December 4, 2023Review Recipe
Table of Contents
Our cranberry jello salad recipe brings a refreshing twist to your holiday table, combining the tartness of cranberries with the sweetness of jello for a truly unique dish. This easy-to-make salad will quickly become a family favorite!
Cranberry Jello Salad Ingredients
The salad’s cranberry flavor is enhanced by cranberry juice and whole cranberry sauce, while crushed pineapple adds a tropical twist.
Chopped pecans provide a crunchy contrast, and optional garnishes like the topping, fresh cranberries, and mint leaves add visual appeal and extra flavor.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 packages (3 ounces each) of cranberry or raspberry-flavored jello
- 1 cup of boiling water
- 1½ cups of cranberry juice
- 2 cans (14 ounces each) of whole cranberry sauce
- 1 (20-ounce) can of crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 cup of chopped pecans
- 1 cup of heavy whipping cream for garnish (optional)
- Fresh cranberries, for garnish (optional)
- Mint leaves, for garnish (optional)
Substitutions And Additions
CRANBERRY OR RASPBERRY JELLO: If you prefer a different flavor, feel free to substitute this with any other fruit-flavored jello.
Just keep in mind that this will alter the flavor profile of the salad.
CRANBERRIES: If you’re not a fan of cranberries or can’t find them, you can swap them out for raspberries, blueberries, or even diced apples.
Each of these alternatives will bring a slightly different flavor profile to your jello salad.
WHOLE BERRY CRANBERRY SAUCE: If you’re not a fan of whole cranberries, you can substitute this with smooth cranberry sauce.
This will give the salad a smoother texture but still provide that delicious cranberry flavor.
CRUSHED PINEAPPLE: If pineapple isn’t your thing, you can substitute it with another canned fruit like mandarin oranges or peaches.
Just make sure to drain the fruit well to prevent the salad from becoming too watery.
CHOPPED PECANS: If you have a nut allergy, you can omit the pecans in this side dish.
If you don’t like pecans, feel free to substitute them with another type of nut, like walnuts or almonds.
How To Make This Cranberry Jello Salad Recipe
Creating our cranberry pineapple jello salad is a simple process that requires minimal prep work. Let’s walk through the steps together.
STEP ONE: Spray a 9×13 casserole dish with oil and set aside.
OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS
Ensure that the dish you’re using is a 9×13-inch size to accommodate the full quantity of the recipe.
Using a smaller dish may result in overflow or unevenly set jello.
STEP TWO: Combine the jello and boiling water in a large mixing bowl. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved, and then add the cranberry juice.
When mixing the gelatin with boiling water, make sure to stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
This will ensure a smooth and even consistency throughout the salad.
STEP THREE: Add the whole cranberry sauce, crushed pineapple, and chopped nuts to the jello mixture. Mix well to combine all the ingredients evenly.
If you prefer a smoother texture, you can use a blender or food processor to pulse the cranberry sauce and pineapple before adding them to the gelatin mixture.
This will create a more uniform consistency.
STEP FOUR: Pour the mixture into a 9×13-inch dish, spreading it evenly.
STEP FIVE: Place the dish in the refrigerator and let it set for at least four hours or until firm.
It’s important to allow the jello salad to chill and set for at least four hours or overnight.
This ensures that the salad holds its shape and achieves the desired texture.
STEP SIX: Before serving, whisk the heavy whipping cream to soft peaks.
STEP SEVEN: Once the cranberry jello salad has set, you can garnish it with whipped cream, fresh cranberries, and mint leaves, if desired.
STEP EIGHT: Cut the jello salad into squares or scoop it out to serve.
Troubleshooting This Recipe
The jello is not setting properly
Solution: If your jello salad isn’t setting properly, make sure you followed the instructions for boiling water and dissolving the gelatin completely.
Ensure the jello mix is fresh, as expired gelatin might not set correctly.
You can also try placing the salad in the refrigerator for a longer time, as colder temperatures can help it set more firmly.
The salad is too tart
Solution: Adjust the sweetness by adding a bit of sugar if it’s too tart for your liking. Taste and adjust gradually to achieve your preferred level of sweetness.
To balance the tartness, you can also add a bit more whipped topping or yogurt to mellow out the flavors.
The texture is too firm or too soft
Solution: If the salad turns out too firm, you can try gently folding in a bit more whipped topping or yogurt to soften it.
On the other hand, if it’s too soft, you may need to add more gelatin to the recipe to help it set better.
Dissolve the extra gelatin in a small amount of hot water before mixing it into the salad.
How To Serve
Our cranberry jello salad is a dish that can be served in a variety of ways. Here are some suggestions:
SERVE IT FOR DESSERT: The sweet and tangy flavors of this salad make it a perfect way to end a meal.
Serve it chilled, garnished with whipped cream, cranberries, and mint leaves.
SERVE IT AS A SIDE DISH: The cranberry flavor of this salad makes it a great addition to any meal.
ENJOY IT AS A SNACK: This salad can also be enjoyed with a cold glass of iced tea. Its flavors make it a treat that can be enjoyed anytime.
BRING IT TO A POTLUCK: This salad is easy to make and serves a large group, making it an excellent choice for gatherings.
Its unique flavor will surely stand out and impress your friends and family.
Main Dishes That Go With Cranberry Salad
Turkey: A classic pairing, especially during Thanksgiving. The savory flavors of the turkey are beautifully offset by the cranberry fluff.
Baked Chicken Breast: Much like turkey, roast chicken’s mild flavor pairs well with the vibrant taste of cranberry.
Ham Roast: The salty and smoky flavors of ham contrast nicely with the cranberry fluff salad, making it a popular choice for holiday feasts.
Fried Pork Chops: Pork complements the tart cranberries.
Beef Pot Roast: The robust flavors of roast beef can be balanced out with the light and fruity cranberry fluff salad.
Grilled Salmon: The fatty richness of salmon contrasts with the acidity of cranberry, creating a harmonious pairing.
Stuffed Bell Peppers: The combination of grains, meat, and vegetables in stuffed peppers pairs well with the sweet-tart profile of cranberry fluff.
When To Serve
THANKSGIVING: Cranberry jello salad is a classic addition to a Thanksgiving feast.
HOLIDAY CELEBRATION: Serve this salad as part of your Christmas dinner or buffet.
SUMMER BBQ: Its fruity and creamy components make it a refreshing and cool side dish for hot weather.
POTLUCK OR PICNIC: It’s a crowd-pleaser that can be enjoyed outdoors.
MORE DESSERT RECIPES
Our cranberry jello salad is not only yummy but also easy to store.
Here’s how you can do it:
MAKE AHEAD: This cranberry jello recipe can be made ahead of time. Simply prepare the salad as instructed, cover it, and store it in the refrigerator.
It will need at least four hours to set, but you can leave it in the refrigerator overnight if you’re preparing it for the next day.
IN THE FRIDGE: After serving, you can store any leftovers in the refrigerator. Cover the dish with plastic wrap or transfer the leftover salad to an airtight container.
It will keep in the refrigerator for up to three days.
IN THE FREEZER: We don’t recommend freezing the cranberry jello salad, as gelatin-based dishes tend to lose their texture and become watery when thawed.
Why We Love This Recipe
There are many reasons why we love this cranberry jello salad. Here are a few:
FLAVOR: The tangy cranberries perfectly balance the jello.
TEXTURE: This salad has a unique texture that adds to its appeal.
EASY TO MAKE: The recipe involves simple steps and uses common ingredients, making it accessible to even novice cooks.
Our cranberry jello salad is a dish that combines cranberries with jello. Its unique flavor and texture make it an ideal choice for a variety of occasions, from being a side dish to summer picnics.
Frequently Asked Questions
While fresh cranberries can be used in this easy cranberry salad recipe, they will give a much tarter flavor.
If you prefer a sweeter salad, it’s best to stick with canned cranberry sauce.
You can substitute the pecans with other types of nuts like walnuts or almonds.
Just keep in mind that this will alter the flavor and texture of the salad.
This salad can be made ahead of time. It needs at least four hours to set, but you can leave it in the refrigerator overnight if you’re preparing it for the next day.
More Recipes You’ll Love
Cranberry Jello Salad
- 3 ounces cranberry or raspberry-flavored jello, 2 packages
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1½ cups cranberry juice
- 14 ounces whole cranberry sauce, 2 cans
- 20 ounces crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream, optional garnish
- Fresh cranberries, optional garnish
- Mint leaves, optional garnish
- Spray a 9×13 dish with oil and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the jello and boiling water. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved, and then add the cranberry juice.
- Add the whole cranberry sauce, crushed pineapple, and chopped nuts to the gelatin mixture. Mix well to combine all the ingredients evenly.
- Pour the mixture into a 9×13-inch dish, spreading it evenly.
- Place the dish in the refrigerator and let it set for at least 4 hours or until firm.
- Before serving, whisk the heavy whipping cream to soft peaks.
- Once the cranberry jello salad has set, you can garnish it with whipped cream, fresh cranberries, and mint leaves, if desired.
- Cut the jello salad into squares or scoop it out to serve.
- Ensure that the dish you’re using is a 9×13-inch size to accommodate the full quantity of the recipe. Using a smaller dish may result in overflow or unevenly set jello.
- When mixing the gelatin with boiling water, make sure to stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved. This will ensure a smooth and even consistency throughout the salad.
- If you prefer a smoother texture, you can use a blender or food processor to pulse the cranberry sauce and pineapple before adding them to the gelatin mixture. This will create a more uniform consistency.
- It’s important to allow the jello salad to chill and set for at least 4 hours or overnight. This ensures that the salad holds its shape and achieves the desired texture.