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Cascading Fruit Centerpiece

It's exciting and fun to build this pretty centerpiece, which I have made for holidays, weddings and showers over the past 20 years. The ginger dip is wonderful, or you can fill the fruit cups with other favorite dips, flavored yogurt or whipped topping. —Ellen Brown, Aledo, Texas
  • Total Time
    Prep: 3 hours
  • Makes
    1 fruit centerpiece


  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 5 tablespoons unsweetened pineapple juice
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
  • 1 fresh pineapple
  • 1 large grapefruit
  • 1 large navel orange
  • 1 medium lemon
  • 8 Styrofoam rounds (four 10x1 inch, four 6x1 inch)
  • 2 wooden dowels (one 8x1/4 inch, one 4-1/2x1/4 inch)
  • Floral metal greening pins
  • 3 to 5 pounds seedless green grapes
  • 3 to 5 pounds seedless red grapes
  • 1 pound fresh strawberries
  • Silk flowers with leaves
  • 3 cups yogurt of your choice


  • In a small mixing bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Stir in coconut. Chill until serving.
  • Cut off pineapple top with a fourth of the pineapple attached; set aside. For dip bowl, cut a third from bottom of pineapple; remove fruit, leaving a 1/2-in. shell. Remove peel from center section of pineapple; core and cut pineapple into chunks.
  • Cut the grapefruit, orange and lemon in half widthwise. Remove pulp from one half of each; set aside. (Save the remaining grapefruit, orange and lemon halves for another use.)
  • Stack two 10-in. Styrofoam rounds and two 6-in. rounds; cover each stack with heavy-duty foil. Repeat with remaining rounds. On a 19x15-in. platter, pile the stacks on top of each other, staggering them and anchoring with dowels.
  • Place pineapple top on the top circle; position lemon, orange and grapefruit cups on other circles. Place pineapple bowl on platter.
  • With greening pins, attach clusters of grapes onto circles. Randomly add strawberries, pineapple chunks and more grapes to cover the foil and platter. Decorate with silk flowers. Just before serving, fill pineapple bowl with pineapple ginger dip. Fill lemon, orange and grapefruit cups with yogurt.

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Average Rating:
  • Izabella
    Sep 29, 2015

    Mine did not turn out exactly like the picture. Everyone still liked it. I would like directions like some others did. Is this possible? I like doing things like this. So nice and makes the occasion feel special.

  • emsijo
    Nov 28, 2014

    Unless you have a sense of design stay away from this feat. There are directions what to buy but no direction how to put what where. The cost of the Styrofoam and everything else needed was so high that the next time I will buy a ready made centerpiece. Yes, it was beautiful once it was put together,by the right person but that person was not me.

  • tina17522
    Jul 28, 2014

    This looks beautiful and I want to make it for our daughter's 40th birthday laua surprise party. Can anyone suggest or tell me what they use for the base tray? Thinking of an oven rack, it's larger, but don't know what else I have around. Thanks!

  • bernnie_2001
    Apr 10, 2014

    Everyone loves this centerpiece. I have made this on several occasions. I placed it next to chocolate fountain. Just keep an eye on children.

  • NH-rescue
    Jul 30, 2013

    This fabulous centerpiece is always impressive! Our 4-H club has done this centerpiece twice for our town's luncheon for seniors and they've loved it both times.We've found that sometimes buying the styrofoam can be expensive and have learned to ask around for clean packing pieces folks might have. Everything gets covered well in aluminum foil anyway.We've also found that just flavored yogurt makes a good dip if you are in a hurry.Label any dips if possible - people appreciate the information.This recipe is highly recommended!

  • angelhairred
    Jun 26, 2013

    I love, love, love this centerpiece. I needed it to serve 100+ for a church brunch. I made it on a large mirror and include bowls of blueberries, raspberries,blackberries, and cherries. I used blackeyed susans and red roses with alternating red and yellow napkins. it was a real show stopper. Thanks for planting the idea. More centerpiece ideas, please.

    Jun 21, 2011

    I made this for a Pastor's Table turned out nice. I too would like to see it before fruit because I kinda assembled it my way when it came to dowels.

  • soxbabe
    Dec 25, 2010

    Wonderful! Easy to do although the fruit gets a bit expensive. Someone asked about the dowels, where they go, but they can actually be left out. Just secure the styrofoam discs together with greening pins. This was a great hit for my Christmas party. Everyone wants the recipe.

  • crossroad80
    Oct 17, 2010

    How do the two dowels stabilize the stacks? Need instructions where and how to place them.

  • summerkaye
    Sep 16, 2010

    I have made this centerpiece for many different occasions. and each time was a hit. very easy but, takes alot of time .