You never know when inspiration for a recipe idea will hit. This one came in 2 parts. Last weekend I was at my parent’s house for dinner, and my mom made a salad with bagged coleslaw, chopped apple, dried cranberries, and Miracle Whip (she has a thing for Miracle Whip that I just don’t understand). Sort of a coleslaw/Waldorf salad mash-up that actually worked. I filed that away somewhere in my brain to be recalled at a later date.
Fast forward to dinner one night this week. I was going to be making BBQ chicken breasts and needed a side to go with them. I first thought potato salad. Then thought I should use the sweet potatoes I had in the cupboard instead. Then I thought – hey, those would go really well with apple and cranberries…like that coleslaw my mom made! And just like that, this salad was born.
Aside from chopping up ingredients and cooking the potatoes, this is one simple side dish that you can prep ahead of time, and it will keep in the fridge for a few days. It has a great mix of flavours and textures – soft sweet potatoes, crunchy apples, celery, and walnuts, and the chew of the dried cranberries. A nice change from your typical potato salad, or Waldorf salad for that matter.
Sweet Potato Waldorf Salad
makes 4 – 6 servings
If potato salad and Waldorf salad had a baby, it would be this dish. Crunchy apples and celery combine with sweet potatoes to make a colourful, fibre-rich dish perfect to serve alongside BBQ chicken or pork, and would also make a great lunch on its own.
- 3 cups sweet potato, peeled & cubed (approximately 2 medium potatoes)
- 1 large apple, cored and chopped (I used an ambrosia)
- 2 large stalks celery, chopped
- 1/2 c walnuts, chopped
- 1/4 c dried cranberries
- 1/3 c mayonnaise
- 1/3 c sour cream or yogurt (I used sour cream)
- 1/8 – 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- pinch of salt
1. Cook your potatoes – I recommend using your steamer basket to do so. This was you avoid them getting water logged and mushy. They only need about 6 – 7 min to cook this way. Once cooked, put them in a colander and run under cold water to stop the cooking process. You want them to keep their shape in the salad.
2. In a large bowl, combine the apple, celery, walnuts, cranberries, mayonnaise, sour cream, nutmeg, and salt. Mix until everything is evenly coated.
3. Add in sweet potatoes, and mix gently until just coated. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow flavours to develop.
Note: This recipe is fairly forgiving with amounts of ingredients – tailor the amounts to your tastes or what you have on hand. If your two sweet potatoes give you 4 cups, then go with that. No point in wasting them! Also, adjust the nutmeg to your tastes – it can easily overpower a dish.
Waldorf salad – love it or hate it? I have a fond place in my heart for my mom’s version of it.