Strawberry Salad with Rhubarb Dressing


I am so obsessed with rhubarb. When the first shiny stalks appear at the market, I usually buy more than I can carry.

Whenever given the choice between a rich, chocolate dessert and something lemon-y or fruit-y, I always opt for the one that errs on the side of sour. And I like my rhubarb SOUR! Barely sweetened, please.


Two of my favourite things to make are Ginger Rhubarb Crisp and Strawberry-Rhubarb pudding cake. (Don’t worry, neither are bracingly sour – I temper my own tastes to please the masses.)

When I encountered this recipe for a spring salad that pairs fresh strawberries with a tart rhubarb vinaigrette I scrambled to make it as soon as I could. It landed on my book club potluck brunch.

I figured, berries = breakfast, so we’re good. The waffles, spinach tarts, hash browns, mimosas and warm cinnamon buns were plenty, so one complained about my bowl of greens. (And yes, I know – I belong to the world’s BEST book club.)


The salad is just greens, toasted almonds and strawberries and the dressing is the loveliest shade of pink, flecked with tiny black poppy seeds.

I only veered from the recipe as written in the amount of maple syrup – since it was breakfast food, I added another splash of maple syrup. And I added a pinch of salt, too.

What are you making with rhubarb these days?


I’m going to hand the microphone over to Katie Watters for a minute – she’s from a non-profit organization called Raising the Village, whose focus is food security through sustainable agriculture. She’d like to share a bit of info about a current campaign called “Living Below the Line”, wherein participants are challenged to eat and drink for under $1.75/day for 5 days – the Canadian equivalent of the extreme poverty line.

They are are looking for people to participate in the challenge on behalf of Raising the Village, to help empower some of the most remote and impoverished villages in Africa.

belowtheline“For many of us, food is what brings family together, what makes an evening romantic and what warms our hearts and our mouths. Think about your mom’s stuffing, barbecues with your friends in the summer, or your family gathering at Christmas. However, many others are not fortunate enough to enjoy this privilege. This is where Global Poverty Project’s Live Below the Line campaign steps in. This campaign challenges our understanding of food by giving us a taste of what it would be like to live below the extreme poverty line; to eat and drink on $1.75 a day. Raising The Village has partnered with The Global Poverty Project to raise awareness about extreme poverty and to raise funds to eradicate it.It may seem impossible to eat and drink on $1.75, but the unfortunate truth is that 1.2 billion people live on the equivalent amount every day for all of their daily needs (including housing, transportation, school supplies, clothes, household needs, etc.)”

Katie invites you to join the challenge, which runs until June 30th, here:

Strawberry Salad with Rhubarb Dressing
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
From Chatelaine magazine.
For Rhubarb Dressing:
  • 1 cup fresh rhubarb, chopped
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  1. For salad ingredients and instructions, see here.
  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    That rhubarb dressing is seriously calling my name!! LOVE!

  • Shannon Johnson

    Jennifer– We LOVE rhubarb too! Thanks for reminding me that it is rhubarb season! One of our favorite ways to eat rhubarb is to cut it into chunks and cook it down along with some diluted fruit juice (apple is good) and then sweetened with honey to taste. Sometimes it calls for a little squirt of lemon juice too. It turns into this beautiful pink, tangy sauce that is perfect over a waffle with almond butter and topped with a little coconut creamer……. Oh– I just remembered that my mother-in-law always pairs a little fresh basil with her rhubarb in a pie or crisp and it is simply perfect. Can’t wait to try your salad!

    • Jennifer Pallian

      That sounds amazing, Shannon! I’m going to try cooking it in fruit juice. I like it really tart. Would never have thought to pair it with basil!

  • Carol at Wild Goose Tea

    I raced thru your blog just to get to the recipe for the rhubarb dressing. How totally unique!
    Perfect with the strawberries in the salad—-but of course you already know that!

  • Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie

    Love this salad! I just made a salad with strawberries, rhubarb, and pear the other day. Finding the rhubarb was a challenge and I should have bought more! Such a great idea to make a rhubarb dressing, would’ve never thought of that.

    • Jennifer Pallian

      I find the best bet for finding rhubarb is the farmers market! Or if you have a garden, plant some and I’ll live vicariously through you :)

  • Carol at Wild Goose Tea

    What a GREAT dressing. I have zip like this in my box of tricks. Fun color and something different to change up a salad. Most excellent.

    • Jennifer Pallian

      Thanks, Carol!

  • Skinny Decadence

    That salad looks simply divine. Rhubarb is so in this year!

  • Rachel

    Wow! That looks delicious! I’d love to try it, especially because I LOVE strawberries and rhubarb together :)

    Check out my blog:

    And my new cookbook:

  • Benjamin

    I have tried this awesome dressing recently. Even though I have adjusted it a bit, I have to say that the idea is really amazing (having cooked rhubarb a lot, it has been the first dressing ever). Thank you! :)