Waldorf Salad

Favorite FallGluten-FreeVegetarianApple

First presented at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in 1893, this all-American Waldorf salad recipe includes chopped apples, celery, grapes, and toasted walnuts in a mayonnaise dressing.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Waldorf Salad is a favorite around here, particularly in the fall when apples and walnuts are in season. It’s especially popular around the holidays, gracing many a Thanksgiving and holiday spread.

According to the American Century Cookbook, the first Waldorf Salad was created in New York City in 1893, by Oscar Tschirky, the maître d’hôtel of the Waldorf Astoria.

The original recipe consisted only of diced red-skinned apples, celery, and mayonnaise. Chopped walnuts were added later to this now American classic.

Waldorf Salad

Some prefer their Waldorf salad made with yogurt, instead of mayo. I usually stay in the mayonnaise camp (which is what we are using in this recipe), but feel free to substitute yogurt for the mayo if you prefer. In which case you may need to add some honey to offset the added tartness of the yogurt.

Seems like everyone has their favorite version of Waldorf Salad! If you have one you would like to share, please tell us about it in the comments.

Waldorf Salad Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

If using yogurt, omit the lemon juice. You may also want to add a little honey to balance the tartness of the yogurt.


  • 6 Tbsp mayonnaise (or plain yogurt)
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 sweet apples, cored and chopped
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes, sliced in half (or 1/4 cup of raisins)
  • 1 cup celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup chopped, slightly toasted walnuts
  • Lettuce


In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise (or yogurt), lemon juice, salt and pepper. Stir in the apple, celery, grapes, and walnuts. Serve on a bed of fresh lettuce.

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Waldorf Salad

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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228 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Diane

    Love it, and made no alterations to recipe. An all time favorite in my family.


  2. richard norris

    My variation is to make a Waldorf apple pie! I cook applesauce (Cortland apples) add Grape halves,cinnamon and nutmeg and chopped walnuts/pecans. Let cool. Peel and chop 2 or 3 green apples (Granny Smith),crumble 1/2 to 1 cup blue or Roquefort cheese. Bloom 1 pack gelatin in a little apple cider. Mix all ingredients and pour into prebaked pie crust. Chill in fridge for 1-2 hours. Serve w a little fresh whipped cream. Note there is NO added sugar with this recipe.

  3. Maria

    I want to make this but i was wondering what mayo is the best to use, hellman’s kraft???

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  4. Amanda Smit

    This Waldorf Salad is delicious!! Made it exactly according to the recipe with two differences. I used Pecan nuts and add one teaspoon of soft blue cheese to the dressing and whisk it in. The blue cheese was my husband’s idea. Worked very well!!


  5. Cedrick Jay Delacruz

    Its so delicious


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