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This easy salad with grapes is fresh, crispy, it’s a delicious combinations of flavors and textures. Lettuce, grapes, blue cheese, walnuts and a light vinaigrette dressing will have everyone coming back for seconds!
It’s a fabulous side salad option, or as a stylish starter perfect for the holiday season. It’s also ready in 10 minutes.
I’ve enjoyed several iterations of this salad with grapes over the past couple of weeks, and I can’t stop eating this one. When grapes are on season, inexpensive and full of flavor, this is one of our go-to salad recipes.
I love the contrast between the acidity from the sweet grapes, the slightly piquant blue cheese and the nutty walnuts.
It’s all about classic pairings: grapes, cheese and nuts. It’s no wonder it tastes totally delicious and takes a simple bowl of lettuce salad to the next level. I’ve also added some finely sliced celery for extra crunch. And although the recipe requires rich blue cheese, its flavor is bright and fresh.
List of the ingredients
- Lettuce salad (or baby leaf greens)
- Blue cheese
- Dijon mustard
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Vinegar (white, red or cider vinegar)
How to make salad with grapes
(Note: this is a quick description with step-by-step photos, the full recipe is at the bottom of the page).
- Place the all the dressing ingredients into a small jar.
- Close the lid, and shake vigorously until combined and emulsified. Done.
- Finely slice the lettuce salad, and halve the grapes.
- Toast the walnuts (this step is optional, but it’s worth it if you have time)
- Place all the ingredients in a salad bowl, pour the dressing over, and toss gently.
- Sprinkle with some chopped walnuts and small pieces of blue cheese and serve.
Ingredients for salad with grapes:
Green leaves: both gem or Romain lettuce make a perfect and budget-friendly base for this salad. But you can pretty much use any baby leaf greens you like.
Grapes: I love seedless red or black grapes, especially when grapes are in season and sweet, but this time I’ve mixed three types of grapes, including some tart green grapes. Feel free to use your favorite varieties.
Blue cheese: roquefort, gorgonzola piccante (aged and drier than sweet gorgonzola), Danish blue cheese, they all work fine in this recipe. Make sure the cheese is creamy but firm enough to crumble or to be cut into small pieces. The recipe calls only for 3oz of cheese, it adds flavor without weighing it down. But feel free to add a bit more cheese if you like.
Walnuts: this is a classic choice for this grape salad, and it’s worth toasting them in the stove or in the oven, it brings out their delicious earthiness.
Celery: make sure it’s fresh and crunchy, but feel free to skip it if you don’t have it on hand.
Salad dressing: I used a light vinaigrette made with vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, and Dijon mustard. I wouldn’t use any balsamic vinegar or honey in this dressing, they add extra sweetness making the grape salad a bit unbalanced for my liking.
Substitutions and variations
- Mix the greens! Baby arugula, lamb lettuce, baby spinach work fine for this salad with grapes recipe. And if you use baby leaf greens, there’s no need to finely slice them.
- If blue cheese is not your thing, you can use crumbled feta cheese, or mature cheddar instead of blue cheese. That said, you could easily skip the cheese for a delicious dairy-free/vegan salad.
- Nuts: you can use pecans or hazelnuts instead of walnuts, and you’re welcome to substitute toasted sunflower seeds for the walnuts for a nut-free option.
- More protein? Some shredded cooked chicken would be a perfect add-in.
Tips to make a delicious grape salad!
- Finely slice the lettuce, and get maximum fresh flavor in every bite.
- Cut the grapes in halves, this is a must: it’s safer and important for the texture.
- Toast the walnuts until golden for a little extra crunch!
- Mix in the dressing gently, maximum 1 hour before serving.
How long last this salad with grapes in the refrigerator?
It keeps well, covered and refrigerated, for up to 24 hours before serving it. So you can make it ahead, but keep the vinaigrette aside. The trick is not to add the dressing (or any salt!) until just before you serve it. The salt draws moisture out of the lettuce making the leaves to lose their crispiness, you don’t want that. : )
More salad recipes to impress?
If you look for more festive salads, I’ve got you covered with this collections of 15 beautiful salads! Below some of our favorites, delicious all year round and also perfect for special occasions:
This delicious salad with grapes 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
Salad with grapes
Salad with grapes
- 5oz (150 grams) Romain or gem lettuce, finely sliced
- 10oz (280 grams) grapes, cut into halves (approx 2 cups)
- 3oz (80 grams) Blue cheese (roquefort, gorgonzola or stiton…)
- 2 small celery ribs, sliced
- 15 walnut halves, toasted and cut into pieces
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp vinegar (red, white, or cider vinegar)
- ½ tsp Dijon mustard
- ¼ – ½ tsp fine salt, to taste
- ⅛ tsp black pepper, plus more to serve if desired
- 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.
- Make the dressing: place the dressing ingredients into a jar with lid, shake until well emulsified. I used a scant ½ tsp of salt for the dressing, something between ¼ and ½ tsp.
- Assemble the salad: place the finely sliced lettuce, grapes, celery, and the blue cheese into a large serving bowl. Add half of the toasted walnuts, pour the dressing over and toss gently.
- Serve: sprinkle with the rest of the walnuts, freshly ground black pepper if desired, and serve.
1. Crumbled feta or mature cheddar instead of blue cheese. It’s fine to skip the cheese for a vegan option.
2. Toasted pecans, hazelnuts or toasted pumpkin seeds instead of walnuts. Nutrition facts: the nutrition values are for one serving and are based on an online nutrition calculator (the final drizzle of olive oil is not included). It’s an estimate only and it should not be considered as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. Please see my disclosure policies.