What Makes a Great Fruit Salad?

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What makes a great fruit salad?

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From staying cool on a hot summer day to squeezing in a fresh mid-day snack, fruit salad is an ideal choice for a sweet, satisfying refreshment. The problem, however, is that not many people know what it takes to make a great fruit salad. We at Edible Arrangements® pride ourselves on being Fruit Experts® (and maybe a little fruit obsessed), so we know exactly what it takes to create the perfect fruit salad.

Our Edible To Go® product line features deliciously fresh, never frozen fruit treats that you can enjoy on the go, including – of course — fruit salads. Here are 3 steps we follow to create the perfect fruit salad every time:

Step 1: Choose 100% fresh, never frozen fruit.

No matter what types you choose, making a great fruit salad begins with the single most important ingredient: actual fresh fruit! Many fruit salads are made with seasonal fruits or year-long favorites, but regardless of which fruits you include, the most important factor in ensuring an irresistibly sweet snack is freshness!

Why is in-season fruit important to making a great fruit salad?

“While apples and bananas are largely in season year-round, most fruits have specific seasons when they’re the freshest. When fruit is freshly picked, it’s much tastier and more nutritious. That’s because it doesn’t have to endure lengthy travel to get to your local food store or farmer’s market. Think about it. You love biting into a fresh, plump peach in the summertime because it’s sweeter, juicier, and a whole lot tastier than a peach in the winter. For a taste of the many mouth-watering, in-season fruits, Edible®’s Summer Fruits Platter is packed with fresh fruits that peak in the summer, like mangoes, kiwi, and watermelon. It makes a tasty appetizer or dessert for your summertime get-togethers. If you’re headed to a potluck picnic, impress the crowd with a delicious fruit platter from Edible Arrangements® – no prep work or baking required!

In addition to being more delicious and nutritious, you’ll also save money by purchasing in-season fruits as these are usually a lot less expensive than their out-of-season counterparts. Plus, buying in-season fruit ensures that you’re boosting the local farming economy versus that of a different country or state.”

Step 2: Wash, cut, and prepare fruit.

Now, aside from washing the fruit (which is a given), the “cut and prepare” part is open to a little interpretation (and, in our opinion, a LOT of fun). Most of the fruit available in our fruit salads (think strawberries, cantaloupe, honeydew, pineapple, etc.) are cut into deliciously bite-sized pieces. When it comes to grapes and blueberries, we keep them just as they are. Whether you prefer having your fruits mixed or neatly layered, we can customize your fruit salad to your personal preference to create a fruit salad that’s perfect for you!

For some, properly cutting certain summer fruits (like mangos) prevent them from making a truly great fruit salad. Fortunately, as the Fruit Experts®, we created a handful of “how to cut” videos that showcase certain fruits, such as mangos, watermelon and kiwi!

Step 3: ENJOY!

For obvious reasons, we saved the best step for last. Once your fruit is washed, sliced, diced, and layered to perfection, DIG IN and enjoy your sweet, fresh treat! And, bonus, at your local Edible Arrangements® store, you can even top it off with a few extras like chocolate, nuts, and toppings for a little added indulgence (we call this an Indulgent Fruit Salad).

Great Summer Fruit Salads

For some inspiration, we rounded up some of the best fruit salads around that feature our favorite summer fruits.

  • Perfect Summer Fruit Salad Recipe

The perfect summer fruit salad by Nicole Holley provides a great dish that works like a fine wine and improves with age (as the fruit soaks in its juices). The star of the dish remains the fruit, which includes pineapples, kiwis, bananas and strawberries.

“Bring orange juice, lemon juice, brown sugar, orange zest, and lemon zest to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla extract. Set aside to cool. Layer the fruit in a large, clear glass bowl in this order: pineapple, strawberries, kiwi fruit, bananas, oranges, grapes, and blueberries. Pour the cooled sauce over the fruit. Cover and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours before serving.”

  • Fresh Summer Fruit Salad Recipe

Nothing says summer like a fresh fruit salad filled with locally grown fruits, such as watermelon, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. In this simple recipe from Spend With Pennies, anyone can create a fantastic side dish, snack or even dessert.

“When picking your fruits, you will want to make sure they are ripe and fragrant for a sweeter salad! If using fruits that can brown like apples/pears, toss them in a little bit of citrus juice before adding to the salad. This will keep them from browning as quickly. Cut all of the fresh fruit roughly the same size, making each piece bites sized or smaller. Then toss in a big bowl and add your fruit salad dressing if using!”

  • Easy Fruit Salad Recipe

Dinner Than Dessert offers another great fruit salad recipe that features a wonderful combination of berries, citrus fruit, kiwi, and grapes. Plus, the recipe includes a sweet sauce made from juice and honey and topped with fresh mint leaves that helps keep the dish fresh for a few days.

“Easy Fruit Salad is one of my go-to recipes because it’s quick and easy to throw together, and a great way to get a serving of fresh fruit. I like to make this salad with pineapple, berries, kiwi, and grapes, but you can use any fruit you’d like. This salad takes a total time of 10 minutes to throw together, but I like to refrigerate it for at least two hours to let the flavors come together and get cold. Add the orange juice, orange zest, lemon juice, lemon zest, and honey to a saucepan and bring to a boil on medium heat, whisking for 3-4 minutes then turn off, add in the vanilla and let cool completely. Add the fruit to a large bowl and toss carefully with the sauce and refrigerate for at least two hours (you can also toss each fruit individually and line up the fruits in rainbow order then garnish the fruit salad with mint).”

  • Easiest Summer Fruit Salad Recipe

Simplicity makes this summer fruit salad by The Kitchn a great addition to any party, BBQ or gathering. In this recipe, the base starts with watermelon, which is possibly the most summer of all the summer fruits.

“Ingredients include honey, lemon juice, cinnamon, seedless watermelon, sliced strawberries and fresh blueberries. Whisk the honey, lemon juice, and cinnamon together in a large bowl until combined. Add the watermelon, strawberries, and blueberries. Toss gently until fruit is evenly coated and serve immediately.”

  • Easy Fruit Salad Recipe

Another terrific, along with beautiful and healthy fruit salad recipe is from The Forked Spoon and is made with fresh, ripe fruit and drizzled with a light orange juice dressing. Plus, the easy recipe only takes about 20 minutes and contains with no added sugars.

“Prepare the orange juice “dressing” which is just tossing the fruit with freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice. Not too much. We don’t want the fruit swimming in juice, but just enough to coat the fruit. This step is super easy, simply add the fresh orange juice and lemon juice to a small bowl. Mix to combine and set aside. Prepare the fruit. Prepare and chop fruit – take care not to chop fruit into pieces that are too large, or too small. If they are too small, they will turn mushy faster, and will not taste as fresh should you end up with leftovers. Mix. To a large mixing bowl add the more “sturdy” fruit first (grapes, pineapple, mango, blueberries, and strawberries). Drizzle with half the orange juice mixture and gently toss to combine. Next, add the remaining fruit except for the raspberries. Drizzle with the remaining orange juice mixture and gently toss to combine. Serve. Add the raspberries to the bowl and serve immediately, or cover with plastic wrap or a tight-fitting lid and store in the refrigerator until ready to enjoy.”

  • Best Summer Fruit Salad Recipe

For a small tweak on the standard fruit salad, The Stay At Home Chef likes to combine the typical fruits with some lemon poppy seed dressing! Additionally, the recipe allows for some personalization by adding honey (or another sweetener) if the fruits, such as pineapple or strawberries make the salad too acidic.

“Prepare the fruits. Pineapple: Cut the pineapple into bite-sized cubes . Strawberries: Rinse them thoroughly, hull them, and cut the big strawberries into quarters, and the smaller ones in half for bite sized pieces. Kiwis: slice the kiwi in half, and use a spoon to remove the fruit from the peel. Cut into bite-sized cubes. Combine all the prepared fruit in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle lemon juice over fruit. Sprinkle the sugar and poppy seeds over and then stir gently to combine. Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.”

  • Summertime Fruit Salad Recipe

This fruit salad recipe differs from the old school fruit salads of yesterday. It doesn’t contain any jell-o or canned fruit. Like the other great fruit salads, this recipe features ripe peaches, strawberries, blueberries and even some basil. Plus a dash of maple syrup, lemon juice and balsamic vinegar for contrast.

“In a medium serving bowl, combine the strawberries, peaches, blueberries and basil. Drizzle the lemon juice, maple syrup and balsamic vinegar on top. Gently toss to combine. Serve immediately, or chill for later. This salad is best enjoyed promptly, but will keep well for about 2 days in the refrigerator (pour off excess juices if necessary).”

  • Pina Colada Fruit Salad Recipe

For a little variation, while still producing a great summer fruit salad, this recipe from Taste of Home offers a taste of the tropics on warm summer days. Plus, for a little extra punch, the recipe can be tweaked to mimic an authentic pina colada.

“Ingredients include frozen nonalcoholic pina colada mix, grapes, blueberries, strawberries, pineapples, raspberries and mint, plus some juices. For dressing, mix first 5 ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Place fruit in a large bowl; toss gently with dressing. Refrigerate, covered, until serving. If desired, top with mint.”

  • Kid Friendly Fruit Salad Recipe

Most fruit salad recipes includes a “sauce” or dressing, which tosses all of the fruit. However, as Joyful Healthy Eats notes, why mess with nature. As a result, this fresh fruit salad is healthy, gluten free and most importantly, kid friendly.

“The Summer Fruit Salad filled with loads of fresh fruit and dressing FREE. It’s the perfect refreshing salad to have around all summer long that’s naturally gluten free. Ingredients include blueberries, raspberries, grapes, strawberries, kiwi, mango and pineapple chucks. Simply add all of the fruit to a large bowl. Gently toss with a wooden spoon and serve.”

  • Kiwi Berry Fruit Salad Recipe

In the kiwi berry fruit salad recipe, A Dash of Sanity showcases a vibrant salad that includes a lemon honey glaze that offers a little differentiation from the routine fruit salad.

“The Kiwi Berry Fruit Salad is refreshingly sweet and I could literally just drink the glaze. Made with all of our favorite berries including strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. But it’s the kiwi that brings this salad all together, adding a touch of mellow sweetness. A perfect balance to the tartness of the berries. Cut all fruit as directed. Combine all of the fruit into a large mixing bowl and toss together. Make glaze, by in a small mason jar or cup with lid combine honey, lemon zest and juice. Screw on lib and shake well to combine. Drizzle over salad and toss to combine. Serve and devour immediately.”

For a perfect fruit salad every time, check out the menu at your local Edible Arrangements® store. Be sure to follow us on Instagram and show us how YOU enjoy your Edible To Go® fruit salads with the hashtag #EdibleToGo!