Classic Waldorf Salad

Classic Waldorf salad

The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
372 Calories
30g Fat
27g Carbs
4g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 372
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 30g 38%
Saturated Fat 9g 47%
Cholesterol 39mg 13%
Sodium 164mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 27g 10%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 19g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 11mg 57%
Calcium 61mg 5%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 362mg 8%
*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.)

The Waldorf salad is said to have been created by Oscar Tschirky, a maitre d'hotel of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. The hotel opened in 1893, and the recipe appeared in his comprehensive cookbook, The Cook Book by Oscar of the Waldorf (1896). The salad was simply made with apples, celery, and mayonnaise, and it quickly became a favorite in other hotel restaurants. Walnuts were included in George Rector's recipe in The Rector Cookbook (1928). Walnuts became a standard ingredient after that. The recipe in The Waldorf Astoria Cookbook (1981) also includes nuts.

This is a classic Waldorf salad recipe with lightly sweetened apples and walnuts, brought together with a creamy mayonnaise and whipped cream dressing.

Choose this delicious salad for a Thanksgiving meal or any special dinner. We like dried cranberries in the salad because they add texture and extra flavor.


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  • 3 medium apples (golden delicious or red delicious)

  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • 1 dash salt

  • 1 cup celery (thinly sliced)

  • 1/2 cup walnuts (coarsely chopped)

  • 1/2 cup whipping cream (cold)

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise

  • 3 cups mixed salad greens

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Gather the ingredients
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  2. Wash the apples, but do not peel them. Core the apples and cut them into 1/2-inch cubes.

    Cut apples
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  3. Sprinkle the cubed apples with sugar, lemon juice, and salt.

    Sprinkle cubed apples
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  4. Add celery and nuts and toss to blend.

    Add celery
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  5. In a medium bowl with an electric mixer, whip the cream to stiff peaks.

    Make stiff peaks
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  6. With a rubber or silicone spatula or spoon, gently fold the mayonnaise into whipped cream.

    Add mayo
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  7. Fold the whipped mayonnaise and cream mixture gently into apple mixture.

    Fold whipped mayo
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel
  8. Serve the salad on mixed salad greens or large lettuce leaves.

    Serve salad
    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel

What Goes Well With Waldorf Salad?

A Waldorf salad goes well with many meat dishes, including fried or roasted chicken, baked ham, pork loin or chops, and salmon. It is a great luncheon salad as well, and a fabulous side dish to serve along with a holiday dinner.

What Is a Bound Salad?

A "bound salad" is a combination of ingredients bound together with a thick dressing, such as mayonnaise, boiled dressing, or a mayonnaise-like dressing. Waldorf salad, tuna salad, pasta salad, potato salad, and chicken salad are a few examples of bound salads.


  • If you can't get golden or red delicious apples, use any good crisp, sweet eating apple in the recipe.

Recipe Variations

  • Add 1/4 cup of raisins or dried cranberries for extra flavor, texture, and color. 
  • Make it with chopped pecans instead of walnuts.
  • Instead of apples, make the salad with freshly diced pears.
  • Toast the walnuts briefly before adding them to the salad.
  • Add about 1/2 to 1 cup of halved red or green seedless grapes.
  • Make the salad with your favorite vegan mayonnaise.