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Creamy Cranberry Salad Recipe

Creamy Cranberry Salad Recipe

One of my piano students taught me the perfect lesson in salad for the holidays. The keys are cranberries, pineapple, marshmallows and nuts. —Alexandra Lypecky, Dearborn, Michigan
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. + chilling YIELD:16 servings


  • 3 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries, chopped
  • 1 can (20 ounces) unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained
  • 2 cups miniature marshmallows
  • 1 medium apple, chopped
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts


  • 1. In a large bowl, mix first six ingredients. Refrigerate, covered, overnight.
  • 2. To serve, beat cream until stiff peaks form. Fold whipped cream and walnuts into cranberry mixture. Yield: 16 servings (1/2 cup each).

Recipe Note

Test Kitchen Tips

  • Make it easy on yourself. Pulse cranberries in a food processor to chop them.
  • To really bring the walnuts to life, toast them for a few minutes in a dry skillet. Stir occasionally and watch closely so they don't burn, Remove from the heat when fragrant.
  • Nutritional Facts

    1/2 cup: 200 calories, 12g fat (7g saturated fat), 34mg cholesterol, 32mg sodium, 23g carbohydrate (20g sugars, 1g fiber), 1g protein.

    Reviews for Creamy Cranberry Salad

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    ebow1 User ID: 5616038 263120
    Reviewed Mar. 6, 2017

    "I made this for Thanksgiving, everyone lived it. Making it again for Easter, wondering if anyone has tried different fruit."

    Sharon User ID: 8999894 258640
    Reviewed Dec. 25, 2016

    "I made this for Thanksgiving and it was barely touched! I think I need to stick to more traditional homemade cranberry relish. I ended up eating it all by myself for lunch for a week."

    Carole User ID: 8970849 258239
    Reviewed Dec. 17, 2016

    "I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a hit even with those who won't normally try anything different!"

    missteddybear User ID: 8940173 258183
    Reviewed Dec. 15, 2016

    "leecruz, the recipe calls for FRESH OR FROZEN cranberries. hope that this helps. :)"

    Chris User ID: 8975951 257363
    Reviewed Nov. 27, 2016

    "Thank you for sharing this recipe on Facebook. I made this for Thanksgiving dinner and it was an overwhelming hit! Im adding it to my Christmas dinner menu as well. This recipe will now be a holiday tradition."

    donnapieron User ID: 8329479 257266
    Reviewed Nov. 25, 2016

    "I guess I don't care for raw cranberries....everything was great about this recipe except for the toughness of the cranberries. I wonder if they can be partially cooked before adding to the salad. My husband felt the same way, as I noticed him trying to chew and swallow. Will try again or perhaps use the dreaded canned whole berry cranberry sauce."

    Jim User ID: 8974809 257235
    Reviewed Nov. 24, 2016

    "Small error estimate on "16 servings". Just made this for Thanksgiving 2016 and 7 people consumed it all!"

    Nessa.03 User ID: 7651380 256888
    Reviewed Nov. 17, 2016


    ddward6090 User ID: 581039 256367
    Reviewed Nov. 3, 2016

    "Do you measure the cranberries before or after they are chopped?"

    annsway1 User ID: 1667005 255407
    Reviewed Oct. 13, 2016

    "Wonderful change from the cranberry salad I have been eating for 30 years! lol"

    skylargrace User ID: 8811774 246727
    Reviewed Apr. 7, 2016

    "I made this for Easter dinner and my family loved it! I did add more walnuts than the recipe called for, for that extra crunch. Also, I liked the idea of it staying fresh and not runny for a week after Easter. We ate every bite to the bottom of the bowl!"

    hughesbambi User ID: 2603719 246359
    Reviewed Mar. 31, 2016

    "Really, Really Good. I was so happy to find a recipe that used whipping cream instead of chemical laden whipped toppings. I will definitely made this a lot."

    harveena User ID: 361795 244945
    Reviewed Mar. 5, 2016

    "Followed the recipe, no changes and everyone loved it."

    Catbird513 User ID: 8551474 244252
    Reviewed Feb. 21, 2016

    "I cook in an elementary school and made this for the kids and they loved it. I did not have whole cranberries so I used canned cranberry sauce and it worked fine. I also could not put in the walnuts due to allergies. This is a keeper and I will make it again."

    jhlu User ID: 7181806 240651
    Reviewed Dec. 30, 2015

    "Absolutely will be making it again. It was very good and everyone else loved it too for Christmas. I would also halve the recipe for a smaller group. You don't have to wait just until you serve it to fold in the whipped cream and walnuts. It was fine the 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th day."

    texvic User ID: 7767037 240600
    Reviewed Dec. 30, 2015

    "If you like any kind of whipped or fruit type salad then you will really enjoy this, I could not find cranberries fresh or frozen so I used frozen cherries, and it was delicious … Using the cherries makes it a deeper color than what it shows in the picture but no big deal, have to say that this is a keeper, thank you so much for sharing."

    dsclements User ID: 4318294 240430
    Reviewed Dec. 28, 2015

    "Spectacular and crazy easy. I substituted a clementine for the apple and would do that again. Omitted the walnuts due to allergies. Regardless of the changes, everyone loved it."

    mzgrinder User ID: 6418368 240194
    Reviewed Dec. 25, 2015

    "Very tasty and easy to put together. A Definite Winner! Even for the little kids that may not like fresh cranberries! Keeper..."

    beltza User ID: 2199797 238604
    Reviewed Dec. 2, 2015

    "This was outstanding but I just realized I forgot the apple! Haha! Will definitely be making this again."

    PageRD User ID: 5881442 238345
    Reviewed Nov. 29, 2015

    "I thought this recipe was really good and easy. It made a colorful addition to our Thanksgiving table. It makes a lot so I think I would halve it for smaller groups. I've also made it with frozen cherries."

    Grammy Debbie User ID: 30612 238314
    Reviewed Nov. 28, 2015

    "Absolutely delicious! I've started the tradition of at least one new recipe every Thanksgiving and this was the one for this year's meal. Everyone from youngest to oldest loved it, even those who didn't think they liked cranberries! I did use real whipped cream. My grandsons asked to take the leftovers home with them and my daughter called the next day to say it was all gone and they were asking for more! Now that's a recipe endorsement for sure!"

    kathyhooper User ID: 3240957 238177
    Reviewed Nov. 26, 2015

    "This is so good! It's easy to make and great for holiday time!"

    Sweethart721 User ID: 3236169 238156
    Reviewed Nov. 26, 2015

    "Made this to take to my parents today.....holy amazing!"

    misslrodriguez58 User ID: 8024819 236961
    Reviewed Nov. 8, 2015

    "Great recipe!!"

    235gbt User ID: 8485749 236866
    Reviewed Nov. 7, 2015

    "I wonder if I could use the dried cranberrys - not to fond of the fresh or frozen kind?"

    dhebert1 User ID: 8350844 236846
    Reviewed Nov. 6, 2015

    "I MAKE THIS salad EVERY YEAR FOR Thanksgiving AND FOR Christmas. THE FAMILY LOVE IT!"

    Warzecha User ID: 6512999 236251
    Reviewed Nov. 3, 2015

    "First made this years ago when seeing the Recipe on the Ocean Spray Fresh Cranberry package. The original recipe called only chopped apple and halved slice grapes. No pineapple. Great to remember this old recipe. I will make it again this Thanksgiving. When my boys were small they loved it....they did not know it had cranberries....just called the Pink salad."

    dianag2 User ID: 3603906 236088
    Reviewed Nov. 1, 2015

    "I first brought this salad as my contribution to my family's Christmas potluck dinner in the 1990's. My family liked it so well that it became a tradition at our annual get-togethers. It is the perfect mixture of sweet & tangy. Really Really good! Since it is so simple to make, my aging mother took over the preparation as her contribution to our dinner. She always used a meat grinder to grind the cranberries instead of chopping them. I love the sound of the cranberries popping as they go through the grinder. If you don't have a grinder, make sure you chop them very well."

    Nanamitt User ID: 6982486 236027
    Reviewed Oct. 31, 2015

    "Who wouldn't love this. I prefer the fresh cranberries myself."

    judy1606 User ID: 6190072 235999
    Reviewed Oct. 30, 2015

    "I've made this recipe for many, many years, but instead of using an apple, I use an orange. I put fresh cranberries through my food grinder and then quarter an orange, peeling and all, then put that through the food grinder. Mix the cranberries and orange together with the sugar and let sit overnight. The next morning everything else can be added. Yummy."

    dmclouston User ID: 2048696 235995
    Reviewed Oct. 30, 2015

    "I made this last Thanksgiving and it was wonderful.I don't like whipping cream so I used cool whip and it turned out great.I was asked for the recipe by several guests."

    leecruz User ID: 7204203 228802
    Reviewed Jul. 1, 2015

    "Has good reviews but no one mentions the type of cranberries they use. Fresh? Frozen? Can't wait to try it!"

    NanyCarol User ID: 7999191 220704
    Reviewed Feb. 17, 2015

    "OMG, we made this 3 times over the Christmas holiday, a definite keeper!! My grandkids hate cranberries, but they snarfed this down!!! I put a few bags in the freezer so we could have this after Christmas. We tried both Cool Whip & whipping cream, of course the whipped cream was better, but good either way!!! I will be making this for Thanksgiving, as well as Christmas!!! I would give this 10 stars, if I could!!!"

    Lily380 User ID: 6234992 218276
    Reviewed Jan. 19, 2015

    "my family loved it, leftovers were better than the first day!!"

    lisarae77 User ID: 3667384 214043
    Reviewed Dec. 5, 2014

    "awesome. made as written. I will be making every year now to take to both thanksgivings."

    valanddansmith User ID: 988113 64835
    Reviewed Dec. 1, 2014

    "This was really, really good!!! Great twist on a traditional ambrosia type salad. I chopped my cranberries in a food processor and it worked out great. I didn't let mine sit overnight either... It really only sat for a few hours and it was perfect. Of course Cool Whip can be used, but making your own whipped cream only takes a few minutes and is actually kinda fun. If you do use Cool Whip, you'll want to leave out some or all of the sugar because the whipped cream in this is unsweetened. Pecans are also great in this. One other note - my apples didn't discolor at all - 3 days later, the salad still looks great. Perfect little fruit salad for the holidays!"

    JennMcE User ID: 8090223 50341
    Reviewed Nov. 30, 2014

    "Delicious! Great way to serve cranberries! Makes a huge amount of salad, though. Next time I'll be cutting the recipe in half. Thanks for sharing."

    jojostarbuck68 User ID: 7161651 202914
    Reviewed Nov. 30, 2014

    "Added one small package of jello (any flavor) to help it set up and to add some sweetness. Everyone loved it! Delicious!"

    robandmarianne User ID: 8129325 19301
    Reviewed Nov. 27, 2014

    "I love this salad as written. It made so much, however, that I would like to know if anyone has ever frozen it for later on???"

    Nana009 User ID: 8120743 69341
    Reviewed Nov. 24, 2014

    "I have made this recipe for years always using cool whip. I suppose the heavy cream is probably just as good if not better, but I guess I opt for quick b/c I work full time. I have always found the cool whip to work well. the only time it didn't turn out is one year when I forgot the sugar!!!LOL"

    Janecooks67 User ID: 3461916 84453
    Reviewed Nov. 23, 2014

    "This is a great salad made just as written. Why would anyone want to use chemical laden cool whip in your food. Whipped cream is so much better in this salad. 5stars"

    tnea User ID: 7878350 69166
    Reviewed Nov. 23, 2014

    "I love the canned Ocean Spray Sauce. Has anyone ever substituted this for the frozen cranberries?"

    JerseyWin User ID: 8058950 23143
    Reviewed Nov. 14, 2014

    "I have made this for many years and have always used Cool Whip. I grind the cranberries and add crushed pineapple and sugar and let set overnight."

    KsMeMa User ID: 8095330 31420
    Reviewed Nov. 13, 2014

    "I make a similar recipe and use Cool Whip"

    cee-jay User ID: 1579946 24851
    Reviewed Nov. 12, 2014

    "This looks good but I would like an answer to the question elizabethgoudge asked. Has anyone made it with Cool Whip instead of whipping cream.????"

    elizabethgoudge User ID: 8019573 69165
    Reviewed Nov. 10, 2014

    "Can you sub Cool whip for the whipping cream?"

    czgwis User ID: 8087413 64793
    Reviewed Nov. 9, 2014

    "Added a little cream cheese into the cream when whipping..."

    Beanerp User ID: 5891528 24847
    Reviewed Nov. 6, 2014

    "Delicious and nice and easy! I made this last Thanksgiving and plan to make it this year!"

    susan valley-putt User ID: 2566861 24845
    Reviewed Nov. 3, 2014

    "I haven't made this does sound good, but need to know if "Cool Whip" be used in place of heavy cream? THANKS!"

    sueduds User ID: 8067352 23142
    Reviewed Nov. 2, 2014

    "So Delicious YUM ?"

    Pressurecook User ID: 6662024 24449
    Reviewed Jun. 27, 2014

    "We loved it and eat it like a dessert. My husband asks for it all the time."

    angela32 User ID: 3084463 48296
    Reviewed May. 10, 2014

    "Very good flavor. Not sure mine set long enough, the cranberries even though blended, still were tough."

    Lbrowne68 User ID: 7459346 23138
    Reviewed Nov. 29, 2013

    "Very good everyone said they enjoyed it and look forward to it again. The apple did not discolor."

    preachermom User ID: 4175916 69164
    Reviewed Nov. 29, 2013

    "I mixed everything but the cream together the night before, and the next day when we got to the in-laws house added the freshly whipped cream....refrigerated for a bit and, WOW! What a lovely salad and fabulous way to add Cranberries to Thanksgiving without putting up with the canned kind!"

    [email protected] User ID: 1067999 69163
    Reviewed Nov. 7, 2013

    "i make this every year but leave out the apple because of the discoloring. wonderful"

    Wilmacoats User ID: 6394559 24442
    Reviewed Dec. 28, 2012

    "Very good and easy too make."

    marybrehm User ID: 2047642 69158
    Reviewed Dec. 26, 2011

    "Very nice flavors and easy to make. I didn't chope the cranberries fine enough though and it was a bit crunchy. Will save and make again. Thanks for sharing."

    loopyjane3377 User ID: 4588054 23137
    Reviewed Dec. 19, 2011

    "I have been making this for a couple of years now for Christmas dinner. It really is delicious and very refreshing. I'm not even a big cranberry lover but I sure love this. And so does my family."

    strojhs User ID: 586795 50340
    Reviewed Dec. 30, 2009

    "One of the most delicious recipes I've made. Had innumerable requests from people for it. Can't wait to make it again."

    Paulawenger User ID: 4540949 51843
    Reviewed Dec. 28, 2009

    "Even my teenage (and above) boys who normally don't like cranberries,loved this salad. I didn't add the nuts and I used Cool Whip Lite instead of the whipping cream."

    magjim5 User ID: 4340186 202913
    Reviewed Dec. 12, 2009

    "I used cherry craisins as no fresh cranberries in store and cut the sugar to less than 1/3 cup. Fantastic!! Heavy cream held up over 5 days!"

    moefun User ID: 856912 69751
    Reviewed Nov. 24, 2009

    "I modified this recipe just a bit so it would keep longer in the fridge. I added a can of mandarin oranges and used cool whip instead of the whipping creamwhich won't break down as fast. My family really loved it!"

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