Autumn Harvest Spinach Salad with Pears, Cranberries, and Pumpkin Seeds

This week’s theme in the ‘I Heart Cooking Clubs’ food blogging group is “Autumn Harvest” with Nigella Lawson’s recipes. I selected her Spinach Salad with Pumpkin Seeds and Avocados because I just LOVE spinach salad and always serve it for special occasions and holidays. However, I’ve never made this particular recipe. So I decided to give it a go. And as usual, I made some changes for my own creativity by ADDING sliced pears, dried cranberries, and a cranberry balsamic vinaigrette instead of using Nigella’s dressing. These additions truly made this salad more representative of autumn fare!

Autumn Harvest Spinach Salad with Pears, Cranberries, and Pumpkin Seeds

What You Need:

  • 2 packages of baby spinach leaves
  • pumpkin seeds
  • 2 sliced pears with peels (my addition)
  • 2 avocados, peeled and cubed
  • dried cranberries (my addition)
  • Cranberry Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp cranberries
  • 4 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste


  • Combine all ingredients in blender and mix until smooth. Adjust ingredients by adding what you prefer
  • Here's what you need to do to prepare the salad:
  • Gently wash the spinach leaves with water and gently pat dry with a towel.
  • Add the avocado to the spinach.
  • Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds in the spinach.Add dried cranberries to your desired amounts.
  • Gently toss together well.
  • Place on individual salad plates and place several slices of the pears on top.
  • Add more cranberries or pumpkin seeds if desired.
  • Either add the vinaigrette and toss lightly all of the ingredients again or pass the vinaigrette around in a pretty bowl or small pitcher for your guests to add their own dressing.
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  1. This is a fabulous choice for autumn harvest! I love that you used pears and cranberries. It sounds so wonderful!! I’m looking forward to following you along – you have a wonderful blog!!

  2. This looks so yummy! It would be a great salad for Thanksgiving!! Thanks for sharing a great recipe. Enjoy the weekend.

  3. I love the autumnal feel of the salad. I am a huge fan of pears and cranberries together.
    Haden News is right on – this would be a great, light addition to a holiday table.

  4. This is definitley very autumnal. Baby spinach in salads is one of my favorite ways to eat the green veggie. I like your additions too.

  5. This salad looks really wonderful!

  6. What a perfect combination of ingredients , Roz ! It’s a poem in the kitchen !
    Have a marvelous Friday :)

  7. This is a beautiful salad not to mention the delicious flavors all used here. I love the dressing and I think it would easily become one of my new favorites!

  8. Oh my gosh, this is such a perfect autumn salad…the pictures alone are making me drool! Great additions :D Thanks for bringing it to IHCC for the Autumn Harvest, Roz :D

  9. I adore spinach and I have beautiful pairs waiting to become something sweet and luscious– and, I should hope– healthy. LOVE balsamic, so this would be the perfect salad. Is white vino healthy?
    PS: I need to work on a blog badge. Thanks for asking.

  10. What a delicious combo of fall flavors for a salad! And that vinaigrette – how clever to puree the cranberries! I like the changes you made!

  11. I just saw your message! I’m never too busy to visit your beautiful blog and leave a kind word for a friend! *HUGS*

  12. What a gorgeous salad! I love all the ingredients!

  13. Beautiful salad! A great pick and your changes make it just perfect for fall.

  14. Beautiful! Love the additions. And your pictures look fantastic!

  15. Oh my! Guess what we have on hand? Everyone one of these ingredients.

    We will having this for dinner soon. Yum!

  16. I keep saying I’m going to join in on this cooking club and I havn’t yet! This looks so yummy!!

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