An unconventional morning meal, The Breakfast Salad with Cinnamon Toast Croutons and Maple Vinaigrette. Who knew a salad for breakfast could be so good?
I’ve noticed a trend here in Asheville and on the menus of popular breakfast joints around the country… Salad for breakfast.
Before you turn up your nose, let me clarify. These breakfast salads are not bland leafy side-salads with bottled ranch dressing, but bold hearty meals. A good breakfast salad encompasses everything that makes breakfast so appealing: carbs, eggs, pork-fat, and sweet accents.
After exploring these salads at several favorite breakfast hotspots, I decided to work on my own version.
First, I wanted to put my family’s favorite morning flavors into the breakfast salad. That way, it would be hard for the kids to resist. My version had to include: bacon, maple syrup, cinnamon toast and eggs.
The Cinnamon Toast Croutons were the first inspiration. Truly, I could eat a whole pan of these babies.
In fact, it’s important not to make them too far in advance, or there will not be any left for the salad. Maple Vinaigrette provides a sweet and poppy essence with apple cider vinegar and Dijon mustard. The addition of candied nuts and dried cherries offers a granola-like quality.
To complete The Breakfast Sala, prepare your morning eggs just the way you like them, and place them on a bed of crisp baby spinach.
This, my friends, is a great way to start the day!
Eat breakfast like a King, lunch like a Prince, and dinner like a Pauper. ~ Adelle Davis
The Breakfast Salad
- 6 cups French bread cubes
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch salt
- 1 cup candied nuts
- 3/4 cup dried cherries
- 12 ounces bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 6 cups baby spinach, packed
- 12 large eggs, prepared to order
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lay the bread cubes out on a rimmed baking sheet. Mix the melted butter, sugar, cinnamon and salt together and drizzle over the bread cubes. Toss and bake for 5-10 minutes until toasted.
Whisk all the ingredients together until smooth. Set aside.
- Cook and drain the bacon. Prepare the eggs to your liking—scrambled, poached, sunny-side-up.
- Prepare each salad plate with a heaping cup of baby spinach, topped with cinnamon toast croutons, candied nuts, dried cherries, and crumbled bacon. Then top each with 1-2 eggs and drizzle with maple vinaigrette!
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