Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette

Apples and cheddar just go together. I’ve always loved the combination.

It’s Monday and time to think about staring the week off on a healthy note after some Superbowl party indulgences.

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - The flavors just POP in this fast, easy, and healthy salad!

There are so many wonderful textures and flavors in every bite you can’t help but like it. It’s filling, satisfying, and healthy.

Hearty spinach, crisp juicy apples, salty cheese, chewy orange-flavored dried cranberries, and Fisher Natural Sliced Almonds for extra crunch. February is heart health month and Fisher has nine products certified by the American Heart Association as heart healthy.

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - The flavors just POP in this fast, easy, and healthy salad!

I made a simple shake-it-together vinaigrette that’s tangy-yet-sweet from the apple cider vinegar, honey, and mustard. It coats each and every bite perfectly.

Dressings can make or break salads and this one is a keeper. If you have extra, it’ll keep airtight in the fridge for a week.

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - The flavors just POP in this fast, easy, and healthy salad!

Salads may not be quite as fun to eat as Oreo Cream Cheese Brownies and warm Chocolate Chip Cookies, but they’re reality if you want to fit into your clothes.

Honestly though this is the food I crave day in, day out.

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - The flavors just POP in this fast, easy, and healthy salad!

I loved this salad and so did my family.

Here’s to sticking with those New Year’s resolutions into February.

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - The flavors just POP in this fast, easy, and healthy salad!

Print Recipe

Apple, White Cheddar, and Spinach Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette

There are so many wonderful textures and flavors in every bite you can't help but like it. It's filling, satisfying, and healthy. Hearty spinach, crisp juicy apples, salty cheese, chewy orange-flavored dried cranberries, and almonds for extra crunch. There's a simple shake-it-together vinaigrette that's tangy-yet-sweet from olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, and mustard. It coats each and every bite perfectly. If you have extra, it'll keep airtight in the fridge for a week.

Yield: Serves 2 generously, or 4 modestly

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

Salad
about 6 cups fresh spinach
1 large apple, cored and sliced very thin (try Envy, Gala, Fuji, or similar)
1 cup grated aged white cheddar
1/2 cup dried orange-flavored cranberries (I use Trader Joe's; plain dried cranberries may be substituted)
1/2 cup Fisher Natural Sliced Almonds

Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette 
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons mustard (I like either dijon or honey mustard)
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
3/4 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste

Directions:

  1. Salad - To a large bowl or platter, add all ingredients in the order listed; set aside.
  2. Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette - In a small glass jar or container with a lid, add all ingredients, put the lid on and shake vigorously until combined; taste vinaigrette and tweak as necessary to taste. Drizzle over salad, toss to combine, and serve immediately. If you don't use all the vinaigrette, extra will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 1 week.

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Post is brought to you by Fisher. The recipe, images, text, and opinions expressed are my own. #thinkfisher

51 comments

  1. I have spring mix, galas, dried cranberries, extra sharp cheddar and smoked almonds on hand. This salad looks so good I’m calling those ingredients close enough to make it for lunch today!

    • Knowing your tastes, I think you’re going to love it as much as I did and that’s awesome that you have all these items on hand…great minds think alike! LMK what you think!

  2. This totally sounds like one of the salads that I order at a restaurant that I LUHVE! The crunchy apples, cheesy goodness and that vinaigrette! I Need it. Pinned!

  3. Yep, I have everything for this salad in my fridge or pantry. Lunch is calling. Perfect!

  4. This salad is a trifecta…I love apples cheese and nuts…I’m getting over a foot of snow today and a salad makes me long for warmer weather.

    • Me too – and I live in San Diego. The days are getting a bit longer, like 10 mins in the evening and as an evening runner, it’s like borrowed time! And a sign spring is maybe coming :)

  5. Mel and I were just saying it’s fruit and salad ONLY today. This salad looks so good – I think it’s dinner. Pinned!

  6. At the risk of shocking you two days in a row … this sounds yummy! I really do try to focus on healthy eating! ;)

  7. That dressing sounds beyond! Perfect pairing to the apples, cranberries and cheese….gonna test it out tonight! I’m a salad fanatic.

    .:Marta:.

  8. Who doesn’t love the apple-cheddar combo? This salad looks scrumptious!

  9. Yes, after yesterday chowing on all the wrong (but tasty) kinds of food, now is the day to eat this gorgeous salad. Now, THIS salad is all what I’m craving!

  10. Hi

    What brand of aged white cheddar did you use in this recipe.

  11. Oh wow, what a delicious-looking salad! I love the apple+cheese combo, and I can’t believe I’ve never tried it on salad. I’ll have to try it as soon as I can get to the store to buy some cheddar (it’s a snow day and they’re still clearing the roads…and I just realized I don’t have any cheese in the house – how is that even possible??)!

  12. I totally loved this–the apple and cheddar hit the spot today! Your salads are always so good, and they seem to appear just when I’m in the mood for something different. I made enough dressing to pour over shredded cabbage, toasted walnuts and another apple tomorrow.

    • Thanks for trying this one on the same day I posted it – you’re the best! And glad you enjoyed it and now you have enough dressing for tomorrow’s recipe :) And you’re in luck…I have another salad next week or maybe the week after? with a totally unexpected dressing but I think you’ll enjoy that one too :) Thanks for the feedback, Paula!

  13. I’m so excited to try this recipe. So delicious! So inspirational!

  14. How light, fresh and delicious! I don’t mind eating healthier when healthier looks this good!

  15. This salad looks delicious, Averie! I always keep a bag of spinach leaves in my fridge, so I’m definitely going to try this out. Love the dressing, too!

  16. I so want this salad Averie!! Need to make up for all my wild eating in Switzerland ;)

  17. This looks delicious! I love creative salads like this!

  18. What a gorgeous photograph of a salad! I love salads and eat them almost every day. I have a pear-cranberry vinegar in my cabinet that’s looking for a salad to dress. Do you think I could substitute this vinegar for the apple cider variety? :)

  19. i am so glad you said white cheddar rather than gouda or blue cheese. I am just not a huge fan of blue cheese and I swear its on every salad I see on blogs! This looks great

    • Funny I have people in my family who are not blue cheese fans and while I like it, I’ve been conditioned over the years to not buy it often and so I never even think to use it for blog recipes :) So you’re safe here!

  20. ok this combo SOUNDS good so i’m sure it would taste even better, delish. i love your savory recipes just as much as your sweet ones, Avery. pinning and trying this one too. thanks!

  21. Delicious salad—–I love all the components.

  22. This salad looks so refreshing and good. I just want to start eating from my screen. I love love love this recipe.

  23. I love the combination of moisty apple, sweet cranberries and salty cheese and crunchy almonds. I usually use toasted pines and fresh pomegranade in my salads, but this also looks really tasty! Thanks for a great recipe!

    /F

    http://globalspicedblog.tumblr.com/

  24. Averie I have to say your photos are gorgeous. I always have the hardest time photographing salads but yours looks fantastic!

    • Thanks for sharing that! I have a hard time with MOST salads actually. This one wasn’t too terrible but usually I am left taking wayyyyy tooooo many photos…of lettuce. As I think to myself, this really shouldn’t be that hard :)

  25. I made this salad for my wife, and couldn’t explain how much she loved it. Thanks for the recipe, Averie :)

  26. Can you substitute Guyere or Swiss cheese for the aged white cheddar?

  27. So, learned something new today. Those cranberries my husband “hates” somehow are perfectly awesome on salad. Go figure. Made it for myself thinking he wouldn’t want any since it has all the elements of nothing he likes. But I think I am one step closer to incorporating non-ranch salad in my life. Can I get an AMEN!

    • That is awesome he liked the cranberries, even though he previously ‘hated’ them. Yeah, kids (and men) can be soooo fickle about what they think they don’t like, when it’s presented in a new way! Love it when this happens!

  28. Make it today! Yum!! Ok, used glazed walnuts because I used the last of the pecans to make spiced nuts.
    p.s. I’m cheating on you with Christina Tosi and making cornflake, marshmallow and chocolate chip cookies. lol

  29. Yep, most were fairly flat. It did seem to be too much butter and there wasn’t enough chocolate (but after 10 minutes of creaming butter/sugar/egg with a hand mixer I wasn’t thinking I wanted to mix anything else in). I’ve made the compost and the blueberries and cream before…with the same results. I do like the crumbly bits in them tho’ (yeah, i cheated on the graham cracker pie crumbs and broke up a Kebbler crust). I really like some of the ideas so I guess I’m going to work on making the parts I like work in practice. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and your stuff!!

    • Sorry to hear yours were flat-ish (but it’s common with her recipes I’ve found and not surprising, as frustrating as it is!). She had great ideas for add-ins, crumbly bits, unique textures and flavors, it’s just a matter of working those things into a dough base that holds up better, IMO :)

  30. Tried this salad yesterday. My family – not cranberries lovers. Well, they are now. Food presented in the right way can make wonders.

  31. I’m making this salad tonight! Just replacing the almonds with sunflower seeds.  Should be yummy!

  32. Love the vinaigrette!

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