Say hello to crunch, spice, sweet and tang in a jar…

…and to meal prep at its finest. This might just be my favorite winter salad thus far.

I’m really trying to embrace winter this year…slash I cannot deal whatsoever. Not that I really have a choice in the matter but trust me,  it’s a struggle every single winter for this southerner to come to terms with the unholy temperatures we’ve got goin’ on up here.

And what turns a wintery blue frown upside down? A glass of wine…in my hand…right now…if I’m being honest. HOWEVER, food is a verrrry close second. This light but mighty beast of a winter salad does the trick my friends and actually makes me feel quite cozy while starring at the storm outside (and even cozier with a glass of wine as well). Mooooooving on.

So first of all I’ve been thinking for a while, what is this whole salad in a jar business everyone has been talking about? (ps. I realize I’m about a year late on this) I’ll admit I can be pretty resistant to some trends but then I tell ya, every so often a really good one comes along. This would be one of the good ones.

Here’s the deal. Throw all of your salad ingredients into a jar, drizzle your dressing on top, close the lid, shake, and voila you’ve got yourself a tossed salad without all of the mess. Prep a few jars at the beginning of the week and easily transport them to work with you for your lunch. G-E-N-I-U-S.

The ‘wow’ factor and finesse are all in the texture and flavor combinations. Behold, layers of healthy goodness waiting to be devoured.

Smooth and silky goat cheese, crisp pears, spicy candied pecans, tarty dried cranberries and crunchy sliced almonds. Need I say more? Drizzle with honeyed balsamic vinaigrette and your taste buds will jump for joy!

We’re gunna make it through this winter together y’all, and winter salads are here to help!

Give this pear salad with spiced pecans a try and let me know what you think!


Pear Salad with Spiced Pecans and Honeyed Balsamic Vinaigrette

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 5 jars

Pear Salad with Spiced Pecans and Honeyed Balsamic Vinaigrette

Ingredients

    Salad Ingredients:
  • handful of dried cranberries
  • 2 pears, chopped into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese
  • 2 handfuls mixed greens
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup granola
  • 1 tbsp sliced almonds (optional)
  • spiced pecans (below)
  • Spiced Pecans Ingredients:
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Dressing Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 olive oil
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp honey dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

    Salad Directions:
  1. Layer ingredients in a mason jar. Drizzle dressing on top. Close lid and toss/shake to evenly distribute dressing.
  2. Spiced Pecans Directions:
  3. In a medium-large bowl, mix dry ingredients. Add water and mix. Add pecans and stir to fully coat.
  4. Turn oven on 350ºF for 12-15 minutes or until pecans are toasted and caramelized.
  5. Dressing Directions:
  6. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Drizzle on top of salad.
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