This Spinach Arugula and Pear Salad is a delicious and refreshing salad option that is far from boring! Peppery arugula, tender baby spinach, and crisp pear slices are tossed with a tangy apple cider vinaigrette, dried cranberries, and crunchy walnuts to create the perfect side dish or light lunch or dinner.
This simple spinach arugula salad with tangy vinaigrette and crisp pear slices pairs well with pasta, soups, or sandwiches.
It’s easy to make and customizable which makes it the perfect salad to toss together on busy weekdays.
But it would also be a vibrant and refreshing addition to your holiday table this year!
Never eat boring salads again!
This vibrant and fresh salad is crafted by combining arugula, baby spinach, and crisp pear slices, all tossed with a lively apple cider vinaigrette, sweet dried cranberries, and crunchy walnuts.
Arugula and Spinach: I bought a pre-mixed 5 ounce container of arugula and spinach.
Pear: Any variety works. Make sure it's ripe by applying pressure near the stem. If it gives slightly, it's ready!
Red Onion: If you don't love raw onions, feel free to switch it out with caramelized onions. They take longer to make but worth it.
Walnuts: Toasted walnuts add a nice crunch! Pecans would be a great substitute.
Dried Cranberries: I use unsweetened dried cranberries.
Vegan Cheese: I used crumbled vegan brie from the brand Nuts for Cheese. But crumbled vegan feta would be delicious as well.
Apple Cider Vinaigrette: The salad dressing is made up of apple cider vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, maple syrup, dijon mustard, shallot and garlic.
See recipe card for quantities.
A salad spinner is an amazing kitchen tool that has been so useful to me. They are inexpensive and I often times use the bowl to mix large amounts of salad in.
For storing leftover salad dressing, I use these weck jars.
How to Make This Recipe
This arugula spinach salad with apple cider vinaigrette is incredibly easy to make and requires just a few simple steps.
The full written recipe can be found in the recipe card below.
Step 1: Finely mince the shallot and garlic then add to a small jar or bowl.
Step 2: Add the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, lemon juice, dijon mustard, salt, and pepper.
Step 3: Shake the jar or whisk vigorously to combine.
Step 4: Add the arugula and spinach to a large bowl or on a platter.
Step 5: Toss with the remaining ingredients. Reserve some pear slices, cranberries, and walnuts for topping.
Step 6: Drizzle 2 or 3 tablespoons of the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Serve with additional dressing to taste on the side.
Top with reserved cranberries, pear slices, and walnuts.
Note: If you’d like to prepare this salad ahead of time, store the salad ingredients and salad dressing separately and toss together when ready to serve.
Substitutions & Variations
Making salads and salad dressings at home allows you to experiment with various flavors and ingredients to suit your preferences and complement a wide range of dishes.
This recipe is no different. Feel free to switch things up!
Arugula and Spinach: I bought a pre-mixed bag of arugula and spinach but you could use just arugula, just spinach, or a spring mix.
Pears: Apple slices would be great- any variety will do.
Use red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar instead of lemon juice and apple cider vinegar.
Vegan Cheese: I used a vegan brie from the brand Nuts for Cheese. But vegan feta would be delicious as well.
Walnuts: Change it up! You can use hemp hearts, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, pecans, pistachios, or almonds.
Onions: Try caramelized onions if you are feeling fancy!
This salad is best enjoyed immediately after it’s prepared, especially once the dressing has been added.
To prepare this salad ahead of time, store the salad ingredients and salad dressing separately and toss together when ready to serve.
The dressing can be stored separately in an airtight jar in the fridge for 1-2 weeks.
Tips & Tricks
The process of combining oil and vinegar to form a creamy mixture is known as emulsifying. There are three methods to achieve this: whisking the ingredients in a bowl, shaking them in a jar, or blending them together in a blender.
If your salad dressing separates, just give it a vigorous shake prior to serving.
Taste and adjust: Always taste your vinaigrette and adjust the flavors as needed.
Use a salad mix. If you don’t have arugula and spinach at home, you can use your favorite salad mix instead.
Prep ahead. Whisk the dressing and toss the salad in advance so all you have to do is mix them together before serving.
Be careful not to over-dress the salad. You can always add more dressing before serving.
Add as much of the toppings as you like. The measurements are just a guide.
Frequently Asked Questions
I love the crisp pear but apple would be a solid replacement. Strawberries, pomegranate seeds, or peaches would be good too depending on the season.
Definitely but I would recommend storing the salad mixture and the dressing separately so the greens don't go soggy.
The flavor can be is peppery and slightly bitter. I absolutely love it but if you're not a fan, you can replace it with more spinach or butter lettuce.
Not always! Look for the vegan label or check the ingredients for wine. Check out this post on 10 Dijon Mustard Substitutes & Is it Vegan to learn more.
More Salad Recipes
Looking for other salad or salad dressing recipes like this? Try these:
Spinach Arugula and Pear Salad
- 2 tablespoons Minced Shallots
- 1-2 Garlic Cloves minced
- 2 tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 ½ tablespoons Maple Syrup
- Juice of ½ Lemon
- 2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
- Pinch of Kosher Salt
- Pinch of Black Pepper
Spinach Arugula and Pear Salad
- 5 ounces Arugula and Spinach see note
- 1 medium Pear cored & thinly sliced, any variety works
- ½ cup Chopped Walnuts
- ½ cup Dried Cranberries
- ⅓ cup Thinly Sliced Red Onion
- ⅓ cup Crumbled Vegan Brie or Feta see note
- Finely mince the shallot and garlic then add to a small jar or bowl along with the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, lemon juice, dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Shake or whisk vigorously to combine.
- Taste and adjust dressing to your preferences. Set aside.
- Add the arugula and spinach to a large bowl or on a platter. Toss with the remaining ingredients. Reserve some pear slices, cranberries, and walnuts for topping.
- Drizzle 2 or 3 tablespoons of the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Serve with additional dressing to taste on the side.
- Top with reserved cranberries, pear slices, and walnuts. Serve and enjoy!
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