This post was originally published on A Food Lover’s Kitchen.
This Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad has all the makings of a perfect spring salad, with lots of crunch and zest. This salad pairs really well with all kinds of grilled foods.
» You might also like these Easy Smoked Vegetables.
This is a fantastic side salad to serve for any dinner or make it a centerpiece salad at your Easter dinner celebration. It’s a huge hit because the flavors are so bold and vibrant.
When blood oranges and fennel come into season in early spring, it’s definitely time to start making salads like this one. The spring flavors really pop and bring this salad to life.
In the early spring, these vegetables are delivered in or Imperfect Foods delivery, so we seem to always have them on hand to make this delicious salad.
Ingredients You Need
There are quite a few great spring ingredients in this salad, but it comes together quickly.
- Red Onion
- Blood Oranges
- Salt & Pepper
- Vinaigrette (store-bought or use this homemade recipe)
How to Make Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad
Thinly slice the fennel. It doesn’t have to be paper thin, but it’s much easier to eat when it’s fairly thin slices. I use a mandolin to slice the fennel. It’s super fast and I can adjust the slices to my preference.
For the blood oranges, you need to segment them. To do this, cut off the peel on all sides, then you can cut between the segments with a sharp paring knife, which will give you the flesh of the orange without the membrane between each piece. Here’s a quick video that will help you learn to segment the orange, if you haven’t done it before.
This is a composed salad that you can build either in a serving bowl or on a plate. There are two larger portions or 4 small portions. It’s best to mix the whole salad together in one bowl.
Add the spinach to a bowl or plate. Top with avocado, cilantro, fennel, blood orange slices and red onion.
Drizzle the vinaigrette over the top, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. It doesn’t need a lot of salt, just a sprinkle to bring out the flavors in all the ingredients.
You can garnish the salad with fennel sprigs – the shoots at the top of the fennel bulb, if you have them. I love how pretty they make the final salad.
How Do You Cut Fennel For a Salad?
Cutting fennel for a salad is easy! First, slice off the stalks and the root end. Remove any tough outer layers. Cut it in half lengthwise, then cut the halves into thin slices or wedges. If you want a finer dice, cut each slice into smaller pieces. Finally, season with salt and pepper to taste before tossing into your favorite salad mix.
Does Fennel Have a Strong Licorice Taste?
Yes, fennel does have a strong licorice taste. Raw fennel has a definite anise or licorice flavor that mellows when the vegetable is cooked. The intensity of the flavor varies from variety to variety, so you may find some more mild than others.
Experiment with different types of fennel until you find one that suits your tastes. I find that mixing the fennel with acid, like the apple cider vinegar in this recipe makes it a lot less potent. I don’t love licorice at all, but I do like the taste of fennel in this salad.
What Substitutions Can I Make?
If you really don’t like fennel but still want to try this salad, I would recommend using celeriac in its place. Celeriac has a very mild flavor but a similar crunch and texture to fennel. It does not have a licorice taste. It tastes more like a very mild celery.
Other substitutions you can make are:
- Use arugula for a spicier taste instead of spinach
- Use a regular orange if you can’t find blood oranges
- Use any type of onions you like, rather than the red onions, if you’re not a fan. They are quite potent.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Like this recipe? We’d love for you to share it on your Pinterest board! Click to follow our Pinterest boards so you can find all our recipes!
Instagram it! If you try this recipe please tag #legendsofthegrill on Instagram or Twitter. We love to see your photos of our recipes! Also follow us on Facebook to keep up on what we’re cooking up.
Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad
- Paring knife
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 1 avocado sliced
- 8 sprigs fresh cilantro roughly chopped
- 1 small fennel bulb thinly sliced
- 1 blood orange sectioned
- 2 slices red onion quartered
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinaigrette
- Salt & ground black pepper to taste
- Add the spinach to a bowl. Top with avocado, cilantro, fennel, blood orange slices and red onion. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the top, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Garnish with fennel sprigs, if desired.
- It’s best to make the salad just before serving. If you want to make the salad ahead, reserve the dressing on the side until just before serving, so the salad doesn’t wilt.
- Regular oranges can be substituted for the blood oranges, if you can’t find them.
🥧 If you’re interested in more great recipes, I share all my favorite recipes at A Food Lover’s Kitchen, Instant Pot recipes over at A Pressure Cooker Kitchen, air fryer recipes at Air Fry Anytime, and cocktails and drinks at Savored Sips. Check it out today!
Like this recipe? Save it to Pinterest!
Laura is a passionate home cook and grill enthusiast who has spent years perfecting her culinary skills, with a particular focus on grilling techniques and flavor combinations. Her fascination with the grill, smoke, and the mouthwatering results they produce has led her on an exciting journey to discover the best methods for grilling delicious and unforgettable meals.