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Apple Spinach Salad with Maple Walnuts
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Apple Spinach Salad with Maple Walnuts

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and I’m so excited! I’ve never cooked for the holiday before and I can’t wait to finally take a stab at roasting a turkey. We bought all our groceries this weekend (except the turkey, which we’ll picking up Wednesday from this local turkey farm), and I started prepping tonight by making vegetable stock for the turkey brine. I also cleared as much out of the fridge as possible, so our large 5 gallon pot for the brining would fit comfortably. This meant getting a little creative with some ingredients that needed to be used up!

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t make a lot of main dish salads at home, but there were 6 ounces of leftover fresh baby spinach in a large plastic container from Costco that were begging to be dressed up today. I settled on tossing them with a shallot apple cider vinaigrette and also mixed in some turkey bacon and apple slices. I also whipped up some maple walnuts to add – yum! My Turkey Day timeline is all set and I can’t wait to get into the kitchen this week. I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Apple Spinach Salad with Maple Walnuts
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:

Maple Walnuts:
1/2 cup walnuts
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon salt

Crispy Turkey Bacon:
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 slices turkey bacon, chopped

Dressing:
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons apple cider
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon salt

For assembly:
4 cups packed fresh baby spinach leaves (6 ounces)
1 apple, cored and sliced into wedges

Directions:
Prepare the maple walnuts by placing the walnuts and maple syrup in a small nonstick pan. Heat over medium low heat for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring regularly, or until maple syrup has evaporated; stir in salt. Spread walnuts on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and allow to cool to room temperature.

To prepare the bacon, heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large nonstick skillet and sauté bacon for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until crispy. Drain on paper towels.

To make the dressing, add shallots to the same pan the bacon was cooked in and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes or until tender. Place shallots in a small bowl and whisk in apple cider vinegar, apple cider, olive oil, maple syrup, and salt.

To assemble the salad, toss spinach leaves with desired amount of dressing, bacon, maple walnuts, and apple slices. Makes 2 servings.

Nutrition: 496 calories, 35.7g fat, 4.7g fiber, 9.6g protein per serving
Cost: $2.97 per serving

29 Responses to Apple Spinach Salad with Maple Walnuts

  1. I love that you’re buying a local turkey! When I host Thanksgiving, I am definitely going to do that :)

    The salad sounds fantastic – I would have difficulty not eating all of the maple walnuts!

  2. Good luck hosting TG!! You’ll do great! Not gunna lie, the thought of brining a turkey intimidates me! It sounds like you guys are going to get a great bird from that farm — what a great option! :) Salad looks delicious! Shallots and maple syrup…mmm! :)

  3. Yum! This is exactly what I want to make in the days FOLLOWING the huge Thanksgiving feast I’m going to eat. I think my body will be craving spinach by that point :) And more maple goodness, of course!

  4. I hope you guys had a great Thanksgiving! This salad looks deliciou! It’s so perfect for fall.

    Your story about the bus and missing your stop made me laugh. Don’t do that again! Haha. Maybe you could listen to books on cd, that way you could watch for your stop. 😉

  5. Great salad Kerstin! I love turkey bacon in salads, and your dressing sounds fantastic! We love to have main-dish salads for dinner, so I’m saving this one!

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