Mexican Christmas Eve Salad is a traditional salad served in Mexico during the holidays.
In Mexico, Noche Buena refers to Christmas Eve. I love visiting Mexico during the holidays. From poinsettia plants filling the markets to the traditional foods served. It is a wonderful time to visit. On Christmas Eve, families gather for a late Christmas dinner. My husband’s family would start to come over to the host’s house around 10. Eating on Christmas Eve usually started around Midnight. On my first visit to Mexico City, I was so surprised that we ate so late for Christmas. My family always eats around 3 pm on the holidays, so Midnight was a little different for me. I love experiencing new cultures and family traditions, especially those around the holidays. One of the traditional recipes served is a light and healthy Mexican Christmas Eve Salad.
This Mexican Christmas Eve Salad has a colorful mix of beets, oranges, apples, jicama, peanuts and pomegranate arils. It is so festive and so gorgeous. I like to use a large serving platter to assemble that salad. First the romaine lettuce is placed on the platter. The fruits are then carefully arranged on top of the salad.
I have seen different dressings for this salad. Some dressings have a crema or yogurt base and some use the beet cooking liquid in the dressing. In this recipe, I made a light lime and olive oil vinaigrette to dress the salad. I like to keep the dressing light and bursting with bright citrus flavor.
You could assemble the salad a few hours before serving, but just leave off the dressing until ready to eat.
I think that you’ll find this Mexican Christmas Salad to be:
Light & healthy
Bright & Citrusy
Festive & Colorful
Perfect for the holidays
For the salad:
- 3 Medium Beets, trimmed and cleaned
- 2 Heads of Romaine Lettuce, chopped
- 2 Oranges, segmented
- 1 Small to Medium Jicama, peeled and cut into match sticks
- 1 Granny Smith Apple, thinly sliced
- Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1 Pomegranate, seeded
- 1/2 Cup Peanuts
For the dressing:
- 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice
- 2-3 Tsp Agave Nectar
- 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
- Preheat the oven to 375 F.
- Wrap the cleaned beets in tin foil and roast until fork tender, about 40-60 minutes. It'll depend on the size of your beets.
- While the beets are roasting, prep the other salad ingredients.
- When the beets are done and cool enough to handle, peel them and then slice.
- In a small salad bowl, add the apple slices and toss with lemon juice. This will help prevent browning.
- On a shallow serving platter, arrange the romaine lettuce in an even layer. Add the sliced beets and segmented orange around the outer part of the salad. Then add the sliced jicama and apples slices around the salad. Add the pomegranate arils to the center and garish the whole salad with peanuts.
- if you don't want to arrange everything around the lettuce, you can add everything to a large salad bowl and just toss together.
For the salad dressing:
- In a mason jar, add the olive oil, lime juice, agave nectar and salt. Tightly cover the jar and shake until emulsified. Taste and add more agave or salt.
- When ready to serve, drizzle the salad dressing over the salad. Or serve the dressing on the salad if you aren't planning on eating the whole salad right away.