Harvest Salad with Apple Cider-Honey Vinaigrette

Harvest Salad with Apple Cider-Honey Vinaigrette

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Servings: 4 to 6

As soon as the air gets crisp and the days become shorter, Chef Bobby Flay craves this salad. Asian pears, dried cranberries, wild rice and walnuts come together and just scream “fall.” Deep green kale is a gorgeous base for the ruby fruit and lightly golden nuts. Look for Tuscan kale, which is also known as lacinato kale, dino kale and cavolo nero.


For the vinaigrette:

  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) apple cider
  • 1 Tbs. finely diced shallot
  • 2 tsp. cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. clover honey
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) canola oil
  • 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

For the salad:

  • 1 cup (6 oz./185 g) wild rice
  • 4 cups (32 fl. oz./1 l) cold water
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup (1 1/3 oz./40 g) dried cranberries, soaked in warm water for 15 minutes and drained
  • 1 bunch (about 1 1/2 lb./750 g) Tuscan kale, stems and ribs removed, leaves coarsely chopped (about 8 cups)
  • 4 oz. (125 g) baby spinach leaves
  • 2 ripe Asian pears, halved, cored and chopped
  • 3/4 cup (3 oz./90 g) pecans or walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) pomegranate seeds


  • To make the vinaigrette, in a small saucepan over high heat, bring the apple cider to a boil. Cook until reduced to 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml), about 10 minutes. Transfer to a medium heatproof bowl and let cool slightly.
  • Add the shallot, vinegar, mustard, honey, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper and whisk until smooth. Pour both of the oils into a measuring pitcher. While whisking, slowly drizzle in the oils and whisk until emulsified. The vinaigrette can be made up to 8 hours in advance; whisk again before using.
  • To make the salad, in a medium saucepan, combine the rice, water and 2 tsp. salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the rice has split (see Tip), about 1 hour. Drain the rice in a colander. Spread the rice out on a baking sheet and let cool to room temperature.
  • In a large bowl, combine the cranberries, kale, spinach, pears and cooled rice. Add half the vinaigrette and toss to coat, making sure everything is well coated. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Transfer the salad to a large shallow bowl or platter. Drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette, scatter the nuts and pomegranate seeds over the top and serve. Serves 4 to 6.
  • Tip: Wild rice should not be served al dente, as it’s best when allowed to bloom. Bobby Flay prefers his slightly overcooked, when the grains are fully butterflied.
  • Adapted from Bobby at Home: Fearless Flavors from My Kitchen by Bobby Flay (Clarkson Potter, 2019)

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