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Cran-Orange Gelatin Salad

After seeing this gelatin salad in a flier, I decided to make it lighter. I like to serve it as a fruit salad, but others may like it for a sweet treat. —Eva DeWolf, Erwin, Tennessee
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. + chilling
  • Makes
    15 servings


  • 1 can (15 ounces) mandarin oranges
  • 2 packages (.3 ounce each) sugar-free cranberry gelatin
  • 1-1/2 cups boiling water
  • 1 can (14 ounces) whole-berry cranberry sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups crushed salt-free pretzels
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Sugar substitute equivalent to 5 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 package (8 ounces) fat-free cream cheese
  • 1 carton (8 ounces) frozen reduced-fat whipped topping, thawed


  • Drain oranges, reserving juice in a 2-cup measuring cup; set oranges and juice aside.
  • In a large bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in cranberry sauce until melted. Add enough cold water to the reserved juice to measure 1-1/2 cups; add to gelatin mixture. Stir in oranges. Chill until partially set.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the pretzels, butter and 2 tablespoons sugar substitute. Press into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. dish; chill.
  • In a small bowl, beat cream cheese and remaining sugar substitute until smooth. Fold in whipped topping. Spread over crust. Spoon gelatin mixture over cream cheese layer. Chill for at least 3 hours or until set.
Editor's Note
This recipe was tested with Splenda no-calorie sweetener.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 183 calories, 7g fat (5g saturated fat), 13mg cholesterol, 185mg sodium, 26g carbohydrate (12g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 fat.

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  • Laurelsinthekitchen
    Dec 29, 2017

    I have had the strawberry version of this and enjoyed it, so I decided to try the cranberry version for Christmas, and my family loved it. This recipe is a keeper.

  • jbrain
    Dec 26, 2014

    Made it for the first time at Christmas - it was a big hit. Thought I would use more pretzels next time but also like the graham cracker idea.

  • Ringgoldmom49
    Dec 19, 2010

    I made this for Thanksgiving as a side salad with dinner. It tasted really good and everyone liked it, but I was disappointed in the pretzel layer. It didn't hold to the cream cheese layer, so it looked messy when I put it on the plates. I had to spoon some of the pretzels under the individual servings. Somewhat disappointing, but I will make it again, with some changes, because it looked good (minus pretzel fiasco) and tasted even better.

  • god'slillgirl
    Sep 11, 2010

    When I made this I used real sugar, salted pretzels & regular whipped topping & it tasted great!!! I think that I didn't have enough butter in the crust though because it was really crumbly & didn't stay together. Everyone loved it & wants the recipie!! Love the salty, tangy, sweet combo :)

  • heather12ab
    Oct 30, 2009

    I forgot to add that we use graham cracker crumnbs instead of pretzels.

  • heather12ab
    Oct 30, 2009

    It's a fantastic recipe and we have made it several times. Great for get togethers.

  • XOBasia
    Dec 12, 2008

    I've always made one like this, but using frozen strawberries and strawberry jello....any combination would work. Sounds good with the oranges, too.

  • CarmelN
    Dec 12, 2008

    It was a huge hit and so easy to make. I made it for a Christmas social with 13 friends. and of course the recipe just needs to be shared.

  • twinmomky
    Dec 12, 2008

    Can this be made with the cranberry jelly instead of the whole cranberries?

  • barber2
    Dec 12, 2008

    Another comment I forgot to include, I have to admit that this combo of oranges and cranberries are not a favorite of mine. Not a huge cranberry lover but it looked Christmasy and I loved it! I would agree with another comment..... I think of it as a salad, but it could be a dessert, it's that good, and it's very refreshing. It's Christmas, forget the calories for a little while!