If you’re looking for a salad that’s substantial enough for dinner, this one will please everyone.

My 3-year-old son is old enough now that he asks me, “What’s for dinner tonight?” He typically eats pretty well, but salad is not something he normally gets excited about. That is, until he tried my Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing.

My son loves everything bacon, and this salad is loaded with a variety of textures and flavors and topped with a sweet and tangy warm bacon dressing. The baby spinach used in this recipe is delicate, small and not as crunchy as romaine or iceberg, which might be another reason he likes this salad. He also loves eggs, cheese and tomatoes, and the warm dressing packed with bacony flavors and bits probably distracts his mind from his typical idea of a salad.

My mother was the chef in our home and she has been making a rendition of this recipe since I was small. I can hear her now, “That is not how I make mine,” but this is my version and very similar to hers. It is one of the first salads I remember loving as a child. I can remember my mother picking me up from school and asking me what I wanted for dinner. Now, as a parent and wife myself, I understand the daily battle of trying to think of something to prepare for dinner as the regular dishes tend to get monotonous.

I can’t say this is a very healthy meal, but it sure is tasty and unique with a warm dressing. And I do not know if this is considered a Southern recipe, but with lots of bacon, sugar and bacon grease, it sounds Southern to me. I do know this is hearty enough to serve as the main meal, and it is easy and quick to whip up.

If there are ingredients in this dish you dislike or want to substitute, feel free. You can incorporate black-eyed peas, chickpeas or chicken for added protein. You can also use honey instead of sugar or Parmesan cheese instead of Swiss cheese. The salad ingredients do not matter because the dressing is the star of the dish.
If you have not tried Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing then here is your chance. Maybe your kid will even eat their greens.

Photography by James Stefiuk

Print Recipe
Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing
If you’re looking for a salad that’s substantial enough for dinner, this one will please everyone.
Warm Bacon Dressing Spinach Salad
Course Salad
Cuisine Southern, Spring
Keyword bacon, salad, spinach
Servings
Ingredients
For the Salad
Course Salad
Cuisine Southern, Spring
Keyword bacon, salad, spinach
Servings
Ingredients
For the Salad
Warm Bacon Dressing Spinach Salad
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, place the baby spinach. In separate piles arrange the eggs, mushrooms, onions, cheese, tomatoes, croutons and crumbled bacon (reserve about 1 tablespoon bacon crumbles for the dressing) on top of the spinach.
  2. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the shallots in the bacon drippings and bits until opaque. Whisk in the olive oil, vinegar, Dijon mustard, sugar and pepper and let simmer for 1 minute to dissolve the sugar. Stir in 1 tablespoon of bacon crumbles.
  3. Serve the dressing warm alongside the spinach salad.