This fall harvest salad is bursting with fresh fall flavors! Crispy apples, juicy pomegranates, pecans, avocado, and goat cheese are tossed in a white balsamic vinaigrette. This salad is crunchy, smooth, sweet and savory. It's a gorgeous addition to autumn holiday dinners like Thanksgiving, Rosh Hashanah, and Sukkot!
This autumn salad looks so festive on the holiday table, and it's easy to put together. Members of my Jewish Holiday Cooking Facebook Group loved this salad last Rosh Hashanah, so if you haven't tried it, I think you'll love it too.
Why You'll Love This Apple Pomegranate Salad
- Easy to prepare.
- Beautiful addition to fall holiday menus.
- Perfect contrast of textures and flavors.
- This salad gets rave reviews from holiday guests.
Dana’s Note: This fall harvest salad utilizes my favorite fruits from the fall season: apples and pomegranate. I love serving this salad for all the High Holidays and for Thanksgiving dinner. It’s colorful and makes a beautiful presentation. The apples and honey in the salad are in the spirit of Rosh Hashanah and are symbols of a sweet new year.
Fresh apple slices, juicy pomegranate seeds, creamy avocado and goat cheese, and crunchy pecans make this fall harvest salad recipe the perfect balance of textures and tastes. It really is a celebration of fall flavors.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
See the recipe card below for a complete ingredient list and measurements.Jump to Recipe
- White balsamic vinegar - Slightly less sweet than dark balsamic vinegar. You can substitute with white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
- Romaine lettuce - Chopped into bite sized pieces. You can also substitute with butter lettuce, mixed baby greens, or shaved brussel sprouts.
- Pecans - Toasted pecans add a nice crunch to this salad. You can swap with pistachios, walnuts, slivered almonds, or pepitas. Omit if allergic.
- Pomegranate -This salad uses pomegranate seeds, also known as arils (the edible portion of the pomegranate fruit).
- Apple - Use a variety like Gala, Pink Lady, Cameo, or Honeycrisp apples.
- Cheese - Both soft goat cheese and feta go well with the salad. Creamy goat cheese makes for a great texture contrast to the other crisp ingredients.
Step by Step Directions
See the recipe card below for complete directions.Jump to Recipe
This delicious fall harvest salad is so easy to put together!
First make the homemade dressing. Add dressing ingredients to a lidded jar and shake well to combine.
Add lettuce to a wide flat serving bowl. Spoon some harvest salad dressing over and gently toss. Top with the rest of the ingredients, and drizzle some more dressing over the salad toppings.
- This salad can be doubled to serve more people.
- Make the dressing a day or two ahead to save time.
- Serve in a low, wide bowl so all the toppings stay on top.
- Squeeze lemon juice on the apple and avocado to help prevent browning.
Apples and pomegranate are some of my favorite fall flavors, but you can also add in other fall harvest produce to this delicious salad!
- Add in Asian pears, roasted sweet potatoes or butternut squash, thinly sliced red onion, or dried cranberries.
- Add in hearty grains like quinoa, farro, brown rice, or barley to make an even more filling salad.
- Change up the greens by using a bed of kale, spinach, arugula, or a combination.
Parts of this salad can be prepared in advance to save you time. This really comes in handy for holiday dinners!
The dressing can be made 1 to 2 days in advance and stored in the refrigerator. The lettuce, nuts, cheese, and pomegranate can be prepared earlier in the day. Cut the apple, avocado, and herbs last, no longer than an hour before serving. Squeeze lemon juice on the apple and avocado to help prevent browning.
Storage and Reheating
How to store: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Store dressing and salad separately.
How to freeze: It is not recommended to freeze this salad.
More Fall holiday recipes
- Honey Mustard Chicken with Apples, Butternut Squash, & Brussels Sprouts
- Za'atar Roasted Chicken with Lemon and Herbs
- Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Dates, Pecans, and Cheese
Fall Harvest Salad with Apples and Pomegranate
- large serving platter
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 4 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar or white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1½ teaspoons honey or maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 6 grinds freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 sprinkles garlic powder
- 6 cups romaine lettuce dry and cut into bite-sized pieces, or 6 handfuls
- ⅓ cup pecans toasted and chopped
- ¼ cup crumbled goat or feta cheese
- ½ pomegranate seeds/arils or half container of pomegranate arils
- 1 avocado peeled, pitted, and cut into chunks
- 1 small apple like Honeycrisp, Gala, or Cameo, remove core and cut into small chunks or short, thin strips
- ½ lemon, the juice of
- 2 teaspoons thinly sliced fresh basil or tarragon Optional
- Measure all the salad dressing ingredients into a jar with a lid. Shake well to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your palate if needed. Refrigerate the dressing until ready to use. Dressing can be made a couple days in advance. Shake well again before using.
- Prep the ingredients first so that the salad can be assembled quickly.
- The lettuce, nuts, cheese, and pomegranate can be prepared earlier in the day if desired or before serving is fine too. Cut the apple, avocado, and herb (optional) last, no longer than an hour before serving. Squeeze lemon juice on the apple and avocado to help prevent browning.
- Take out a flat, wide bowl (like a pasta serving bowl) or a serving platter. Place the lettuce in the bowl. Shake the salad dressing in the jar and then use a spoon to drizzle some of the dressing over the lettuce and gently mix. Spread the lettuce out in a flat layer. Next evenly sprinkle the rest of the ingredients one at a time over the top of the lettuce. Give the salad dressing a stir with a spoon and drizzle dressing over the toppings. You will have extra dressing left to serve on the side. Serve as soon as possible.
- I prefer to serve a salad in a flat, wide bowl or a platter so that the toppings can't sink to the bottom. Leaving all the toppings on the top makes for a colorful presentation.
- If you are in a hurry, you can use a bottled salad dressing. This salad is good with a wide variety of dressings including any vinaigrette or Ranch.
- Feel free to personalize this salad because this recipe is so flexible. For example, use arugula or baby spinach instead of lettuce. Substitute a different nut like walnut or almond slivers work well. Leave out the avocado or pomegranate if you can't get one in your area. Use pear instead of apple. So many options work.
- Taste the salad and adjust it to your liking. Maybe you like more salt (I tend to salt lightly). Maybe you are really into cheese and prefer more. This recipe is a guide to your dream salad.