Watermelon Radish Salad with Creamy Tarragon Dressing (Paleo, Whole30, Keto)
This is my new favorite summer salad with sweet and crunchy watermelon radish, juicy celery, and tart apples coated in a creamy licorice-y tarragon dressing. They say you eat with your eyes and the beautiful colors in this salad are beyond tempting! Paleo and Whole30 friendly, this salad is SO GOOD with everything from grilled salmon to burgers and is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
I made this salad for the first time when I came home from the store with a watermelon radish my daughter had accidentally placed in my cart instead of a bunch of red radishes. Well, as Bob Ross says, “we don’t make mistakes, we have happy accidents” and this was a very happy accident for sure! I wanted to make a delicious, bright, and earthy salad to accompany the salmon cakes we were having for dinner and let me just tell you, I think this was better than the main course! I plan on making this all summer long!!
Why Apples are So Good For You!
Who doesn’t love a crisp, sweet apple? Aside from how tasty and delicious they are, they are super nutritious and should be part of a whole food diet. Apples originated from Kazakhstan in central Asia and finally made their way to America in the late 1600’s by French Jesuits .
Thank goodness we have apple for our salads, applesauce, apple pies, apple crisp, apple cider, apple muffins, and so much more! Apples are full of nutrients that keep you healthy and nourished, let’s take a look!
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine): A water soluble vitamin that is essential in glucose metabolism and supports health heart and nervous system function.
- Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): There are many benefits from a diet rich in vitamin B6. It plays a role in our immune health, metabolism, and brain health. Vitamin B6 is essential in creating neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, which play a role in emotional health and sleep .
- Vitamin C (ascorbic acid/antioxidant): A powerful antioxidant that reduces oxidative stress, improves the absorption of non-heme iron, supports the immune system, and healthy bones .
- Vitamin E: (antioxidant): Supports immune function and works to regulate free radicals that cause cellular damage and supports the immune system, vision and healthy skin.
- Vitamin K: Fat soluble vitamin that supports the body’s ability to form blood clots and is converted to vitamin K2 in the gut and supports healthy bones .
- Copper: Essential mineral in the formation of red blood cells and in supporting cardiovascular health and immune function .
- Potassium: An essential electrolyte necessary in nervous system function, metabolism, hydration, and in regulating your heartbeat .
Apples are full of insoluble and soluble fiber that supports the digestive system as well as overall health.
- Insoluble fiber: bulking fiber that keeps things moving along through the digestive system promoting healthy detoxification and waste removal.
- Soluble fiber: absorbs water and gels in the digestive tract slowing the absorption of carbohydrates therefor supporting blood sugar regulation and feeds the beneficial bacteria in the microbiome.
Phytochemicals (Antioxidants): Apples are loaded with phytochemicals, which are organic compounds found in produce and are beneficial for health. The richer the color of the fruit or vegetable, the more phytonutrients it contains. Here are a few of the ones found in apples:
- Quercetin: A flavonoid that neutralizes free radicals, reduces inflammation, fights cancer, and supports vessel and heart health.
- Catechin: Also abundant in green tea, catechins reduce oxidative stress and prevent cellular damage and have strong anti-inflammatory properties.
- Gallic acid: Powerful antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and antimicrobial properties .
- Coumaric acid: Powerful phytonutient that has antimicrobial, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties to support health.
So grab some lovely, crisp apples and a sweet watermelon radish and let’s get cooking!
Watermelon Radish Salad with Creamy Tarragon Dressing Ingredients
For the Salad
1 Watermelon Radish, peeled and sliced
1 Apple, thinly sliced
2 Stalks of Celery, thinly sliced
1/2 Red Onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup Raw Pepitas or Sunflower Seeds (opt)
For the Tarragon Dressing
1/3 cup Unsweetened Coconut Yogurt
2 Tbsp No Sugar Added Mayonnaise
1 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Zest
1-2 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
2 Tbsp Fresh Tarragon, minced
1 Tbsp Pure Maple Syrup (opt)
1/2 tsp Fine Sea Salt or Pink Salt
1/4 tsp Ground Black Pepper
How to Make Watermelon Radish Salad with Creamy Tarragon Dressing
1. In a medium bowl combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon zest and juice, tarragon, maple syrup and spices giving it a good whisk to combine.
2. Peel, cut off the ends and and slice the watermelon radish in half. Set the radish with the cut side down and thinly slice the radish, transfer to the bowl.
3. Wash and thinly slice the apple and celery and onion, adding to the bowl. I like to cut these into the same half-moon shape as the radish, but feel free to slice them up any way you like!
4. Transfer all the veggies to the bowl and mix well with the dressing to evenly coat.
5. Top with any seeds or nuts you like, or just some more fresh tarragon like me!
Serve and Enjoy!
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Q: How long will this keep?
A: I like to eat it as fresh as possible as the acid and salt in the dressing will breakdown the veggies and apples some, and they won’t be as crisp. If you are looking to make enough for leftovers, I would slice everything into matchsticks so the leftovers are more like a cole slaw.
Q: Can I use red radishes for this recipe?
A: No, I wouldn’t. The flavor profile is very different and red radishes are “spicy” and will alter the taste of the salad compared to the sweeter watermelon radish.
Q: What is the best way to store the radish if I’m not ready to. make the salad?
A: Wash the radish and remove the root at the base of the radish. Wrap it with a damp paper towel and then place it into a plastic bag and store in the refrigerator’s crisper drawer for 7-10 days.
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I am a holistic nutritionist with an auto-immune disorder, a love of cooking, and a passion for holistic health.
Sharing what I make and eat with all of you…in hopes that you find inspiration here to fuel your body and feel your best with nutrient dense whole foods and clean eating.