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Simple Arugula Salad (With Mushrooms & Balsamic)

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5 from 6 votes

This arugula salad with a simple balsamic vinaigrette is tossed with sliced mushrooms, candied nuts and shaved cheese. The pepperiness of arugula, earthiness of mushrooms, sweetness of candied nuts, and saltiness of pecorino cheese is one of the best salad combinations ever!

Some of my favorite recipes are created by mistake! A late-night simple arugula salad with leftover ingredients from the fridge and pantry turned into something magical.

Serve with juicy baked chicken breast for a complete lunch or dinner!


  • Arugula – arugula is the base for our simple salad!
  • Baby bella mushrooms (also known as cremini) – raw sliced mushrooms add earthiness.
  • Candied walnuts – candied walnuts add sweet butteriness.
  • Pecorino romano cheese – pecorino cheese shavings add a salty sharpness.
  • Garlic – garlic. Enough said!
  • Extra virgin olive oil – olive oil binds our vinaigrette together.
  • Balsamic vinegar – balsamic vinegar adds a sweet tartness.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Arugula – substitute fresh spinach for arugula.
  • Baby bella mushrooms – substitute white for baby bella mushrooms.
  • Candied walnuts – substitute candied pecans for candied walnuts.
  • Pecorino romano – substitute parmesan for pecorino cheese.
  • Balsamic – substitute white balsamic or sherry wine vinegar for balsamic.

What Does Arugula Taste Like?

Arugula has a peppery, slightly bitter taste that’s perfect with a balsamic vinaigrette to mellow out its assertiveness.

What to Serve With Arugula Salad

Top your arugula salad with juicy chicken breast, chilled or grilled shrimp, or drained and rinsed cannellini beans for an extra protein boost!

Of course, serving with a crusty piece of bread goes without question!

How to Clean Mushrooms

Use a dry paper towel or clean kitchen towel to gently rub any dirt off your mushrooms. It also won’t hurt to put them in a colander and give them a quick rinse and pat dry. Although some say to never rinse your mushrooms, many others (including me!) say a little shower won’t hurt ’em!

Other Arugula Salad Recipes on Tastefully Grace!

Simple Arugula Salad (With Mushrooms & Balsamic)

This arugula salad with a simple balsamic vinaigrette is tossed with sliced mushrooms, candied nuts and shaved cheese.
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Course: Salad
Keyword: any season, fall, winter
Servings: 4 appetizer portions
Calories: 270kcal
Author: Tastefully Grace


  • 5 ounces arugula
  • 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms sliced
  • 2/3 cup candied walnuts
  • 1 small block pecorino romano cheese about ¼ pound
  • 1 large garlic clove finely minced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  • In a large salad bowl, add arugula, sliced mushrooms and candied walnuts.
  • In a smaller bowl, add garlic, balsamic, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Whisk together until well combined. Taste vinaigrette to make sure you like the vinegar-to-olive-oil ratio. Some balsamic vinegars are more “tart” than others.
  • Pour dressing over arugula and toss until combined.
  • Serve on salad plates. Use a veggie peeler to garnish each salad with pecorino shavings. Sprinkle with cracked black pepper.
  • Optional: add juicy baked chicken breast for a complete meal!



Serving: 1serving | Calories: 270kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 249mg | Potassium: 408mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 893IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 215mg | Iron: 1mg
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