Fall Apple Salad

The hubby’s side of the family gets together every month for family dinner — usually on Sunday. The cousins run around, play, and argue with each other while the grown ups drink wine and catch up. It’s a pretty nice ritual to have in your life and we’re lucky that the boy (single child that he is) has so many cousins nearby.

What we eat varies but we have started to settle into a routine re: who brings what. My sistah-in-law seems to be staking out desserts and they have been darn good. (Must get on Pinterest.) I started bringing salad awhile back and that is now kind of my thing. I think in a previous post I referred to myself as the salad ninja — which sounds like a game my son would play on his iPhone, come to think of it. The challenge is that twelve salads a year (give or take) means you have to get creative or risk boring everyone. Usually, I just look for whatever is in season at the store and go from there. Right now, my produce obsession is Honeycrisp apples. So that is where I started…

Fall Apple Salad (serves 6-8 as a side)


  • 1 large honeycrisp or other sweet apple
  • 5 oz package pre-washed salad greens (I like half & half)
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced or diced red onion
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts (or walnuts or pecans if you like)


Fill a small bowl with cold water and squeeze in juice from half a large lemon (or one whole small lemon.)

Lemon bath

Quarter, core and dice your apple and place it in the lemon water. This little bath with keep your apple from getting brown.

Fall Apple Salad

After a few minutes, drain your apples and pat them dry with a paper towel. Layer your salad greens in your bowl and top with sliced onion, crumbled goat cheese, and apples. Grind a little fresh black pepper on top.

Fall Apple Salad

You can also sprinkle the nuts on at this point — I left mine on the side initially due to some nut allergies in the fam. Never good to give someone anaphylactic shock at family dinner. Now, you will want a dressing. You can use a bottled dressing — something light and fruity would be good — but I like to make my own. I used some fancy ingredients from Oil & Vinegar but, recognizing you may not have these on hand, I’ve also given you a foolproof Ina Garten dressing.

Cherry-Lime Vinaigrette 

Whisk together the following ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp lime-flavored grapeseed oil
  • 2 tbsp cherry balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp chocolate balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt, pepper, and onion powder to taste

Barefoot Contessa Vinaigrette

(adapted slightly from Ina Garten’s Cape Cod Chopped Salad recipe)

Whisk together the following ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons good apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil

No pictures of the plated salad, I’m afraid… Too much wine, too little motivation to take out my phone and snap a picture. Given how fast it disappeared, I think it was a hit.

Categories: Brunch, Recipes, Salads, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Fall Apple Salad

  1. looks yummy! big family get togethers are always fun. have you tried bringing quinoa salad? it’s my new favourite salad. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Thanksgiving Recipes « Zen of BBQ

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