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How to Make Fruit Salad

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A plate of fresh fruit salad.

Temperatures rise in the summer, but the best remedy to a hot day is a cool treat. Fruit salad provides a delicious way to stay cool and healthy. You’ll find that this recipe contains a variety of fresh ingredients that help you beat the heat. From pineapple and oranges to berries and nuts, each ingredient serves a purpose.

Best of all, you can put this fruit salad together in just 20 minutes. Combining the ingredients is a breeze, and the rest of your job is easy. Simply let the ingredients chill in the refrigerator for a couple of hours. The end result? A delicious treat that provides about eight servings.

 

Enjoy Light Eats in the Summer

When the weather heats up, your ideal snack probably isn’t something as hot and heavy as the air outside. You want something refreshing, something chilled to provide your system with some comfort. Fortunately, this fruit salad recipe is sure to hit the spot. No matter your craving for something sweet, this fruit salad is a pleaser. It travels well for a potluck or family picnic, but it’s also a fabulous snack to have on hand.

 

The History of Fruit Salad

Fruit salad has a rich history that dates back to the ancient Greeks. It is thought that the ancient Greeks and Romans both mixed various fruits as part of a meal. Americans took hold of the idea in the 1800s and ran with it.

The 1900s transformed fruit salad, bringing new fruits and concepts into the mix. For some, fruit salad contained pineapple rings, bananas, and maraschino cherries. This was a very tasty, sweet snack that was often surrounded by whipped cream. It was called a candle salad. In the mid-1900s, canned fruit and gelatine combinations became the norm. Sometimes the gelatin was packed into a circular mold packed with fruits.

Today, fruit salad can come canned, but the truth is that nothing beats fresh fruit. Fresh fruit best brings out the taste and texture of the fruit. Fresh fruit salad is certainly the best iteration of all these concoctions.

Of course, you can make any substitutions you wish if you prefer canned fruit. Some people certainly prefer the taste of canned pineapple, for instance. It can provide a more consistent flavor. The opposite also applies. Feel free to use fresh fruit when a recipe calls for canned fruit as well. This is ideal for those regions that have amazing fresh fruits that are in season.

A plate of fresh fruit salad.

Fruit Salad

Prep Time 20 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Servings 8

Ingredients
  

  • 40 ounces pineapple if using fresh fruit, you also need two cups of pineapple juice
  • 30 ounces mandarin oranges
  • boxed vanilla pudding 3 ounces
  • 1 cup berries strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or a mix
  • 1/4 cup nuts chopped
  • 1 cup vanilla yogurt

Instructions
 

  • Begin with the Oranges & Pineapple: If you are using canned mandarin oranges, open the can and drain all the juices into the sink. Place the canned or fresh oranges, in slices, in a large bowl. Next, add the pineapple to the bowl. If you are using canned pineapple, drain the juice but reserve it for the sauce later on. If the reserved juice does not equate to two cups, add water until you have two cups. Mix the two fruits well.
  • Add Berries & Nuts: Next, you will add the berries you've chosen for your project. If you are using a larger berry, like strawberries, you need to slice them into smaller pieces. Then, you will add the nuts of your choice to the bowl. Don't mix yet.
  • Heat the Juice: The first step for making the sauce is to put the pineapple juice in a mid-size pot. Turn your heat to medium and allow the juice to warm. Whisk the mixture every few minutes as the juice warms. When the juice is continuing to boil, add the box of pudding mix. Whisk the mixture until you see that the powder is completely disappearing into the liquid and it is becoming thicker. Remove the concoction from the heat and turn off the range. Let the mixture cool for a while. When the mixture is cool, whisk in your yogurt. Again, you will see the mixture begin to thicken.
  • Drizzle the Sauce Over the Fruit: The final step for your fruit salad is to mix the sauce with your fruit salad. Before you do this step, make sure that the sauce is totally cool. You don't want to drizzle hot sauce on the fruit. Be gentle with your drizzle.
  • Next, use a wooden spoon to combine the fruit: Be gentle to avoid squishing the fruit. You want each piece of fruit to have sauce, but you don't want to spoil your fruit. Cover the bowl with foil or plastic and place it in the refrigerator. In a few hours, the salad will be ready to serve.

Fruit Salad Recipe with Photos

Ingredients

The complete set of ingredients to be used.

This is a simple fruit salad recipe that calls for just a few ingredients. While simple, the ingredients come together to create a fantastically delightful summer dessert or snack. Here’s what you need:

  • 40 ounces pineapple (if using fresh fruit, you also need two cups of pineapple juice)
  • 30 ounces mandarin oranges
  • boxed vanilla pudding (3 ounces)
  • 1 cup berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or a mix)
  • 1/4 cup nuts, chopped
  • 1 cup vanilla yogurt

 

Begin With the Oranges & Pineapple

The fruit slices are placed in a large bowl.

If you are using canned mandarin oranges, open the can and drain all the juices into the sink. Place the canned or fresh oranges, in slices, in a large bowl.

 

The pineapple juice from the can reserved in a container.

Next, add the pineapple to the bowl. If you are using canned pineapple, drain the juice but reserve it for the sauce later on. If the reserved juice does not equate to two cups, add water until you have two cups.

Mix the two fruits well.

 

Add Berries & Nuts

Next, you will add the berries you’ve chosen for your project. If you are using a larger berry, like strawberries, you need to slice them into smaller pieces. Then, you will add the nuts of your choice to the bowl. Don’t mix yet.

 

Heat the Juice

Dressing is made with the pineapple juice.

The first step for making the sauce is to put the pineapple juice in a mid-size pot. Turn your heat to medium and allow the juice to warm. Whisk the mixture every few minutes as the juice warms.

When the juice is continuing to boil, add the box of pudding mix. Whisk the mixture until you see that the powder is completely disappearing into the liquid and it is becoming thicker. Remove the concoction from the heat and turn off the range. Let the mixture cool for a while. When the mixture is cool, whisk in your yogurt. Again, you will see the mixture begin to thicken.

 

Drizzle the Sauce Over the Fruit

The sauce is drizzled over the sliced fruits.

The final step for your fruit salad is to mix the sauce with your fruit salad. Before you do this step, make sure that the sauce is totally cool. You don’t want to drizzle hot sauce on the fruit. Be gentle with your drizzle.

Next, use a wooden spoon to combine the fruit. Be gentle to avoid squishing the fruit. You want each piece of fruit to have sauce, but you don’t want to spoil your fruit. Cover the bowl with foil or plastic and place it in the refrigerator. In a few hours, the salad will be ready to serve.

 

Tips to Personalize Your Fruit Salad

Are you still looking for new ways to customize your fruit salad and make it your own? These wonderful tips will help you customize fruit salad if you crave something a little bit different:

  • Use fruits that are in season for your region. If you live in the strawberry capital of the world, use those berries. If you love your local oranges or have your own orange tree, use them.
  • There are other fruits you might consider using too. You might prefer to toss in or substitute apples, grapes, peaches, nectarines, mango, papaya, cantaloupe, or jicama. Some people like to add some bananas to their plates but keep in mind that bananas will brown if you try to refrigerate them.
  • Add a dash of lemon juice if you like your fruit salad to be a little more tart.
  • Keep the fruit sizes consistent. Each piece of fruit should be about the same size to maintain a solid consistency and texture.

 

FAQs

How do I make a fruit salad in a watermelon?

Scoop out the flesh of a whole watermelon cut in half. Dice your favorite fruits like pineapple, berries, and kiwi, and mix them with the diced watermelon. Place the fruit mixture back into the watermelon halves, and serve!

 

What is an Italian fruit salad?

An Italian fruit salad, or “Macedonia,” is a mix of fresh fruits with the secret ingredient being a syrup made of lemon juice, sugar, and a splash of liqueur-like Limoncello. Popular fruits include peaches, cherries, and plums. Just combine and enjoy!

 

What are some tips to stop fruits from browning in a fruit salad?

To prevent fruits like apples and bananas from browning, add a touch of citrus juice like lemon or pineapple juice to your fruit salad. The acidity slows down the browning process and keeps your fruits looking fresh!

 

Which fruits should not be combined in a fruit salad?

Avoid combining fruits with varying levels of ripeness, as this may affect the overall texture of your fruit salad. It’s best to avoid mixing melons with citrus fruits, as their flavors may clash.

 

How do I make a rainbow fruit salad that is visually stunning?

A rainbow fruit salad can be created by arranging brightly colored fruits in the order of the rainbow. Start with red strawberries, follow with orange segments, then yellow pineapple, green kiwi, blue blueberries, and finish with purple grapes.

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Author

  • Laurie Graves

    Laurie is a 50-something wife and boy mom, who loves to share easy recipes, DIY home ideas, and food hacks. She truly believes that with a little inspiration, anyone can make their home and meals feel special.

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