of salad! The vibrant colors look stunning against the dinnerware.

  17. Cristina from theroamingkitchen.net
    05.02.2014

    Ha, prep wine is an important part of every balanced diet! This kind of salad is exactly what I want to be eating right now.

  18. Karen from familystylefood.com
    05.02.2014

    Really beautiful – just the colors of a perfect spring day. I’m so hungry for green things!

  19. Christina a busy humble after work cook
    05.04.2014

    I find myself getting excited each time i visit your website! And with each recipe i say i can’t wait to try this… thx for being passionate about your food and sharing. This recipe like them all seems like a winner.

  20. Kate from cookieandkate.com
    05.05.2014

    Oh, love those blue plates! So pretty. The salad is gorgeous, too! I’ve been putting radishes in everything lately.

  21. Heather E
    05.06.2014

    Made this tonight for dinner with farmers market veggies and it was so, so good! Definitely going into our dinner rotation while the veggies are in season!

    • jeanine
      05.12.2014

      so glad you liked it!

  22. Martha
    05.12.2014

    One of the best salads ever. I used both Mozz and avocado and skipped the chick peas. Forgot to buy basil so used pesto. Perfect salad for our community Mother’s Day dinner!

    • jeanine
      05.12.2014

      so glad you liked it!

  23. cilicia
    06.06.2014

    Hello I have a ASAP question cause I’m making this tonight for tomorrow …I wanted to know when you said to omit the salad greens overnight , did that include the dressing also? Wouldn’t it make the vegetables mush

    • jeanine
      06.07.2014

      You can toss it with the dressing, the asparagus, etc, will stay plenty crispy, but the greens would become soggy. (Or you can wait to add the dressing at the end, that’ll work too).

  24. Hi Jeanine & Jack,
    I can’t tell you how much I love your site. As a foodie… as a photographer, as a graphic designer AND as a wordpress fanatic… you are hitting all my buttons!

    Love your recipes (after living in Istanbul for 2 years and Spain for 15 I put lemon juice on everything too) such variety! And, as a “pescatarian”, (I don’t eat land animals – I eat fish though…) your site delivers time after time.

    Absolutely fantastic. Immense enjoyment.

    Thank you.

    Matt

    • jeanine
      10.11.2014

      Hi Matt – thank you! You’re so kind. This comment just made my day…

  25. Rebecca
    03.15.2015

    How many servings does this recipe make?

  26. JoAnn Tanis
    04.05.2015

    This is a beautiful and tasty salad. However, the photo was taken with no dressing on the salad. Just FYI.

  27. Emily
    03.28.2016

    I made this for Easter lunch yesterday, and it was wonderful! I had the leftovers for lunch today, and it was even better. This is the PERFECT Spring/Summer salad!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      03.30.2016

      Hi Emily! Glad you loved this one, it’s one of my favorites for spring too 🙂

  28. Jodi
    04.13.2017

    Hi. Beautiful salad. Will be making as party of my Easter dinner. Curious how many as written this serves?
    Thanks.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.13.2017

      Hi Jodi – it should serve 4 as a side. Happy Easter!

      • Jodi
        04.13.2017

        Great – thanks, Jeanine. Happy Easter to you as well!

  29. Valerie
    04.20.2019

    This is honestly such a delicious salad… I knew it from looking at the ingredients. Only thing I did differently is doubled the dressing (because we like it saucy!) and used Boccochini cheese. Fresh herbs from my garden would be the only thing to make this salad better in my opinion but considering we had snow 2 weeks ago I’ll take some good organic grown ones… was such a hit at our Easter dinner!

    • Jeanne
      04.20.2019

      How did you measure the basil and mint in the dressing? I’ll need to double it, too. Approximate amounts? Thanks.

  30. Jeanne
    04.20.2019

    Would love to know how to measure the amount of basil and mint for the dressing. Making it for company the first time…..sounds wonderful.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.20.2019

      Hi Jeanne, about 1/4 cup in the dressing, more can go in the salad itself. I hope that helps!

  31. Mary
    06.23.2019

    This is salad is awesome! Thanks for sharing. I used basil and mint from my garden and the dressing was scrumptious! Looking forward to trying your other recipes 🙂

  32. Amanda
    04.21.2020

    This was delish! I used edamame instead of peas for some added protein and it was very tasty. The dressing was also phenomenal…I opted out of using oil as I follow an oil-free diet but it still turned out EXCELLENT! thank you for this great recipe.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.22.2020

      Hi Amanda, I’m so glad you loved it!

  33. Samuel
    05.25.2020

    4 stars
    What on earth? Did you change the recipe? Why not just post it as a new recipe rather than edit one from 2014? Or post an edit at the top? Now there’s no way to see the old recipe.
    Feel like we’re being gaslighted…
    Both are delicious, but miss the original.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      05.25.2020

      Hi Samuel, it’s the same recipe, I just updated it with new photos and clarified some of the measurements. The only thing significant change is the feta vs. mini mozzarella balls. I hope you enjoy the salad.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.