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Meatless Monday: Punch up spinach salad with sweet roasted apple

To change up the traditional spinach, apple and walnut salad, this version has roasted apples in it.

Image: Nancy Foster/SheKnows

And these aren’t just any roasted apples. These apples are made with ingredients that are in apple pie filling, complete with the brown sugar, butter and spice.

Image: Nancy Foster/SheKnows

Add in Brie cheese and crispy, crunchy cinnamon walnuts, and you’ve got something special.

Image: Nancy Foster/SheKnows

There’s one more touch to make it even better — an easy homemade honey-orange vinaigrette is drizzled on top for a beautiful salad worthy of eating anytime of the year.

Image: Nancy Foster/SheKnows

Roasted apple and Brie spinach salad with cinnamon walnuts recipe

Serves 3

Prep time: 24 minutes | Cook time: 16 minutes | Inactive time: 15 minutes | Total time: 55 minutes


For the roasted apples

  • 2 apples (Gala or Fuji), peeled, cored and cut in 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 dash salt
  • 2 pinches pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 pinches ground cloves
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small cubes

For the cinnamon walnuts

  • 1 cup walnut halves
  • 2 dashes salt
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 dashes cinnamon

For the honey-orange vinaigrette

  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 2 dashes ground black pepper

For the salad

  • 6 cups fresh spinach leaves
  • Roasted apples
  • 6 ounces Brie cheese, cut into small- to medium-size cubes
  • Cinnamon walnuts
  • 1/4 apple (Gala or Fuji), skin on, cored, cut in thin slices (for garnish)
  • Honey-orange vinaigrette


For the roasted apples

  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  3. To the middle of the parchment paper, add the apples, lemon, salt, pumpkin pie spice, ground cloves, brown sugar and flour.
  4. Lightly toss all the ingredients to coat the apples.
  5. Top with small cubes of butter.
  6. Bake just long enough that the apples are baked but still firm (in total about 11 – 12 minutes). After 6 minutes of baking in the oven, pull out the cookie sheet and, using a spatula, turn the apples over. Return the cookie sheet to the oven for the remaining 5 – 6 minutes).
  7. Remove from the oven, and let cool.

For the cinnamon walnuts

  1. Heat a medium-size nonstick skillet on low to medium heat.
  2. Add the walnuts, salt and brown sugar. Continuously stir.
  3. Continue to stir until the brown sugar starts to stick to the nuts (about 3 – 4 minutes).
  4. Add the cinnamon, stir, and transfer the nuts onto waxed paper to cool.

For the honey-orange vinaigrette

  1. To a medium-size Mason jar, add all the ingredients. Cover tightly with the lid, and shake.
  2. Set aside in the refrigerator until just before serving.
  3. Just before serving, shake up the ingredients again.

For the salad

  1. To each serving plate, add the spinach leaves.
  2. Top with the roasted apples, Brie cheese and cinnamon walnuts.
  3. Garnish with thinly sliced apple.
  4. Just before serving, drizzle the honey-orange vinaigrette on the salad.
meatless monday
Image: SheKnows

More spinach salad recipes

Spinach salad with fresh figs, cranberries and walnuts
Strawberry spinach salad
Spinach wrap

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