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WINTER SALAD + CITRUS GINGER DRESSING

Winter Salad with orange, pomegranate and quinoa tossed with fresh leafy greens and creamy citrus-ginger dressing is healthy and so easy to make! Vegan, oil-free, and whole food plant based recipe.

top down view of winter salad with items surrounding.

With winter abound, oranges and pomegranate seeds are at their peak and terrific tossed with leafy greens, quinoa and creamy dressing for a colorful salad that’s nourishing, delicious, and sure to brighten your winter days!

Why We Love This Winter Citrus Salad!

The creamy orange-ginger dressing is light and refreshing. It’s like eating an orange creamsicle with ginger added.

The flavors of the fruits along with the quinoa and bed of greens all mingle together creating a truly fantastic vegan winter salad, that’s fresh, vibrant and healthy!

This simple citrus winter salad is perfect for a light lunch or dinner. It’s easy to make with only 10 ingredients and ready in 15 minutes or less!

top down view of ingredients used to make winter salad with citrus.

Winter Salad Ingredients

The ingredients for this winter citrus salad are very simple, but it’s full of flavor – especially with the delicious creamy orange-ginger dressing!

(Note, measurements can be found in the recipe card below)

  • Leafy greens – Use your favorite spring mix or power greens blend.
  • Cooked quinoa – Any color will do. I’ve used tri-color here. If you have an Instant Pot, try this easy Instant Pot Quinoa recipe!
  • Oranges – Mandarine, clementines or navel.
  • Pomegranate seeds – Sub with dried cranberries.
  • Red onion – Can sub with sliced green onions if needed.
  • Fresh mint – Adds a layer flavor, but it is optional.
  • Cashews – Raw cashews are best for the most neutral flavor base.
  • Ginger – Use fresh grated or minced, and for ease use the store bought tube of ginger found in the salad section of the grocery store.
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Garlic
  • Salt & Pepper
side by side photos showing the process of making orange ginger dressing.

How To Make Winter Salad with Citrus Dressing

Here is quick overview with a few photos for reference. You can find the full printable recipe card below.

How To Make Orange Ginger Dressing. The orange ginger dressing is super easy to make and whips up in about 1 minute. You can optionally soak the cashews if you like. I usually do a quick soak method in hot water for 5 minutes, making soaking cashews quick and easy.

Recommended Equipment. My favorite tool for making small dressings like this is a personal blender, like this NutriBullet (affiliate link). It works fast, cleans up well, and doesn’t take up much space.

top down view of winter salad with items surrounding.

How to assemble winter citrus salad. Layer the leafy greens in an individual bowl. Top with quinoa, orange slices, and pomegranate seeds. Drizzle the dressing over top.

It’s simple, colorful, and delicious!

Top Tips

  • Switch up the grain. In place of quinoa, try using a hearty grain like farro or barley.
  • Storage. The dressing can be made ahead and stored for up to 6 – 7 days in the refrigerator.
side angle view of winter salad with items surrounding.

We hope you love this salad as much as we do!

More Healthy Salad Recipes!

top down view of winter salad with items surrounding.

If you try this easy salad recipe or have a question, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.

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WINTER SALAD + CREAMY ORANGE-GINGER DRESSING

This healthy, delicious winter salad is paired with a homemade creamy orange-ginger dressing. Easy to prepare and ready in 15 minutes!

Ingredients

Scale
  • 5 oz. leafy greens of choice (I used a spring mix)
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
  • 3 tangerine or cuties (mandarins), slices
  • 1 tablespoon red onion, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped

Orange-Ginger Dressing

  • 1/2 cup cashews, soaked* (see notes)
  • 1/4 cup water + more as needed
  • juice of 1 orange
  • 12 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, to taste
  • 1 inch knob fresh ginger, chopped or grated
  • 1/2 small clove garlic
  • himalayan salt & pepper, to taste

Instructions

Orange-Ginger Dressing: Place all ingredients into food processor/blender and process until creamy. For a thinner dressing add 1 tablespoon water at a time until desired consistency. Taste for flavor, add the other half of the garlic clove if needed. Makes about 3/4 cup. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 – 6 days.

Salad: Peel the oranges, and slice width wise into 1/4 inch slices, or simply break them up into wedges. Serve individual salads with 1/3 of the leafy greens, 1/3 cup of cooked quinoa, 1 tablespoons pomegranate seeds, 1 teaspoon red onion, slices of 1 tangerine and chopped mint. Add a helping of dressing over top, mix together and enjoy!

Notes

For a simple single serving dressing, use the juice of two squeezed oranges and add a tablespoon of fresh minced ginger, mix and top on your salad.

Soak cashews in 1 of 2 ways:

  • Soak in cool water for 2 – 3 hours, drain well.
  • Soak in hot (not boiling) water for 5 minutes, drain well.

RECOMMENDED EQUIPMENT: I love my NutriBullet for small jobs like making dressing (affiliate links). For more of my favorite cooking tools, shop my kitchen essentials.

Updated: Winter Citrus Salad was originally published in January 2013. It has been retested and updated with new photos and helpful tips in March 2021.

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11 Comments

  1. Hi! For the dressing, can you give me an idea of how much actual juice from the orange you ended up with? Thank you!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Great question, Wendy! I would say anywhere from 2 – 4 tablespoons. You can always add more to taste for a more orange flavor.

  2. Absolutely lovely recipe
    Loved the dressing …. This is the dressing I was looking for..
    I used some roasted vegetables in this salad.

  3. lysa jordan says:

    Yum! This dressing sounds delicious, I would love a little nutty creamy something on my salad in a very near future. I will try your recipe!

  4. TheCookieFairy says:

    Wow. Perfect. Simply perfect. I'm writing the ingredients needed for this recipe on my shopping list and making this next week. Thanks for this great recipe!

    1. It's a wonderful combination…enjoy! :)

  5. heatherscreativeconcoctions says:

    This looks festive and I love anything ginger and orange:)I will have to try a cashew based dressing, great idea!

    1. Please do, I think this will be a great fit for you. I'm finding that nuts are extremely versatile, and here in this dressing the cashews add a nice creaminess. Enjoy!

  6. Thank you for this! I just made the dressing and significantly decreased the fresh ginger and it is delicious! Did you really use 2-3 tablespoons? I used about 1 teaspoon and it was plenty gingery for my taste. BTW, I happened across you blog for the first time a few weeks ago. Your recipes look great and I can't wait to try more!

    1. Your so welcome! I'm a little obsessed with certain herbs and spices and ginger is one of them…I have to say this wasn't always the case but I have a fond ginger tooth these days and actually used 3 tablespoons. Glad you started with a smaller amount and didn't overpower it for yourself…good instinct!

      I'm glad to have crossed paths and would love to hear you thoughts on anything else you try. I'm excited to share these tasty, healthy recipes and hope everyone enjoys them as much as I do! Cheers :)

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