Citrus and Blue Cheese Salad with Candied Walnuts and Thyme

Sweet & savory forever, baby!!

Hi! Welcome to “good mood food” from Kale Me Maybe’s Carina Wolff. If you’re somehow reading this and aren’t yet subscribed, be sure to do so below. You can expect recipes in your inbox every Tuesday, and paid subscribers get even more! All paid posts are now behind a paywall now, so if you want more than just the free Tuesday recipes, be sure to subscribe!)

If you’re not into combining sweet and savory flavors, I’m here to convince you.

Fruit and cheese have always paired well together (hello cheese boards!), but we’re going beyond just the classic fig jam and brie situation — we’re bringing citrus into the mix. I used Cara Cara oranges for this salad, a type of navel orange with a distinctive pink flesh and sweeter flavor. The sweetness of the orange pairs nicely with the saltiness of the blue cheese, and everything gets tied together with some maple-coated walnuts and a sprinkle of thyme.

If you can’t get cara cara oranges, don’t fret! You can use regular oranges. I know blue cheese isn’t everyone’s cup of tea either, but I think it’s time for all of us to get adventurous!

As always, be sure to tag me on Instagram (@kalememaybe) if you make this dish.

Orange, Candied Walnut, and Blue Cheese Salad with Thyme

Ingredients (serves 4)


  • 2 medium cara cara oranges

  • 2 oz blue cheese

  • A sprinkle of fresh thyme (around 1/2 tsp)

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Candied Walnuts

  • 1/2 cup raw, unsalted walnuts, roughly chopped

  • 2 tbsp maple syrup

  • Pinch of salt

1. First, prepare the candied walnuts. Heat up a medium-sized pan on medium heat. Add the walnuts, maple syrup, and pinch of salt, and cook for about 5 minutes until maple syrup has just started to bubble and caramelize, stirring ocassionally. Transfer to a parchment paper-lined sheet, and let cool.

2. Peel oranges and remove any excess white pith. Turn the orange on its side, and then cut into rounds. Cut those rounds in half so they look like wedges/half-moons, and then spread them evenly on a plate.

3. When walnuts have cooled, add them to the plate with the oranges. Sprinkle on the blue cheese (crumbling with your fingers), and top with fresh thyme. Finish off the salad off by drizzling on the olive oil and white wine vinegar.

What I’m Craving This Week: Last week was all about fancy plated food, and this week I’m into nourishing bowls. Rice bowls have been my jam these days. They just make the perfect blank slate, and I like to load them up with beans, vegetables, and homemade sauces.

Recipe I’m Loving: I’m clearly feeling the whole citrus thing right now. I’ve been daydreaming about making this Citrus Scallop Crudo recipe from The Scallop Guys again. It’s so refreshing, and I love the taste of raw scallops.

Life updates: I am just about fully vaccinated, and I already feel the energy changing all around me, especially since California has one of the lowest COVID rates in the nation right now. I got to see my extended family on Mother’s Day and hug my grandma! I celebrated my friend’s birthday in Big Bear, and I have brunch plans with friends this weekend. I know most people don’t really care about my weekend schedule, but it feels SO nice to be able to resume normal plans.

In case you missed it: Last week I shared all the best food I ate in Austin in my post “Best Places To Eat In Austin.” If you or anyone you know is going to Austin soon, I’ve got all the recs!

Coming this week for paid subscribers: It’s a bonus recipe week! I’ll be sharing a Roasted Carrot over Saffron Yogurt recipe.

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