We love to make this roasted pear and apple salad in the fall with all the freshly harvested apples and pears!
It is topped with prosciutto, cinnamon pecans, pepitas, gorgonzola and raisins then tossed with the most stunning caramelized shallot maple vinaigrette.
Ingredients for Roasted Apple Salad
Here is a list of the ingredients you will need for this salad recipe:
- Prosciutto – adds crunch and smoky delicious flavor
- Honeycrisp Apples (or Jonagold) – these apples hold up great to roasting and the flavor is the best
- Bartlett Pear (or Bosc) – become so flavorful and delicious when roasting
- Cinnamon Pecans (or Hazelnuts) – You can buy these at the store or make them on your own. See section below for how to make them at home.
- Olive Oil – helps keep the apples and pears from sticking to the pan
- Black Pepper – adds flavor
- Mixed Greens with Arugula – If your container of mixed greens doesn’t include arugula then buy some arugula and add it. Arugula just shines in this salad!!
- Gorgonzola – We love gorgonzola but it is easily substituted with any cheese you love. Try smoked cheddar, gouda, goat cheese, manchego, gruyere, etc.
- Pepitas – adds a yummy little crunch and nutty flavor
- Golden Raisins – can be replaced with regular raisins, craisins or pomegranate seeds
This recipe was inspired by a Taste of Home recipe I was reading. It just sounded so good and it was fabulous on this salad! Here is what you will need:
- Shallots – have a mild onion flavor and caramelize quickly
- Kosher Salt – adds a touch of flavor to the shallots as they caramelize
- Maple Syrup – use the real stuff!
- White Balsamic Vinegar (or Apple Cider Vinegar) – you gotta have vinegar for a vinaigrette, both these options are sweet and tangy
- Olive Oil – the base of the vinaigrette
The measurements for each ingredient in the salad and in the homemade dressing are listed in the recipe card at the end of this post.
What Apples are Best for Salads?
I am forever loyal to honeycrisp apples! Jonagold will also work great. If you can’t find those or if they are too expensive (they can get quite pricey), then go with gala, granny smith, or Braeburn.
How to Roast Apples and Pears
Roasting apples and pears is so easy! You will want to slice them pretty thin, cutting the pears a little thicker than the apples. Then lay them on a baking sheet that has been drizzled with a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Make sure all the slices are in a single layer. Place them in a preheated oven (425 degrees) and let them roast for 10 minutes. Then flip them all over and roast them for about 5 more minutes or until they are golden.
How to Make Cinnamon Pecans
Do you ever smell those to-die-for cinnamon nuts at football games or state fairs? It is seriously the best smell on earth! You can make them at home so easily! Here is what you will need:
- 1 1/2 cups whole pecans
- 3 Tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons water
To make the nuts, add all ingredients to a large skillet over medium-low heat. Stir everything together and then keep stirring as the sugar begins to melt. Cook until pecans have begun to toast lightly (about five minutes) and then pour onto parchment paper to cool. You can use this same technique with almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, etc.
Can I Use Bacon Instead of Prosciutto?
Yes, but prosciutto feels lighter in this salad and is healthier than bacon. I realize that bacon is probably something you might already have on hand so if you that’s what you have, then go for it!
What to Serve with this Salad
If you want to make this salad a little heartier, add some grilled chicken or smoked chicken. Keeping it a side dish is also a great option to alongside a roasted whole chicken, a pork tenderloin or a pot roast.
How to Store Salad
Salads are tricky to store once they have all been put together because the lettuce gets so wilty and soggy. So if you have extra salad that has already had everything added to it, just eat it within a day or too and store it in the an airtight container.
You can store everything separately for longer and just assemble everything right before eating. The dressing, roasted fruits and cinnamon pecans can be made ahead of time and it’s super fast to just assemble everything.
I am a salad lover! Give me all the salads all the days and I am a happy lady! So I love assembling salads and trying different combinations of toppings and dressings. This roasted pear and apple salad hits all the necessary salad notes…crunchy, salty, sweet, creamy, chewy, yummy yummy yum yum yum!
More Delicious Salad Recipes
Vinaigrette (adapted from Taste of Home)
Prevent your screen from going dark
Preheat the oven to 400.
Lay the prosciutto out onto a sheet pan so the pieces aren’t overlapping. Bake for about 9-12 minutes, or until crisp. Quickly transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside until cool. Once cool, crumble to pieces.
12 oz Prosciutto
Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees and drizzle a little olive oil on the pan. Add the sliced apples and pears to the sheet pan, spreading them in an even layer. Roast for 10 minutes. Then flip the fruits and roast for another 5 minutes, or until golden. Set aside to cool.
1 1/2 Honeycrisp Apples, 1 Bartlett Pear
Meanwhile, heat a skillet over medium heat. Once hot add a drizzle of olive oil, then gently add the shallots, and a pinch of salt to the skillet. Sauté for a few minutes without stirring until the shallots are caramelized and softened.
Kosher Salt, 2 Shallots
Stir in the maple syrup and vinegar. Let simmer for 30 seconds or until the liquid is absorbed. Transfer to a bowl and let cool.
4 Tablespoons Maple Syrup, 4 Tablespoons White Balsamic Vinegar
Slowly drizzle in the olive oil to the shallots, and season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste.
1/3-1/2 Cup Olive Oil, Black Pepper
Add the mixed greens with arugula to a large mixing bowl. Add the roasted apples, pears, pecans, prosciutto, cheese, raisins and pepitas.
1 Cup Cinnamon Pecans, 1 Container Mixed Greens with Arugula, 6 oz Gorgonzola, 2 Tablespoons Pepitas, 3/4 Cup Golden Raisins
Drizzle in the vinaigrette and toss to combine. Taste the salad and season with more salt and freshly cracked black pepper if needed. Serve immediately.
Cheese – This is a great salad to use your favorite cheese like:
- smoked cheddar,
- aged sharp cheddar
- goat cheese
Raisins – You can use craisins or pomegranates for a more holiday festive salad.