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25 Best Christmas Salads That Are Merry and Bright

It's a fresh way to balance out all those comforting dishes!

Headshot of Kara ZaubermanBy Kara Zauberman
christmas salads brussels sprouts salad in wooden bowl
Caitlin Bensel

Christmas dinner menus are packed to the brim with comfort food dishes, like mashed potatoes, ham, casserole recipes, and more. So, if you want to add a pop of freshness to balance things out, look no further than these Christmas salad recipes. Here, you'll find ways to make your holiday meal bright and merry. Try a classic Caesar salad or Ree Drummond's favorite kale citrus salad with a spicy kick. Looking for a Christmas salad that's hearty enough to feed a crowd? Check out the holiday wild rice salad or the chicken Waldorf salad that's perfect for a Christmas brunch.

Here, you'll find tons of Christmas salad recipes to serve as a Christmas appetizer or Christmas side, including classic salads, creative salads, and some of the best Pioneer Woman salad recipes of all time. For instance, Ree's Caprese salad is a family favorite and her ranch chopped salad would make a refreshing accompaniment to your Christmas ham. There are also tons of ways to let seasonal winter produce shine—add some roasted butternut squash, shaved Brussels sprouts, or even citrus fruits to your bed of greens. With plenty of tasty mix-ins, like dried cranberries and crunchy salad toppers, these Christmas salads are sure to be a hit. Don't forget a drizzle of salad dressing!


Caesar Salad

christmas salads caesar salad
Caitlin Bensel

You can't go wrong with a classic Caesar salad. It's crowd-pleasing for a reason and the homemade dressing and croutons only make it better!

Get the Caesar Salad recipe.



Couscous Salad

christmas salads couscous salad
Caitlin Bensel

Moroccan couscous cooks up in just 5 minutes so this salad is an easy addition to any holiday menu. We love the bright pop of color and sweet flavor from the pomegranate seeds!

Get the Couscous Salad recipe.


Italian Pasta Salad

christmas salads italian pasta salad
Will Dickey

Although pasta salad is more closely associated with summer BBQs, it's also a great make-ahead dish to take to a holiday potluck. This one in particular has tons of tasty mix-ins that you might find on a Christmas charcuterie board.

Get the Italian Pasta Salad recipe.

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Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad

shaved brussels sprouts salad in wood bowl
Caitlin Bensel

This crunchy salad highlights one of the more popular winter veggies these days: Brussels sprouts! When thinly sliced and served raw with dried cranberries and slivered almonds, they become just like a crisp slaw.

Get the Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad recipe.


Green Bean Salad

green bean salad with tomatoes and olives
Caitlin Bensel

Green beans are often served in casserole form on the holidays, but this fresh take will surprise your guests! The green beans, tomatoes, and red onion join forces with tasty mix-ins like olives, cheese, and almonds.

Get the Green Bean Salad recipe.



Chef's Salad on a Stick

picnic side dishes chefs salad on a stick
Caitlin Bensel

Here's a fun holiday starter to kick things off: salad on a stick! It's an easy way to serve salad to a crowd.

Get the Chef’s Salad on a Stick recipe.

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Broccoli Salad

broccoli salad in wood bowl
Caitlin Bensel

If you're heading out to a potluck Christmas or just looking for a make-ahead dish to serve at home, this broccoli salad is just what you need. It's creamy, crunchy, and just a little bit sweet thanks to dried cranberries.

Get the Broccoli Salad recipe.


Green Goddess Chicken Salad Dip

green goddess chicken salad dip
Caitlin Bensel

This is not your average salad recipe—it doubles as a party dip! Snack on the green, festive dish while you prepare the rest of your holiday meal.

Get the Green Goddess Chicken Salad Dip recipe.


Classic Three-Bean Salad

classic three bean salad in blue bowl
Will Dickey

Swap out the heavy green bean casserole in favor of something a little lighter, yet still just as tasty this holiday season. This potluck-ready salad is made with fresh green beans, canned beans, and a flavorful red wine vinaigrette.

Get Ree's Classic Three-Bean Salad recipe.

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Ultimate Winter Salad

ultimate winter salad with pomegranates
Natalie Perry/The Pioneer Woman

This colorful salad has a bit of everything—fresh veggies, leftover roasted squash, candied nuts, and winter fruit. It will look stunning on any holiday table.

Get the Ultimate Winter Salad recipe.



Red and Green Fruit Salad with Mint Syrup

red and green fruit salad with mint syrup white background
Ralph Smith

Your Christmas brunch deserves a fresh and flavorful salad—fruit salad, that is! Make this one with a mint-infused syrup for a touch of sweetness and holiday cheer.

Get Ree's Red and Green Fruit Salad with Mint Syrup recipe.


Antipasti Chopped Salad

antipasti chopped salad

Try this salad as a starter for your Christmas dinner—or any hearty Italian meal for that matter. It's packed with goodies like sliced pepperoni, salami, cheese, and marinated veggies.

Get Ree's Antipasti Chopped Salad recipe.

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Roasted Beet Salad

roasted beet salad on white plate with greens
Ashley Alexander

All your guests will be impressed by this colorful salad. To make the presentation look fancy, simply plate the roasted beets, grapefruit, and baby lettuces over a heaping dollop of bright pink beet vinaigrette.

Get Ree's Roasted Beet Salad recipe.


Greek Salad

christmas salad greek style
Danielle Daly

This classic salad is a year-round favorite. Pair it with lamb chops, roast chicken, or even roasted potatoes.

Get Ree's Greek Salad recipe.


Ranch Chopped Salad

christmas salad with ranch dressing
Ralph Smith

This crunchy salad is topped with a creamy buttermilk-based dressing that would taste just as delicious alongside a steak dinner as it would your holiday roast.

Get Ree's Ranch Chopped Salad recipe.


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Holiday Wild Rice Salad

christmas salad with holiday wild rice
Brenda Score

We love loaded salads—especially for Christmas! This one is packed with hearty mix-ins, like wild rice, apples, pecans, and bacon.

Get the Holiday Wild Rice Salad recipe.


Wedge Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

christmas salad with wedge of lettuce and buttermilk ranch dressing
Ralph Smith

This crunchy salad would make a beautiful starter at your holiday meal. You could even put all the wedges on a big platter (family-style) and let your guests help themselves.

Get Ree's Wedge Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing recipe.


Ginger Shrimp Salad

christmas salad with ginger shrimp
Ryan Dausch

Fresh ginger and jalapeño pepper bring zing and spice to this shrimp-topped salad. It's a perky Christmas starter that'll liven up any holiday menu.

Get Ree's Ginger Shrimp Salad recipe.

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Kale Citrus Salad

christmas salad with kale and citrus
The Pioneer Woman

Crisp kale is the star of this winter salad, but the bright citrus and spicy jalapeños really help the greens shine.

Get Ree's Kale Citrus Salad recipe.


Apple, Pecan, and Blue Cheese Salad with Dried Cherries

christmas salad with apple, pecans, blue cheese and dried cherries
The Pioneer Woman

"My favorite salads are ones with lots of different things going on: some kind of fruit, some kind of nut, some kind of cheese," Ree says. Make it your own by swapping pears for apple, goat cheese for blue cheese, or even cranberries for cherries.

Get Ree's Apple, Pecan, and Blue Cheese Salad with Dried Cherries recipe.


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