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This autumn arugula pear salad features arugula leaves with a delicious classic combination of juicy pears, blue cheese and walnuts. It’s easy, ready in no time, and tastes fresh and fabulous.
And it’s worthy of your festive gatherings, or any meal in between!
This simple arugula and pear salad has been one of my favourite go-to holiday salad for years now. I can whip it up in less than 15 minutes with just a few ingredients, it’s beautiful, and it always hits the spot!
And if you love pairing fruit with cheese and nuts, this is the salad for you.
The tangy blue cheese cuts the sweetness of the ripe pears and balances the flavors, while the walnuts add their lovely buttery crunch.
Then the peppery arugula leaves and sliced pears are gently tossed with a light vinaigrette, because with all the delicious flavours going on here, we don’t want the dressing to steal the attention!
This is the kind of salad that’s elegant and festive enough for a special occasion meal, but it’s so easy to make that you’ll toss it together for everyday dinners and lunches too.
And it’s perfect to convert anyone to being a salad lover!
List of the ingredients
- Arugula leaves
- Blue cheese
- Walnuts or pecans
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Apple cider vinegar
- Dijone mustard
- Salt & pepper
How to make arugula pear salad
(Note: this is a quick description with step-by-step photos, the full recipe is at the bottom of the page)
- Shake the dressing ingredients in a glass jar and set aside.
I use this glass dressing shaker for my salad dressings, it’s so practical and I love the anti-drip spout that doesn’t leak.
- Toast the walnuts to bring out their nutty flavor.
- Halve the pears and using a corer or a tea spoon scoop out the core.
- Use a sharp knife or a mandoline to slice the pears.
- Arrange the arugula, the pears, the cheese and the walnuts in a serving bowl.
- Drizzle with the dressing, and gently toss just before serving. It’s delicious served with crusty bread, crispy breadsticks or warm focaccia!
Arugula pear salad ingredients
Arugula (aka rocket): the peppery flavor of fresh baby arugula is perfect to balance the sweetness of the pears. This cruciferous vegetable is packed with great health benefits!
Pears: juicy ripe pears are not negotiable here. I used Conference pears, which are in season and good value in the UK, but you can use any variety you want, as long as they’re ripe and taste delicious.
Blue cheese: roquefort, gorgonzola piccante (aged and drier than sweet gorgonzola), Danish blue cheese, they all work fine in this pear arugula salad. Make sure the cheese is creamy but firm enough to crumble or to be cut into small pieces.
Walnuts: for their nutty flavor and crunchy texture, and it’s worth toasting them on the stove or in the oven, it brings out their delicious earthiness. Pecans are great too, but more expensive than walnuts.
Dressing: I used a vinaigrette made with extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, salt, pepper, and Dijon mustard that emulsify the dressing and adds a touch of tangy flavour. I’ve also added a touch of honey for sweetness and flavor.
If you look for more recipes with arugula…
You might love this collection of delicious arugula recipes which includes arugula pasta, pizza, and beetroot salad with arugula and sautéed arugula and arugula frittata to enjoy with crispy bread or warm focaccia!
More delicious fall salads
If you look for more delicious salads that are elegant but easy to make, check this collection of holiday salad recipes! Below a few of my favs:
- Salad with grapes
- Cabbage salad with apples
- Beetroot salad
- Winter salad
- Artichoke salad
- Celery and parmesan salad
- Spinach arugula salad
This terrific arugula pear salad would be great for potlucks and for your holiday table this time of year. If you make it, or you have a question, let me know by leaving a comment. I would love to hear from you! x
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Arugula Pear Salad
Arugula pear salad
- ½ cup (60 grams) walnuts, lightly toasted
- 3 juicy and ripe pears, sliced
- 5oz (150 grams) baby arugula
- 4oz (110 grams) blue cheese, crumbled
- 1 ½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
Arugula pear salad
- Make the dressing: place the dressing ingredients into a jar with lid, shake until well emulsified.
- Toast the walnuts: toast the walnuts on the stove over medium heat for about 5-6 minutes until they smell nutty. Keep a close eye on them. Alternatively, spread on tray and toast in a 180°C/350°F oven for 8 minutes. When they're cold, break them into pieces.
- Slice the pears: just before serving, halve the pears and scoop out the core. Cut them into 3mm / 0.12" slices. Make sure you don't cut them too thin, they're very fragile and they will “flop” easily.
- Assemble the salad: place the arugula leaves in a large salad bowl, and and just before serving drizzle with a touch of dressing and gently toss to lightly coat the leaves (use about 1-2 tablespoons of dressing). Then scatter over the pears, the crumbled cheese, and the toast walnut and drizzle with the remaining dressing . Serve and enjoy!
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