Apple Pecan Salad

Apple Pecan Salad is an easy and delicious fall salad with creamy and crunchy textures. Served with a homemade Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing, this becomes a delicious and satisfying side dish.

Serve this along side Easy Broiled Pork Chops, Mom’s Classic Meatloaf or Lemon Rosemary Chicken and Potato Bake for an easy family fall dinner. Of course a family dinner isn’t complete without dessert. Fall favorites such as Pumpkin Crisp, Old Fashioned Cream Cheese Pie or Mom’s Old Fashioned Swedish Apple Cake are the perfect way to end the evening.

A plate of salad with apple and pecans sitting on a brown wooden table.

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A serving of Fall Apple Salad with pecans, havarti cheese, red onions and celery.

Secrets To an Irresistible Salad

In my younger years I became a short term salad snob. I say short term because thankfully it only lasted a few years. What it looked like, I thought homemade salads tasted like weeds. Don’t ask me where this came from or why because I grew up with my parents making amazing salad spreads and today I adore salads. I am very thankful I grew out of this stage since salads are an easy and delicious way to help eat your veggies.

What I have learned over the years of making irresistible salads is having salty, sweet, savory, creamy and crunchy components makes all the difference. However, it is important to tailor the ingredients to your favorites so as to make it your own. Here are a few suggestions so that your Apple Pecan Salad becomes completely irresistible.

Salad Greens Options

For this recipe I used spring mix. However, green leaf lettuce, red leaf lettuce, arugula, romaine lettuce, baby spinach or butter lettuce would all work beautifully for this salad.

Apple Options

I very much enjoy green apples (aka Granny Smith Apples) for salads and apple desserts since they are tart, firm and full of flavor. On the other hand, apples such as Fujis, honey crisp and pink lady apples make a delicious alternative as a sweet component.

Cheese Options

Havarti is a luxuriously smooth and rather mild cheese, making a wonderful companion to green apples. However, there a quite a few other cheese options that would be just as delicious such as goat cheese, gorgonzola, feta, cubed mozzarella and blue cheese.

Nut Options

Pecans have a crunchy texture with a buttery flavor that makes them so perfect for this salad. I do recommend sticking with pecans. However, Candied Walnuts, cashews or sliced almonds would be divine also.

Crunchy Options

Adding crunchy ingredients, such as celery to a salad makes for very satisfying eating. Raw broccoli florets, pepitas (roasted pumpkin seeds), cucumbers and bacon also add in an enjoyable crunch. Additionally, bacon adds in a salty component that can make the salad even more irresistible.

How To Make This Fall Apple Pecan Salad

  1. Prepare Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing and refrigerate until needed.
  2. Prep the celery, onion, lettuce and apple. To prevent the cut apple from turning brown squeeze a small amount of lemon juice over the cut slices (this is only needed if there will be a period of time between the preparation and serving the salad).
  3. Add all salad ingredients to a large bowl and drizzle desired amount of dressing over the top.
  4. Toss well using salad tongs and serve immediately.


Should the pecans be toasted for this salad?

Pecans are absolutely delicious either raw or toasted, so it really comes down to a personal preference.

To toast them, preheat your oven to 350℉ and bake for 8-10 minutes or until fragrant and they have deepened in color.

I don’t like the taste of apple cider vinegar. Is there another homemade vinaigrette that would work with this salad?

Yes, my Simple Herbed Lemon Vinaigrette is my absolute favorite salad dressing because it tastes amazing and works with just about any salad.

How do I turn this into an Apple Pecan Chicken Salad?

This salad is extremely satisfying when chicken is added. Leftover rotisserie or baked chicken works beautifully or add 2 baked boneless skinless chicken breasts that are either shredded or cut into bite sized pieces.

Would this salad work well for Thanksgiving dinner?

Absolutely! The flavors and textures are very complimentary to the main dishes for Thanksgiving.

What other type of fruit can I use in place of apples?

Strawberries, grapes, blackberries and dried fruit like cherries would all be a delicious substitute for apples.

More Delicious Salad Recipes

Rocket Pear Salad

Strawberry Walnut Salad

Herbed Barley Salad

Kale and Brussel Sprouts Salad

Pecan Cranberry Chicken Salad

Festive Orange Spinach Salad

Arugula Grain Salad

If you enjoyed this Apple Pecan Salad please let me know by leaving a comment and review below. Doing so helps to encourage others to make the recipe also. Thank you!

A serving of Fall Apple Salad with pecans, havarti cheese, red onions and celery.

Apple Pecan Salad

Apple Pecan Salad is an easy side dish perfect for fall meals or as a Thanksgiving side. Add in chicken and it becomes a full meal.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Apple Pecan Salad, Fall Apple Salad, Salad with Apple and Pecans
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 431kcal
Author: Heather


  • 10 ounces spring mix lettuce
  • 1 batch Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing
  • 1 medium green apple *cored and thinely sliced
  • 1/2 pound havarti cheese *cut into small cubes
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 medium red onion *thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries


  • Prepare Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing and refrigerate until needed.
  • Prep salad ingredients and add to a large bowl.
  • Add in desired amount of dressing and toss well. Taste test as addittional salt or dressing may need to be added.
  • Serve immediately.


*Please use as many organic ingredients as possible. 
Recipe Notes
  • Once dressed, this salad is best fresh. However, it will last up to 2 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container. 


Calories: 431kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 473mg | Potassium: 289mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 3911IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 274mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @thefedupfoodie or tag #thefedupfoodie!

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    This refreshing salad was a big hit. I took it to two different gatherings in the past couple of days and received rave reviews all around and requests for the dressing recipe.

5 from 1 vote

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