Baby Arugula Salad with Pistachios

Baby arugula is combined with crunchy pistachios, salty parmesan cheese, and creamy avocado in this baby arugula salad with pistachios. It’s a simple recipe to make and it is filled with flavor.

arugula salad on a plate

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This is a light and refreshing salad that goes well with everything! Arugula’s peppery and almost bitter flavor comes to life when it’s drenched in a honey lemon vinaigrette.

The pistachios add just the right amount of crunch and the chunks of avocado melt into creamy little bites for a perfect balance of flavors.

Add grilled chicken or salmon to this salad and you have a full low carb and complete meal.

Why you will love this arugula salad

  • It’s healthy! Arugula is high in fiber and has numerous health benefits as well as avocados and pistachios filled with heart-healthy fats.
  • Arugula salad with pistachios is an easy recipe that takes minutes to assemble with just a few simple ingredients.
arugula salad ingredients

Here is what you will need

This is a brief summary of the ingredients needed to make this arugula salad and a convenient shopping list from my Instacart affiliate link. For a printable recipe card with exact measurements and detailed instructions, scroll down to the recipe card section.

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  • Baby arugula
  • Pistachios
  • Avocado
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Extra-virgin-olive-oil
  • Honey
  • Shaved parmesan cheese
  • Black pepper and sea salt (optional)


How to make this baby arugula pistachio salad recipe

Prepare: Rinse the arugula under cold water and thoroughly dry it. Remove the flesh from the avocado and cut it into chunks, and measure the pistachios.

Mix the dressing ingredients together in a small jar or small mixing bowl, and set aside.

A large salad bowl filled with arugula, avocado and npistachios

STEP 1: Place the baby arugula, pistachios, and avocado chunks into a large bowl.

STEP 2: Pour half of the dressing over the salad and gently toss.

salad dressing pouring over a salad

picture of y peeler shaving parmesan cheese

STEP 3: Use a y-vegetable peeler to shave the parmesan cheese into thin slices and add them to the salad. Season with black pepper and sea salt to taste, toss once again and serve immediately.

Note: If you have extra salad dressing, store it in the refrigerator for up to a week.

overhead view of arugula in clear glass mixing bowl wooden spoons tossing ingredients and dressing with linen towel to the side

Ingredient notes and substitutions

The full list of ingredients to make this salad recipe is above. Below are notes about some of the ingredients, along with ideas for substitutes.

Baby arugula – If you don’t care for the peppery flavor of arugula, it can be substituted with baby greens, Boston lettuce, baby spinach or a mix of your favorite greens.

Pistachios – Look for unsalted pistachio nuts. They can be shelled or unshelled which are a little more expensive, but convenient.

Honey – Adds a touch of sweetness to the salad dressing. It can be substituted one for one with maple syrup.

Make ahead instructions

Even though this salad is simple to put together, it can be prepared a few hours ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator without the cheese and dressing.

Just before serving add the salad dressing and shave the cheese.

How to store leftover arugula salad with pistachios

Leftover salad can be stored for up to two days in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

an overhead view of arugula salad on plate

What goes best with this salad

This salad tastes great with almost anything it is served with. Turn it into a healthy meal when it is served with pork chops with vinegar peppers and potatoes, Chicken Caprese, Cilantro Lime Shrimp, Grilled Chicken Breasts with Strawberry Balsamic Salsa, Fresh and Easy Blush Sauce with Pasta, Pasta with Bolognese Sauce, Ground Chicken and Pasta Casserole, Deconstructed Stuffed Peppers, Buffalo chicken eggrolls.

Recipe variations

Change up the cheese – instead of shaved parmesan cheese, add blue cheese crumbles, feta cheese crumbles or shaved parmesan cheese.

Change up the nuts – replace pistachios with sliced almonds, chopped pecans, walnuts or walnuts.

Change the dressing – instead of lemon juice, use freshly squeezed orange juice, or any citrus fruit juice or balsamic vinegar for a balsamic dressing.

Add fruit – replace the avocado with fresh strawberries.

Add beets – add a little more texture to the salad and add sliced golden beets or red beets along with a few slices of red onion.


  • Add the dressing individually if you anticipate having a leftover salad to prevent it from getting soggy.
  • Use just enough dressing to moisten the salad, and serve the remaining dressing on the side.
How do you prepare arugula for a salad?

Baby arugula is usually eaten raw and doesn’t need much preparation since its leaves are small and tender. If the arugula is more mature, it may need to have the stems trimmed and roughly chopped.

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You might like these healthy recipes

Arugula Salad with Pistachios

Peppery arugula meets crunchy and slightly salty pistachios in a salad that’s filled with healthy ingredients.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Click on serving size to scale this recipe

Course: Salad, Side Dish Recipes
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Baby arugula salad, Salad with pistachios
Servings: 4
Calories: 418kcal
Author: Anne
Scale this Recipe 4


  • 8 ounces baby arugula
  • 1/2 cup shelled roasted pistachios
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 3 ounces shaved parmesan cheese to taste
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey


  • Prepare the ingredients: rinse and dry the arugula. Remove the flesh fro the avocado and cut it into chunks. Remove shells if needed from the pistachios and measure them. Mix the salad dressing ingredients (olive oil, honey and lemon juice) together in a small bowl or jar.
  • Place the baby arugula,pistachios and avocado chunks into a large bowl.
  • Pour half of the dressing over the salad and gently toss.
  • Use a Y-vegetable peeler or a sharp knife to shave the parmesan cheese into thin slices and add them to the salad.
  • Season with sea salt and black pepper to taste, gently toss the salad again and serve immediately with dressing on the side.


Serve with grilled chicken or seafood for a complete dinner.
Extra salad dressing can be stored in the refrigerator for a week.
See article above for variations, tips and suggestions.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 418kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 23g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 359mg | Potassium: 515mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1588IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 363mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and can vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used

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  1. Simple arugula salads are SO satisfying and your additions are the perfect touches to make it better! Definitely going to throw this together.