stunning sides: apple cranberry salad with zesty balsamic vinaigrette

apple cranberry salad with warm balsamic dressing - porch&tablr

I’ll be the first to admit it – I don’t like salads much, unless they’re more fun, less lettuce like the apple cranberry salad. To me, I would much rather eat (almost) anything before touching the side of lettuce on my plate, and I know, I know, it’s good for ya. 

I just think that it gets pretty dull to have a lump of spinach, or iceberg lettuce and a plain old dressing from the fridge… Pass the mash please! 

But alas, as I’m trying to eat healthy, and embrace the less-lettuce-salads, the apple cranberry salad hit the spot for me. The sweetness from the apples and cranberries and the tangy flavours from the balsamic vinaigrette balanced it’s way into my “acceptable salad list.” The vinaigrette is served warm, but it’s just as tasty cold. That too seems like an odd concept: warm salad dressing… But with these colder days upon us, it’s actually a nice way to add a little warmth to the plate.

Now, onto the apple cranberry salad recipe!

apple cranberry salad with zesty balsamic vinaigrette
Serves 5
Meant to be served warm, this salad packs some flavour. Vinaigrette also delicious cold
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Total Time
25 min
Total Time
25 min
  1. 4 cups of spinach
  2. 1 small red onion, finely diced
  3. 1 large granny smith apple - thinly sliced
  4. 1 cup of dried cranberries
  5. 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
Warm Vinaigrette
  1. 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  2. 4 teaspoons honey
  3. 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  4. 2/3 cup olive oil
  5. 1/2 teaspoon freshly cut basil
  6. salt & pepper to taste
  1. Layer the salad in order above.
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the balsamic vinegar, honey, dijon mustard and olive oil and bring it to a soft boil for 3 minutes.
  2. Lower the temperature to low and add the basil, salt and pepper, and simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. Let cool slightly and pour over the salad.
  4. Toss.