This air fried fennel and grapefruit salad makes a delicious healthy side dish. Fresh green salad leaves, pink grapefruit, onion and air fried fennel drizzled with a zingy grapefruit vinaigrette and sprinkled with sumac. This vegan salad is one you'll love!
There are so many ways to make vegetables taste great and in this salad, the air fried fennel really is the star of the dish. Air frying the fennel for about 15-20 minutes means it still has a bit of a bite to it plus gives it gorgeous crispy edges and a few delicious charred leafy bits. If you haven't tried air frying fennel yet, try it! Even if you don't make this fennel salad, you need to try air fried fennel soon.
The crispy air fried fennel goes so well with the juicy pink grapefruit too. I love slightly sour flavours and the sweet sourness of the grapefruit goes beautifully with the bitter sweetness of of the fennel. Not only are there grapefruit slices in the salad, the salad dressing also has grapefruit juice in which helps bring all the flavours together.
Ingredient notes for air fryer fennel and grapefruit salad
To make this salad you'll need:
- Fennel bulb - Use a large fennel bulb and cut it into wedges. Make sure you cut through the centre so that all the leaves stay attached to the stalk.
- Oil - You'll need a little oil to coat the fennel in before air frying it and also extra virgin olive oil for the salad dressing. I usually use a light olive for the fennel but you could use a vegetable oil instead.
- Seasoning - A little salt and pepper for the fennel and for the salad dressing.
- Grapefruit - I like to use a pink grapefruit as it's a little sweeter than a yellow one but either will work. If you use a yellow grapefruit you may want to add a little extra agave nectar to the dressing.
- Red onion - This goes really well in the salad. You can use a white salad onion if you don't have a red one.
- Salad leaves
- Sumac - Sumac is a lovely fresh lemony spice that really adds to the citrus flavour of this salad.
- Agave nectar - If you don't have agave nectar, use honey instead unless you want the salad to be vegan.
How to make air fried fennel salad
First prepare the fennel for the air fryer. Cut it into wedges, with each wedge about 1-2cm thick at the widest edge. Make sure you cut through the centre of the fennel so the leaves stay attached to the stalk.
Toss the fennel in a little oil and seasoning before air frying. Air fryers can differ a little so check how done the fennel is after 15 minutes. It may need an extra 5 minutes.
While the fennel is air frying, remove the skin from the grapefuit and cut out the segments so they don't have any skin on them. Finely slice the red onion and whisk together the ingredients for the dressing.
Arrange the salad on a plate with the salad leaves on the bottom, topped by the fennel, grapefruit, red onion and sumac. Drizzle the dressing over the top.
Can you cook the fennel in the oven instead of the air fryer?
Yes of course! I've cooked my fennel in the air fryer but you can roast it in the oven instead. It will take about 20-25 minutes at 180C. The salad will be exactly the same.
Storing the salad
If you don't eat all the salad it can be stored in the fridge but it's best to store it without the dressing. As it's quick to assemble the salad, it's best to store each part separately.
The air fried fennel with keep well for 3 days in the fridge in an airtight container. The dressing will also keep well in an airtight jar in the fridge.
Can you adapt this air fried fennel salad?
Yes you can. Why not make it with a different citrus fruit? I think oranges would work really well here.
You could also sprinkle on a few pine nuts, pecans or walntus if you wanted to add an extra dimension.
What can you serve with this air fried fennel and grapefruit salad?
This salad works really well on it's own an an appetiser. But it also works brilliantly as a side dish. Because of the citrus I think it's wonderful with fish. Just serve it with grilled or fried white fish or salmon.
It's also lovely with grilled chicken or leftover roast chicken. You could also serve some nice bread on the side to wipe up all the salad dressing.
Air Fried Fennel and Grapefruit Salad
- 1 fennel bulb cut into wedges
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- pinch salt
- 1 grapefruit
- ¼ red onion thinly sliced
- 50 g salad leaves
- 1 teaspoon sumac
Ingredients for the salad dressing
- 30 ml extra virgin olive oil
- ½ grapefruit
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar Can be substituted with honey
- Pinch salt
- pinch black pepper
- Cut the fennel into wedges, making sure you cut through the centre so the wedges don't fall apart. Coat them in a little oil and season lightly.
- Air fry the fennel for about 15-20 minutes at 185℃. When you think it is ready, test it with a fork to make sure it is as soft as you want it before you take it out of the air fryer.
- Prepare the grapefruit by cutting the skin off with a sharp knife and then take out each segment by cutting them out with the knife.
- Mix up all the ingredients for the dressing. I only used a quarter of the grapefruit for the dressing. Taste it and adjust the quantities to suit your tastes.
- Assemble the salad by putting the salad leaves on a plate. Top with the air fried fennel and grapefruit slices, the sliced onion and the sumac. Then drizzle the dressing over the top.
More salad recipes you'll love!
If you like this salad then do check out these salad recipes:
- Spinach citrus salad with grapefruit vinaigrette
- Air fried carrot salad
- Air fried brussels sprouts salad
Keep in touch
Do let me know if you make this air fryer fennel salad recipe or any of my other recipes. I love to get feedback from readers.