Here’s a favorite salad recipe that’s cool, creamy and crunchy all at the same time! Blackberry Salad with Toasted Hazelnuts uses a scattering of cooked grains, crumbled goat cheese, thin sliced radishes and plump, fresh blackberries, plus a drizzle of juicy lemon vinaigrette. Satisfying and amazingly delicious!
Blackberries are the star of the show here…the big, juicy, ripe kind.
This salad calls for Butter Lettuce (my very favorite- beautiful, tender and delicious) followed by toasted hazelnuts plus a whole bunch of other luscious ingredients:
- Soft and creamy goat cheese
- Thinly sliced radishes for a peppery little kick
- Wheatberries or other leftover grains make this a chewy, substantial salad
- Fresh herbs – Italian parsley and fragrant mint are the perfect combination
- A bright and flavorful citrus vinaigrette rounds it all out, for drizzling alongside
This a great salad to make for lunch or a light dinner by itself, or as a side to grilled chicken or fish.
Ingredients You’ll Need for This Recipe
Note: This is a partial list of ingredients…for the full ingredient list, see the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
- Cooked Grains: Almost any leftover cooked grains will work, wheatberries are my favorite for this recipe.
- Butter Lettuce: So tender, so crunchy. Delicate, but substantial enough to stand up to the rest of the ingredients.
- Hazelnuts: Buy them already salted and toasted to save time.
- Radish: Thinly sliced and so pretty!
- Italian Parsley and Mint: Both of these herbs add a fresh punch to the salad and are easy to find in the grocery store.
- Goat Cheese: Just a crumble for a creamy texture that’s delicious with the chewy wheatberries.
- Lemon Juice and Seasonings: Use pantry staples like freshly ground pepper and flaky sea salt, plus rice vinegar and fresh lemon juice for an easy vinaigrette.
- Cook the Wheatberries: Use leftover grains if you have them…rice, farro, bulgar or spelt berries, even couscous works! To cook your own, rinse the dried wheatberries and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the grains are chewy but tender.
- Make the Vinaigrette: Use a simple canning jar with a lid..just add olive oil, lemon juice, rice vinegar and honey. Screw on the lid and shake, that’s it!
- Assemble the Salad: Lay the Butter lettuce on the plate, then divide the grains on top of the lettuce. Add the blackberries, hazelnuts, radish, parsley, mint and goat cheese.
- Season: Sprinkle with a little flaky sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Serve: Pass the Lemon Vinaigrette alongside for drizzling.
How to Select Perfect Blackberries
- At the Farmer’s Market there were baskets of fresh blackberries sitting on a rickety table with a crumpled yellow tablecloth next to a small, hand-lettered sign that said “picked today.” SOLD. The fresher, the better.
- Look for berries that are firm, fat, round, and juicy. Shiny, even. A proper blackberry is SO plump and sweet and amazingly wonderful you won’t care if the seeds stick to your teeth 🙂
- Check for ripeness by their deep black color and plump, full feel. Taste one if possible!
- Buy in season and make sure no berries are smashed in the container. They’ll mold faster if any are crushed.
Tips and Substitutions
- After all that fuss about how great blackberries are, you could totally use raspberries, strawberries or even fresh figs in this salad instead.
- Don’t have time to cook grains for this salad? Use leftover brown rice or other grains you may have on hand. Most any grain will work!
- I love the soft crunch of butter lettuce, but other small, leafy spring greens will taste great too.
- Hazelnuts–toasted, salted and roughly chopped, add a certain sweetness and can stand up to the other flavors in this recipe, but toasted pecans would be delicious too.
- Cook the wheatberries yourself and also make this amazing Roasted Grape Hazelnut Breakfast Bowl.
Serving Ideas for This Recipe
- Could you serve a sliced, warm chicken breast with this salad? The answer is YES.
- Plate each portion individually! It’s a nice option that can be done a little ahead….just serve the vinaigrette on the side.
- Don’t assemble this salad more than 30 minutes ahead of serving or it will start to look sad. Just keep the components cool in the fridge until your ready start plating.
- This salad also looks great on a big, white platter with some pretty serving-ware.
- Some dessert ideas for this recipe are Muffin Tin Caramel Apple Pies, Melon with Ice Cream and Caramel Sauce, Roasted Nectarines with Caramel Sauce
- Or, finish it off with Strawberry Cheesecake in a Jar. So good!
More Salad Recipes to Try:
If you’ve tried Blackberry Salad with Roasted Hazelnuts or any recipe of Studio Delicious, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!
Blackberry Salad with Toasted Hazelnuts
- 1 1/2 cups Grains, cooked
- 4 cups Lettuce, Butter lettuce preferred
- 1/2 cup Hazelnuts, dry roasted, roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups Blackberries, organic
- 1/4 cup Radishes, very thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup Italian Parsley, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup Mint leaves, fresh
- 1/2 cup Goat Cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 tsp Flaky sea salt and ground pepper
- FOR THE VINAIGRETTE
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil, extra virgin
- 1 tablespoon Lemon juice, fresh squeezed
- 1 tablespoon Rice Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Honey
- Flake Sea Salt and lemon pepper
- COOKED WHEATBERRIES
- 1 cup Wheatberries, dried
- 3 cups Water
- COOK THE WHEATBERRIES Place rinsed and dried wheatberries in a medium saucepan with the water. Bring water to the boil, cover and reduce the heat to medium, simmer until water is absorbed, 20-30 minutes. Add a little more water if needed until the grains are tender and chewy. Remove from heat and cool before assembling the salad. Can be made up to 3 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator.
- MAKE THE VINAIGRETTE Put the olive oil, lemon juice, rice vinegar and honey in a small jar with a lid and shake until combined. Alternatively, you can place the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk with a fork until combined.
- ASSEMBLE THE SALAD Lay the butter lettuce on the platter or plates and divide the grains on the plates. Add/divide the hazelnuts, blackberries, radish, parsley, mint and goat cheese. Season with the flaky sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Serve the lemon vinaigrette alongside to drizzle on top.
- Use 1 1/2 cups of any leftover grains you might have on hand, even rice!
- Farro, bulgur wheat or spelt berries work well instead of wheat berries.
- For gluten free, try brown rice, buckwheat, quinoa or millet.
- If you can't find red butterleaf lettuce, regular butter lettuce is a good substitute
- For the hazelnuts, chop them roughly with a sharp knife to break them down a bit. Or, place a clean kitchen towel over the top and lightly pound the hazelnuts with a kitchen mallet or the bottom of a sturdy glass jar (like a Ball jar.) You want uneven sizes and crumbles.
- Super important to read the whole recipe before you begin
- Pay attention to the ingredient list and photos for the recipe
- If possible, prep your ingredients a little before you start
- Always use a sharp knife for safety
- Use the size of pan called for in the recipe
- For savory recipes, taste and season as you go
- Buy fresh, organic ingredients, locally sourced whenever possible
SOURCE: Studio Delicious, Inspired by The Love and Lemons Cookbook. This recipe was originally posted August 2019 and was updated with new photos and text September 2020.