Winter Fruit Feta Salad with Cranberry Balsamic Dressing

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Seasonal fruit is the star in this festive and colorful Winter Salad. Crunchy candied nuts, salty feta cheese, and a sweet and tangy cranberry dressing make it delicious and satisfying. Perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas!

winter salad in a large wooden bowl with orange slices, pomegranate arils, and more toppings

Festive Winter Salad for Thanksgiving or Christmas

Come November and December, you may not find the same variety of fresh fruits and vegetables in the grocery store as you find in the summer. But winter fruit can be just as delicious and plentiful. You’ll find the shelves stocked with citrus fruits and pomegranates, so I made them the star of this salad.

Orange slices add bright, fresh flavor. Pomegranates are little sweet-tart bursts. Avocados filling richness to this salad. And some salty feta is the perfect counterpoint. To add crunch, I love to use my sweet and spicy candied nuts, but you can just sprinkle on some toasted pecans for crunch. Then to add to the seasonality, I used some of my Cranberry Balsamic Dressing, but any balsamic vinaigrette or even a simple splash of balsamic vinegar and olive oil will do.

All of these flavors come together into one bright and delicious salad that has all the flavors of the holiday. It is perfect to serve with a Thanksgiving turkey or Christmas ham. Or save it for the day after the holiday and top it with your leftover meat to turn it into a satisfying dinner salad.

tossed salad with winter fruits and candied nuts

Ingredients

You’ll love all of the seasonal flavors that come together in this Winter Salad.

  • Mixed baby greens.
  • Oranges. Cut off the rind removing all the white pith, then cut them into segments.
  • Avocado. Sliced or chopped.
  • Pomegranate. Remove the arils.
  • Feta cheese. You can also substitute blue cheese or goat cheese, or even a sharp white cheddar.
  • Nuts. I like the sweet and spice flavor of Candied Spiced Nuts, but you can also just use toasted pecans, Honey Glazed Walnuts, or your favorite.
  • Cranberry Balsamic Dressing. This is made by blending equal parts leftover cranberry sauce, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil with a pinch of salt. You can also use another balsamic vinaigrette raspberry vinaigrette, or just some olive oil and vinegar
a winter salad in a large wooden bowl with a jar of dressing next to it

Assembling the Winter Salad

Make a base of greens. Place all of your greens in one big salad bowl or divide it between serving bowls.

Segment the oranges. Using a serrate knife, cut off the top and bottom of the orange so you see some of the fruit. Then, working your way around the orange, slice off the rind from top to bottom, removing all of the white pith. Then cut segments by making a cut as close to the membrane as possible to remove each segment but leaving the membrane attached.

Top the salad. Place the orange segments on top of the salad, followed by the avocado, pomegranate seeds, feta cheese, and nuts. Drizzle it with the dressing.

Toss and serve. Toss the salad before serving or just let people serve themselves.

Storing Leftovers

This winter salad is best prepared and eaten right away, though you can prepare the different components in advance. The candied nuts and dressing can be stored for several days before using them, and the oranges can be cut the day before and kept in a sealed container.

If you do happen to have leftovers, cover them tightly with plastic wrap or transfer the leftover salad to a container and store it in the refrigerator. If you have already tossed it with the dressing, you’ll want to eat it within a day or so.

small wooden bowl with a serving of winter salad with oranges and pomegranates

Serving Suggestions

This is the perfect Thanksgiving or Christmas salad to enjoy with your favorite holiday main dishes.

You can also make it the day after the holiday and top it with leftover turkey, ham, or beef to make it a dinner salad that is light and fresh, but filling. Or serve it with soup you’ve made from your leftovers for a delicious soup and salad meal with one of these recipes:

tossed salad with orange slices, pomegranate seeds, nuts, and feta in a wooden bowl

Shop the Recipe

Brianne Recommends

AVOCADO TOOL – I love these for making it quick and easy to slice an avocado.

SERRATED KNIFE – I prefer a knife like this for segmenting an orange.

SALAD BOWL AND TONGS – A salad like this looks especially gorgeous in a nice wooden bowl.

JELLY JARS – Your dressing will keep for several days in a jar in the fridge.

tossed salad with orange slices, pomegranate seeds, nuts, and feta in a wooden bowl

Winter Salad with Cranberry Balsamic Dressing

Mixed greens, topped with seasonal fruit, salty feta, and a tangy Cranberry Balsamic Dressing
Prep: 10 mins
Servings: 4 -6 servings

Ingredients

  • 10 oz. Mixed baby greens
  • 2 oranges, rind removed and cut into segments
  • one avocado, sliced or chopped
  • seeds from one pomegranate
  • 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 cup Candied Spiced Nuts or toasted nuts such as pecans
  • 1/4 cup Cranberry Balsamic Dressing or another balsamic vinaigrette dressing

For the Cranberry Balsamic Dressing

  • 1/4 cup cranberry sauce
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • Place the mixed greens in a big salad bowl or divide between individual bowls.
  • Top with the orange segments, avocado, pomegranate seeds, feta, and nuts.
  • Drizzle with the dressing. Toss everything together or serve as-is.

For the Cranberry Balsamic Dressing

  • Combine the ingredients in a small blender jar, or a glass mason jar that can attached to your blender blade and blend until smooth.
    If you don't have one of these appliances, you can whisk it in a bowl or shake it in a jar, but it might not be as smooth.
Nutrition Facts
Winter Salad with Cranberry Balsamic Dressing
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 505 Calories from Fat 360
% Daily Value*
Fat 40g62%
Saturated Fat 9g45%
Polyunsaturated Fat 7g
Monounsaturated Fat 17g
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 575mg24%
Potassium 775mg22%
Carbohydrates 33g11%
Fiber 10g40%
Sugar 19g21%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 1198IU24%
Vitamin C 64mg78%
Calcium 252mg25%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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