Apple Pecan Salad

This apple pecan salad is a great way to celebrate the fall season in a nutritious way. It is easy, balanced, flavorful, and satisfying. Save this plant-based salad recipe for your next family gathering or holiday event!

apple pecan salad in a bowl.

Apple Pecan Salad

I decided to make this apple pecan salad because I always love to celebrate the fall season with food. However, it is not always easy to find healthy dishes that are autumn-inspired. I decide to take this salad to the next level by making a homemade pecan vinaigrette that is tangy, savory, and a little sweet. It is the perfect way to dress this salad up!

Aside from being delicious, it is also a balanced meal. In order to make a meal balanced, you need protein, fiber, vegetables, and healthy fats! This salad packs everything you need with only 6 ingredients and 5 ingredients in the vinaigrette. You get a generous serving of vegetables from the arugula and cherry tomatoes, protein from the quinoa and pecans, fiber from the apple and quinoa, and healthy fat from the olive oil and pecans!

apple pecan salad in a mixing bowl with dressing.

Tips and Substitutes

  • Arugula: I love arugula so I personally would not switch it out myself. However, mixed greens or spinach would be a great alternative. 
  • Apple: A perfectly crisp apple provides the best textures and flavor for this fall recipe but you can also try pears.
  • Pecans: I don’t recommend substituting the pecans for this salad but you can also use walnuts or pumpkin seeds if you have a nut allergy.
  • Quinoa: Quinoa is such a great addition to this recipe because it adds texture, heartiness, protein, and fiber. If you can’t get your hands on some quinoa, I recommend trying couscous or farro. 
  • Cherry tomatoes: I love using heirloom cherry tomatoes for extra color and flavor but regular cherry or grape tomatoes work just fine.
  • Dried cranberries: These add a perfect sweetness/tartness to the salad. If you don’t have dried cranberries, try raisins or golden raisins as an alternative. 
apple pecan salad in a bowl.

Best way to Serve this Apple Pecan Salad

This salad is great by itself as a nourishing meal but can also be used as an appetizer or as part of a vegan thanksgiving dinner. Check out some of these dishes that would pair well with this recipe:

Vegan Holiday Roast

Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Autumn Inspired Vegetable Soup

Print
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apple pecan salad in a bowl

Apple Pecan Salad


  • Author: Anna Rios
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This apple pecan salad is a great way to celebrate the fall season in a nutritious way. It is easy, balanced, flavorful, and satisfying. Save this plant-based salad recipe for your next family gathering or holiday event!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 46 cups arugula
  • 1 apple, diced
  • 3/4 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup quinoa, cooked
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

Pecan vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 shallot (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste

Instructions

  1. Toast pecans for 5 minutes in an air fryer at 375 or on a pan on medium heat for 5 minutes as well.
  2. Blend all of the pecan vinaigrette ingredients in a blender until smooth. Adjust water to preferred consistency and salt to taste.
  3. Add all salad ingredients to a large mixing bowl.
  4. Add dressing and toss until it is all coated evenly.
  5. Serve immediately and enjoy!
  • Category: Salads
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Apple pecan salad, fall inspired salad, autumn salad, vegan salad

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