I went on a climbing day trip with my friend Joe recently, and at the heat of the day, he pulled out an ice cold fruit salad to share. It was just a simple combination of seasonal fruits, chopped small, but I’ve since been making versions every hot day that I’m outside.
This Cherry Pecan Fruit Salad is my favorite version so far. Cherries have been everywhere around here lately, and any kind would do here. It’s worth cutting them in half to avoid having to worry about the pits later while scooping up big bites of this salad. I also added some berries and stone fruits, sticking with tartness over sweetness when possible. The chopped pecans add crunch and depth to the flavor, and even a little protein to make this feel like a nice cold trail mix. I bet chocolate would be good here, too.
I decided not to make a syrup for this salad. It holds together pretty well, and doesn’t need any extra sweetness in my opinion, though I’m not considering this to be a dessert salad. I added chia seeds, which get a little jelly when they mix with moisture. This adds some thickness to the whole thing. If you wanted, you could warm the lavender in a simple syrup ahead of time to give the whole thing more of all of that.
Cherry Pecan Fruit Salad
Prep Time / Cook Time/
Activity GuideCar Camping, Day Trip, Picnic
- 1 cup cherries, halved
- 1 cup raw pecans, rough chopped
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 cup raspberries
- 2 plums, chopped small
- 1 nectarine, chopped small
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds, whole
- 1 tablespoon fresh lavender flowers (optional)
- Cutting board
- Medium bowl with tight-fitting lid, or storage container
- Halve cherries and remove pits. Chop stone fruits small.
- Mix all fruit together in a big bowl with pecans. Sprinkle chia seeds over top, and fold everything together, carefully so as not to smoosh the berries too much.
- Sprinkle lavender flowers over top, which will perfume the whole thing a bit and you’ll smell it upon opening the container later on in the day.
- Keep chilled until ready to eat, either in a cooler or an insulated food container.