The Best Salads in Jacksonville

4/07/2017

Best Salads in Jax

The humble Salad. Perhaps one of the most underestimated menu items. So often considered an afterthought, an appetizer, or at best an add on. For me and many others though, salads are so much more. Whether you are a craving your veggies, hitting the gym a little harder, or just interested in testing out the creativity of your favorite dining destination, a salad can represent way more than a bed of greens. For the last few years I've been compiling some of my favorite "Destination Salads" on the First Coast. These salads so inspiring, they are worth going out of your way for over and over again. Let's just say, they are making salads sexy again.

Spinach and Quinoa Salad from Eleven South Bistro and Bar
Spinach and Quinoa Salad from Eleven South Bistro and Bar

Spinach and Quinoa Salad
Jacksonville Beach - my full review here

Eleven South Bistro and Bar is no stranger to awards. For over a decade it has received countless accolades for it's upscale menu, intimate setting, and impressive wine list. Not to be upstaged by the rest of the menu, salads take a much appreciated featured role in this highly lauded foodie destination. This new Spinach and Quinoa Salad certainly has star power and bursts with well balanced flavor. Pay close attention to the Banyuls Vinaigrette, this one can't be missed. Quinoa has been a bit of a buzz word for the last few years, but it truly is a great source of protein. I love this tasty combo pulling together layers of flavor. Eleven South's menu does change seasonally, so if this salad goes missing, you can look for other great seasonal items. The lunch menu boasts a Salad du Jour and you really can't go wrong with any of their selections. 

The Super Food Salad from American Gator Club
Superfood Salad from American Gator Club
American Gator Club
Superfood Salad
Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa , Ponte Vedra Beach - my full review here 

The American Gator Club is one of my favorite "Best Kept Secrets" in the region due to it's somewhat humble location tucked inside the Sawgrass Marriott Resort. Head out to the pool deck and find yourself inhaling the delicious aromas of tasty handhelds, and Southern inspired tapas. You'll also find this colorful Superfood Salad brimming with all the good stuff. Almonds, blueberries, local cauliflower and more antioxidant and protein rich ingredients put this salad at the top of my crave worthy list. 

The 3 Palms Grille Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad
Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad 3 Palms Grille
3 Palms Grille 
Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad
Ponte Vedra Beach - my full review here

I have to confess. As sophisticated as my palate has become, I still don't love beets. That is to say, I still don't love beets when they aren't done well. If those little jewels are straight off the farm and prepared with simplicity and finesse, then I'm all for them. This Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese salad is a beautiful example of how fresh and robust "beets done right" can be. The candied pistachios bring balance the denseness of the beets with a sweet crunch. The Bibb lettuce is a refreshingly light choice against heavier greens like Kale. Top it off with creamy goat cheese, orange supremes, and a citrus poppy vinaigrette and you have one satisfying dish. 

The Burrata Caprese from Coast
Burrata Caprese from Coast 
Coast 
Burrata Caprese with Shrimp
Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island - my full review here

Oh Burrata, that creamy, elegant delight brought to you by mozzarella. Since my first experience with Burrata, I've been utterly smitten. Coast, one of the new destinations created by the brilliant culinary minds at the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, brings a classic combination to life with it's Burrata Caprese. A mediterranean staple including garden fresh tomatoes, crispy prosciutto, and shallots. For a little more protein top it off with wild caught shrimp, fresh from the Atlantic Coast. It doesn't get much better than that folks. 

The Super Kale Salad from M Shack
Super Kale Salad from M Shack

M Shack
Super Kale Salad 
Multiple Locations - Also included in my "Best Family Friendly Restaurants" blog

M Shack burgers have developed their own cult following around these parts. Freshly ground hormone free black angus beef prepared from scratch in house keep fans coming back again and again, but did you know the Super Kale Salad has just as popular a following as it's more meaty menu companions? That's right, this family friendly destination pleases all tastebuds with it's versatile menu catering to meat eaters, vegetarians, vegans, and those requiring a gluten free diet as well. 

The Kale Salad from Moxie Kitchen + Cocktails
Kale Salad from Moxie Kitchen + Cocktails

Moxie Kitchen + Cocktails 
Kale Salad
The Markets of St Johns Town Center - Jacksonville - my full review here 

As striking on a plate as it is flavorful, Moxie's Kale salad brings together beets (done right), and fresh massaged kale. Some varieties of Kale (in my opinion) can have a tendency to get a little stiff and crunchy. That's why it's important to give the leaves a little extra love. No doubt about it, this tender, melt in our mouth kale will leave an impression, and you'll be back for more before you know it. 
The Grilled Romaine Ceasar from Ovinte
Grilled Romaine Ceasar from Ovinte

Ovinte 
Grilled Romaine Ceaser
St Johns Town Center- Jacksonville - my full review here 

Who says salads should always be served cold? I remember my first experience with grilled greens, and it was a game changer for sure! This Grilled Romaine Ceasar is incredible. Pair smokey grilled romaine, with freshly grated buttery parmesan, and the tart acidity from the tomatoes and your tastebuds are going to thank you. So much goodness happening on this plate. Served hot or cold, a grilled salad is a treat for the senses. 

The Market Greens Salad from 619 Ocean View is a show stopper
Market Greens Salad from 619 Ocean View
619 Ocean View
Market Greens Salad 
Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort and Spa - Ponte Vedra Beach

Anytime someone serves me an unseasoned salad, I cry a little inside. Prepared correctly, many salads don't even need a dressing. This Market Greens Salad from 619 Ocean View is a fine example of such a dish. The freshest greens, made from scratch croutons, light seasoning, and a soft boiled egg come together in an unexpected show stopper. Our recent visit definitely left us wanting more of this destination salad. 

The Roasted Beet Salad at Flying Iguana
Roasted Beet Salad from Flying Iguana
Flying Iguana Taqueria & Tequila Bar  
Roasted Beet Salad
Neptune Beach - my full review here 

Earthy beets, fresh mint, bitter arugul, and tart pickled mango combine in this fresh remix of the colorful beet salad at Flying Iguana in Neptune Beach. Of course there are plenty of reasons to find yourself dining at the Flying Iguana. Perhaps more well known for their large Tequila selection, or their flavorful handhelds. You can be sure the culinary staff doesn't hold back when it comes to your greens. If you dig a little deeper you'll discover that Flying Iguana has cultivated it's own rooftop garden brimming with fresh ingredients that make their appearance in seasonal specials, veggie staples, and hand crafted cocktails. Explore for yourself. I promise you wont be disappointed. 

BG Shrimp Chopped Salad from Burrito Gallery
Image Provided by Burrito Gallery - BG Shrimp Chopped Salad from Burrito Gallery
Burrito Gallery 
BG Shrimp Chopped Salad
multiple locations - Also included in my "Best Family Friendly Restaurants" blog

Not only for Burrito lovers, this Jacksonville favorite has recently expanded to include multiple locations. I had yet to venture to this popular dining spot until it was mentioned to me that they have some killer salads. Boy was I excited when those promises proved true. To be honest I have yet to try a Burrito at the Burrito Gallery. Everything is just so darn good. Order any salad and you'll be pleased but if you have a hankering for shrimp, you certainly can't go wrong with this BG Shrimp Chopped Salad. Our family go-to? A steak and chicken quesadilla, and a Cobb salad split. With generous portions and a can't-miss trio of guac, queso, and salsa you will definitely be full. Did I mention the generous house margaritas? Done and done! 

Where are your favorite foodie destinations? Know a place with stand out salads, desserts, tapas and more? I want to hear about them in the comments below. You never know who will make my next round up!

Until then...

Enjoy the Journey!

xo - Amy West

www.amywesttravel.com 

Mixed greens with Atlantic Salmon
Another Salad du Jour from Eleven South topped in Atlantic Salmon
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