Cranberry Jello Salad is a sweet-tart dessert salad loaded with crushed pineapple, chopped pecans, cranberries and a tangy cream cheese topping! It's perfect to serve for Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas dinner, or any night of the year!
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It's pretty well established that I love a good jello like this cherry pineapple jello salad, triple layer Christmas jello, apricot jello salad, or this lemon pineapple jello with pineapple whipped cream topping. If jello isn't your thing, I'm sorry. Maybe you would like to try this fresh green bean casserole instead!
But it should really be no surprise to long-time readers of this blog that I would be all about a cranberry jello salad with cream cheese topping and chopped pecans sprinkled over the top. I love the flavors and textures going on in this sweet side dish, from the creamy topping to the crunchy filling to the jiggly gelatin!
Make it with fresh homemade cranberry sauce or just use the canned stuff - whichever you prefer.
If you love cranberry desserts, be sure not to miss my cranberry orange bread and fresh cranberry shortbread bars that make a beautiful addition to any cookie plate! Or create a showstopping holiday dessert with my festive cranberry coconut cake that is decorated with sugared cranberries!
I know that this recipe for cranberry salad is really more of a dessert and not a salad, but I'm not going to let that stop me from enjoying a slice of this sweet-tart deliciousness with my meal! If you want a real salad, definitely try this winter pear, pomegranate & swiss salad with poppy seed dressing!
How to Make Cranberry Jello Salad
All it takes to prep a cranberry Jell-O salad is a few minutes to dissolve a couple of packages of gelatin into hot water and then stir in the other ingredients. Give it a couple of hours to set, then mix up the sour cream and cream cheese topping to spread on top before sprinkling with nuts and slicing to serve with your favorite holiday meal or Sunday dinner.
Like many jello dishes, cutting a clean slice isn't always easy, but nobody will care once they take their first bite!
Even More Thanksgiving Recipes to Add to Your Holiday Menu
- Creamy Mashed Potatoes
- Homemade Pumpkin Pie
- Slow Cooker Creamed Corn
- Lion House Dinner Rolls
- Easy Southern Cornbread Dressing
Did you make this recipe?
Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.
Cranberry Jello Salad
- 2 (3-ounce) pkgs. cherry Jell-O (or raspberry or cranberry, if you can find it)
- 1 ½ cups boiling water
- 20 ounces crushed pineapple (do not drain the juice)
- 1 (15-ounce) can whole cranberry sauce (or 2 cups homemade cranberry sauce)
- 1 cup chopped pecans divided
- ¾ cup cranberry or apple juice
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup sour cream
- Add both packets of Jell-O to the boiling water in a large bowl, stirring until completely dissolved.
- Stir in the crushed pineapple (juice and all) and whole cranberry sauce, using the back of the stirring spoon to break up any chunks of cranberry sauce a bit against the side of the bowl.
- Add in ¾ cup of the chopped pecans and the cranberry or apple juice and stir to combine, then carefully pour into a 9x13-inch glass dish or jello mold and refrigerate until set, about 2 hours.
- In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese on high speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Add the powdered sugar and sour cream and mix well until completely combined, then spread over the top of the set Jell-O.
- Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup of chopped pecans, then serve.