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This chunky charoset recipe, made from chopped apples, pears, walnuts, grape juice, and spices, is a must-have for Passover! It’s easy to make in just 10 minutes and can even be made ahead of time for your Seder celebrations.

chunky charoset in a large white bowl.
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What is Charoset?

Charoset (pronounced kah-row-set) is a fruit and nut mixture traditionally mixed into a paste and served at Jewish Passover Seders. It’s really easy to make, tastes fruity and sweet, and is always a hit, whether served at Passover or year-round!

We made our chunky charoset recipe in the same style as the Eastern European Ashkenazi Jews. Using a blend of chopped apples, pears, walnuts, warm spices, and purple grape juice, it’s an easy dish that doesn’t skimp on flavor! There’s a little bit of everything in each bite: (1) sweet-tart flavors from the fruit and grape juice, (2) a soft crunch from the nuts, and (3) comforting cinnamon and nutmeg to keep us coming back for more.

It can be stressful preparing for the Seder, but luckily, this Passover charoset recipe only takes 10 minutes to put together. It can even be assembled a few days ahead of time and kept in the fridge!

Either keep the recipe as-is or play with it using the mix-ins you love. Charoset is endlessly versatile, with plenty of room for citrus zest, sugar, extra fruit, more warm spices, or anything else you crave.

Looking for more vegan recipes for Passover? Check out our vegan potato latkes, cauliflower steaks, and vegan lentil shepherd’s pie.

The Ingredients and Substitutes

ingredients for Chunky Charoset on a white surface
  • Apple: We used Fuji apples for the ultimate juicy crunch.
  • Pear: A diced Bartlett pear complements the chopped apple perfectly.
  • Walnuts: Or you can use pecans, pine nuts, almonds, pistachios, or another nut you have on hand.
  • Dried cranberries: These add a tart bite to the charoset.
  • Purple grape juice: Kosher red wine is the traditional choice, but grape juice keeps our version family-friendly! White grape juice also works as a substitute.
  • Cinnamon & nutmeg: To warm up every bite.

What Could I Add to Charoset?

  • More fresh fruit: You can also add figs, grapes, blueberries, or pomegranate.
  • Brown sugar: Add up to 1 tablespoon of light brown sugar for more sweetness.
  • More dried fruit: Like chopped apricots, dates, crystallized ginger, or raisins.
  • Lemon juice: Add a splash of lemon juice to enhance the tangy-tart flavors.
  • Citrus zest: Just like the lemon juice, a pinch of lemon zest or orange zest will give the charoset a zingy pop of flavor.
  • More spices: Add a pinch of saffron or ground cloves.

How to Make Charoset

  • Add all of the ingredients to a large bowl.
  • Toss to combine.
chopped apples and pears in two separate bowls.
ingredients for chopped charoset in a large white bowl.
  • Serve the charoset on your Seder plate and enjoy!

For the best flavor, cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for 30 to 60 minutes. This gives the flavors time to meld together, making your charoset even more delicious.

FAQs

What are the best apples for charoset?

The best apples for charoset are firm and crisp. We like Fuji apples best, but Gala, Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, McIntosh, Jonathan’s, and Pink Lady are great choices, too.

Should I peel the apples and pears?

It’s up to you! We left the skins intact, but if you want softer bites, go ahead and peel the fruit.

Can it be made nut-free?

Yes, you can swap the walnuts for seeds instead, like sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.

Pro Recipe Tips

  • Save on prep time: Carefully pulse the apples, pears, and walnuts in a food processor instead of chopping them by hand. Be careful not to overprocess them into a paste, though.
  • Taste as you go: As you’re making the charoset for Passover, give it a taste and add more apples, juice, and spices as needed to help balance the flavors.
  • Toast the walnuts: We recommend toasting the walnuts in a dry skillet over medium heat before adding them to the charoset. This releases their natural oils, taking their flavors to the next level!
close up on two spoons in a bowl of chunky charoset.

Serving Suggestions

The sweetness in this Ashkenazi charoset helps it balance the bitterness of the horseradish  (maror) also found on a Seder plate. Paired with vegan matzo ball soup, it’s a delicious part of your Passover.

And if you’re not Jewish or just happen to love charoset, you’re more than welcome to indulge year-round. You can use it (or the leftover charoset) as a delicious filling for hand pies, classic apple pie, and apple crescent rolls, top it on vegan cheesecake, or spoon it over your vegan yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast.

Storage Instructions

Chunky charoset looks and tastes best when it’s served fresh, but you can also make it ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.

If you plan on assembling it in advance, we recommend tossing the apples and pears in a little lemon juice to prevent them from browning.

More Vegan Passover Recipes

You may also like these 22 Must Try Vegan Passover Recipes!

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Chunky Charoset

5 from 83 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 0 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 batch
This chunky charoset recipe, made from chopped apples, pears, walnuts, grape juice, and spices, is a must-have for Passover! It’s easy to make in just 10 minutes and can even be made ahead of time for your Seder celebrations.

Ingredients 

  • 1 fuji apple, finely diced
  • 1 bartlett pear, finely diced
  • ½ cup of finely chopped walnuts
  • ½ cup of dried cranberries
  • ½ cup of purple grape juice
  • ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon of nutmeg

Instructions 

  • In a bowl, mix all the ingredients until well-combined.

Notes

Looks the prettiest served fresh, but you can store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3 to 5 days. 
If you don’t have dried cranberries, raisins are a great fit.
  • Save on prep time: Carefully pulse the apples, pears, and walnuts in a food processor instead of chopping them by hand. Be careful not to overprocess them into a paste, though.
  • Taste as you go: As you’re making the charoset for Passover, give it a taste and add more apples, juice, and spices as needed to help balance the flavors.
  • Toast the walnuts: We recommend toasting the walnuts in a dry skillet over medium heat before adding them to the charoset. This releases their natural oils, taking their flavors to the next level!

Nutrition

Calories: 856kcalCarbohydrates: 130gProtein: 11gFat: 40gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 28gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gSodium: 14mgPotassium: 799mgFiber: 18gSugar: 100gVitamin A: 173IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 114mgIron: 3mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Jewish
Method: No cook
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
About

Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    OMG YUM! This is like fruit cereal in the best way possible. Such a great idea for an easy, healthy breakfast or snack.

  2. Toni, I love that you’re making jewish recipes now!! They always make me smile. Can’t wait to try this one!

  3. I love learning a different dishes served during holidays in other cultures. This looks and sounds like a wonderful dish bursting with flavour and texture.