Grilled Steak Salad with Cherries & Balsamic Dressing

Steak and cherry salad with goat cheese and pecans sitting on a white plate next to a bowl of red cherries

The weather’s finally starting to heat up over here which can only mean one thing in my book – bring on all the salads! And since I’m such a huge fan of sweet and savory salads, this grilled steak salad with cherries is absolutely perfect! Now I know what some of you are probably thinking… “Steak…and cherries…in a salad? Hmmm maybe not…” But trust me loves this flavor combo is insanely good! Peppery garlic steak, sweet cherries, creamy cheese and the perfect tangy dressing to tie it all together! It’s the perfect sweet and savory salad you never even knew you needed!

Ingredients for your grilled steak salad

  • New york strip steaks: Look for steaks that are more on the thin side without a lot of fat surrounding it. These will take less time to cook and you won’t need to cut off as much of the fat later. (Plus new yorks can be very tender when they’re cooked right which is perfect for a steak salad!)
  • Mixed greens or spinach: Provides a sturdy base to stand up to your steak.
  • Fresh cherries: Adds a sweetness and a refreshing element to your salad. Look for cherries that have a smooth skin with no brown spots for the best results. (I love using dark sweet cherries for this salad recipe.)
  • Goat cheese: Adds creaminess to your steak salad and compliments the sweetness of your cherries too.
  • Toasted pecans: Provides a little extra crunch to your grilled steak salad.
  • Maple-balsamic dressing: Ties all of your steak salad ingredients together! (You can use my homemade balsamic dressing recipe or your favorite store bought dressing too!)
Close up of steak and cherry salad tossed with a balsamic vinaigrette

What is the best steak to use for your grilled steak salad?

I personally love using new york steaks for this salad because they’re so easy to cook and are already perfectly portioned. If you’re making this steak salad for dinner, then I would definitely suggest using one steak per person (depending on the size of course). Otherwise, you could probably get by with using one large steak for two people if it’s for a lighter meal.

I absolutely LOVE using 100% grass fed angus steaks from Sprouts for any steak recipe I make. They’re all pasture raised in the USA with no added hormones or antibiotics AND they’re always so tender and taste amazing too. Plus they have great prices for quality cuts of meat that just can’t be beaten anywhere else!

Tips on how to grill steak for your salad

  • Liberally season your steaks! Steak LOVES seasoning so you can season that sucker to your little hearts content! (Plus it creates a nice crust on the outside too when it’s seared.)
  • Cooked to medium is the best! Don’t get me wrong I love a good medium rare steak just as much as the next person but when it comes to a salad, it really needs to be cooked just a touch more. Medium steak isn’t quite as chewy as medium rare so it so it’s much easier to eat with the rest of your salad ingredients.
  • Let your steaks rest! This helps them to lock in their juices and gives you a tastier and more flavorful bite.
  • Cut against the grain! This makes it easier to chew when you’re eating your steak salad.

Note: Cooking time may vary depending on the size of your steaks.

A salad made with spinach, fresh cherries, goat cheese, toasted pecans and seared steak sitting on a white plate with a silver fork sticking out of it

How to make a grilled steak salad with cherries

  1. Cook your steaks. Preheat your grill to high heat and liberally season your steaks with garlic salt and pepper. (I personally love using fresh cracked garlic salt and pepper.) Once hot, place your steaks on the grill and cook for 3-5 minutes. Then flip and cook for an additional 3-5 mintues. Transfer your steaks to a serving tray and let them rest while you prepare the rest of your salad.
  2. Prepare your dessing. Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a bowl and place it in the fridge while you prepare your salad.
  3. Toast your pecans. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Then spread your pecans out on the sheet and bake for 5-6 minutes. Set them aside to cool.
  4. Make your salad. Pit and cut your cherries in half, then add them to a large bowl with your mixed greens or spinach. Crumble your goat cheese over the top and toss with your desired amount of dressing. When you’re ready to serve, slice your steaks against the grain and lay them on top of your salad. Sprinkle your toasted pecans on top and serve immediately
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Grilled Steak Salad with Cherries & Balsamic Dressing

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Gluten free
Keyword: cherries, grilled steak salad, maple-balsamic dressing
Author: Caitlin Monson

Ingredients

For the steak salad:

  • 2 new york strip steaks, about 1½ inches thick
  • Cracked garlic salt, to taste
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 4 cups mixed greens or spinach
  • 1 cup fresh cherries, pitted & halved or quartered
  • ¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • cup toasted pecans (see notes section for directions on how to toast)

For the maple-balsamic dressing:

  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp extra light olive oil

Instructions

To make the dressing:

  • Whisk all of your ingredients together in a bowl and place it in the fridge until you're ready to eat.

To make the steak salad:

  • Preheat your grill to high heat and liberally season your steaks with garlic salt and pepper. Once it's hot, place your steaks on the grill and cook for 3-5 minutes, flip and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes. (Cooking time may vary depending on the size of your steaks.) Then transfer them to a serving tray and let the steaks rest while you prepare the rest of your salad.
  • Next, add your mixed greens/spinach, cherries and goat cheese to a bowl and toss with your desired amount of dressing.
  • When you're ready to serve, slice your steaks against the grain and lay them on top of your salad. Sprinkle your toasted pecans over the top and serve immediately.

Notes

Use 1 steak per person (depending on the size) if this salad is for dinner. For a lighter meal, 1 steak should work for 2 people.
To make toasted pecans: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Then spread your pecans out onto your prepared baking sheet and bake for 5-6 minutes. Let them cool completely once done.

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