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Pear, Almond + Blue Cheese Salad

Active Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Gluten Free
  • Vegetarian
image for Recipe schema

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Why we love it:

As a full meal, this is a very light dinner, but sometimes it is exactly what you need. Check the substitutions for ideas on how to add to it if you’re craving more. This is a classic combo with an incredible combination of flavors.

Ingredients

  • 14 Shallot
  • 14 cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 12 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 12 teaspoon Honey
  • 14 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 14 teaspoon Black Pepper (freshly ground)
  • 14 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Pear (ripe - Bosc or Bartlett variety)
  • 8 ounces Spring Mix Salad Greens (or baby arugula or kale)
  • 1 cup Almonds (Marcona)
  • 14 cup Dried Cranberries
  • 4 ounces Blue Cheese

Cooking Instructions

  • 1. DRESSING

    Finely mince the shallot. Prepare the dressing by adding all ingredients - balsamic, Dijon, honey, salt, pepper, and shallot to a jar (or mixing bowl) and shake vigorously (or whisk) to combine. Add the olive oil and shake or whisk until it’s thick and consistent. Set aside.

  • 2. PEAR

    Slice the pear into cubes or slices.

  • 3. GREENS

    Wash and dry greens if needed. Toss in a bowl. Add the almonds, chopped pear, and cranberries.

  • 4. CHEESE

    Slice into thin squares to serve like the photo - or crumble in for a more casual presentation.

  • 5. SERVING

    Toss with balsamic vinaigrette and serve.

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Substitutions

  • DAIRY FREE:
    a high quality DF cheese would work here, otherwise omit cheese and try adding roasted cauliflower florets or crispy tofu
  • NUT FREE:
    omit almonds and try pepitas or sunflower seeds
  • PESCATARIAN:
    seared shrimp, smoked salmon, sauteed filet of salmon, roasted halibut, or seared scallops alongside the salad
  • PEAR:
    apple, pomegranate, persimmons, mandarin slices
  • MARCONA ALMONDS:
    walnuts, pecans, regular almonds, pistachios, or cashews would all be good, just look for roasted and salted - or roast them first
  • BLUE CHEESE:
    goat cheese, pecorino, feta, or slices of brie
  • VEGGIES:
    add roasted rounds of sweet potatoes, cauliflower florets, wedges of acorn squash, cubes of butternut squash, seared brussels sprouts. Any of these add a little protein and make it more filling
  • PROTEIN:
    add a scoop of brown rice, lentils, wheat berries, barley, or quinoa
  • TOFU:
    pan sear tofu and add on top, tastes delicious with the dressing
  • KIDS CORNER:
    keep components separate. Use cheese the kids will enjoy. A side of pasta, spaghetti squash noodles, a fried egg, or simply garlic bread round out the meal

Prep Ahead & Use It Up

Whisk up the vinaigrette

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