Spring Lentil Salad {Fresh & Healthy}


Quick Summary

Spring Lentil Salad- lentils with asparagus, peas, artichokes, fresh herbs, feta cheese, and a simple lemon dressing. This hearty vegetarian salad is full of flavor and perfect for spring!

spring lentil salad in bowl.

My classic lentil salad is one of my favorite salads. I make it all of the time. Have you tried it? I sure hope so, it always hits the spot. I also have a sweet potato lentil salad that is super satisfying and delicious.

I love using lentils in salads because they are hearty, a good source or protein, and pair well with so many vegetables. I recently made a Spring Lentil Salad and it has all of my favorite spring ingredients in one bowl.

Lentils are the base of the salad and then I add asparagus, artichokes, peas, green onions, fresh herbs, and pistachios for a little crunch. I toss the salad in a simple lemon dressing that brings the salad to life.

spring lentil salad ingredients.

Salad Ingredients

This salad screams spring thanks to all of the fresh ingredients!

  • Lentils– I use green lentils for this salad. They hold their shape and don’t get mushy.
  • Water or vegetable broth– for cooking the lentils .
  • Bay leaf– to add flavor to the lentils.
  • Asparagus– woody ends removed and chopped into 1-inch pieces.
  • Peas– I use frozen peas because I always have a bag in the freezer.
  • Artichokes hearts– use artichoke hearts that are in water or brine. You can use marinated artichokes, but they will add extra oil to the salad. Drain the artichokes and chop them with a sharp knife.
  • Green onions– I like using green onions because they are mild onions and I love the pop of green!
  • Herbs– chopped Italian parsley, mint, and basil add LOTS of fresh flavor.
  • Feta cheesecrumbled feta adds a nice salty flavor. Goat cheese or Parmesan cheese would also be good. If you need the salad to be dairy-free, you can omit the cheese.
lentils in strainer for spring lentil salad.

How to Make Spring Lentil Salad

  • In a large saucepan, combine the lentils, water or broth, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and then turn to low and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until lentils are soft, but still slightly firm. Do not overcook or the lentils will be mushy.
  • When the lentils are done cooking, use a colander to drain the lentils. Discard the bay leaf. Rinse quickly with cold water and drain well. Transfer to a large bowl.
spring lentil salad in bowl with spoon.
  • While the lentils are cooking, you can prepare the rest of the salad. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and prepare a large bowl of ice water nearby. Drop the asparagus into the boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes. Add the peas and cook for 1 more minute or until veggies are tender but still bright green. Transfer to the bowl of ice water for 1 minute, then drain. Place the asparagus and peas on a clean kitchen towel to dry.
  • To make the dressing. In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, honey or maple syrup, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  • In the large bowl with the lentils, add the blanched asparagus, peas, artichoke hearts, green onions, parsley, mint, basil, and feta. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir; drizzle with dressing and toss until well combined.
  • Taste and add more salt and pepper, if necessary. Sometimes, I also squeeze a little extra lemon juice over the top of the salad. For garnish, you can top with a handful of chopped pistachios and extra feta cheese, if desired.
  • You can serve immediately but I like to let the salad sit for 30 minutes so the flavors can meld.
spring lentil salad on plate with bread.

Serving Suggestions

I like to eat the salad with pita chips, pita bread, or garlic bread, or plain toasted bread. It is the perfect light lunch or dinner.

If you want to serve the salad as a side dish, it goes well with the following main dishes.

spring lentil salad in bowl with lemon wedges.

More Spring Salads

Spring Lentil Salad

Lentils with asparagus, peas, artichokes, fresh herbs, feta cheese, and a simple lemon dressing. This hearty vegetarian salad is full of flavor and perfect for spring!

For the salad:

  • 1 cup uncooked green lentils, rinsed well and picked over
  • 3 cups water, or vegetable broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4- pound asparagus, woody ends removed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 12 oz artichokes hearts, drained and chopped
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese, optional
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Garnish: chopped pistachios and extra feta cheese, optional

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey or pure maple syrup
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • In a large saucepan, combine the lentils, water or broth, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and then turn to low and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until lentils are soft, but still slightly firm. Do not overcook or the lentils will be mushy.

  • When the lentils are done cooking, use a colander to drain the lentils. Discard the bay leaf. Rinse quickly with cold water and drain well. Transfer to a large bowl.

  • While the lentils are cooking, you can prepare the rest of the salad. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and prepare a large bowl of ice water nearby. Drop the asparagus into the boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes. Add the peas and cook for 1 more minute or until veggies are tender but still bright green. Transfer to the bowl of ice water for 1 minute, then drain. Place the asparagus and peas on a clean kitchen towel to dry.

  • To make the dressing. In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, honey or maple syrup, garlic, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

  • In the large bowl with the lentils, add the blanched asparagus, peas, artichoke hearts, green onions, parsley, mint, basil, and feta. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir; drizzle with dressing and toss until well combined. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if necessary. Sometimes, I also squeeze a little extra lemon juice over the top of the salad. For garnish, you can top with a handful of chopped pistachios and extra feta cheese, if desired.

  • You can serve immediately but I like to let the salad sit for 30 minutes so the flavors can meld.

Calories: 280kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 11mg, Sodium: 374mg, Potassium: 536mg, Fiber: 14g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 1024IU, Vitamin C: 22mg, Calcium: 117mg, Iron: 4mg

Have you tried this recipe?

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