Whenever I think of healthy lunch options, salads are certainly an obvious choice.  However, salads done poorly can end up being a step in the wrong direction.  If you bring a boring/flavorless/blah salad, it’s going to be all the more tempting to buy something from the food court, go out with coworkers, etc.  Thankfully, salads don’t need to be boring.  To me, it just takes a few components to elevate a salad from blah to omgiwanttoeatthiseveryday.  This salad originated from desperate scrounging in a bare weekend fridge for something, anything, that could constitute lunch.

I combined baby spinach leaves with oven roasted tomatoes, a bit of boursin cheese, crumbled pita chips, and a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette.  And then I fell in love.  This has all the components of a really good salad.  Start with greens you actually like as the base.  If you don’t like the base, you’re not going to like the salad.  Roasted tomatoes add another dimension of flavor and boursin provides creaminess (and all around awesome-ness).  Normally I would add croutons for some crunch but I believe my little crouton monster had eaten them all so I opted for crumbled pita chips instead.  They worked so well that now I use them whenever we happen to be out of croutons.  This crave-worthy salad has become a definite favorite of mine.  I hope you like it too!


For the dressing:
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the salad:
3 cups baby spinach leaves, washed and dried
About ¼ cup oven-roasted tomatoes
2-3 tbsp. crumbled Boursin cheese
3-4 tbsp. crumbled pita chips


  • 01

    To make the dressing, combine the olive oil and vinegar in a bottle or jar.  Season with salt and pepper.  Close tightly and shake well.  (I recommend making a double or triple batch to keep on hand for other salads, sandwiches, etc.)

  • 02

    Portion the spinach leaves onto serving plates.  Top with a handful of oven roasted tomatoes, crumbled boursin and pita chips.  Drizzle lightly with the balsamic vinaigrette.

  • 03

    Make ahead tips:  I find that spinach salads hold up well to pre-assembly without wilting as lettuce often does.  For this particular salad, I combine all ingredients except the dressing, transport to work, and dress just before eating.

  • Kay

    Looks so simple and refreshing! Happy Monday to you, too! Hope all is well with you and your children! :)

  • Wow, this looks fantastic. Completely agree that a bad salad is only incentive to find something else to eat, not to mention having a bad salad dissuades you from ever eating salad.

    Love the addition of pita chips, I would have never thought to include them but they are definitely croutons 2.0 :)

  • Rachel Rosenberg

    Now this is my kind of salad! Looks delish.

  • Gina Iampolsky

    Love this idea. Thanks for the inspiration. I love this one

  • Makala

    Oh my goodness! This looks delish, and so easy to assemble, too!!! Quick question though… what exactly is “Boursin cheese”? What other cheese might you suggest substituting in case I can’t find any “Boursin cheese” over here in England? Thanks, Annie!!!

  • That looks delicious. I am the queen of salads and always on the lookout for creative ideas. Saving this one!

  • Kelsey

    I love taking salads for lunch. I know I’ll enjoy this combination!

  • Wow! What a simple (but delicious lunch). I’ve got to try this! :)

  • Jennifermarissa

    I am in love with your lunch series! Seriously, great lunches are the biggest oversight in cookbooks and recipe collections. Keep up the excellent work/inspiration.

  • I love salads too! Dressing is my biggest concern when it comes to salad. I have to like the dressing, to like the salad!

  • annieseats

    Aw, thank you! I’m so glad you’re enjoying it :)

  • Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes

    I like this idea. I was just telling my hubby tonight that I need new and interesting salad ideas for the summer!

  • I love that salad bowl–so pretty! Also, the addition of boursin cheese is definitely awesome and the pita chip idea is ingenius :)

  • Great salad… it’s good for the weather here, so hot ..you can’t breathe! Thanks

  • annieseats

    You can Google for a description and then see if you have something similar available there. Enjoy!

  • I love spinach salads for lunch! Great!

  • Sus_henfridsson

    Hi annie! I just have to tell you how much I love your blog! Its my new favourite! I read it all the time and I love your pics and recipes! I know you probably cant understand the language but if you fancy it you are welcome to at least look at the pictures on my recently started food blog =) http://www.pepparpeppar.wordpress.com.

    Keep up the amazing work!

    Many happy wishes from Sweden!


  • Just dropping by to say hi and to tell you that I nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award: http://nutrisavvysblog.wordpress.com/2012/06/26/the-versatile-blogger-award/

  • Love the idea of adding pita chips to a salad! I’ll have to try that sometimes. My go to add ins are always slices almonds and dried cranberries but it’s time I get more creative!

  • Ana

    Mmmm.. I love spinach! Will try this salad soon :)

  • Natalie

    Made this today, it was amazing! Thank you so much for starting this series, it’s already improved my lunches ten-fold! Looking forward to your next lunch-related post!!

  • Ali

    This lunch series is awesome Annie! I’ve been looking for some new ways to spice up my routine, thanks!!!