Pear Walnut Blue Cheese Salad – This fresh mixed green salad has candied walnuts, sliced pears, a homemade tangy salad dressing, and topped with a crumble of blue cheese.
Salads can usually end up one of two ways and that is either boring with only lettuce and a couple tomatoes that officially make it a salad and not just a pile of lettuce or full of intense flavor, texture, and lots of stuff. Of course, I prefer that kind of salad instead and of course, this pear walnut blue cheese salad is that kind of salad.
First things first is eating a salad that is full of intense flavor. Buttery candied crunchy walnuts combined with sweet juicy sliced pears, tangy cranberries, and topped with a crumble of blue cheese.
The base and texture of this salad is bag of your favorite mixed greens. I chose to use a mixture of baby spinach, arugula, and radicchio. I love the combination of these three together and it makes me feel like I am eating a healthier salad that is loaded with greens and texture.
But no, no, no it does not just stop there because this pear walnut blue cheese salad is also tossed with a homemade salad dressing that is super easy to make, light, and not overpowering. All you need to make this dressing is place the juice of a lemon, some lemon zest, olive oil, clove of garlic, salt, and Dijon mustard into a blender or food processor and whiz everything together until it is comes out creamy and smooth. A simple flavorful salad dressing that only takes minutes to make and can be used on any salads that you plan to make in the future.
So much flavor packed into this salad that it could never be boring and is totally delicious.
Pear Walnut Blue Cheese Salad Ingredients:
- 1 cup walnuts
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- Juice of a lemon
- ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 5 ounces mixed salad greens
- 2 fresh pears, sliced
- 1 cup candied walnuts
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup blue cheese
Using a medium skillet on medium high heat, add in the butter and once it begins to melt add it the sugar and walnuts. Stir continuously for about 5 minutes and transfer the candied walnuts to a parchment lined baking sheet in an even layer and allow them to cool and harden.
In a blender or food processor, add in the lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic, Dijon mustard, olive oil, salt, and blend or pulse until the salad dressing is completely smooth.
Rinse and dry the mixed salad greens. Place into a large bowl to assemble the salad. Clean and slice the pear and add on top of the salad greens. Add in the candied walnuts and dried cranberries.
Drizzle on as much of the salad dressing as you would like and toss the salad until everything comes together. Top with the blue cheese and serve immediately.