An easy Pear Salad Recipe with candied walnuts and gorgonzola is all you need to compliment the Fall season! It’s the perfect dish for a light lunch, dinner or holiday meal. Tossed in a homemade white wine vinaigratte, this fruit and nut salad is simple, crisp and irresistible.
Fall is coming upon us, and for me, that means a transition in our dinner menus. There is nothing more simple than making a fresh salad, from the dressing up! I was telling friend and photographer Alea just how quick it is to make your own salad dressing.
She was amazed it could be done in just 3 minutes. Actually, more often than not, less than 1. Especially when you get the hang of it. Once you’ve had it, you’ll never buy another bottle again!
This combination of greens, fall fruit, nuts, and cheese is just one of my favorite easy salad recipes – I make it time and time again as a starter for holiday gatherings or to enjoy as a light lunch or dinner.
Pear Salad Ingredients
- Arugula – Tender, slightly spicy arugula is my go-to green of choice for this simple salad! It compliments the sweet pears and walnuts so well. But you can use any of your favorite salad greens. Spinach would be wonderful.
- Gorgonzola – I top it with fresh gorgonzola, not pre-crumbled, which tends to be dry. Purchase an imported Italian gorgonzola in the cheese section of your grocery store for the best flavor.
- Candied Walnuts – The candied walnuts give it a delicious crunch. You can often purchase them in the store, or you can make your own candied walnuts with my easy recipe!
- Bartlett Pear – Ripe Bartlett pears are key – they are unbelievably tender and full of flavor, especially during the Fall season!
- Olive Oil – Use a high quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil. This is a salad dressing after all, so we want the good stuff.
- White Wine Vinegar – White wine vinegar offers a light, crisp flavor. Champagne vinegar would be just as lovely.
- Minced Garlic – Adds a slight savory, sharp bite which pears so well with the sweet ingredients.
- Black Pepper – Purchase a small pepper mill and whole black peppercorns for fresh cracked black pepper. It tastes so much better than the ground variety.
How to Make Pear and Walnut Salad with Gorgonzola
- In a jar with an airtight lid, shake the olive oil, white wine vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper.
- Toss with arugula and top with gorgonzola, walnuts, and ripe pear.
What is the Best Pear for Salad?
Barlett pears are my go-to choice for this fruit and nut salad. I love their sweet, juicy flavor and soft texture. You can also try the popular Bosc pear which are wonderfully crisp and have a delicate, sweet flavor. Or for the sweetest pear, go for the Comice pear, which are less grainy and have a clean, bright pear flavor.
As long as it’s ripe – it’s good enough for me!
What Kind of Cheese Pairs Well with Pears?
Since pears are so sweet when in season, they pair wonderfully with intense, flavorful cheeses like a blue cheese or goat cheese. That’s why Gorgonzola is the cheese of choice for this salad! If you want to up the sweetness factor a bit more, look for Gorgonzola Dolce in the cheese section – it is more delicate in flavor and texture.
How Do You Serve Pear and Gorgonzola Salad?
To serve this easy pear salad recipe, I like to pile it high on a platter so everyone can enjoy a good mix.
To really see how quick and easy this Irresistible Salad Recipe is, watch the video in this post.
More Salad Recipes You’ll Love
Easy Pear Salad Recipe with Walnuts
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 6 cup arugula
- 5 ounces gorgonzola anything but pre-crumbled
- 2 1/2 ounces candied walnuts
- 1 bartlett pear ripe, cubed
- In a jar with an airtight lid, shake the vinaigrette ingredients.
- Toss with arugula and top with gorgonzola, walnuts and ripe pear.