Mexican Christmas Eve Salad [Ensalada de Nochebuena Recipe]

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My family have been making Ensalada de Nochebuena (Mexican Christmas Eve Salad) for Christmas for more than 70 years and it is still a favorite of both young and old.Ensalada de Nochebuena

This is my family’s recipe, it has changed over the years. The original recipe had lettuce and sugar cane and was served mostly dry, but ours now is very fruity and sweet and yummy and wet. 

RELATED POST: Mexican Christmas Recipes Checklist

The fruit floats in an exquisite combination of beet and jamaica juice. This recipe makes plenty for all 35 of my family who are regularly together each Christmas and then some. I usually eat two or three cups of it myself.

I recommend making it at least 8 hours before serving.  And I insist that the beet and jamaica juice be made one day in advance to allow enough time to cool down before adding the fruit.

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Limas y tejocotes

Mexican Christmas Eve Salad [Ensalada de Nochebuena]

Makes 35 cups approx.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium beets
  • 1/4 kilogram Dry Jamaica flowers (slightly more than 1/2 lb)
  • 3 cups of sugar, divided
  • 15 guavas
  • 4 apples
  • 45 tejocotes
  • 1 medium jicama
  • 4 oranges
  • 4 mandarin oranges
  • 4 limas (looks like a combo between a lemon and a lime, but is different and the flavor is very sweet and lovely. See photo immediately above)
  • 1 pound of shelled roasted (unsalted) peanuts

Instructions

Remember that it is recommended to make this salad one day in advance to allow all the flavors to combine.

Peel beets put them in a pot, cover with water (approx 1.5 – 2 quarts) and add a cup of sugar, cook them over medium-high heat for approx. 30 minutes or until they are soft.

In a big pot cook the jamaica flowers with 4 liter (approx 4 quarts) of water and 1 1/2 – 2 cups of sugar. Cook over high heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to boil and then lower the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Allow both the beets and jamaica to cool down.

Keep them overnight in the fridge.

ensalada de nochebuena beets

The next morning, take the beets out of the water and chop them into small square pieces and put them in a big bowl. Reserve the juice.

ensalada de nochebuena fruit

Cut guavas in small pieces. Peel and cut in small pieces apples, tejocotes and jícama. 

Peel oranges, mandarin oranges and limas, remove the membrane and divide each wedge in half and add to the salad bowl.

Strain the beet juice over the fruit and then carefully strain the jamaica water over the top of the fruits as well.

ensalada de nochebuena

Finally, add the peanuts (they should be peeled completely). Mix everything and let it rest for at least 8 hours before serving.

ensalada de nochebuena

RELATED POST: Jamaica de Refreshing Hibiscus Flower Drink

Yum! Love it!

Happy Holidays! ¡Feliz Navidad!

christmas eve salad
beet salad
5 from 3 votes

Ensalada de Nochebuena

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
resting time8 hrs
Total Time9 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 35 cups

Ingredients

  • 2 medium beets
  • 1/2 lb Dry Jamaica flowers (1/4 kg)
  • 3 cups of sugar divided
  • 15 guavas
  • 4 apples
  • 45 tejocotes
  • 1 medium jicama
  • 4 oranges
  • 4 mandarin oranges
  • 4 limas looks like a combo between a lemon and a lime, but is different and the flavor is very sweet and lovely. See photo immediately above
  • 1 lb of shelled roasted unsalted peanuts

Instructions

  • Peel beets put them in a pot, cover with water (approx 1.5 – 2 quarts) and add a cup of sugar, cook them over medium-high heat for approx. 30 minutes or until they are soft.
  • In a big pot cook the jamaica flowers with 4 liter (approx 4 quarts) of water and 1 1/2 – 2 cups of sugar. Cook over high heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to boil and then lower the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Allow both the beets and jamaica to cool down. Keep them overnight in the fridge.
  • The next morning, take the beets out of the water and chop them into small square pieces and put them in a big bowl. Reserve the juice.
  • Cut guavas in small pieces. Peel and cut in small pieces apples, tejocotes and jicama.
  • Peel oranges, mandarin oranges and limas, remove the membrane and divide each wedge in half and add to the salad bowl.
  • Strain the beet juice over the fruit and then carefully strain the jamaica water over the top of the fruits as well.
  • Finally add the peanuts (they should be peeled completely). Mix everything and let it rest for at least 8 hours before serving.
Course: Salads
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Fruit salad for Christmas, How to make ensalada de nochebuena
Author: Silvia

Notes

Remember that it is recommended to make this salad one day in advance to allow all the flavors to combine.
Refrigerate.

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Kate
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Kate

This is so interesting. I’m going to definitely be making this one next year.

Patricia Zerpa
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Patricia Zerpa

Hermosa y deliciosa. Me encanta la idea de una ensalada dulce además de ser una receta de tradicion familiar. Gracias por compartirla

Enriqueta E Lemoine
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Enriqueta E Lemoine

Delicious Silva! And so colorful!

Cristy
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Cristy

Deliciosa !!! Mi favorita y sobre todo creo q después de la rica cena esta ensalada te ayuda a la digestión por la cantidad de fruta que lleva . Saludos

Mayito Castillo
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Mayito Castillo

Esta ensalada es una verdadera delicia, nunca la he probado, tengo que prepararla. Muy bonita presentacion!

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