Thanksgiving Fruit Salad

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Let’s bring some color to your Thanksgiving table with our super easy Thanksgiving Fruit Salad! It’s filled with fresh seasonal fruits and just a hint of honey for that sweet touch. It looks amazing and is seriously effortless to put together.

Suitable for Gluten Free and Vegan diets. Post includes Weight Watchers points.

Zoomed in view of sliced fruit in a white bowl.

Do you have a big crowd coming over, or maybe it’s a smaller, more intimate gathering this year? No worries, this salad is perfect for any size event. It’s super quick to toss together, giving you more time to mingle and enjoy the day.

Do you know how Thanksgiving can be all about those heavy dishes? Well, this fruit salad is your refreshing dessert. It’s light and fresh and complements the richer flavors on your menu.

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And oh, those pomegranate seeds! They add a burst of color and a bit of fun texture everyone loves. Especially for the kids after being hyped up on cookies, Nutella Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls, and Cherry Pie all day! They don’t have to know it’s not dessert, right? 

Round bowl with fruit in it.

Why Make This Recipe

  • It’s sweet – Each fruit is yummy, but this combination makes a sweet dish! 
  • It’s juicy – Lush fruits combine their goodness to make a refreshingly juicy fruit salad. 
  • It’s kid–friendly – I don’t know many kids who will pass up a fruit salad and it’s tasty and fun to eat! 
Fruit salad recipe ingredients.

Ingredient Notes

  • Pears — Sweet and juicy with a buttery flavor when ripe, pears provide a tender and firm base for the fruit salad. Choose red, yellow or green. 
  • Apples — Use both red and green crunchy apples. They have different flavor profiles with green being more tart and red being more sweet. 
  • Seedless grapes — Red grapes or purple seedless grapes will work the best here. Granny smith apples and honey crisp or fuji apples are great options.  
  • Kiwis — These fuzzy brown skinned sweet fruits are adorable and tasty. Sweet and sometimes a little tart, they play well with the other fruits in the salad. 
  • Mandarins — Mandarin oranges are known at the store as “Cuties” or Clementine oranges. They are sweet, juicy and easy to separate with each wedge contained in its own skin.
  • Pomegranate Seeds — These are the edible seeds inside the pomegranate fruit. They are tart, small, jewel-like, and are surrounded by a juicy pulp. 
  • Dried cranberries — Small and dark red, these dehydrated snacks are sweet and tart. Fresh cranberries aren’t recommended because they are too tart.
  • Apple pie spice — Featuring warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice, apple pie spice tastes like fall.  You can also use Pumpkin Pie Spice.
  • Mandarin juice — Juice some mandarins like you would lemons for lemonade, or simply use orange juice.  
  • Maple syrup — This little bit of maple syrup will help pull the sugars out of the fruit creating a sauce.
  • Mint (optional) – This can be used for decoration.

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How to Make Thanksgiving Fruit Salad

Get complete ingredients list and instructions from the recipe card further below.

Fruit sliced or diced on a white plate.

Step 1. Wash and chop all of the fruit into bite-sized pieces. In a large bowl, add all the salad ingredients. 

Fruit salad dressing in a clear glass jug.

Step 2. In a small bowl or jar, combine all the dressing ingredients.

Salad with dressing being poured onto it from a jug.

Step 3. Pour the dressing on the fruit.

Fruit being mixed with spoon.

Step 4. Toss gently. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Pro Tips

  • Use your favorite seasonal fresh fruit.
  • Add a splash of lemon juice to the maple-orange dressing to keep the fruits from turning brown. 
  • Sprinkle the salad with pecans, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds before serving to add a crunchy and nutty flavor.
  • Similarly, consider adding unique ingredients like fresh herbs (mint, basil), coconut flakes, or a sprinkle of sea salt to elevate the flavor profile and add complexity to the salad.
  • Play around with different dressings or sauces. Try something like balsamic glaze.
  • Top with whipped cream, cool whip, or Ninja Creami Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe for a beautiful holiday fruit salad.
Close up view of various fruits in a white bowl.

Delicious Variations 

  • Greek Yogurt Fruit Salad – Combine Greek yogurt with diced apples, grapes, bananas, and walnuts for a creamy and protein-packed fruit salad. Sweeten with a drizzle of honey or maple syrup if desired.
  • Berry Medley – Mix together strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries for a vibrant and antioxidant-rich salad. Drizzle with a honey-lime dressing for added sweetness.
  • Mediterranean Fruit Salad – Combine diced watermelon, cucumber, feta cheese, and mint leaves for a refreshing and savory twist. Drizzle with a balsamic glaze for added depth of flavor.
Bowl of fruit with dressing.

Prep And Storage

  • Prep Ahead – Prepare the dressing and diced fruits, but don’t mix them until about 45 minutes before serving. Toss the fruits in a little lemon or lime juice to keep them from browning. By keeping the dressing separate, you will keep the fruits from becoming soggy. 
  • Store – Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. 
  • Freeze – It’s not recommended to freeze fruit salad. 
Close up view of fruit on a wooden spoon.

FAQs 

Can I add nuts or seeds to the fruit salad?

Yes, you can add nuts or seeds to this fruit salad. Adding toasted nuts or seeds like pecans, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds can add crunch and depth of flavor to the fruit salad. Just be mindful of any allergies your guests may have.

How do I prevent the fruits from browning?

To prevent the fruits from browning toss the fruits in a bit of lemon or lime juice, as the acidity slows down the oxidation process. Alternatively, you can add fruits like apples or pears at the last minute to minimize browning.

How do I choose ripe fruits for the salad?

You can choose ripe fruits for salad by looking for firm fruits that yield slightly to pressure, with vibrant colors and a fresh aroma. Avoid fruits that are overly soft, bruised, or have moldy spots.

Thanksgiving fruit salad on a white plate.

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Fruit salad in a white plate.

Serve With:

  • This salad paired with these delicious waffles is a great Thanksgiving dessert or breakfast.
  • Pancakes with this fresh fruit salad makes the best dessert.
  • Add some homemade vanilla ice cream.

More Dessert Recipes

No meal is complete without a tasty dessert. We have such a wide selection for you to choose from.

Weight Watchers Points

There is just 1 Blue Plan SmartPoint in one serving of this.

Thank you for reading my Fruit Salad for Thanksgiving recipe post. And please come visit again as I continue to slice, dice and dream up affordable Air Fryer recipes, Instant Pot recipes, Southern Recipes, and more. Thanks for supporting Recipes from a Pantry, food blog.

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Round bowl with fruit in it.
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5 from 1 vote

Thanksgiving Fruit Salad

This vibrant Thanksgiving fruit salad jazzed up with a sweet maple-mandarin dressing is perfect for your Thanksgiving table.
Prep Time10 minutes
Total Time10 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: american, western
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 217kcal
Author: Bintu Hardy

Ingredients

Salad

  • 2 (356g) pears diced
  • 2 (364g) red apples sliced
  • 2 (364g) green apples sliced
  • 2 cups (304g) seedless grapes
  • 3 (207g) kiwis peeled, sliced and quartered
  • 3 (120g) mandarins peeled
  • ½ cup (87g) pomegranate arils
  • ¼ cup (30g) dried cranberries

Dressing

  • ½ teaspoon (2.5ml) apple pie spice
  • ¼ cup (60ml) mandarin juice can be swapped to orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) maple syrup

Instructions

  • Wash and chop all of the fruit into bite-sized pieces.
  • In a large salad bowl, add all the salad ingredients.
  • In a small bowl or jar, combine all the dressing ingredients.
  • Pour the dressing on the fruit and toss gently.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving.
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Notes

  • Add a splash of lemon juice to the maple-orange dressing to keep the fruits from turning brown. 
  • Sprinkle the salad with pecans, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds before serving to add crunchy and nutty flavor.
  • Similarly, consider adding unique ingredients like fresh herbs (mint, basil), coconut flakes, or a sprinkle of sea salt to elevate the flavor profile and add complexity to the salad.
  • Play around with different dressings or sauces. Try something like maple-lime dressing or a balsamic glaze.
  • Storage – Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. 
  • There is 1 Blue Plan SmartPoints in one serving of this.

Nutrition

Calories: 217kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 7mg | Potassium: 507mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 453IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 1mg

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5 from 1 vote

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