You'll love this easy, bright and elegant Mediterranean orange salad! Navel oranges are given a lift with the addition of pomegranate seeds (arils), fresh mint, and a honeyed lime dressing.

A few tips make all the difference, so be sure to read on!

Orange Salad arranged on platter with pomegranate seeds, fresh mint, and onions

So many variations of orange salad exist in Mediterranean cuisine, but this recipe is the closest to one you would see in North Africa. Think places like Morocco, Tunisia, and my home country, Egypt. 

This is one simple, bright, and elegant salad where sweet navel oranges get a lift with the addition of pomegranate arils (seeds), fresh mint and a few flavor makers. You can throw it together quickly for a special dinner or add it to your holiday table. I'll show you how below.

Simple Mediterranean Orange Salad

The stars of this salad are two bright and powerful ingredients: oranges and pomegranate arils (seeds). I add a generous handful of  fresh mint--which acts as a great bed for the sliced oranges--and a few slices of red onions or shallots. 

A sprinkle of warm spices, and a bright lime dressing with a touch of honey and orange blossom water (totally optional), give this salad a complex flavor that is both super refreshing and even more delicious!

Everyone likes fruit salad, but this orange salad is unique. I love that I can arrange it on a bright platter, so it's more of a " composed salad." It's an easy and sophisticated way to serve a fruit salad that isn't just "fruit tossed in a bowl."

Composed salads are salads that are intentionally arranged on a plate instead of tossed together. Arranging the ingredients not only helps the salad look visually appealing, while still making sure each bite has all the ingredients for that perfect balance of flavors. 

For this particular salad, spending an extra minute or two arranging the ingredients on the plate is well worth the effort. 

Orange Salad with Pomegranate, Fresh Mint, and Onions

How to Make This Orange Salad: A Few Tips

This orange and pomegranate salad is easy to make, but a couple of simple steps and tips make a difference. Here is how:

Prepare the Dressing

This is super simple. In a small bowl or mason jar, combine the lime juice, olive oil, honey, and if you like, a bit of orange blossom water.

Orange blossom water is a completely optional ingredient here, but it's fragrant and can really bring an extra element of brightness here.  Here is the brand I use (affiliate link).

Prepare the Oranges

For this salad, using sliced oranges not only looks so pretty, but it really helps with the texture of the salad.

To get those perfect medallions, instead of peeling the skin off with my hands, I use a small paring knife (affiliate link). Sometimes with really fresh oranges, peeling with hands can break apart the fruit inside. Then, I go around again and try to remove as much of the pith (the white spongy layer between the skin and the fruit). While the pith is edible and good for you, removing it makes for a more pleasant experience. 

Orange salad. Onion and pomegranate to the side of a large platter

Prepare the Onions

Next, prepare the onions using my secret trick that will tone down some of its sharp flavor.

Slice the onions and let them rest in a bowl of ice cold water for about 5-10 minutes. Alternatively, you can also soak them in orange juice or vinegar. Because this salad has only a few ingredients, using water to quickly "pickle" them will not alter the flavor of the orange salad. Marinating the onions beforehand works with any recipe you plan to use raw onions in. Honestly, it's a game changer.

Prepare the Pomegranate Arils

I know some are intimated by cutting a pomegranate and emptying of its seeds. It can be a messy process, and if you have to avoid it and use already packaged pomegranate seeds, that is fine.

Wondering, "how do I remove the seeds of a pomegranate?" Here is what you do: cut the pomegranate in half horizontally. Hold the cut side in your palm over a bowl. Use a wooden spoon to tap the peel of the fruit. The seeds will fall out on their own! You can store any extra seeds in the refrigerator for a day or two.

Assemble the Salad

Finally, plate the salad! To get that really gorgeous colorful presentation, start with a few fresh mints as a bed for the orange slices. Arrange the orange slices and onions. Sprinkle a pinch of salt, sweet paprika, and cinnamon. Now spread the pomegranate seeds on top.

Drizzle with the dressing, then add a few more fresh mint leaves. 

Assembled orange salad on blue platter

Can I make this Orange Pomegranate Salad in Advance?

It's best to assemble this salad just a few minutes before serving. And as you saw, it's pretty simple!

But, if you want to do a little bit of prep work earlier in the day, or one night in advance, you can. Peel the oranges and slice them, but save them in the fridge in their own air-tight container. You can also prepare the pomegranate arils (seeds) and save them in their own container.

The dressing can also be made one night ahead and saved in it's own container. Give it a shake before drizzling over the salad.

What to Pair this Salad with?

This orange salad is super versitle. I love how festive and bright it is, you can easily add it as part of a big brunch buffet or next to anything from something meaty like roast lamb or lamb chops, to baked turkey breast, Souvlaki, or even salmon kabobs. 

Looking for more tasty and festive salads? Check out this shaved brussels sprouts salad and this tabouli salad.

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Orange Salad arranged on platter with pomegranate seeds, fresh mint, and onions

Easy Mediterranean Orange Pomegranate Salad


Description

You'll love this easy and bright Mediterranean orange salad! Slices of sweet Navel oranges are given a lift with the addition of pomegranate seeds (arils), fresh mint, and a honey-lime dressing. A festive and light addition to any dinner!

Read the post above for a few important tips.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 ½ oz thinly sliced red onions (about 1 cup)
  • 25 fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • 6 Navel oranges, peeled, sliced into rounds
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Pinch sweet paprika
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • Seeds (arils) of 1 pomegranate

Dressing


Instructions

  1. Make the dressing. In a small bowl, mix together the lime juice, olive oil, honey and orange blossom water. Set aside.
  2. Place the sliced onions in a bowl of ice cold water. Set aside for 5-10 minutes, then remove the onions from the water and dry them completely.
  3. Prepare a serving platter. Sprinkle half the amount of chopped mint leaves on the platter, then arrange the orange slices and onions on top. Sprinkle a pinch of salt, sweet paprika, and cinnamon. Now spread the pomegranate seeds on top.
  4. Drizzle or spoon the dressing over the orange pomegranate salad (You can add as little or as much as you want of the dressing.)
  5. Finally top the salad with the remaining fresh mint leaves. Set aside for 5 minutes or so before serving.

Notes

  • Cook's Make-Ahead Tips: This salad is best made and served fresh, but if you'd like to do some prep in advance you can. You can peel and slice the oranges 1 night ahead, be sure to save them in the fridge in their own tight-lid container. You can also prepare the pomegranate arils (seeds) and save them in the fridge in their own container. The dressing can also be prepared and saved in the fridge for one night. Give it a good shake before using. When ready, assemble the salad as instructed.
  • Visit our online shop to browse our olive oils, all-natural and organic spices and more!
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean

Keywords: Orange Salad, Orange Pomegranate Salad, Pomegranate Salad

*This post originally appeared on The Mediterranean Dish in 2016 and has been recently updated with new information for readers' benefit. Enjoy!

 

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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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Comments

  1. Thank you for all your recipes, and taking time to share them. I’ve new, and not yet made any, though I am very excited to do so.

  2. Do you think chopped roasted pistachios would be good on this salad? I'm planning on making it for christmas dinner this year .

  3. I’m not a fan of mint. What can I use instead that would blend well with the ingredients? Thank you.

  4. This was on our Thanksgiving table -- it was beautiful on the platter and beautiful on our plates -- a lovely contrast to all the browns, tans and greens. The flavor also was a tasty contrast and didn't complete with the cranberry sauce. Just perfect. Leftovers were gobbled up the next day. I think it will be a new Thanksgiving standard.

  5. I have been eating a lot of this orange salad since watermelons are out of season right now. I've switched it up a bit since I do this just for me. I use a 3 pound bag of mandarin oranges (the wedges rather than slices), I leave out the pomegranates because they do not store as long as the oranges, and I leave out the onions (just because I don't like them). Still very delicious! I would never have thought of those spices/flavors together. Thank you!

    1. This is one of the most delicious salads ever. I love the cinnamon and paprika on the oranges. It tastes so special.

  6. I made this beautiful light salad to accompany a family dinner. It was perfect! The flavors were beautiful together and the presentation with the gorgeous oranges, bright green mint and ruby red pomegranates was outstanding. The touch of cinnamon with the oranges was such a surprise taste! I loved it and many others at the dinner loved it too! I can't wait to make this again!

  7. Wow. We had this for Thanksgiving, and everyone loved it. I added the optional orange blossom water, and I really feel like that little addition makes the whole salad. Thanks for the recipe.

      1. Delicious use of winter citrus. I used sliced clementines, I did not use the orange blossom water but plated this salad on a thin layer of diced Romain lettuce for added crisp and nutrients. I loved it so much I’m making it again tonight for mom and dad! Must try this salad at least once.

  8. My husband and I love this salad...it's so easy to prepare and beautiful to look at. Plus, it is delicious!

    We used to be vegan, but now enjoy cheese and seafood on a weekly basis. I love the recipes from your site....they are so tasty, easy to prepare and healthy. A few of my favorites are: baela, israeli couscous salad, baked shrimp with veggies, ricotta cake!!!!, baked spaghetti, spinach and lentil soup and shrimp orzo soup.

    1. Marti, thank you so much for taking the time to share! I'm glad to hear you're enjoying a number of the recipes here!! Happy cooking!

  9. I've prepared twice and both times were a big hit. I followed recipe step by step. Except I substituted mandarin oranges because easier to peel. When sliced they made pretty floral segments. Next attempt, I plan to use more mint and let the salad dressing and fruit marinate longer before serving.

  10. We enjoyed this salad this past Thanksgiving! I am vegetarian and my mother saw this recipe and prepared it for me! This is quite simply one of the best flavor combinations.... at first I was skeptical about the onions but I could literally eat this all day! The flavors of the sweet oranges, tangy poms, and peppery onions with the drizzle are amazing.

    Thanks for sharing.. this is a staple for our holidays now 🙂

  11. I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a huge hit. Everyone loved the freshness and that it balanced out all the carb overload. Will definitely make it again. Think it would be delicious next to grilled lamb. I think it would be wonderful with a little fresh feta.

    1. Oh Martha, this is great to hear! I am so so glad you gave this one a try! You're right, it would go wonderfully with grilled lamb. I'm gonna try that soon!