This is a purposefully simple salad full of great fall flavors, easy to make and easy to love. It’s also a great opportunity to use your best olive oil—the salad’s simplicity will really let it shine. (For more about olive oil and when to use which ones, read this post.)
Serve the salad alongside roasted meats, fish, or vegetables. Or, to make it more of an entrée, add sliced apple or pear, cooked farro or wild rice, or roast chicken or turkey. Or all of the above. :)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt, or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper, or more to taste
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 8 cups loosely packed baby spinach leaves (about 4 ounces)
- 1/3 cup crumbled feta or goat cheese
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted (see note)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, mustard, salt, and pepper, whisking until the salt dissolves. Whisk in the olive oil.
In a large bowl, combine the spinach, cheese, cranberries, pecans, and onion. Add the dressing and more salt and pepper to taste and serve.
NOTE To toast nuts, preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the nuts onto a rimmed baking sheet and bake until lightly browned and fragrant, 6 to 10 minutes, depending on the type of nut and the size of the pieces. (Read this post for more about toasted nuts and why they'll make such a difference in all your cooking.)