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Why We Love This Recipe
Is it just me or are side dishes at dinner, the forgotten dish? After getting the main dish ready, it feels like I can’t manage anything else.
I’m guessing not but either way, this Apple Carrot Salad with Raisins is so easy that I no longer have an excuse! With just a handful of ingredients, it comes together so quickly that when you try it you might just feel the same.
I originally found this recipe in one of collection of favorite recipes from a church cookbook. I knew it would be a winner the first time I tried it because those cookbooks are most often filled with family favorites.
This carrot apple slaw is a family favorite. It’s got just the right amount of crunchiness that makes it the perfect companion to grilled chicken or pork too.
Apple Carrot Salad is delicious as side on it’s own but we also enjoy it as a topping on some leafy greens and maybe adding some toasted nuts. That’s another way to reinvent this simple salad.
What Ingredients Are Needed To Make This Recipe?
All of the ingredients for this slaw are easy to find at any grocery store.
We have a lemon tree so I pretty much always have cubes of lemon juice in my freezer year round too. (Read more here about how I preserve lemons for the freezer). You also make cubes of orange juice to use in recipes. They’re so handy!
I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t sure originally how the addition of raisins would taste in this slaw recipe, but it totally works! The crunchiness with the carrots and apples come together with the other ingredients for a slightly sweet salad.
I’ve adjusted the amount of sugar from the original recipe but even so, you could easily reduce the sugar or perhaps leave it out altogether. We like that slight sweetness to counter the tartness of the lemon juice.
Preparation Pro Tips
To chop the carrots and apples I use a small , easy pull food chopper (affiliate link). It’s non-electric and tiny enough to store in a cabinet, unlike a larger food processor that requires more space. I had a similar one for at least 15 years before a part on it cracked—probably from overuse!
Of course you can also use a large chef’s knife to chop the apples and carrots, it’s still very quick!
I found that the apples tended to brown really quickly after I chopped them. They’re still okay to eat but they just might not be as pretty. So I’d recommend when you chop them, toss the lemon and orange juice with the apples right away as that will help prevent additional browning. (1)
Toss everything together (2) and cover with a lid to let it chill in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. You could also eat the salad right away. (3)
Make Ahead Preparation Tips
This recipe can be made up to a day in advance. We’ve actually eaten it a couple of days afterwards and it still tastes good but the apples do brown a little more.
Is This Slaw Freezer Friendly?
While I’ve not frozen this slaw recipe, I have frozen other slaws that have carrots. They generally freeze well and as I know chopped apples can be frozen too, so I’m going to have to give it a try in the freezer.
That said, I do think this slaw recipe is better fresh but maybe making a double batch and having some in the freezer is a good idea too!
What Are Some Other Healthy Salad or Side Dish Ideas?
As I mentioned, sides and salads tend to be a forgotten dish around my house but I’m getting better. They’re even more likely to make an appearance when they’re easy! A couple of my family’s favorites are this Simple Stovetop Brown and Wild Rice Pilaf, Roasted Rosemary Potatoes (can also be frozen–yes!) and Mandarin Tossed Salad. Each take only minutes to prepare and are a perfect accompaniment for just about anything!
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If you’ve tried this recipe, let me know how much you enjoyed it by coming back and leaving a comment below and a rating. I love hearing from you!
Apple Carrot Salad with Raisins
- 1 cup carrots finely chopped or shredded; about 2 medium carrots
- 1 cup Granny Smith apple peeled and finely chopped or shredded; about medium apple
- 1 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ cup raisins
- Finely chop carrots and apples and place in a medium sized bowl.
- Add lemon juice, orange juice, sugar and raisins.
- Stir to combine.
- Cover and chill at least 20 minutes. May be prepared up to 24 hours in advance.
This post was originally published in October 2016 and updated in May 2020 to include additional photos and content.