Be ready to fall in love with this Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Apples and maple roasted walnuts. All tossed in a delightful dressing of apple cider vinegar, maple syrup and Dijon mustard.
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Cosmic Crisp® Washington Apples and they have compensated me financially. As always, all opinions are my own.
The Cosmic Crisp -There's a New Apple in Town!
I'm sharing this shaved brussels sprouts salad with apples because I'm partnering with Cosmic Crisp Apples to showcase an exciting new apple variety that is now my absolute new favourite. The Cosmic Crisp® is a truly exceptional eating experience! This is the ultimate apple: it's sweet, yet tart, super juicy, large in size, and it's a gorgeous red colour.
I am a huge fan of the Cosmic Crisp just for those points alone. But, what really excites me is this: they are naturally slow to brown when cut. Because of this, they are perfect apples for salads, like this shaved brussels sprouts recipe, and many others (including this Roasted Beet and Apple Salad as just one example).
Cosmic Crisp FAQ's
Q: Are Cosmic Crisp apples GMO?
A: The Cosmic Crisp apple variety is not genetically modified (GMO) this variety was classically bred by the tree fruit breeding program at Washington State University into a naturally slow to brown, delicious and beautiful apple.
Q: Where do Cosmic Crisp apples grow?
A: Cosmic Crisp apples are grown on Washington State orchards in the Columbia River basin.
Q: Can I Bake and Cook with Cosmic Crisp apples?
A: They are absolutely delicious for fresh eating, but because Cosmic Crisp apples are sweet and crisp, they are also ideal for baking. (Try Cranberry Apple Oatmeal Muffins or Apple Ricotta Cake). And for cooking, too. (Check out Apple Chicken Stew, or Sweet Potato Apple Turkey Bake) Because they are naturally slow to brown, you can prep your recipe by slicing or chopping your apples, and they will still be beautiful when it's time to add them.
Q: How should I store my Cosmic Crisp apples to keep them fresh?
A: Store them in your refrigerator's crisper drawer at 32°F or 0°C, in a plastic bag with holes in it or covered with a damp paper towel
Q: Where can I buy Cosmic Crisp apples?
A: Cosmic Crisp apples are available at most major retailers in Canada and the US.
Why We Love This Apple & Brussels Sprout Salad
This amazing salad will have you coming back for more! Cosmic Crisp Washington apples are crisper and sweeter than other varieties, and because they are naturally slow to brown, they are ideal for using raw and sliced for salads like this shaved brussels sprouts salad.
Shaved brussels sprouts, tender greens, and maple roasted walnuts perfectly complement those crisp apple slices. And then there's the dressing. Perfectly tart, sweet, and slightly spicy; the tart-sweet, mustard infused dressing will make you savour every bite.
This salad is quick and easy to throw together. Once you get the sprouts shaved, the rest is simple.
You can prep this shredded brussels sprouts and apple salad ahead of time. Then just toss it with dressing when you're ready to serve it.
Here's What You Will Need To Make This Salad:
I used the Cosmic Crisp apple. You will want to core and thinly slice the apples.
Brussels sprouts are delicious when raw and thinly shaved. There is no bitterness, and they have a fresh crispness that will give your salad a delicious crunch. Be sure to choose the smalled brussels sprouts, which tend to be sweeter, and when shopping, choose sprouts that are bright green, compact and firm.
Packaged mixed greens are super convenient for salads. They come in bags or clamshell containers and can be a blend of any quantities of baby romaine, leaf lettuce, baby chard, radicchio, arugula, and others. Packaged blends usually come already triple washed so there is no need to go through that step.
Maple Roasted Walnuts
You can buy candied walnuts, but maple roasted walnuts are easy to make and you just might find them so hard to resist snacking on, that you need to make a double batch. I love walnuts for their slight bitterness, which combined with sweet maple syrup and a little salt, is divine. However, you can also use pecans or even peanuts for this recipe.
If you want to round out your salad with a scattering of cheese, crumbled feta works beautifully. If you like a little bite, I recommend crumbled gorgonzola.
The Dressing Ingredients
For this recipe, and for most salad recipes, I use extra virgin olive oil. Whenever you will actually taste the oil, extra virgin olive oil is a great choice. However, if you are able to find walnut oil, it is another excellent salad oil choice, especially for this recipe which has apples and walnuts.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar is a key ingredient in this salad dressing. Try to use if at all possible. It adds the perfect tart, acidic bite while complementing the brussels sprouts, apples, and walnuts in the salad to perfection.
Only real maple syrup will do. I have said this before, but products that are labelled as "pancake syrup" do not contain maple syrup at all. They are usually simply sugar, water, artificial colours, and flavours. If you don't have real maple syrup and are not vegan, you can substitute an equal amount of honey for the maple syrup. If you are vegan and don't have maple syrup, try agave syrup or brown rice syrup.
Only fresh lemon juice will work here. You'll be using a half lemon in this apple & brussels sprouts salad, so save the rest for your tea or another use.
Dijon mustard has it's own special taste and tang and is the first choice for this shaved brussels sprouts salad recipe, however, you can substitute yellow mustard, stone-ground, grainy, or brown mustard if that's what you have on hand.
Fresh garlic, fresh minced or jarred fresh, pre-minced garlic work equally well, or in a pinch, use ¼ tsp of garlic powder in place of the fresh garlic.
Pro Tips For the Best Apple & Brussels Sprout Salad
- Use a small jar with a lid to make and store your salad dressing. Just put all the ingredients into the jar, put the lid on, and give it a good shake.
- Make the dressing up to a day ahead of time and refrigerate. The dressing will taste even better once the flavours have melded. In the fridge, the oil in the dressing will solidify, so bring it out 30 minutes before serving to allow the oil to liquify. Shake well before using.
- Make the maple roasted walnuts ahead, allow them to cool, and store in an airtight container in the fridge. You will have extra roasted nuts which you can snack on or use in other recipes.
- To shave brussels sprouts, a food processor fitted with the slicing attachment is the easiest, fastest way. But, but you can also do it by hand using a very sharp knife, slicing the sprouts very thinly. Alternatively, use a mandolin, with a cut-resistant glove, or holding each sprout with a fork as you shave it, (to save your fingers).
- Store shaved brussels sprouts in the crisper drawer of your fridge, in an airtight container, or plastic freezer bag, for up to a week. If you have extra, whole brussels sprouts, they will keep longer, depending on how fresh they are when purchased. You can use those extra, whole sprouts to make Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Butternut Squash
- Make ahead: You can assemble most of the salad, cover it with plastic wrap, and keep it in the fridge for up to a day ahead. Don't add optional cheese, or the dressing until serving time.
Additions & Variations
Cosmic Crisp apples, and shaved brussels sprouts are the star ingredients in this salad, With a base of tender mixed greens, accented by maple roasted walnuts, this salad is perfection just as its. However, feel free to add more! Get creative. Here are just a few add-in possibilities:
- Dried fruit such as raisins, cranberries, dates, or figs
- Shredded carrot
- Seeds. Try sunflower or pumpkin seeds
- Radish. Slice up some radish for that extra peppery crunch
- Kale. Replace some of the mixed greens with finely chopped kale.
Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Apples
Maple Roasted Walnuts
- 2 cups walnut halves roughly chopped
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp coconut oil (or butter) melted
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp kosher salt or sea salt
- 4 cups mixed greens packed
- 2 cups brussels sprouts shaved or very thinly sliced
- 2 Cosmic Crisp Apples cored and thinly sliced
- 1 cup maple roasted walnuts cooled
- ¼ cup olive oil extra virgin
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice ½ lemon
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 garlic clove minced
- ½ tsp kosher salt or sea salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Maple Roasted Walnuts
- Preheat the oven to 325° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper
- In a bowl, combine the walnuts, maple syrup, coconut oil, cinnamon and salt together, stirring util the walnuts are completely coated.
- Spread the coated walnuts on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Bake 15 minutes, turning halfway through. Keep a close eye on them so that they don't burn.
- Remove walnuts from the oven. They should be golden to dark brown and crusted. Allow them to cool before adding to the salad.
- Combine mixed greens, shaved brussels sprouts, apple slices, and cooled maple roasted walnuts together in a large bowl or platter
- In a small jar with a lid, combine olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, maple syrup, garlic, salt and pepper. Secure the lid on the jar.
- Shake hard until all dressing ingredients are well combined.
- Pour dressing over the salad, a little at a time, tossing after each addition, until salad ingredients are just coated.
- Serve immediately, topped with optional crumbled cheese if desired