Liven up your fall menu with fruit salad featuring in-season apples. A snap to make and nutritious, the combination of crisp apples, dried cherries, dried cranberries, crunchy walnuts and creamy yogurt provides beneficial phytonutrients, prebiotics, probiotics and omega 3 fatty acids.
Tart Granny Smith apples and sweet red apples balance flavors perfectly. A member of the rose family, a medium sized apple has about 80 calories and 10 percent of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C. Apples are rich in fiber, leading to feeling full sooner and eating less, which is good for managing weight and reducing cancer risk.
Some types of fiber, like those found in apples, are considered prebiotics that feed probiotic bacteria, like those found in yogurt. That’s good news for the gut. Studies show that fiber helps to produce healthful compounds such as those that protect colon cells. Apples contain many phytochemicals too, such as quercetin, epicatechin and triterpenoids, that show promising anti-cancer qualities.
Yogurt provides a creamy, mildly tangy sauce that holds the ingredients together. Yogurt is a probiotic food with live, good-for-the-gut bacteria. Walnuts add satisfying crunch and health-protective omega 3 fatty acids.
Although fall is the peak season for apples, they are available year round. Using dried cherries and cranberries, also containing an array of phytochemicals, especially anthocyanins, means this salad can be an anytime favorite. Reconstituting dried cherries and cranberries makes them plumper and releases their sweet flavors. Plus, the expanded fruit won’t fall to the bottom of the salad.
Crisp apples, chewy cherries and cranberries, and crunchy walnuts make a colorful and phytonutrient-rich festive fall fruit salad.
Apple Salad with Cherries, Cranberries & Walnuts
Makes 8 servings. Per serving: 212 calories, 8 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 34 g carbohydrate, 3.5 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 23 mg sodium.
- 1/4 cup dried cherries
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 2 medium red apples (cored)
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples (cored)
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
- 1 cup vanilla yogurt
- In small bowl, cover dried cherries and dried cranberries with hot water. Let stand while cutting apples.
- Cut apples into 8 wedges and cut each wedge into 4 pieces. Place pieces in large bowl.
- Drain liquid from cherries and cranberries (save to drink or flavor drinking water), and add cherries and cranberries to large bowl. Add walnuts and yogurt and stir until well coated. Serve immediately.
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Photograph by Heather Victoria Photography