I kept telling my husband that I was going to wait until fall to post this salad with maple balsamic salad until he asked me a really good question, “Why, isn’t maple season in the spring?” Point taken. So I realize it isn’t spring anymore, but it’s not fall yet either.
So here it is, and easy to whisk together maple balsamic vinaigrette dressing that I like to add to a salad with grilled chicken, pecans, red onions, apples, craisins, and some feta cheese. It’s actually probably the addition of apple that has me thinking of fall. But let’s face it all these ingredients are available all year round and why should we limit ourselves to seasons for food that’s available all year round?
Here’s what you need:
The dressing is as simple as whisking together some maple syrup, white balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard (I’m not a big mustard fan, and I resisted this step until I learned that it’s also a great emulsifier and really does blend in and not make the dressing taste like mustard), olive oil and salt and pepper. You want to whisk it until it’s all combined or emulsified. This is also a good time to taste a little bit and tweak it to your liking – the combination and proportion of ingredients in the recipe works for me but you might like a little more sweet (add more maple syrup) or a little more tang (add more vinegar).
All that remains now is to prep the rest of the salad ingredients.
Grill up a couple chicken breasts. We seasoned these simply with garlic, salt, and pepper. And then right before pulling them off the grill, I glazed them with maple syrup and let that cook on for a couple minutes.
After the chicken cools for a few minutes, chop into bite sized pieces.
Thinly slice some red onions, slice the apple into bite sized pieces, and chop up some pecans.
Arrange all of this over some fresh spring mix or spinach or romaine or whatever lettuce you felt like grabbing or was on sale.
Drizzle with the maple balsamic and enjoy.
- 1 T + 2 t maple syrup
- 3-4 t white balsamic vinegar
- 1-1/4 t Dijon mustard
- ¼ c olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- Garlic powder
- Salt and pepper
- Maple syrup
- Spinach, spring greens, or chopped romaine
- ⅓ c craisins
- ½ apple, sliced into bite sized pieces
- ⅓ c red onion, thinly sliced
- ¼ c roughly chopped pecans
- ¼ c crumbled feta
- Preheat grill over medium-high heat.
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a bowl, start first with the smallest amount of white balsamic. Whisk until well combined. Taste and season as desired.
- Season chicken with garlic, salt and pepper. Grill for 3 minutes per side. Brush one side with maple syrup. Cook for one minute. Flip brush other side with maple syrup and cook for another minute or until done. Remove from grill and cool for 5 minute then slice into bite sized pieces.
- To build the salad pile chicken, craisins, apple, onion, pecans and feta on top of the lettuce. Toss with maple balsamic dressing and serve.