Sweet Peach Goat Cheese Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
Summer in a bowl! This sweet Peach Goat Cheese Salad is the perfect light summer lunch or dinner recipe. Loaded with sweet peaches, crisp cucumbers, crumbled goat cheese, and toasted almonds with your favorite salad greens. Toss it with balsamic dressing for a refreshing summer meal!
That’s how I like my summer salad recipes. And this peach salad is one for the books!
Inspired by Sweet Green, I found myself ordering this peach goat cheese salad over and over again. Until I stopped and said, I can make this at home! It tastes like summer in a bowl with sweet ripe peaches, crispy cucumbers, herbs like mint and fresh basil, and tons of crunchy almonds. To make it a bit heavier on protein, I love serving it up with grilled chicken or even salmon.
If you’re thinking how can I get even more flavor into this salad – the answer is grilled peaches! Toss them on the grill until they get those delicious grill marks, then chop them or add slices to the salad. The balsamic vinaigrette pairs beautifully with the peaches and mint.
It’s such a refined summer salad and it’s downright delicious when peaches are in season!
Ingredients for Peach Goat Cheese Salad:
- Peaches: Sweet peaches are what truly make this salad. Feel free to add apricots in with the peaches if you want to give the salad a bit more dimension. You could even serve it up on a serving platter to really show off the stone fruit. Peaches are low in calories and high in fiber which makes them a great choice for salads!
- Cucumbers: Persian cucumbers are my favorite summertime snack! The clean flavor pairs beautifully with the floral notes of stone fruit. Feel free to use hothouse cucumbers or any other variety you typically like. Cucumbers are naturally low in carbohydrates so they are light and refreshing in this summer salad!
- Fresh herbs: I love how mint and basil taste with fresh peaches! I sometimes make a small bowl of sliced peaches with fresh mint and a small drizzle of white balsamic for dessert. The vinegar helps release the juices from the peach and it all just works so well together!
- Roasted almonds: Roasted almonds work well with the other ingredients. Feel free to use sunflower seeds or other nuts if that’s what you have on hand.
- Goat Cheese: I love using goat cheese because the flavor pairs beautifully with the peaches. Feel free to swap this for feta cheese if you like, though it does add a bit more tang to the salad.
- Other additions: sliced tomatoes or charred corn are both summer staples for us and for a variation on this salad, I love adding them in for another layer of flavor. Sliced red onions would also add a new layer of flavor to this salad.
- Mixed greens: feel free to use kale, a spring mix, baby spinach, or arugula salad leaves. The base of the salad is entirely up to you!
- The Dressing: For the dressing, you’ll need extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, honey, kosher salt, and black pepper. Simply add the ingredients to a jar and give them a good shake until the dressing emulsifies. You can also swap the honey or maple syrup if you prefer.
Variations on this salad recipe
There are tons of things you can add to this salad to make it a bit more to your liking!
- You can use rotini pasta or something similar to bulk this up if you’re serving a crowd!
- Add chopped dates to bump up the sweetness and fiber.
- You could use blackberries or other fruit along with the peaches.
- Feta would work well in place of the goat cheese if you want it to have a bit more of a briny sodium-y taste to it!
- Swap the regular honey for hot honey for a sweet and spicy kick!
How to Make a Summer Peach Salad Recipe
- Start with the dressing. I like to use white balsamic vinegar for this recipe but you could use regular balsamic as well. Add it to a clean jar with a tightfitting lid along with olive oil, dijon, honey, kosher salt, and black pepper. The prep time on this recipe is super minimal!
- Massage if the base is kale. Add the kale or your desired salad greens to a bowl. If you’re using kale like I do, you might want to massage the kale with the dressing to help make it more digestible. This is optional but I like to massage the kale to really give it a bit more flavor.
- Serve it up. Combine the salad base (if it’s something other than kale) in your bowl. Then, top with sliced peaches, cucumbers, fresh herbs, roasted almonds, and any other add-ins you like. Add the dressing on top and toss to combine. Finish the salad with goat cheese and serve it up! Feel free to drizzle with more dressing as desired.
FAQs about this recipe
You can add a shredded rotisserie chicken, grilled chicken brush with homemade bbq sauce when it’s on the grill, seared salmon (minus the salsa), or grilled shrimp. Anything you like should work here!
You can use nectarines or a medley of stone fruit if you prefer.
Grilled peaches would be delicious.
I’m using white balsamic vinegar for this recipe as I think it pairs well with the other ingredients. Feel free to use regular balsamic if that’s what you have on hand!
If you like this recipe, you might also like:
- Summer Chicken Cobb Salad with Charred Corn
- Pear and Walnut Salad with Gorgonzola
- Quick Summer Tuna Pasta Salad
- Summer Watermelon Feta Salad
- Refreshing Cucumber Melon Salad
- Grilled Peaches with Cookie Crumble
- ¾ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar (see notes)
- 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
- 1-2 tablespoon honey (to taste)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Peach Goat Cheese Salad:
- 2 large peaches, sliced
- 1 cup sliced cucumbers
- ½ cup fresh herbs (I like basil and mint)
- 6-8 cups mixed greens (I use kale or spring mix)
- ⅓ cup chopped roasted almonds (salt-free)
- ½ cup crumbled goat cheese
- DRESSING: Using 1 tablespoon of honey, combine the ingredients for the dressing in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Taste and adjust with more seasonings or the second tablespoon of honey as desired.
- PREP: Prep the ingredients by slicing the peaches and cucumbers, and cleaning and chopping the herbs.
- KALE: If using kale, I suggest cleaning and chopping the kale. Toss half of the dressing with the kale in a bowl. Massage the kale and allow it to sit for 5 minutes before topping.
- SALAD: Arrange the kale or spring mix (arugula or baby spinach works too) on a platter. Top with the sliced peaches, cucumber slices, fresh herbs, roasted almonds, and goat cheese crumbles. Dress with more dressing as desired and serve.
- Balsamic: I like to use white balsamic vinegar for this recipe, but either will work!
- Dressing: You most likely won't end up using all the dressing. For us, this makes enough to dress two batches of this salad. We keep the leftovers in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks!