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Autumn Salad tossed with apple cider vinaigrette in a white bowl sitting on a wooden cutting board.

Autumn Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette

Crisp greens are topped with tart apples, sweet dried cranberries, feta cheese, toasted pecans, and crispy bacon in this Autumn Salad. Finish off with our sweet and tangy Apple Cider Vinaigrette.

Yield: 6 servings 1x
Prep: 15 minutesCook: 0 MinutesTotal: 15 minutes


Apple Cider Vinaigrette Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (sub: honey)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Autumn Salad Ingredients:

  • 8 cups crisp Romaine or Green Leaf lettuce, chopped (approximately 1 head of lettuce)
  • 2 medium tart red apples, cored and diced (do not peel) (recommended: Fuji or Honeycrisp)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries (sub: fresh pomegranate seeds)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted (see Cooking Notes)
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (try baking it ahead of time)
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese (sub: Gorgonzola crumbles)

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  1. Add all the dressing ingredients to a jar with a lid, seal, and shake. (You can make ahead and store in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.)
  2. Add all the salad ingredients to a large bowl, lightly drizzle about 2/3rds of the dressing over the top and toss. Serve with the extra dressing on the side.


  • Bacon Tip: To save time on this salad, be sure to cook the bacon in the oven. It reduces the stovetop mess and is an easy way to cook bacon in bulk.
  • How to Roast Pecans: Preheat oven to 350°F. Place pecans on a rimmed sheet pan. Bake for 5-10 minutes, shaking halfway through. You’ll know they are ready when you can smell them. Watch closely so they don’t burn! Remove immediately from the pan to a bowl to cool off when done.
  • How to Make Ahead: To prep ahead, wash and chop the lettuce, roast the pecans, cook the bacon, and mix up the dressing. Wait until right before serving to chop up the apple. Assemble the salad just before serving to maintain freshness and prevent the salad from becoming soggy.
  • How to Store Leftovers: Store leftovers in the refrigerator, but keep the dressing separate and only mix it in when you’re ready to eat. It’s best to eat leftovers within a day or two.
  • Make Individual Mason Jar Salad: To take this salad to take in your lunch, layer it in a Mason jar in this order: 1-2 tablespoons dressing, apples, dried cranberries, feta cheese, 1 1/2 cups lettuce, chopped pecans. Use the jar of salad within 24 hours. When ready to serve, shake it up well and enjoy.
© Author: Rachel Tiemeyer
Cuisine: American Method: Mix