Easy, Elegant Holiday Salads

These creative, fresh starter ideas will jazz up any holiday meal.

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Spinach, Pear, and Shaved Parmesan Salad
Spinach, Pear & Shaved Parmesan Salad

    Add zip to this pretty holiday salad with a simple, yet irresistible, mustard vinaigrette.

Priscilla's Persimmon and Pomegranate Salad

    For a fresh and flavorful holiday salad, toss persimmons, pomegranate seeds, pine nuts, olive oil, and cilantro in lime juice.

Pear and Walnut Salad

    Fresh pear slices are topped with tangy blue cheese, toasted walnuts, and a zingy pear liqueur-mustard dressing.

Spinach Salad with Brie Toast

    Slices of Brie cheese-topped toast and creamy cranberry dressing give bold flavor to a spinach salad.

Fresh Citrus and Cranberry Salad

    We've added a refreshing kick of mint and ginger to an arugula salad and topped it with chopped fresh cranberries.

Pear-Blue Cheese Salad

    The peppery flavor of curly endive makes a serendipitous match with sweet fresh pear slices and tangy blue cheese. Pecans cooked with salt, butter, and sugar add delicious crunch.

Scott's Holiday Salad

    Scott Peacock's gelatin mold salad is vibrantly fresh and crunchy good -- a celebration of all things deliciously sweet and sour.

Chopped Holiday Salad

    Here's a great idea for holiday potlucks. Marinate and tote the cut-up vegetables separately in re-sealable plastic bags, then unpack them in rows on a platter just before serving.

Sparkling Kumquat Salad

    The light dressing for this pretty salad is made with champagne, but sparkling grape juice makes a great substitute. Kumquats add a tangy punch of flavor.

Waldorf Wilted Salad

    This salad has apples and walnuts, as you would expect -- but bok choy replaces the usual celery, and warm, tangy dressing gently wilts the greens.

Mesclun Salad with Roasted Pears

    Roasting pears intensifies their sweet flavor; Bosc pears are best because they don't lose their shape in the process.

Scallops-Pecan Wilted Salad

    Sesame seed-coated scallops and crunchy pecans top crisp endive and peppery arugula. A spicy-sweet dressing of maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and soy sauce adds zing.

Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts

    This classic holiday salad is so simple to make. Simply toss toasted walnuts, creamy goat cheese, basil, and fresh beets with your favorite balsamic vinaigrette.

Molded Grapefruit Salad

    The tart, fresh taste of the grapefruit in this easy salad is a refreshing contrast to rich holiday foods.

Salmon 'Martini'

    Fill martini glasses with a light starter of salmon, avocado, and cucumber, drizzled with a lemon-tinged olive oil dressing.

Arugula and Pear Salad

    Gorgonzola cheese, red onions, and pancetta (or bacon) toppers dress up this irresistible salad.

Fennel and Orange Salad

    Blood oranges and fresh fennel make this enticing salad sing -- and it all tosses together in just 15 minutes.

Roasted Vegetable Salad

    Your guests will love this hearty salad featuring pan-roasted potatoes and asparagus topped with prosciutto and Asiago cheese.

Pecan Cranberry Salad

    This sweet holiday favorite gets spruced up with crushed pineapple and toasted pecans.

Pink Grapefruit Stacked Salad

    This fresh salad makes the most of seasonal pink and white grapefruit. The apricot-and-mint dressing provides a hint of sweetness that complements the tart fruit.

Creamy Cranberry Salad

    Serve this luscious fruit and cream cheese salad in fancy individual molds if you have them or in a 3-1/2- or 4-cup mold. Another option is to chill it in a 1/2-quart bowl and spoon out individual servings.

Avocado and Grapefruit Salad

    Try this versatile salad as a holiday brunch side; serve it with an egg casserole.

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