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Playing Rach's "Statement" Spinach Salad With LOTS of Bacon

"You know how I love statement salads, salad suppers, making families excited about salad night?" asks Rach. "Well, you're going to be psyched about this one. I'm bringing back the spinach salad with LOTS of bacon—a pound of bacon!—warm onions, sliced apple, toasted walnuts and smoked blue cheese." That's all you need for a super-tasty salad, but to beef it up even more for dinner, add warm diced or shredded rotisserie chicken and/or sourdough croutons. YUM! 

For more statement salads, check out Rach's Steak Salad and No-Cook Italian Salad


For the Bacon Bits:
  • 1 pound meaty bacon
For the Warm Onions:
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 yellow onions, quartered and sliced
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • Salt and fine black or white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon each ground sage and ground thyme
  • 1 cup water or bone broth
For the Dressing:
  • ¼ cup apple cider, sherry or white wine vinegar
  • About 1/3 cup EVOO
  • 2 tablespoons grainy Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon each: smoked paprika/pimenton, granulated garlic and granulated onion
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
For the Salad:
  • Stemmed medium-sized bunches of leaf spinach, 8 to 10 cups yield
  • 2 apples (Braeburn or honey crisp), sliced and dressed with the juice of half a lemon
  • Toasted walnuts, about 1 cup
  • Crumbled smoked blue cheese, about 1 cup


Serves: 4 to 6


Preheat oven to 375°F. 

For the bacon bits, place a wire rack over a baking sheet or on bacon baking pan. Arrange bacon and bake until very crisp. Cool and cut into about ¾-inch pieces.       

For the warm onions, melt butter over medium heat in a medium pan.   

Rachael Ray Hard Anodized Nonstick Frying Pan with Helper Handle

Rachael Ray Hard Anodized Nonstick Frying Pan with Helper Handle

Rachael Ray
$60 $42

Add the onions, bay, salt and pepper, sage and thyme. When onions are translucent and soft, about 12 to 15 minutes, add the liquid and simmer on low until salad is ready to dress. 

For the dressing, combine all ingredients in a squeeze bottle or jar and shake to combine. 

For the salad, combine the ingredients in a large salad bowl and top with the warm onions, bacon and dressing.