Holiday Entertaining...Make-Ahead Salads

Our Mom always served “Sunshine” salad or more popularly known as Carrot and Pineapple Salad for every holiday dinner every year.    Evidently many other Moms did so too, as this recipe from Myrna is one of the most popular on our blog. Both of us still serve it for the holidays every year.
Myrna says:  This can be put in a ring mold, individual molds, or spooned out of the bowl, depending on how fancy you want to get. Some Mayo mixed with a small amount of the pineapple juice makes a nice topping and it looks pretty served on lettuce leaves. The great thing is how easy it goes together. I grate the carrots in my food processor; makes it much easier to do.
Carrot and Pineapple Salad
1 three ounce box of Orange Jell-O
1 eight ounce can crushed pineapple
3/4 to 1 cup grated carrots
1 cup boiling water
Drained pineapple juice and water to make one cup
Dissolve a 3oz. box Orange Jell-O in one cup of boiling water
Drain pineapple, save juice.
Add enough cold water to the juice to make one cup and stir into Jell-O mixture.
Let cool while you grate carrots. I used about 10 of the mini carrots.
Stir carrots and pineapple into Jell-O and pour into molds or dish. Refrigerate and let set.
This will take a while, so be sure to do it in the morning for supper.

Sue says:  Here’s my favorite holiday salad.  We’ve enjoyed this simple holiday salad for years. I like it because it is so easy to make and looks so pretty. It’s a great take-along dish for those holiday get-togethers.  Use pecans or walnuts, whatever are on hand.  I used my home canned cranberry sauce. You can use diet Jell-O, lite whipped topping and low fat cream cheese successfully.
 Cheeseberry Salad
1 (3 ounce) package Jell-O -- cherry
1 cup Hot Water
2 tablespoons Lemon Juice
15 ounces Whole Cranberry Sauce -- canned or 1 pint
8 ounces Cream Cheese
1/2 cup Pecans -- chopped
8 ounce carton Whipped Topping -- thawed
Dissolve jello in hot water. Add cranberry sauce and lemon juice. Cool and pour into 7 x 11" glass pan. Chill until thickened.
Whip cream cheese until light and fluffy. Fold in whipped topping. Spread carefully over jello. Sprinkle with nuts.  Chill overnight, covered.
8 servings
Cost 2014: $3.35 or 42¢ per serving.  This is often less expensive during the holidays, when the cranberries, cream cheese and whipped topping are on sale.
The recipe for 8 for jello and cranberries can be doubled, and poured into 9x13" pan. Topping doesn't have to be doubled. 
The Jello can be sugar free; cream cheese and topping can be light or fat free.

Here are some other salads that are holiday favorites of ours.

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