Waldorf Salad Remix- The BEST you’ll ever taste!


Waldorf Salads. Some people love them. Until recently, I wasn’t one of those people. Sure, I like celery, apples, and walnuts. I even like them together. I do not, however, like mayonnaise.

My sweet husband was asking from a fresh spin on classic salads the other night, and I looked in the fridge. We had celery, apples, and red grapes. In the pantry, I found a bag of walnut pieces. And so I put this together, and warily took a small bite. Then a larger bite. And then I ate a whole plate!


According to Wikipedia, the Waldorf Salad first originated in the mid to late 1890s, as a creation dreamed up by the maître d’ of the Waldorf Hotel (before they joined with the Astoria Hotel). Waldorf Salad nearly always has a creamy dressing, and can be served as an appetizer alone, or on a bed of lettuce for a light lunch or dinner.

When Jason asked me to freshen up the recipe, I immediately knew I needed to replace the mayonnaise if it was going to be something I’d be willing to eat. I started with a little bit of creme fraiche and buttermilk, and then added a few flavors from there.

The glazed walnuts elevate the dish, and the cut ribbons of basil add freshness. Try it and tell me what you think!


Waldorf Salad Remix- the BEST you'll ever taste!
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
4 min
Total Time
14 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
4 min
Total Time
14 min
For the Glazed Walnuts
  1. 1 tablespoon butter
  2. 1 cup California Walnut pieces
  3. 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  4. 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  5. 1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
For the Crème Fraîche Dressing
  1. 1/2 cup (about 4.5 oz) Crème Fraîche
  2. 2 tablespoons buttermilk
  3. 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  4. 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  5. 3/4 teaspoon salt
  6. 1 3/4 cup Granny Smith apple (from about 1 large apple)
  7. 1 cup chopped celery (from about 2 medium ribs)
  8. 1 cup red grapes
  9. 8 large basil leaves (plus more for garnish)
  10. 4 cups arugula leaves
To make the Glazed Walnuts
  1. In a skillet or saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the California walnuts, garlic salt, dried tarragon and freshly cracked black pepper. Stir frequently until toasty and golden brown, about 4 minutes. Remove from pan to cool down.
To make the Crème Fraîche Dressing
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the crème fraîche, buttermilk, lemon juice, salt, and freshly cracked black pepper.
To make the Waldorf Salad
  1. Core the apple and cut it into medium-sized diced pieces. Place in a medium-sized bowl.
  2. Trim the celery ribs. Cut each stalk lengthwise down the center and cut width-wise into 1/4 inch pieces. Put in bowl with apple pieces.
  3. Cut the grapes in half and add to bowl.
  4. Layer all the basil leaves on top of one another. Roll up basil leaves width-wise like a cigar, and cut with a sharp knife into 1/8 inch thick ribbons and add to bowl.
  5. Mix together, add the cooled glazed walnuts, and pour the Crème Fraîche dressing over the top. Stir to combine.
To put it all together
  1. Arrange 1 cup packed arugula on each plate.
  2. Place 3/4 cup of the Waldorf Salad over the top of the arugula.
  3. Top with additional ribbons of basil and enjoy!
  1. This makes a fantastic light and refreshing luncheon with a glass of bubbly!
Kyra Bussanich | Life is Sweet! http://kyrabussanich.com/

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