Contest-Winning Festive Tossed Salad Recipe
Contest-Winning Festive Tossed Salad Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Contest-Winning Festive Tossed Salad Recipe

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With its unique medley of fruits and festive look, this salad is a holiday tradition at our house. Our three grown daughters have come to expect it. One forkful reminds us of all the things we can be thankful for. -Jauneen Hosking, Waterford, Wisconsin
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 15 min.
MAKES:8-10 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 15 min.
MAKES: 8-10 servings


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons poppy seeds
  • 10 cups torn romaine
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 medium apple, chopped
  • 1 medium pear, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 to 1 cup chopped cashews

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 288 calories, 21g fat (4g saturated fat), 10mg cholesterol, 195mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate (16g sugars, 2g fiber), 5g protein


  1. In a blender, combine the sugar, vinegar, lemon juice, onion and salt. Cover and process until blended. With blender running, gradually add oil. Add poppy seeds and blend.
  2. In a salad bowl, combine the romaine, cheese, apple, pear and cranberries. Drizzle with desired amount of dressing. Add cashews; toss to coat. Yield: 8-10 servings.
Originally published as Festive Tossed Salad in Taste of Home October/November 2000, p25

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Reviewed Nov. 21, 2014

"Odd combo of ingredients but absolutely fantastic tasting and looking! Our Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners must-have-on-the-table salad!"

Reviewed Dec. 26, 2012

"This was a hit with a huge crowd."

Reviewed Dec. 19, 2012

"I decreased the sugar to about 2 tablespoons. I omitted the cheese and the poppyseeds. Still pretty good and better for you. I would not recommend decreasing the salt. I think it would have been amazing with candied pecans!"

Reviewed Nov. 23, 2012

"I made this for Thanksgiving dinner since my only job was to bring the salad. The vinagrette was really good, it smelled a little odd at first (most do I think) but I taste-tested it on a small portion of salad and it was really good! Don't be afraid to make big chunks of apple and pear either - I will make bigger chunks next time I make this. This salad is definetly for the occasion but you are able to make twice as much vinagrette then you will probably need so you can refrigerate for later on. People really liked this and commented on how good and different it was - even someone who doesn't like vinagrettes said it was very sweet and really liked it !"

Reviewed Nov. 21, 2012

"A must at our Thanksgiving table! The perfect blend of sweet and salty. Just delicious!"

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