A brightly colored salad with festive ingredients rounds out a complete Christmas dinner and takes minutes to make. Include a salad recipe in your holiday dinner menu as a light beginning course or as a complement to a heartier entrée. These five fabulous salad recipes have healthy ingredients, holiday colors and delicious flavors.
The vinaigrette dressing makes all the difference in this festive salad. Red peppers add vibrant color and chestnuts give it a tantalizing holiday taste. To make the vinaigrette, use a blender to combine ¼ cup of white wine vinegar, ½ cup fresh or thawed frozen cranberries, 2 green onions cut into one inch pieces, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 and ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper and ¼ teaspoon crushed dried sage. While blending, slowly add in ¾ cup of olive oil. Keep it chilled until ready to serve. To prepare the main salad, combine 12 cups mixed greens, 1 small sweet red pepper chopped and 1 eight ounce can of drained and sliced water chestnuts in a large bowl. Sprinkle with grated or shredded parmesan cheese and serve with the vinaigrette. If you are not a fan of cranberries, try using raspberries or strawberries instead. This recipe serves 12.
The bright pink-red pomegranate seeds look beautiful against the crisp green spinach leaves in this tasty salad. Walnuts and sprouts add depth, while onions and feta add bite. Empty 1 ten ounce bag of spinach into a large bowl and top with ¼ of a red onion sliced thin, ½ cup walnut pieces, ½ cup crumbled feta, ¼ cup alfalfa sprouts and 1 pomegranate peeled and seeded. Finish with a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette. If you have trouble separating the pomegranate seeds, cut into sixths and let soak in water for about ten minutes. You can also add the seeds to champagne or white wine for a bit of flavor. As with the last salad, you can switch out the pomegranate for another red ingredient, like cranberries, strawberries or raspberries. This recipe serves four.
This salad is a crisp, refreshing salad in shades of green and white made from fresh winter vegetables. Sweeter than most salads, this is a great choice for children. In a food processor or blender, combine ½ cup sugar, ½ cup lemon juice, 2 teaspoons diced onion, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard and ½ teaspoon salt. Add in 2/3 cup of vegetable oil as you blend. Once it has a thick, creamy texture, add in 1 tablespoon poppy seeds and blend for a few more seconds. To make the salad, combine 1 head of romaine lettuce that has been shredded into bite size pieces, 4 ounces of shredded Swiss cheese, 1 cup cashews, ¼ cup dried cranberries and 1 pear and 1 apple peeled, cored and diced. Toss and then pour the dressing over the salad just before serving. Toss it again to coat. This recipe serves 12.
Created by a working woman with little time to prepare a meal, this simple yet delicious salad combines traditional holiday ingredients with zesty blue cheese and smooth avocado. To prepare, fill a large bowl with one 5.5 ounce bag of mixed greens and spinach. Sprinkle with ¾ cup sweetened dried cranberries, ¾ cup glazed walnuts, one 15 ounce can of mandarin orange slices, ¾ cup crumbled blue cheese and 1 avocado pitted, peeled and diced. Finish with a drizzle of cranberry vinaigrette dressing, toss and serve. If you find blue cheese too pungent, try goat or feta cheese instead. This recipe serves four.
An excellent alternative to the usual leafy greens salad, this one calls for broccoli as the main ingredient. Red peppers add color and bacon gives it a kick of flavor. Unlike the previous salads, this one has a thick, creamy mayonnaise dressing that fills you up on a cold winter’s night. In a large bowl, combine 4 and ½ cups broccoli florets, 3 cups chopped sweet red peppers, 10 cooked and crumbled bacon strips, 1/3 cup sliced green onions and ¼ cup chopped pecans. In a small bowl, combine ¾ cup mayonnaise with one tablespoon cider or red wine vinegar and a dash of pepper. Pour the dressing over the salad, toss to mix and refrigerate until serving. This recipe serves 16.
Any of these simple, festive holiday salads make a delicious addition to a Christmas menu.