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Pear Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing!

Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese

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In the fall and winter, this Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese will make you forget that you’ve been longing for garden tomatoes and summer produce. It’s both delicious and memorable!

Pear Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing!

Spinach Pear Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

This salad hits all the marks. My ideal green salad must have fresh fruit, dried fruit, cheese and nuts. An irresistible salad dressing doesn’t hurt either! For this autumnal salad, I went with Bartlett pears, dried cranberries, a creamy blue cheese and toasted almonds. Fall salads can be just as amazing as peak of season summer salads!

Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing!

Company Worthy Salad

By the time my dinner club could agree on a date, it was early December. My Oktoberfest theme was out, so I just went with an autumnal vibe.

This spinach pear salad would make a lovely light lunch, a terrific addition to a big family meal and is even elegant enough for special company. If you’re not into pears and blue cheese, try the lovely poppy seed dressing on your favorite spinach salad!

More Seasonal Salad Recipes You’ll Love:

Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing! Print

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Pear Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing!

Pear Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

In the fall and winter, this Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese will make you forget that you’ve been longing for garden tomatoes and summer produce. It’s both delicious and memorable!

  • Author: Liz Berg
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Salad, Side Dish
  • Method: Mixing
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

Salad:

  • 5 ounces baby spinach
  • 2 Bartlett pears, cored, cut into quarters, then thinly sliced (prep right before serving so they don’t oxidize, or coat them with salad dressing)
  • 4 ounces blue cheese, cut or broken into small chunks
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries (Craisins)
  • 1/4 of a small red onion, sliced thinly and soaked in ice water for 15 minutes to mellow the bite

Salad Dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds

Instructions

Divide spinach onto 4 plates or salad bowls. Arrange the rest of the ingredients over spinach.*

Make dressing by whisking together the vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper in a Pyrex measuring cup or mixing bowl. Whisk in the honey.** Slowly drizzle in the olive oil until mixture emulsifies. Whisk in the poppy seeds.

Pour dressing over salad, making sure to lightly coat the pears to prevent oxidation.

Notes

*To prevent the pears from oxidizing (turning brown), you may want to cut them right before serving. Alternatively, toss the pear slices in some the salad dressing up to an hour before serving to prevent browning.

**Originally, I added the honey and poppy seeds at the same time. That made a mixture that was tough to emulsify. It still worked but took a little more muscle.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 510kcal
  • Sugar: 23g
  • Sodium: 526mg
  • Fat: 39g
  • Saturated Fat: 9g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 33g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 9g
  • Cholesterol: 21mg
Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese | A terrific autumn or winter salad with an out of this world salad dressing!
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16 comments on “Spinach Pear Salad with Cranberries and Blue Cheese”

  1. Definitely my kind of salad! Fresh and so good for us too. Thanks for sharing, Liz.

  2. Sounds great! All of the salads in your ‘you might also like’ photos look great too:@)

  3. I could eat a salad like this every day of the week! The dresing sounds wonderful. And just the thought of spinach makes me feel healthier!

  4. Ah! I must try this. I have never added pear to salad before. But I’ll leave out the blue cheese 🙂

  5. we are on the same thought process. I love pears this is awesome, I will try it. Have everything to get it set for my lunch today! thanks

  6. Seasonal produce at its best, this is a sensational salad, I love everything about it, thank you for the recipe 🙂

  7. What a gorgeous salad. I love how you’ve composed it. I happen to have a little extra blue cheese in the fridge1

  8. What a pretty winter salad, I just love the variety of textures and flavours. I usually poach my pears this time of year because they are usually so hard here. JT would love this combo.

  9. Pear salads are some of my favorites! Love this combination of flavors too.

  10. Why do I not put more pears in my salads!? This is genius!! I might swap the blue cheese for goat 😉

  11. Beautiful winter salad, I love the pears and cranberries!

  12. I love pears and think they are an underused fruit. You’ve certainly created a tasty salad.

  13. Perfect salad for the season. Recently, I started adding fruits to my salads and now know what I’ve been missing. The Mr even liked them. You certainly did hit all the marks on this one. No extra protein needed.

  14. Yummy salad! Nice vinaigrette as well that would work on a variety of salads.

  15. Wow, certainly didn’t expect the pear & spinach to go together, Liz! Love the combination! Check out our latest Giveaway to Win USD 50 Open to All Worldwide! xoxo

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