Ditch the whipped cream and take summer berries from dessert back to dinner. Bright Berry Salad with fresh lemon and honey dressing is great for grilling season because it’s super quick and easy, and so tasty. Serve it super fresh with just a hint of mint!
If you’ve ever raised an eyebrow at sliced peaches on a salad bar or cinnamon apples as a side dish, then I’m here to raise one back at you. Sweet seasonal side dishes with savory meals are the best kind of upgrade.
One of the perks of being a kid is that you’re constantly plied with fruit. Bananas at breakfast, orange slices at lunch, and applesauce with dinner.
At some point in early adulthood, fruit became an unnecessary accessory at mealtime. But once I had kids, I realized that my mom was both on to something and missing opportunities. As a mom, I wanted to make sure my kids had a balanced diet. As a former kid, I also wanted fruit with dinner. But also as an adult, I wasn’t going to suck Mott’s out of a pouch.
Thus, fruit salad re-entered the chat. Mostly seasonally, sure. But hardly a week goes by in the summer we don’t have a fruit salad to accompany lunch or dinner.
Some veer more towards the savory (like stone fruit salad with tomato and mozzarella), while some are distinctly on the sweet side (give me watermelon strawberry salad all darn day please!). Sometimes they’re punchy (strawberry cucumber salad with red onion and balsamic honey dressing) and sometimes they’re tangy (cantaloupe salad with raspberries and lemon dressing). But they’re always a refreshing contrast to the heavier char-grilled meats and starchy pasta salads that feature heavily in our summer suppers.
How to Keep Berries Fresh
Keeping fresh berries plump, juicy, and mold-free is tough. Even in this house – where fresh berries are a snack we enjoy nearly daily in the spring and summer – we inevitably run into a few moldering berries by the second or third day.
I’ve tried lots of tricks – vinegar washes, dunks into hot water, and even fancy berry storage containers – and haven’t had much success.
I have, however, had success keeping berries fresh for longer by storing them properly. I store strawberries in single layers in a tupperware container, lined with paper towels in-between. For raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries, I remove the berries from the clamshell containers, line the container with a paper towel, replace the berries and add another paper towel on top. This method will keep berries fresh for 3-4 days, depending on how fresh they were when you bought them!
If you’re preparing this berry fruit salad for a special occasion or gathering, we simply recommend purchasing the berries the day before for the freshest ingredients possible.
Pro-tip: use up any sad looking berries in our berry compote!
How to Make a Berry Salad
Get this beautiful, bright, berry-licious fruit salad in just 10 minutes with only a handful of ingredients. Make a simple dressing of honey, fresh lemon, and just a dash of vanilla to drizzle over fresh mixed berries. Give your Berry Salad a good (gentle) toss and it’s ready to serve!
- Place quartered strawberries into a large bowl with whole blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and finely chopped mint.
- In a separate bowl, whisk honey, lemon juice, and lemon zest until smooth and well combined.
- Pour dressing over the berries, then gently toss using a rubber spatula.
- Serve right away, and enjoy!
- Both lemon and lime juice and zest work great in the dressing!
- Honey isn’t vegan, but agave is a great substitute!
- Use the freshest berries you can find. They should be ripe but firm!
- Quarter or even dice the strawberries for a taste of everything in every bite.
- Use a rubber spatula to gently toss the salad so you don’t tear the delicate flesh on the raspberries and blackberries.
What Does it Mean to Hull Strawberries?
Contrary to common parlance, the hull of a strawberry is not actually the outer layer. It’s actually the little leafy green top. Hulling is simply the culinary term for removing that cluster of leaves, usually by cutting into the core, to preserve as much of the berry as possible.
Simply work a paring knife around the hull at a 45° angle, cutting into the flesh of the berry, to create a small cone. This should allow you to easily pull out the hull and some of the tougher pith beneath.
(Alternatively, if you’re having a “no bones day,” you can just hack off the tops of your strawberries and move your berry salad along. The berry police will not come for you. Promise.)
Make It Your Way
- Add in, or swap in, diced peaches, mango, kiwis, or fresh cherries. Any fruit with a slightly sour note (as found in blackberries and raspberries) would be a tasty addition or replacement in this fruit salad.
- Need a little protein or fiber? Mix in chia seeds, flax seeds, or toasted chopped walnuts or slivered almonds.
- Swap limes for lemons in the dressing – juice and zest!
How Long Does Berry Salad Last?
Mixed berry salad doesn’t have a great shelf life and will store for about one day in the fridge. This does make it great for picnics, parties and potlucks, but don’t rely on it for meal prep.
However, the dressing is good for 3-5 days in the fridge on its own, so if you do want to make it last, portion the berries and dress each berry fruit salad individually, just before serving. Store the dressing in a mason jar and give it a good shake before pouring over berries.
Did you make this mixed berry salad? I’d love to know how it turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
Fresh Berry Salad with Honey and MintPrint Recipe Rate this Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 pound fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
- 6 ounces fresh blackberries
- 6 ounces fresh blueberries
- 6 ounces fresh raspberries
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
- 2 tbsp honey or agave
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Place the strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, and mint in a large mixing bowl.
- Combine the honey, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla extract in a small bowl and whisk until well combined.
- Pour the dressing over the berries, then gently toss using a rubber spatula until the berries are evenly coated with the dressing.
- Serve right away, and enjoy!