As the weather cools down and autumn settles in, our cravings turn from cold drinks and ice cream to warming soups and hearty salads.
Salads are such a versatile way to highlight seasonal ingredients. You can keep it simple with just a few components, or load it up with mix-ins like nuts, cheese, and seasonal fruits.
If you’re looking for some fresh autumn salad inspiration, here are 18 of my favorite fall salad recipes. They’re packed with produce, flavor, and texture for satisfying plant-based meals or side dishes.
Apple & Goat Cheese Salad
Crunchy apple slices pair beautifully with creamy goat cheese in this easy fall salad. Tossed with peppery arugula and a sweet yet tangy apple cider vinaigrette, it’s the perfect balance of flavors and textures.
The goat cheese softens slightly from the warmth of the apples and salad greens. Garnish with extra slivered apples or toasted walnuts if desired.
It’s a wonderful way to enjoy sweet honeycrisp or gala apples at their seasonal best!
Brussels Sprout Salad
This shaved Brussels sprout salad is a delicious twist on traditional fall slaws. Thinly sliced Brussels sprouts have a pleasant crunch and juicy crispness.
Toasted pecans or hazelnuts add nuttiness while tart dried cherries provide little bursts of sweet-tart flavor. The Brussels sprouts soften slightly in a Dijon vinaigrette lending fabulous flavor.
For even more texture, toss in shredded carrots or kale. It keeps well, making it a great salad to prep ahead for weekday lunches.
Fennel Salad with Parmesan
This easy fennel salad has the perfect balance of flavors and textures.
Thin shavings of raw fennel have a delightful licorice snap. Their softness pairs nicely with onion slices, juicy lemon, and savory Parmesan cheese.
Scattered fennel fronds make a pretty garnish. The citrusy dressing complements the anise flavor of the fennel.
For added crunch, toss in toasted walnuts or sunflower seeds. It’s a light and refreshing salad perfect for fall!
Butternut Squash Salad
This salad features roasted butternut squash, which has a sweet, nutty flavor and a tender, silky texture.
It pairs wonderfully with the crunch of apples and the tart chewiness of dried cranberries.
The citrusy shallot dressing packs a tangy punch. And the pop of color from fresh pomegranate seeds makes this fall salad as gorgeous as it is delicious.
Pecans would also be a nice crunchy addition. Enjoy it as a side dish or entree salad topped with cooked grains or greens.
Perfect Pomegranate Salad
This salad is all about letting the flavors and colors of fall shine!
Sweet-tart pomegranate seeds pair wonderfully with crunchy apple slices. Toasted pecans add nutty crunch while blue cheese lends a delicious tang.
The possibilities for dressing are endless, but I love a simple apple cider vinaigrette or pomegranate vinaigrette on this salad.
It’s simple but packs a colorful punch of flavors. Enjoy it as a side, stuffed in sandwiches, or topped with cooked grains or greens.
Massaged Kale Pomegranate Salad
This vibrant massaged kale salad is a delicious way to enjoy the superfood powers of kale.
Massaging the kale softens it so the leaves become silky and tender. Paired with sweet-tart pomegranate seeds, apples, and a simple apple cider vinaigrette, it’s an easy weeknight or holiday side salad.
The colors are fabulous for autumn, and the flavors are sweet, tangy, and so, so good. Pecans add a nice crunch too. It’s healthy, seasonal, and satisfying!
Cabbage Salad with Apples & Walnuts
This unique salad features shredded savoy cabbage paired with crisp apples and crunchy walnuts.
Tangy, sweet, and nutty flavors pair deliciously together. Toasted walnuts add fabulous crunch. Green apples lend tartness and texture.
Savoy cabbage has soft ruffles that are perfect for catching the simple dressing. The cabbage softens slightly while still retaining that satisfying crunch.
Pear Salad with Pecans
Juicy pears star in this easy fall salad along with savory gorgonzola cheese, sweet pomegranate seeds, and shallots for a mild oniony bite.
Toasted pecans add fabulous crunch and texture contrast. It’s drizzled in a tangy poppyseed dressing that complements the fruit and cheese perfectly.
Enjoy it as a unique autumn side salad or pair it with cooked grains or greens for an entree salad. So many flavors and textures in one bowl!
Arugula Beet Salad
This salad pairs tender baby arugula with earthy roasted beets and the perfect shallot vinaigrette.
Beets can be quite sweet, so the lemon-Dijon dressing provides a nice tart, tangy contrast. Thinly sliced shallots lend just a hint of onion flavor without overpowering.
Toasted walnuts contribute fabulous nutty crunch. As the beets soften slightly and the arugula gently wilts, the flavors all blend together for a delicious salad full of flavor and texture contrasts.
Farro Salad with Apples
This hearty grain-based salad features nutty farro, sweet apples, peppery arugula, and tart dried cherries.
Farro has a fabulous chewy texture that pairs nicely with soft apples and arugula greens. Feta cheese adds a nice salty accent.
The tart cherry vinaigrette provides just the right sweet-tart balance. Toasted pecans or walnuts would also be a nice crunchy touch.
Enjoy this super-satisfying salad as a meal all on its own or pair it with your favorite protein.
Tuscan Kale Salad
Tuscan kale is fabulous for making kale salads because the leaves are naturally tender and the ribs soften easily.
Here it’s massaged with a lemony, garlicky dressing until perfectly wilted and soft. Mix in shaved Parmesan for a hit of savory umami and nutty crunch.
The garlicky, citrusy flavors are so addicting. Enjoy it as a healthy side or entree salad topped with your favorite toppings like cooked grains, nuts, beans, or proteins.
Simple yet so delicious!
Sweet Potato Salad
Warm roasted sweet potatoes pair fabulously with peppery greens, feta, and almonds in this autumnal salad.
The sweet potatoes grow even sweeter once roasted. Their tenderness contrasts nicely with hearty greens like kale or arugula.
And a mustard vinaigrette brings the flavors together beautifully. Enjoy it warm or cold!
Crisp Apple Salad
This salad celebrates classic fall ingredients like apples, pomegranates, and pecans.
Sliced apples offer juicy crunch. Ruby-red pomegranates pop against the green. Toasted cinnamon pecans add fabulous nutty crunch with subtle sweet spice.
Tangy goat cheese pairs wonderfully with the apples. And it’s all brought together with a maple apple cider vinaigrette.
Enjoy this crisp, refreshing salad as a holiday side dish or healthy weekday lunch!
Delicata Squash Salad
Delicata squash rings have a fabulously tender bite with sweet, nutty flavor that caramelizes beautifully when roasted.
In this salad, they pair wonderfully with tart pomegranate seeds, crunchy pistachios, and a tangy honey mustard dressing.
The squash softens slightly when roasted while the pistachios provide contrasting crunch. Pomegranates add juicy pops of tart sweetness.
It’s a delicious celebration of flavors and textures for fall!
Beet Salad with Balsamic Dressing
This simple yet delicious salad pairs roasted beets with mixed baby greens, goat cheese, and a balsamic vinaigrette.
Beets are one of my favorite fall ingredients. Roasting them concentrates their natural sweetness. Their tenderness pairs perfectly with soft creamy goat cheese and the peppery bitter note of greens like arugula.
The sweet, tangy, earthy balsamic dressing complements all the ingredients beautifully. Enjoy this balanced beet salad as a side or entree topped with grains and nuts.
Apple Manchego Salad Recipe
For this unique salad, sweet apple slices are paired with savory Spanish Manchego cheese. Manchego has a distinctive nutty, buttery, salty flavor that complements the juicy apples perfectly.
Drizzle everything with a simple olive oil and chives dressing to allow the apple and cheese flavors to shine. Chopped parsley or arugula would lend nice freshness too.
Enjoy this apple Manchego salad as an appetizer or light lunch. Simple, yet elegant for fall!
Endive Salad with Parmesan & Orange
This elegant salad features bitter endive leaves, sweet juicy orange segments, savory Parmesan, and crunchy toasted almonds.
The endive leaves are perfect little cups for catching the zingy citrus dressing. Their gentle bitterness is balanced by the sweetness of fresh orange.
Toasted almonds provide fabulous crunch while Parmesan lends its salty, nutty flavor. As the salad sits, the endive leaves soften slightly and absorb more of the tangy dressing.
Enjoy it as a sophisticated holiday starter or side salad.