Thanksgiving Salad with Cranberries, Apples, & Caramelized Pecans

This holiday favorite comes complete with sweet, caramelized pecans that are sure to dazzle your guests.

This colorful and full-flavored salad has become a signature dish at my Thanksgiving table. It's a simple recipe to prepare, yet will wow guests again and again with its delicious pairing of sweet cranberries, crisp apples, and caramelized pecans.

Serves 6

For the caramelized pecans:

  • 2 cups halved pecans
  • 2/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

For the salad:

  • 8 cups mixed salad greens
  • 4 Fuji apples, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle on pecans. Pour maple syrup over pecans, add salt, and toss gently. Bake for 35 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until maple syrup begins to dry. Let cool completely.
  2. In a small bowl, add olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup. Whisk together until emulsified.
  3. In a large bowl, add salad greens, apples, and cranberries. Pour dressing (as much as desired) and salt over salad and toss gently. Sprinkle with caramelized pecans, and serve immediately.
VegNews' co-founder Colleen Holland makes this salad every Thanksgiving, and her family talks about it all year long. Follow Colleen on Facebook for more of her favorite vegan food and recipes.

More Food

The Vegan Barista’s Guide to Starbucks Holiday Drinks

Vanilla soy chestnut-praline lattes, coconut milk gingerbread lattes, and spicy-sweet Mexican hot chocolates are just a few of our 11 favorite drinks on the Starbucks holiday menu.
Read More »

Vegan Stuff to Stuff

This Thanksgiving, get stuffed (literally) by filling one delicious food with another.
Read More »

11 Best Vegan Thanksgiving Instagram Posts

From quinoa stuffing to pumpkin pie smoothies, we’ve rounded up the most like-worthy Thanksgiving posts on Instagram.
Read More »

Two-Ingredient Thanksgiving Hacks from Trader Joe's

Throw a holiday feast with enough items to breeze through the express line at TJ's.
Read More »

5 Ways to Veganize Desserts for Diwali

Celebrate the Hindu festival of light with dairy-free versions of some of India’s favorite sweet treats.
Read More »

This Week on VegNews TV: The secret to these delightful sweet treats is white beans! Aylin Erman shows you how to make these simple blondies.

More Videos »