Apple Salad With Pecans and Raisins

Apple salad with pecan

The Spruce 

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 10 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
233 Calories
18g Fat
19g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 233
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 6mg 2%
Sodium 107mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Protein 2g
Calcium 21mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This deliciously fresh apple salad is similar to the famous Waldorf salad, a classic fruit salad made with apples, celery, and mayonnaise, which dates back to the late 1800s. The addition of nuts didn't occur until 1928, and the Waldorf salad is now known to feature grapes and walnuts.

In this recipe, we use Red Delicious apples, which provide a fresh and crisp mouthfeel, and for a change of pace, pecans are used instead of walnuts, and raisins are added in place of the grapes, maintaining the salad's general taste and texture profile. What results is a refreshing but creamy dish with a nice crunch—perfect for lunch or even a late-day snack. For the holidays, you can incorporate dried cranberries in the fruit salad to give it a festive touch. 


  • 5 medium Red Delicious apples
  • 1 lemon (juiced)
  • 1/2 cup celery (sliced)
  • 1/2 cup pecans (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • Lettuce leaves (for serving)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for apple salad
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  2. Wash the apples but do not peel them. Core the apples and cut them into 1/2-inch cubes.

    Diced apples in a bowl
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  3. Sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent discoloration.

    Apples in a bowl drizzled with lemon juice
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  4. In a large bowl, combine apples with celery, pecans, raisins, and 1/3 cup mayonnaise and gently mix. Add more mayonnaise if desired.

    Apple salad ingredients in a bowl
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  5. Serve scoops of apple salad on lettuce leaves. Enjoy.

    Scoops of apple salad
    The Spruce 


  • Fresh pecans work nicely in this dish, but to bring out their flavor even more, toast them first. Place the nuts on a baking sheet coated lightly with cooking spray and bake at 350 F for about 5 minutes—watch carefully, as the pecans can burn easily.

Recipe Variations

  • As with Waldorf salad, this apple salad also benefits from the addition of chicken and turkey, or even canned tuna, making it a more filling dish and even a sandwich filling (it is great stuffed inside a pita pocket).
  • If you would like to lighten up this recipe, you can replace some of the mayonnaise with plain yogurt. It will add a little bit of tang to the dish, so you should be conservative when squeezing the lemon juice, only using as much as needed to keep the apples from browning. You can also use a reduced-fat or fat-free mayonnaise if you prefer.
  • To make it vegan, use an egg-free, vegan mayonnaise spread like Vegenaise.

What Is the Best Apple for Salad?

A variety of apples work well for salad, but crisp, crunchy apples work best. Ideal varieties are crispy Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Honeycrisp, Golden Delicious, and McIntosh. You can also play around with the apple variety, using what is in season or combining two different types—just stay away from softer, more mealy fleshed fruits.