Blueberries, mango and kiwi marinated in a slightly sweet tequila lime syrup may be the tastiest fruit summer salad you’ll find. Easy and so refreshing, a blueberry salad is a must for any summertime meal.
I’ve heard that we’re supposed to have the best blueberry season that we’ve had for years in the Carolinas, which means more blueberry salad with Tequila dressing at our house. Apparently it rained early in the season and has now been very dry which is what the berries like.
I’ve been to my favorite blueberry orchard and my freezer is full of frozen blueberries so I’m all set for muffins, scones and cobblers. But when you have sweet fresh blueberries it’s time to make a summer fruit salad like this one or one with watermelon and blueberries. (If you have any leftover berries, learn some tips for keeping blueberries fresh longer)
This is similar to the fruit salad I make all summer with a lime honey glaze but this salad dressing works better with mangos and blueberries. The secret ingredient is tequila. The tequila is cooked with the syrup so you’re not going to get tipsy, but all of the alcohol will not burn off. Your left with that unique Tequila flavor.
Why you’ll love it
- Sweet blueberries are the BEST
- Who doesn’t love the flavor of Tequila
- It’s great to take to a cook-out
- You can make this a day in advance and it won’t get soggy
What type of Tequila should you use
I am by no means a Tequila expert, you won’t find me drinking shots, but I do love it in mixed drinks and added to marinades for healthy chicken thighs or grilled chicken wings. In this fruit salad, I would suggest using a good quality brand. Esquire just recently had an article on the 12 best tequilas to drink right now, the two I’m familiar with are Patron and Avion.
What you’ll need for a summer salad
- Fresh blueberries – blueberries are native to North America and you can find them from April through September. After that the berries in the grocery are grown in South America.
- Mango – the citrusy sweet flavor is a great compliment to the berries. You could also substitute peaches.
- Kiwi – this sweet fruit is available all year long in the grocery and adds not only a unique flavor but a nice texture to the salad. You can substitute strawberries if you’re not a fan.
- Tequila – when combined with the berries and lime, it brightens the fruit. If you’re concerned about the alcohol, substitute water and make lime syrup instead. The alcohol will evaporate slightly but will not burn off completely.
- Lime – adds a tropical twist to the fruit salad.
- Sugar – you don’t need much to create just a little sweetness.
How do you make a fresh fruit salad
Step 1: For the dressing for the fruit salad, heat sugar, Tequila and lime zest until the sugar has melted and then add lime juice.
Step 2: Pour the warm syrup over the fruit mixture and refrigerate to let the fruit soak up the lime Tequila flavor.
There isn’t that much sugar so it doesn’t make it overly sweet but adds just enough to make this a favorite summer salad. My girls love it because of the kiwi which is one of their favorite fruits.
Why is it that I live in North Carolina yet my children love tropical fruit and not what we can find in our backyard.
If you want to be more patriotic, use strawberries instead of kiwi. Strawberry season is over for us but I know lots of other folks are still enjoying fresh strawberries.
FAQs about blueberries
The best way to store blueberries is in the refrigerator. Wait to wash them right before eating. They should last about 10 days in the fridge.
Blueberries are a great healthy snack. They only have 60 calories per cup and they are full of vitamins and fiber.
To freeze blueberries, first rinse them and let them dry on a sheet pan. Once dry place the pan in the freezer for about 30 minutes to flash freeze the berries then place them in a resealable bag or vacuum seal for a longer freezer life. They will be good for at least 10 months and even longer if vacuum sealed.
Some of the alcohol will evaporate with cooking, but studies have shown that not all is burned off. Here’s an article if you want to learn more.
What else can you make with blueberries
Looking for more summertime salads
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Tequila Lime Blueberry Salad
- 4 cups blueberries
- 2 mango cut into bite size pieces
- 4 kiwi peeled, and cut into large pieces
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup tequila optional
- 2 limes zest and juice, finely grated and squeezed
- Add fruit to a large bowl. In a small saucepan add sugar, tequila and lime zest. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and add lime juice. Pour warm syrup over fruit and toss. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 6.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- Use a good quality tequila, if you don’t want to use tequila, substitute water.
- When zesting the lime, use a zester so that you don’t get any of the white pith which will add a bitter taste to the dressing
- You can make the salad in advance but not more than a day or the kiwi will turn to mush.
- Freeze the leftovers to use for smoothies
- Buy the kiwi and mango in advance so that you make sure you have ripe fruit for the salad.
- This salad will not keep long as the kiwi will become mushy. The blueberries and mango will stay fresh for about 3 days.