What item do you dig into first on your Thanksgiving plate? I always start with the fruit salads. It’s like eating dessert first 🙂
And there’s really no side dish that’s easier to make than a fruit salad. Some of my favorite fruit salads (besides this amazing Apple Cranberry Salad) include:
My mom has made this Apple Cranberry Fruit Salad for our Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners for as long as I can remember. The sweet cooked cranberries are the real stars of the dish, and make it uniquely special to this time of year. It’s always a crowd favorite too. It’s simple, but festive and delicious! You can serve it plain, or top it with a dollop of whipped cream and sprinkle with nuts.
- 1 (12 oz package) fresh cranberries
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 red apples, chopped
- 1 yellow or green apple, chopped
- 1 (11oz) can Mandarin oranges, drained
- 2 large banana, sliced
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 - 2 cups mini marshmallows (optional)
- Walnuts or pecans, (optional)
- Whipped Cream, for topping (optional)
- In a medium saucepan combine the water and sugar. Add cranberries and cook on medium high, until you start to hear the cranberries pop. Cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
- In a large bowl toss apples, mandarin oranges, and banana together. Add a little bit of lemon juice to keep the fruit from browning. Drain most of the juice from the cranberries. Add them to mixture along with marshmallows and nuts. Toss to combine. Dollop with fresh whipped cream, if desired.
- Cook cranberries as directed and refrigerate overnight. Combine the other fruits (not marshmallows) and refrigerate overnight, separately. Stir the two together before serving, adding marshmallows and topping with whipped cream if desired.
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