The Speckled Palate
December 2, 2016

Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

This post is sponsored by Sprouts Farmers Market. As always, all opinions and recipe are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support The Speckled Palate!

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts!

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

Please note that some of the links listed in this post are affiliate links, meaning if you were to make a purchase through one, I would receive a small commission. Thanks for your support of The Speckled Palate!

Raise your hand if you’re already inundated with holiday sweets.

🙋🏻

Raise your hand if you know it’s going to get worse before it gets better?

🙋🏻🙋🏻

Raise your hand if you’re participating in The Sweetest Season Cookie Exchange next week?

🙋🏻🙋🏻🙋🏻

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

How ‘bout we take the Friday before a week filled with butter, flour, sugar and all kinds of holiday baking goodness and make ourselves a salad for lunch?

That sounds good to you?

Because it sounds downright heavenly to me.

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

Even though this is a salad and we’re choosing to eat this before we dive face-first into all kinds of cookies next week, I’ll be honest: This salad could be healthier.

In fact, I’d venture to say it’s on the unhealthier end of the salad spectrum.

In the spirit of transparency, I’ll reveal the less-than-healthy ingredients before you get too deep into this post: bacon, dried cranberries, feta cheese, homemade candied pecans and a Hot Bacon Vinaigrette.

But!

BUT!

It’s also chock full of Brussels Sprouts, so that’s gotta count for something.

(Also, please don’t leave a comment saying salads always need to be healthy, and I should be ashamed. You know I love healthy salads as much as the next person, but sometimes, the joy of a salad is in those delightful toppings. And these delightful seasonal toppings make this salad extra delicious.)

Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette // The Speckled Palate

I whipped this recipe up in partnership with the lovely folks at Sprouts. In addition to finding it here, you can pick up a physical copy of this recipe in the Sprouts December Deals of the Month flier!

Pick it up today in stores to grab this recipe and a few others that feature December products and holiday goodness. 🙂

I also grabbed all my ingredients from Sprouts, including a gorgeous bag of Brussels sprouts, for this recipe.

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

Erin’s Recommended Tools/Products for Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

Let’s whip up this scrumptious salad!

Here’s how it’s done:

5 from 1 vote
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Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts!
Course Entree
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Erin Parker, The Speckled Palate

Ingredients

Brussels Sprouts Salad

  • 24 oz . Brussels sprouts , trimmed and chopped finely
  • 4 slices Applewood Smoked Uncured Bacon , chopped and fried (reserve the fat for the vinaigrette)
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup feta cheese , crumbled
  • Candied Pecans (see recipe below)
  • Hot Bacon Vinaigrette (see recipe below)

Candied Pecans

  • 1 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup pecan pieces
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon

Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

  • 5 tablespoons warm bacon fat (from the Applewood Smoked Uncured Bacon above)
  • 1 large garlic clove , minced
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grainy Dijon mustard
  • 1 ½ teaspoons honey
  • Black pepper , to taste

Instructions

Make the Candied Pecans

  1. In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, melt the butter.
  2. While the butter melts, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. This will be used to cool the candied pecans.
  3. Add the sugar and pecans to the skillet. Season with salt and cinnamon.
  4. Using a rubber spatula, move the ingredients around frequently so they don’t burn. (Please keep an eye on them. This is not a task where you should be focusing on anything else, as this can burn very easily, especially toward the end of the process.)
  5. After about 5 minutes, the sugar should begin melting and bubbling.
  6. Continue stirring until all the nuts are coated, then transfer immediately onto the prepared baking sheet.
  7. Using the rubber spatula, separate the nuts on the baking sheet so they don’t cool together. If they cool together, you’ll have a hard time breaking them apart.
  8. The candied coating will harden in about 5-10 minutes, then you can enjoy these!

Make the Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

  1. In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until the fat has rendered and the meat is browned and crisp.
  2. Remove the bacon from the pan, and set aside for the salad. Leave the fat in the skillet.
  3. Add the garlic to the skillet, and cook until fragrant. Remove the fat and the garlic from the skillet, and transfer to a mason jar (or another container that can withstand heat.)
  4. Add the apple cider vinegar to the jar, as well as the Dijon mustard, honey and black pepper.
  5. Place the cap on the jar, and shake until combined.
  6. Set aside until time to serve the salad. (If this is made in advance and the vinaigrette cools, reheat in 5-10 second intervals in the microwave until the desired temperature.)

Make the Brussels Sprouts Salad

  1. In a large bowl, combine the trimmed and finely chopped Brussels sprouts, the cooked bacon (from the vinaigrette portion), dried cranberries, feta cheese and the candied pecans.
  2. Pour on the vinaigrette, and toss using tongs.
  3. Serve immediately, and enjoy, sprinkling additional feta, candied pecans and bacon on top of the finished salads if so desired.

 

Serve Cranberry Feta Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Pecans and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette as a festive side dish this season! Brussels sprouts serve as the base of this unique winter salad. Top the shredded Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, crisp bacon, feta cheese, candied pecans, then toss in a warm bacon vinaigrette before serving. Slightly sweet, savory, salty and crunchy, this salad is a delicious new way to enjoy Brussels sprouts! #spon

What healthier dishes would you like to make this season to balance out your cookie intake?

16 Comments

  1. Kelly - A Side of Sweet

    Holy moly! This looks so good! I can imagine making large batches to take it to work all week.

    • Erin

      Thanks so much, Kelly! This salad is totally worth making in large batches to enjoy at work for lunch. One of my friends and I devoured this entire bowl for lunch one afternoon. 😉

  2. Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet

    That is a gorgeous salad, I love these flavors!

    • Erin

      Thank you, Kimberly! These flavors are some of my faves!

  3. carrie @ frugal foodie mama

    Love the bacon & Brussels sprouts combo! 🙂 This salad looks amazing!

    • Erin

      Thanks, Carrie! The bacon and Brussels sprouts combo is kinda hard to beat. 😉

  4. Laura at I Heart Naptime

    This is a meal dreams are made of! (Good thing I’m headed to the grocery store tomorrow morning!)

    • Erin

      Hooray for meal dreams and grocery shopping and hopefully making meal dreams a reality!

  5. Brandy | Nutmeg Nanny

    Loving the cranberry feta combo!

    • Erin

      Thanks, Brandy! You and me both!

  6. Jessica | Novice Chef

    This would be great when my husband is to of town!

    • Erin

      Then you should save this for then! Or lunch. I love to make this for lunch when I don’t have to share with my husband. 😉

  7. Krista

    I love this salad! It is great for eating on the lighter side right now!

    • Erin

      Thanks so much, Krista! It definitely adds some veggies into the diet during a much-needed veggie time of year. 😉

  8. Lauren

    Looks yummy, great idea!

    • Erin

      Thanks so much, Lauren!

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