Apple Salad


Apple Salad is a refreshing and flavorful dish that combines crisp salad greens with the sweetness of apples, the crunch of toasted walnuts, the tang of dried cranberries, and the creaminess of blue cheese. This salad is topped off with a zesty homemade dressing, making it a perfect side dish or a light meal on its own. Easy to prepare and bursting with contrasting textures and flavors, Apple Salad is a delightful addition to any table.

Overview of the Recipe

This Apple Salad recipe brings together fresh mixed salad greens and a variety of complementary ingredients, including apples, walnuts, dried cranberries, blue cheese, and red onion. The salad is dressed with a simple yet flavorful vinaigrette made from olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, and Dijon mustard. Ready in just 15 minutes, this salad is ideal for a quick and healthy meal.

History and Origin

Salads have been enjoyed for centuries, with variations found in numerous cultures around the world. The combination of fruit and nuts in salads is a traditional practice that adds both flavor and nutritional value. Apple Salad likely evolved from the desire to incorporate the fresh, sweet taste of apples with the savory elements of cheese and the crunch of nuts, creating a balanced and satisfying dish.


Salad Ingredients

  • 4 cups mixed salad greens
  • 2 apples, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced

Dressing Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Step 1: Prepare the Salad Ingredients

In a large salad bowl, combine the mixed salad greens, apples, toasted walnuts, dried cranberries, crumbled blue cheese, and thinly sliced red onion.

Step 2: Make the Dressing

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper until the dressing is well combined and emulsified.

Step 3: Dress the Salad

Drizzle the prepared dressing over the salad ingredients in the large bowl.

Step 4: Toss and Serve

Gently toss the salad to ensure all ingredients are evenly coated with the dressing. Serve immediately.

Serving Suggestions

Apple Salad is best served fresh and can be enjoyed as a side dish or a light main course. It pairs wonderfully with grilled chicken, fish, or pork, and can also be accompanied by a crusty piece of bread or a warm soup.

Pairing and Serving Suggestions

  • Main Dishes: Serve alongside grilled or roasted meats like chicken, fish, or beef for a balanced meal.
  • Drinks: Complement this salad with a glass of sparkling water with a lemon twist, a light iced tea, or a fresh fruit juice.
  • Sides: Pair with a hearty soup, garlic bread, or a light pasta dish to round out the meal.

Variations of the Recipe

  • Cheese Alternatives: Substitute the blue cheese with goat cheese, feta, or sharp cheddar for different flavor profiles.
  • Nut Variations: Use pecans, almonds, or cashews instead of walnuts for a different nutty crunch.
  • Fruit Additions: Add sliced pears, grapes, or pomegranate seeds for an extra burst of sweetness.
  • Protein Addition: Include grilled chicken breast, shrimp, or tofu for a more substantial meal.

Health Benefits

Apple Salad is rich in vitamins and minerals, thanks to the fresh vegetables and fruits. Apples provide fiber and vitamin C, while walnuts add healthy fats and protein. The blue cheese offers calcium and protein, and the cranberries contribute antioxidants. This salad is a nutritious choice that supports a balanced diet.


  • Toasting Walnuts: To toast walnuts, place them in a dry skillet over medium heat. Stir frequently until they become fragrant and slightly browned, about 5-7 minutes. Let cool before adding to the salad.
  • Apple Varieties: Use your favorite apple variety for this salad. Tart apples like Granny Smith add a nice contrast, while sweeter apples like Honeycrisp provide more sweetness.
  • Dressing Storage: The dressing can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Shake well before using.


Can I prepare the salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the salad ingredients ahead of time and store them separately in the refrigerator. Combine and dress the salad just before serving to maintain freshness and texture.

What type of apples should I use?

You can use any type of apple you prefer. Tart varieties like Granny Smith add a nice contrast, while sweeter apples like Honeycrisp or Fuji provide more sweetness.

How do I keep the apples from browning?

To prevent apple slices from browning, you can toss them in a little lemon juice before adding them to the salad. This helps maintain their fresh appearance.

Can I use a different type of cheese?

Yes, you can substitute blue cheese with other cheeses like feta, goat cheese, or even a sharp cheddar.

Is this salad suitable for vegans?

To make this salad vegan, omit the blue cheese and use a plant-based sweetener like maple syrup instead of honey in the dressing. You can also add a vegan cheese alternative if desired.


Apple Salad is a delicious and nutritious dish that combines fresh, crisp ingredients with a tangy homemade dressing. Its vibrant flavors and contrasting textures make it a delightful addition to any meal, whether served as a side dish or a light main course. Easy to prepare and customizable, this salad is perfect for those looking to enjoy a healthy and satisfying meal. Try this recipe today and savor the refreshing taste of Apple Salad!

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