Easy Vegan Cranberry Pecan Salad

November 22, 2017

Holy Moly, it’s Thanksgiving already?

Shout out to all of the fantastic people in my life for making the time fly, both newly acquired and long-standing comrades. This year is the first Thanksgiving that I will be at home with my parents in about six years, instead of in an ER, on a helicopter, on an ambulance, taking care of ill loved ones, or traveling…so to say that I’m excited would be a vast understatement. To me, it’s not about actual “thanksgiving” or a “holiday” as much as it is about the honor to slow down and spend time with my favorite people over good food, like this Easy Vegan Cranberry Pecan Salad.

It’s wicked simple (5 ingredients, folks) and sure to please eaters of all kinds. This recipe is something that I chose to make in place of the standard gelatinized and processed sugar filled cranberry salad that my Grammy made for years, that I indubitably still crave. Even if you aren’t vegetarian or vegan, you should do your body a favor and skip the jello, since it’s mostly a lackluster mixture of food coloring, sugar, other random chemicals, and gelatin (otherwise known as “collagen obtained from various animal body parts”).

Speaking of doing yourself a favor; I wrote several weeks ago on 5 ways to take care of yourself this holiday season, and included the fact that it would behoove you to carve out time for self care.

Taking the time to slow down and focus on your wellbeing is imperative all the time, but especially during this time when you’re always on the go and giving so much of your time to others.

Now, back to this delectable holiday recipe:

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Easy Vegan Cranberry Pecan Salad:

Prep Time: 14 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 15 minutes
Equipment needed: Food Processor

Ingredients:

12 oz fresh organic cranberries
1 organic navel orange (you’re going to be using the rind, so try to splurge for organic)
2 organic apples
1/2 cup pecans
1/4 cup coconut sugar (or another natural sweetener of your choice)

Directions:

1. Prep all of your fruit first: Wash the cranberries and remove mushy ones, stems, and other random stuff that may have come along for the ride in the bag. Wash and scrub the navel orange, cutting up into about 8 pieces and removing the hard end pieces. Wash and scrub the apples, chopping them up similar to how you did the orange.

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2. Put half of the cranberries (about 6 oz), half of the unpeeled* orange, and half of the apples into a food processor and pulse until the mixture is coarsely chopped. Pour it into a bowl, and repeat with the other half of your mixture. I prefer smaller pieces (as pictured), but feel free to make this as chunky as you’d like). Add the second batch to the same bowl.

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3. Stir in coconut sugar and pecans, mixing well. Taste the mixture and adjust the sweetness to taste, within reason.

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*Yes, an unpeeled orange. No, I haven’t finally tipped off of my rocker. Just try it. You’re welcome.
*other optional and tasty add-ins would be coconut flakes, cinnamon, or cardamom.
*I recommend making a double batch if you have a large family.
*This can be made up to 2 days beforehand so that the flavors all marinate together.

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What kind of family recipe traditions do you have? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

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