Pear Salad with Glazed Walnuts
Gluten Free Living – 2014
Pear Salad with Glazed Walnuts is an exotic salad with a wonderful lemony taste. It adds grated lemon peel to spring mix, red onions, pears, glazed walnuts and either feta or goat cheese. Then a sweet lemon vinaigrette is poured over all. This salad tastes like a salad you would eat at a high-end restaurant with its gourmet style and flavors. We loved this tasty salad. It’s also healthy, low calorie and gluten free.
I was asked to bring a salad to a New Year’s Day party where there was going to be a lot of football. There was also ham and cheese sliders, queso and dips, and cookies galore. I already had the pears so I decided to make this salad. The original recipe calls for goat cheese. But when I looked at mine, it was a little past the date, so I ended up using feta cheese instead. I think either goat cheese or feta cheese will work well in this recipe.
A couple of years ago I was shopping in an H-E-B grocery store here in the Dallas metroplex. They offered a brochure of recipes around the holidays. This recipe was in that brochure. While the recipe was titled Pear Salad with Glazed Pecans, the recipe itself, said to use walnuts! I had both on hand and decided to use the walnuts.
H-E-B does a fabulous job including recipes on all their store brand items from cheese, to pasta, to sugar. I’ve tried many of them, all with great success. In fact, if you love to peruse recipes they have some fantastic recipes including salads on their website.
We really enjoyed this recipe. While the original recipe uses olive oil, I substituted avocado oil instead. Olive oil was too strong for this kind of salad. I also eliminated the water in the dressing as not necessary. I tried the recipe both ways, but we liked those changes. I’ve never had lemon zest/peels in a salad before, but it added a wonderful flavor to the salad. Additionally, the homemade glazed walnuts were delicious and the instructions quite easy.
If you’re looking for a tasty salad anytime of the year, this one is marvelous. A sweet poppyseed dressing would also work well with this salad. No matter which way you make it, you’ll adore this fabulous salad.
I originally posted this recipe in January 2014. While my pictures were okay, I knew I wanted to remake the salad dressing. As I stated above, I changed to avocado oil and deleted the water in the dressing. It was soooo much better that way.
I remade the recipe in June 2019 for a monthly Connection Class luncheon at our church. The person who usually prepares those meals was unavailable so I was contacted to make the luncheon instead. I served it with Salisbury Steak Meatballs, Easy Baked Rice, Cavatini, Creamy Sweet Corn and Rapid Rise Italian Herb Bread. For desserts I added Oatmeal Scotchies and Peanut Butter Fudgy M&M Bars. Everyone loved that meal and just about everything was cleaned out in no time. 🙂
Pear Salad with Glazed Walnuts is a delicious gourmet-type salad that’s wonderful for entertaining.
We love pears in salad and this combination was excellent.
Lemon peel in the salad and lemon juice in the vinaigrette provide a rather exotic touch to this marvelous salad.
The Lemon Vinaigrette makes this salad so scrumptious. Pictured above is a double batch of this salad and dressing.
Here’s what I did.
I used these ingredients.
Place spring mix in a large salad bowl.
Heat skillet over high heat for 3 minutes. Add walnuts and sugar.
Stir to glaze – about 2 minutes.
Here the walnuts have been well coated with the sugar.
Break apart the walnuts and spread them out on a cookie sheet to dry. Set aside.
Grate up lemon peel for salad. The original recipe called for the lemon zest of two lemons. I found this too much so only used one lemon. Add diced red onion, or red onion sliced thinly and separated into rings.
Squeeze the juice from the lemon into a mixing bowl.
Add water and soak the pears in batches in the lemon water for 5 minutes each batch.
Gently pat dry the pear slices and place them on top of the salad.
You can design the pears in pretty shapes or simply toss the pears on top of the other salad ingredients, as desired.
Sprinkle pears with Feta cheese and candied walnuts. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
I used these ingredients for the lemon vinaigrette.
The original recipe called for olive oil and water. The olive oil was too strong so I substituted avocado oil. That was a great choice. I also eliminated the water. That also, was a great choice. The dressing tasted so much better.
Squeeze lemon juice into blender.
Add avocado oil, Dijon mustard and honey.
Puree ingredients in blender until smooth. Pour dressing into a salad decanter to serve. The Lemon Vinaigrette is awesome. It picks up the lovely lemon zest flavors in the salad so wonderfully.
Pear Salad with Glazed Walnuts is a wonderful salad especially in the fall and winter when pears are easy to get.
I got rave reviews over this salad when I served it for our church’s Connection Class luncheon in June. Almost all of the adults came back for another serving!
Here’s the recipe.
PEAR SALAD WITH GLAZED WALNUTS
(Recipe adapted from H-E-B grocery stores)
- 16-oz. container spring mix
- 1 cup walnuts
- 6 heaping tbsp. sugar
- 2 large red pears, unpeeled, sliced
- 2 lemons
- 2 cups water
- 4 thin slices red onion, separated into rings
- 1 ½ cups Feta cheese or goat cheese
- Heat skillet over high heat for 3 minutes.
- Reduce heat to medium and add walnuts and sugar and stir constantly to glaze.
- The sugar will melt and become golden in about 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat.
- Separate and spread walnuts on a cookie sheet to cool. Set aside.
- Place spring mix in a very large salad bowl.
- Place red onion slices over top.
- Grate peel from lemons and sprinkle over salad.
- Squeeze juice from lemons and combine with 2 cups water.
- Core pears but do not peel.
- Place in lemon water for 5 minutes.
- Drain, dry slightly with paper towels and spread over top of the salad.
- Sprinkle salad with feta cheese and then candied walnuts.
- Refrigerate 30 minutes before serving.
- To serve: toss with lemon vinaigrette.
- 1 lemon
- 4 tbsp. canola oil (recommended above olive oil)
- 4 tbsp. honey
- 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 cup water
- Squeeze juice from lemon into mason jar.
- Add canola oil, honey, Dijon mustard, and water.
- Check for seasonings.
- Add additional seasonings if desired.
- Shake very well.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Shake vigorously before pouring over top of salad.
Either goat cheese or feta cheese can be used in this recipe. Pear Salad with Glazed Walnuts is healthy, low calorie, and gluten free. Sweet Lemon Vinaigrette is drizzled over the top of the salad.
This is a terrific salad to serve for company or holiday dinners like Easter, Mothers Day, Fathers Day or even Thanksgiving.
We loved this tasty Pear Salad With Glazed Walnuts. It’s really not hard to make and it’s so delicious that you’ll want to make this salad frequently.