This easy Mediterranean shrimp salad is less about the lettuce (peppery arugula in this case) and more about the tender poached shrimp, supple white beans, and bursting bites of tomato in a tangy champagne vinegar laced dressing.
With recipes like my healthy kale salad with quinoa and shrimp or citrus shrimp and avocado salad, shareable shrimp salads aren’t anything new here on the blog, and if anything, they’re sure to get a finger-triggering “I LIKE!” response whenever I create a new one.
This Mediterranean inspired recipe, with its smooth champagne vinaigrette that infuses flavor into the plump shrimp and mellow white cannellini beans, is truly multi-functional. It can be a healthy potluck salad option that’s sure to impress, or meal-prepped ahead of time and quickly pulled together for a filling lunch, brunch, or light dinner.
But then, isn’t that how the best salads should always be?
What’s In This Mediterranean Shrimp Salad
Loaded with protein, fresh veggies, and a sprinkling of fragrant dill, this simple salad fits right in line with the philosophies of The Mediterranean Diet plan. This salad’s sorcery is that it fools you into believing you’re eating healthy while loving every bite. Because you are!
Here’s what you’ll need to make this Mediterranean shrimp and bean salad:
- Medium size frozen shrimp, shelled, deveined, and tails removed.
- Bay leaves
- Black peppercorns
- Kosher salt
- Cannellini beans, use a best-quality canned variety, or try my amazingly delicious cannellini beans recipe
- Cherry tomatoes
- Baby arugula
- Red onion
- Fresh dill
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Champagne vinegar
- Grainy whole seed mustard
- Garlic cloves
- Freshly ground black pepper
How to Make Poached Shrimp
Gently poached shrimp makes a difference. While you could use thawed frozen shrimp straight from the bag, slow poaching the shrimp in a lemon and wine-infused water bath makes them plump and more flavorful.
What’s in the poaching liquid:
- Dry white wine such as sauvignon blanc, pinot gris, or non-oaked chardonnay
- Bay leaves
- Fresh dill sprigs
- Kosher salt
- Black peppercorns
How to poach the shrimp:
- Bring the water and other ingredients to a boil.
- Add the frozen shrimp, then turn off the heat.
- Poach the shrimp in the hot water until they turn opaque and pink, about 5 minutes. The shrimp should be cooked through, but still tender and supple, not stiff or tough.
- Drain and set aside to cool.
How to Make This Mediterranean Salad Dressing
Use a high quality extra virgin olive oil. For salad dressings with minimal ingredients, I prefer a lighter, fruitier extra virgin olive oil that keeps this salad light and bright. Save the lower grade olive oil for cooking.
Two acids make a smoother tasting dressing. Acidity is what makes salad dressings sing. The secret to a great dressing is adding more complexity by using more than just one type of acid. Here, I combine champagne vinegar’s smoother taste with the zip of freshly squeezed lemon juice along with it’s zest. Red wine vinegar could be substituted.
Whole grain mustard adds the tang. Acting as a thickener as well as season builder, whole grain mustard in this dressing provides bonus bursts of flavor.
Dill is the zesty herb surprise. I feel like dill gets overlooked when it comes to Mediterranean cooking. Bright but not overpowering, it’s delicate chopped fronds add a springy step to this salad. If dill isn’t your thing, try oregano, minced rosemary, thyme, or basil.
Assemble the Salad
Now that you have all the components, it’s time to assemble.
First, dress the shrimp and cannellini beans with half of the dressing for a quick marinade. Seasoning the shrimp and beans with a few tablespoons of the salad dressing then setting aside for 10 minutes or more (up to 1 hour) infuses a swift dose of flavor into the proteins.
Add the vegetables. Start with the more plentiful arugula, then add the tomatoes. Add more or less of the onion as desired.
Add more dressing, toss, season to taste and sprinkle with dill. This salad gains flavor the longer it sits, so don’t be shy about adding the dressing. Depending on the shrimp, you may wish for more salt too, so add to taste.
Make This Salad Ahead of Time
This salad is a meal prep dream, and a perfect solution for quick lunches or easy dinners.
- Make the dressing up to 1 week ahead of time.
- Prep the cannellini beans and poach the shrimp up to 3 days in advance. Add half of the dressing to the beans and shrimp to steep and gain flavor, if desired.
- Slice the onion and tomatoes and chop the fresh dill. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
- When ready to eat, toss together and enjoy.
What to Serve With This Salad
- How To Cook Artichokes
- Grilled Asparagus
- Easy Lemon Rice Recipe
- How To Make The Best Grilled Salmon
- 50 Favorite Mediterranean Diet Recipes
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
Mediterranean Shrimp Salad With Cannellini Beans
- 2 lemons , one for the poached shrimp and one for the dressing
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 sprigs fresh dill
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt , divided
- 8 whole peppercorns
- 8 ounces shelled medium size shrimp , frozen with tails removed
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
- 3 cloves garlic , pressed or minced
- 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups baby arugula leaves
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes , halved
- 1 1/2 cups cooked cannellini beans , or 1 15-ounce can drained and rinsed
- 1/3 cup chopped fresh dill
- 1/4 medium red onion , thinly sliced
- Bring a medium size pot of water to a boil with the juice of 1 lemon plus the reserved lemon halves, white wine, fresh dill sprigs, bay leaves, 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, and peppercorns. Add the frozen shrimp to the pot and turn off the heat. Poach the shrimp in the liquid until they turn pink and are cooked through, then strain and discard the lemons, bay leaves, peppercorns and dill sprigs. Set aside to cool.
- Meanwhile, combine the olive oil, lemon zest and juice of the last lemon, champagne vinegar, garlic, whole grain mustard, half of the chopped dill, and remaining teaspoon kosher salt and the freshly ground pepper in a small bowl or glass jar with a lid. Whisk or shake well.
- Add the shrimp and beans to a large bowl and toss with half of the dressing then let sit to absorb the flavors for 10 minutes or so. Add the arugula, halved tomatoes, and red onion and toss with more dressing to taste. Season with more kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste and sprinkle with more fresh dill. Serve chilled.
More Mediterranean Salad Recipe Ideas
- Outrageous Herbacious Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
- Roasted Beet And Ricotta Salad
- Greek Chickpea Salad
- Tuscan Tuna And White Bean Salad
- Mediterranean Orzo Salad
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