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This sweet fruit salad is flavored with vanilla-roasted pineapple and fresh mint for a unique side dish.

Nothing quite says summer like the flavorful blend of mango, coconut, and pineapple. Summer picnics and backyard barbeques call for fresh salads to help hydrate and cool off guests, especially in contrast to popular main dishes like grilled burgers or sausages.  

But many fruit salads available for purchase at the grocery store are too sweet for a range of palates and coated in extensive added sugars, overriding the other health benefits the fruits can provide. Not this fruit salad—it won’t perpetuate that addictive sugar craving to keep coming back for more. The added honey is diluted in water so that it mostly extracts the healthy compounds in the spices used, rather than acting as a sweetener. 

With the added freshness of mint and the comforting flavor and warmth of vanilla, this tropical fruit salad is refreshing and balanced for a wider range of ages. The fruit is chopped small, and coconut is shredded to suit eaters who may struggle with larger bites or harsh textures, too. The near-searing effect of sauteing the surface of the pineapple first, then baking it, breaks down the firmness and allows a softer-to-chew bite. 

You can eat this tropical fruit salad while the pineapple is still warm or refrigerate to allow the flavors to marinate before serving chilled. Compound the freshness of this fruit salad with a non-alcoholic electrolyte beverage such as coconut water or water with lime. 

TIP: Coconut could be sprinkled on top for the last 5 minutes of baking the pineapple if you desire a more toasted coconut flavor and texture. 

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Details

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
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Ingredients

  • 1 pineapple, finley chopped

  • 4 small mangos, diced

  • 1/2 cups shredded coconut, chopped 

  • 1 vanilla bean pod

  • 1/2 tsp honey

  • 1 cups water

  • 1/4 cups mint leaves, diced (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Add the vanilla bean pod, honey, and water into a pot over low heat until the honey has dissolved into the mixture.

  3. Add the diced pineapple and cook for another 5-8 minutes or until the pineapple lightly brown.

  4. In a oven safe bowl pan, add your pineapple mixture and bake for 25 minutes.

  5. Let your pineapple cool for 10 minutes, then add your chilled mangos.

  6. Garnish with mint leaves and shredded coconut.

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