This festive Brussels sprouts arugula salad is tossed with pomegranate, Parmesan, avocado, candied pecans and a lemony shallot vinaigrette.
Say hello to my favorite new salad of the season. ♡
I’ve been bringing this festive salad to just about every gathering this season and couldn’t love it more. It’s surprisingly quick and easy to throw together with a gorgeous mix of jeweled pomegranate arils, candied pecans, salty Parm, shredded Brussels, creamy avocado, peppery arugula and my favorite shallot vinaigrette. And the mix of salty and sweet, crunchy and creamy, tangy and peppery flavors here is absolutely delightful! Friends keep asking for the recipe, which is always the best sign!
I’ve gotten in the habit of reaching for a few store-bought shortcuts to speed things up — a bag of pre-shredded Brussels, pre-seeded pomegranate arils, and occasionally store-bought candied nuts — which shave the prep time here down to just 20 minutes. But feel free to make this salad with whatever ingredient swaps and add-ins you love best here. And while it would be a wonderful side dish for the holidays, we’ve also happily made a meal out of this one and find it to be so lovely and filling.
I know you’re going to love it!
Brussels Sprouts Arugula Salad Ingredients
Here are a few quick notes about the ingredients that you will need to make this Brussels sprouts salad:
Brussels sprouts: I go the easy route and just buy a bag of pre-shredded Brussels at the store, but feel free to shred your own by hand or with a food processor. (Here’s a quick tutorial to show you how!)
Arugula: The peppery flavor of fresh baby arugula plays so well with the other sweet and creamy flavors in this salad. Since this salad is borderline a slaw, I like to give the arugula a quick rough chop before adding it in.
Pomegranate arils: These lovely little red jewels add a delicious burst of tart sweetness to each bite and make the salad look extra lovely and festive! If fresh pomegranate arils aren’t in season, feel free to sub in dried cranberries or whatever other fruit you may love.
Avocado: Diced avocado adds a lovely hint of creaminess to the salad.
Candied pecans: I added my favorite homemade candied pecans, which add a delicious pop of sweetness with warming spices and a hint of heat. But feel free to use your favorite store-bought candied nuts (Trader Joe’s has a few great options!) or whatever toasted nuts you love best (such as walnuts, almonds, pistachios or hazelnuts).
Parmesan: Freshly-grated Parmigiano Reggiano adds a wonderful saltiness and depth of umami flavor to this salad! I grated mine using the coarse side of a box grater, but you could also use shaved or finely-grated Parmesan instead.
Shallot vinaigrette: Finally, I recommend my favorite lemony shallot vinaigrette to dress the salad, made simply with garlic, olive oil, Dijon, shallot and lemon. Feel free to prep the dressing up to 2 days in advance, if you would like.
Tips for Making This Salad
Full instructions for how to make this pomegranate salad are included in the recipe below, but here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind too!
Save time with store-bought shortcuts. I purchased pre-shredded Brussels and pre-seeded pomegranate arils from Trader Joe’s to save time with this recipe! Feel free to also purchase your favorite store-bought candied nuts too.
Grate the cheese by hand. I know I’m a broken record with this, but taking the extra minute or two to grate a block of Parmesan will add so much extra flavor to this salad (versus buying the pre-grated stuff)! Highly, highly recommend.
Prep components in advance. If you are making this salad for the holidays or a busy gathering, you can prep the dressing up to 2 days in advance and also combine all of the components except for the avocado and arugula and dressing, which should be added and tossed together just before serving.
Don’t forget to season! Give the salad a taste after tossing everything together and add extra salt and pepper if needed.
Here are a few more variations that you’re welcome to try with this salad recipe:
Add a protein: Add your choice of cooked protein to the salad, such as bacon, steak, chicken, salmon, or shrimp.
Use a different cheese: Add a different cheese in place of Parmesan, such as Manchego, Pecorino, sharp cheddar, crumbled goat cheese or crumbled feta cheese.
Use different greens: Use different salad greens in place of the Brussels and/or arugula, such as Romaine, spring greens or kale.
Use different fruit: Use a different fruit in place of the pomegranate arils, such as pears, apples or oranges. Or you can also sub in some dried fruit, such as dried cranberries or cherries.
Use a different salad dressing: Use a different salad dressing, such as a balsamic vinaigrette, apple cider vinaigrette, or poppy seed dressing.
More Brussels Sprouts Recipes
Looking for more delicious Brussels sprouts recipes to try? Here are a few of our favorites:
Make the vinaigrette. In a large bowl, whisk all of the ingredients together vigorously for 1 minute or until fully emulsified. (Or alternately, vigorously shake the ingredients together in a covered mason jar until fully emulsified.)
Mix.Combine the salad ingredients in a large bowl. Drizzle evenly with the vinaigrette, then gently toss to combine.
Serve.Serve immediately, garnished with a few extra twists of black pepper, and enjoy!