Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad

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Laura Lynch
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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.

Fennel, avocado and blood orange salad

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.

» You might also like these Easy Smoked Vegetables.

Ingredients You Need

There are quite a few great spring ingredients in this salad, but it comes together quickly.

You’ll need:

  • Fennel
  • Spinach
  • Red Onion
  • Blood Oranges
  • Cilantro
  • Avocado
  • 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.

Fennel, avocado, blood orange salad

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.

Fennel, avocado, blood orange 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.

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Fennel salad

Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad

This Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad has all the makings of a perfect spring salad, with lots of crunch and zest.
4.50 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Calories: 283kcal
Author: Laura Lynch

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  • 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.

Notes

  • 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.

Nutrition

Calories: 283kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 85mg | Potassium: 1135mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 2325IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 96mg | Iron: 2mg

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Fennel, avocado, and blood orange salad

4 thoughts on “Fennel, Avocado and Blood Orange Salad

  1. Lauren Vavala says:

    5 stars
    This salad sounds like such a delicious recipe for spring and summer. I am loving all of these flavors together.

  2. lindsay says:

    5 stars
    It’s the perfect time of year for amazing salads! this one is added to my menu for next week and I already know I’m going to love it. Citrus and fennel together is my favorite.

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