From the Jewish Food Hero Kitchen: Citrus Carrot Salad

This lightly sweet and spiced citrus carrot salad is a healthy and refreshing raw food salad that can be added to any meal, whether lunch or dinner, holiday or weekday.

Traditional Carrot Salad Recipes

Traditional carrot salads are loaded with mayonnaise or oil and sometimes include tuna fish or eggs.  I know that many of us grew up eating salad topped with heavy oil or mayonnaise based dressings but there are a few reasons for us to let that habit go.  

Oil-Free As An Informed Health Choice

First and foremost, oil and mayonnaise are not needed to create a delicious salad.  Mayonnaise is made from eggs and oil and it is one of those condiments that seem like they have always been a bad idea for our health.

On the issue of oil, there is a lot of chatter and nutritional debate about its value.  I wrote a post about my top three reasons for not including oil in my diet.  If you want another opinion, here is an article that clearly lays out how oil is not a whole food and how oil is the #1 culprit for calorie density.   

About This Healthier Plant-Based Citrus Carrot Salad Recipe

The salad can be garnished with sliced green onions and chopped parsley.  The parsley provides a fresh, earthy edge and its bright green colour contrasts beautifully with the zingy citrus colour of the carrots.

This citrus carrot salad salad recipe is fresh and delicious.  It is also mayo-free, oil-fee and dairy-free. Instead of all those heavy ingredients, this recipe includes raw vegetables,  dried apricots, fresh parsley and spices, orange juice and lemon juice.

This is a simple salad to add to any table.  It has a vibrant color and fresh,sweet and tangy taste.   Adding more minimally processed whole foods to your diet is always a good idea.  

About The Simple and Delicious Oil-Free Dressing

The dressing is tangy and fresh and is made from orange juice, lemon juice and salt and pepper.  The sweet and sour dressing complements the sweet carrots.

About the Ingredients in this Citrus Carrot Salad

Carrots: eating carrots in their minimally processed guarantees we get the full impacts of their vitamin and mineral content. Eating uncooked produce also provides fiber, much needed by our digestive system whatever our age.  Many of us were raised on the belief that eating carrots would grant us the gift of night vision. While this is not strictly true, the high level of Vitamin A they contain does help to protect our vision. Available year-round and able to survive for an incredibly long time in the cupboard or fridge, carrots are a family favourite to have in constant supply.

Dried Apricots: Dried fruit is nature’s candy! Using these high quality organic unsulphured dried apricots is a good choice for this salad as it delivers a lovely tangy flavor to the salad.  They are also a good source of vitamin A, C and potassium.

Lemons: Fresh lemon juice (or unfiltered apple cider vinegar) is an essential ingredient in salad dressings.  The only headache about lemon juice is making it. Here is a citrus juicer that works really well and captures every last drop of juice.

Orange Juice: Orange juice is another favorite salad dressing ingredient because it is naturally sweet and easy to make fresh.  You can use the same citrus juicer here to make your kitchen life easier.  

Parsley: Fresh herbs are so good for us because they add scent, flavor and medicinal properties to our food.  To read about all the health benefits of parsley, click here.

Cinnamon:  This warm spice is full of powerful antioxidants – even more so than garlic! It has anti-inflammatory effects, is great for heart-health and can even improve sensitivity to the hormone insulin. Read more about the wonders of this delicious ingredient here. Click here to see the a beautiful organic cinnamon powder I used in this recipe.

Cumin:  A common ingredient in Indian cuisine, cumin is excellent for digestion and is often used as a breath freshener at the end of a meal. Did you know it is also full of iron? That’s great news for anyone concerned about how to cover all nutritional bases when transitioning to a vegetarian or vegan diet. Click here to see the organic cumin powder I used in this recipe. If you prefer whole seeds, try these organic cumin seeds.

Carrot Salad Tips

Here are some simple tips and potential variations for the perfect carrot salad.

  1. Adding more greens: serve it on a bed of lightly steamed spring greens or kale
  2. Add more protein:  Add a can of drained chickpeas and/or a tablespoon of tahini to the dressing.
  3. Add more sweetness: Add a small handful of dried raisins to the salad.
  4. Add more spice + heat: sprinkle with freshly pressed garlic and freshly ground pepper.
  5. Adding starch: Serve alongside warm, fresh bread, baked potato, baked sweet potato or squash.  

Three other plant-based recipes that you might enjoy:

Kosher for Passover Apple Pistachio Cake

Toasted Almond Brown Rice Salad with Dried Cherries

Quinoa Cranberry Mandarin Salad

If you like this recipe, you’ll love the Jewish Food Hero Cookbook: 50 Simple Plant-Based Recipes for your Holiday Table.

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From the Jewish Food Hero Kitchen: Citrus Carrot Salad

  • Author: jewishfoodhero

Scale

Ingredients

Salad Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lemon, sliced into thin rounds and quartered
  • 3 1/4 cups coarsely grated carrots (from about 10 medium-sized carrots)
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • Optional: Sliced shallots or green onion to taste

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon fresh orange zest
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice  
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

 


Instructions

Cook the lemon slices:

  • Place the quartered lemon slices in a small skillet and sauté for 5 minutes

Prepare and season the rest of the salad:

  • Grate the carrots using the food processor grater function (or a hand grater)

  • In a large bowl, combine the carrots, dried apricots, and parsley

  • Add the sautéed lemon slices, along with all of the remaining ingredients, and mix well

  • Add shallots or green onion if using

Prepare the dressing:

  • Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to blend

 

To serve:

  • Just before serving, pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat