Sweet little Mandarin oranges are tasty whether canned or fresh. Mandarins are actually an entire family of small pumpkin-shaped oranges that includes the tangerine, clementine, and satsuma. Check out some top-rated recipes that call for mandarin oranges.

Simple Pan-Roasted Salmon on Salad with Spinach and Mandarin Orange Salad
Simple Pan-Roasted Salmon on Salad with Spinach and Mandarin Orange Salad | Photo by Meredith

Fresh mandarins are easy to slip out of their skins, which are thin and fit loosely around the fruit. Getting to the juicy, sweet fruit inside is like unwrapping a tiny gift -- which is one reason Mandarins are so popular eaten out-of-hand as a quick, healthy snack. You can also add Mandarins to salad, or use their juice to make sauces.

Canned Mandarin oranges add sweetness to cakes. You can also toss them into salads or stir fries. If the hint of flavor seems familiar, it should be--the Mandarin's peel gives off an essential oil that is used to flavor hard candies, carbonated drinks, chewing gum, even perfume!

When to Buy Fresh Mandarins

Mandarins are at their delicious peak during the holiday season, and make an easy (and cheap) addition to Christmas stockings. Tangerines are the sweetest variety, but they also come with pesky seeds. Clementines, sometimes sold as "cuties," are almost always seedless. Satsumas -- the variety you're most likely to get when you buy canned Mandarins--are also seedless.

Recipes to Make with Mandarin Oranges

"Tart pomegranate seeds add a delicious crunch to this salsa that also features sweet mandarin oranges, red onions, jalapenos and cilantro," says Average Jane. "Great served with tortilla chips."

Pomegranate Salsa
Photo by Christina

"Hearty, delicious super-easy green salad reminiscent of traditional chicken chow mein," says TheRecycleChef. "Add a splash of your favorite Asian dressing and you have a complete meal."

Chicken Chow Mein Salad
Photo by lutzflcat

"Mandarin oranges add the color and the dressing adds the zing to this mixture of greens," says Rhonda. "You can use spinach or iceberg lettuce in place of romaine, or use a combination of any of them."

Poppy Seed Salad
Photo by Baking Nana

"Sweet and savory come together beautifully in this salad of marinated grilled chicken and pineapple on a healthy bed of baby spinach," says S-Zirl. "We never have leftovers and everyone who eats it wants the recipe! Use fresh pineapple and rosemary; it makes the dish."

Photo by Allrecipes

"Here is a very low cost and simple recipe for a great Vietnamese chicken recipe, Maho," says PinkPetunias. "It is something we eat on a regular basis, and my toddler likes it too, so you know it is yummy."

Maho, Vietnamese Chicken Recipe
Photo by Ashten Mott

Check out our collection of Mandarin Orange Recipes.