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This sweet, savory, tangy and crunchy Christmas salad is the perfect side for your holiday meal. Candied sliced almonds, pomegranate seeds, and apples add a sweet crunch to this green salad, then it is topped with sharp, tangy cheese and sweet balsamic dressing. You cannot go wrong with this holiday salad. Follow my tips below to make this Christmas salad extra special.
Ingredients you will need: 1 bag mixed greens, pomegranate, sweet and crispy apple, pear, sharp cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette dressing (store-bought or homemade).
The holidays are full of decadence and indulgence, but I don’t always like the way I feel the day after all that indulgence. Especially since I’ve started to run again, I can definitely feel it after I’ve had too many sweets, so I have to balance it out with something that will do my body good and taste good, too. At our holiday table we like to serve the good stuff, like ham, potatoes, and macaroni and cheese, but it’s nice to have an awesomely delicious salad to sneak in the healthy stuff.
Well, not really “sneak in,” because, well, it’s salad, and there really is no disguising it. Poor salad always gets a bad rap during the holidays; at least, it does at our house. It’s like we feel obligated to have one, but no one really wants to eat it, partially because the usual salads look kind of lame compared to the rest of the holiday spread. That is, until now. This Christmas salad will change people’s minds on that obligatory salad because it looks (and more importantly, tastes) pretty darn yummy.
This salad would really be good any time of the year, but with the green from the lettuce and pear, and the red from the apple and pomegranate seeds, it looks so festive that I had to name it Christmas Salad. Seriously, it might as well show up to your holiday feast in an ugly Christmas sweater. That, and the ingredients are all fresh and readily available in fall and winter. You’ll definitely want this pretty, yummy, healthy dish on your holiday table!
Tips For Making Christmas Salad
- Cooking during the holidays can be stressful, so prep what you can ahead of time. Use convenience items when possible, like using a bagged salad mix and pre-made salad dressing.
- Don’t have pomegranate? You could substitute craisins.
- Use candied nuts – I used honey roasted sliced almonds, but candied pecans would also be delicious.
- Pick your favorite sharp and tangy cheese. This really helps to nicely balance out the sweetness of the other ingredients. I used a goat mozzarella cheese, but feta or blue cheese would also be nice. Or even a sharp, aged cheddar.
- If you aren’t planning to serve this salad right away, toss the apples and pears in lemon or lime juice so they don’t brown, and wait to add the pomegranates and nuts until right before serving.
This recipe is so simple that you don’t really need any special tools. All you need is just a large salad bowl, a cutting board and a knife. You could get a salad dressing container to make the salad dressing in if you desire, but just a bowl and whisk will do if you choose to go the homemade route.
How To Deseed A Pomegranate
If you’ve been around awhile you may know that I love pomegranates. They really just add an extra special pop to a dish, and they are equally as special in this salad. If you don’t know how to cut a pomegranate, it is really simple, but slightly time consuming. Luckily, now you can just purchase de-seeded pomegranate if you are really crunched for time, but it’s not hard to deseed your own pomegranate.
- Cut the top off the pomegranate and then cut down where the white flesh lines are.
- Pull it apart and run your finger through the seeds to pop them off.
- Place the seeds in water.
- After you’ve deseeded the entire pomegranate into the water, remove any of the white flesh that may have fallen and strain seeds.
- Strain seeds and place in a resealable container.
How To Make Christmas Salad
In a large bowl, add a bag of mixed lettuce. I used a butter lettuce and radicchio blend.
Chop up an apple and a pear and place on top of the lettuce greens. If you don’t plan to serve the salad right away, add a splash of lemon or lime juice to the apples and pears so they won’t brown.
Cut and deseed a pomegranate, and top salad with pomegranate seeds. Or just use store-bought deseeded pomegranate.
Top with candied almonds cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette. Enjoy.
Need more holiday recipe inspiration? Check these ideas out!
- Cranberry Cream Cheese Appetizers
- This rum custard pie is delicious!
- Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are one of my favorites.
- Peppermint Fudge Shortbread Cookie Bars are a healthier take on a decadent dessert.
Christmas Salad Recipe
Christmas Salad is the perfect holiday salad to add some festive and healthy cheer to your holidays.
- 1 bag lettuce blend
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup candied sliced almonds I used honey roasted almonds, but other candied nuts would work also.
- 1/2 cup cheese feta, goat milk, or blue cheese would work
- 1 apple chopped
- 1 pear chopped
- Balsamic Vinaigrette homemade or store-bought
- In a large bowl, add a bag of mixed lettuce. I used a butter lettuce and radicchio blend.Chop up a apple and a pear and place on top of the lettuce greens. If you don't plan to serve the salad right away, add a splash of lemon or lime juice to the apples and pears so they won't brown.Cut and de-seed a pomegranate, and top salad. Or just use store-bought deseeded pomegranate.Top with candied almonds cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette. Enjoy.
Do you have a special Christmas Salad you serve at your holiday table?