Carrot raisin salad is one of those vintage classic dishes I grew-up eating. This Carrot Raisin Salad with Pineapple takes a bit of a turn from the classic as it features crushed and chunks of pineapple as well as thinly sliced red onion which gives it a bit of a bite. All dressed with a homemade poppy seed dressing to enhance the flavor giving an update to this classic dish. I highly recommend that you skip grating the carrot and julienne the pieces instead which tends to hold up better to the dressing and maintains the integrity and crunchiness of the carrot pieces.
The colors in this salad make me happy. Vibrant orange, sunny sweet pineapple and dark red raisins make it a feast for the eyes that looks good enough to eat. There’s texture galore and due to using julienne carrot it doesn’t turn to “mush” the next day like grated carrot salads tend to do. This simple dish can be served with nearly any entree, as a special holiday salad or at a casual backyard barbecue, the sky is the limit. In a hurry? Grab a couple of packages of matchstick carrots from the produce department and you’ll be good to go with minimum prep. I really love having a bit of pineapple flavor in every bite so, I sneak crushed pineapple into the dressing and then chunks of pineapple into the salad mix for texture. It’s a vintage salad brought forward with a few flavor twists making it a super special side dish to make and serve.
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- 4 cups thinly julienned carrots (About 4-5 medium-large carrots)
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 (8-oz) can pineapple chunks, well drained
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 3 Tbsp granulated sugar or equivalent sweetener of choice
- 1 Tbsp white balsamic or rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1½ tsp poppy seeds
- 1 tsp salt or garlic salt (omit garlic powder if using garlic salt)
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 (8-oz) can crushed pineapple, well drained
- Snipped fresh chives for garnishing (optional)
- In a large mixing bowl toss together the carrots, raisins, pineapple chunks and onion. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar, lemon juice, poppy seeds, salt, onion and garlic powders. Whisk until fully combined then stir in the crushed pineapple. Taste and adjust salt and sugar, if needed.
- Pour over the carrot mixture in the mixing bowl and stir until evenly coated.
- Cover and chill for 4 hours or overnight.
- Stir well before serving. sprinkled with chopped chives, if desired.