Christmas Salad is a delicious salad during the holiday season. It’s loaded with gorgeous winter fruit like pomegranate arils, juicy pears, and the sweet crunch of candied almonds.
A few years ago my older sister shared this wonderful salad recipe with us, and now it’s our favorite salad this time of year. It’s perfect on Christmas Eve. It’s the classic red and green colors of Christmas with the beautiful ruby red gem tones of the pomegranate arils (don’t worry…I had to google that word…it’s the name for the pomegranate seeds), and the pretty mixed greens. We made a quick video so you can see it all come together in a quick minute.
What you’ll need to make Christmas Salad:
- mixed greens (red leaf, green leaf or romaine)
- ripe green pears
- ripe red pears
- parmesan cheese
For the Dressing:
- red wine vinegar
- dried onion flakes
- dried mustard
- poppy seeds
How to make Christmas Salad with Pomegranate:
- Toast almonds: In a dry hot pan, toast the sliced almonds until lightly browned and fragrant. Add in the 2 tablespoons of sugar and toss until well coated. Remove the almonds from the pan and let cool. The almonds can be stored at room temp in a covered dish until ready to use.
- Prepare pomegranate: Seed the pomegranates in a bowl of water. The seeds will fall to the bottom and the red and yellow insides will float to the top. Remove the pomegranate seeds from the water and chill in the fridge until ready to use.
- Make the salad dressing: add all salad dressing ingredients to a bowl and whisk until combined.
- Prepare toppings: In a large salad bowl add the greens, sliced pears, pomegranate seeds, crumbled bacon, parmesan cheese and toasted candied almonds.
- Toss and serve: Drizzle and toss the salad with the salad dressing. Serve immediately, and enjoy!
There are a bunch of things for this recipe that can be done in advance, so that assembly is easy when you might be hosting a crowd, and have a bunch of food to prepare.
- Cook the Bacon: You can cook the bacon days before. Store in the fridge wrapped in a paper towel in a plastic bag (to absorb any grease).
- Toast the almonds: You can toast and candy the almonds a day ahead as well as de-seeding the pomegranate.
- Remove the pomegranate seeds: You can remove the pomegranate seeds a day or two ahead.
- Chop and Wash the lettuce: Did you know that a salad spinner works as a crisper? Your salad can stay in the spinner after you have washed and removed all the water. These steps can be done a day ahead.
- Slice the pears: The pears can be sliced a few hours ahead, it helps to add a little lemon juice to the sliced pears to keep them from browning.
- Assemble the salad hours before: The key here is to not add the salad dressing until right before serving.
How to store this Salad:
Once the salad dressing has been added to this salad, it doesn’t keep longer than a couple of hours. It’s best enjoyed right away.
There’s something so satisfying about knowing that your salad dressing is homemade. This dressing makes the salad too…it’s sweet and tangy and the perfect match to all the wonderful ingredients.
Toasting almonds for Christmas Salad:
Instead of buying pre-toasted almonds, you should toast your own! Whenever I toast and candy almonds, I always toast a second batch for my daughter. She thinks they’re so good! Plus they make the house smell so good too.
Cooking bacon for Christmas Salad:
Did I mention this salad has bacon?! I know! We love to cook bacon in the oven…it’s the best way to cook up a bunch!
What to serve with Christmas Salad:
Serve with salad alongside these delicious main courses:
Celebrate the colors and the fruits of the season with this delicious Christmas Salad. It's the perfect salad to go with your Christmas dinner.
FOR THE SALAD
- mixed greens (green leaf, red leaf or romaine) (only two heads of lettuce needed), chopped and washed
- 2 ripe green pears peeled and sliced
- 2 ripe red pears peeled and sliced
- 2 pomegranates seeded
- 1 pound bacon cooked and crumbled
- 1 cup almonds (sliced) toasted and candied
- 2 tablespoons sugar for the almonds
- 1 cup parmesan cheese grated
FOR THE SALAD DRESSING
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 3/4 cup oil
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons dried onion flakes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried mustard
- 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
In a dry hot pan, toast the sliced almonds until lightly browned and fragrant. Add in the 2 tablespoons of sugar and toss until well coated. Remove the almonds from the pan and let cool. The almonds can be stored at room temp in a covered dish until ready to use.
Seed the pomegranates in a bowl of water. The seeds will fall to the to bottom and the red and yellow insides will float to the top. Remove the pomegranate seeds from the water and chill in the fridge until ready to use.
Make the salad dressing: add all salad dressing ingredients to a bowl and whisk until combined.
In a large salad bowl add the greens, sliced pears, pomegranate seeds, crumbled bacon, parmesan cheese and toasted candied almonds.
Drizzle and toss the salad with the salad dressing. Serve immediately, and enjoy!
De-seeding the pomegranates and toasting the candied almonds can both be prepared ahead of time.
Making This Recipe? Tag us on Instagram: @NoBiggie using the hashtag #NoBiggieRecipes, so we can see what you are making in the kitchen!
More Salad Recipes We Love:
That’s it! I’d love to know…what is your family’s Classic Christmas Eve dinner? Do you mix it up, or do you always serve the same thing every year? Let me know in the comments below.