Everybody loves this irresistible Raspberry Pretzel Salad recipe with it's salty-sweet combo of crunchy pretzel crust, creamy cool whip and cream cheese filling, and sweet-tart raspberry jello top! It's a summertime and holiday favorite!

A slice of raspberry pretzel salad on a plate.

Raspberry Pretzel Salad Recipe

This is one of those funny "salad" recipes that is really a dessert (let's all just admit that right up front, alright?) but you are allowed to eat it WITH YOUR DINNER because it's called a salad. That, my friends, is called winning at life. 

I recently took this raspberry pretzel salad to a potluck with a bunch of friends and we all stood around extolling its virtues. I mean, what's not to love? I can't decide which layer is my favorite, which is a good thing because every bite has elements of crunchy, salty-sweet pretzel crust, creamy, almost no-bake cheesecake like filling in the middle, and fruity, sweet-tart raspberries in raspberry jello on top.

It's heaven. You might want to make a two pans of it, because you are definitely going to be wanting more the moment that last slice is gone.

We love raspberries and all kinds of raspberry desserts! Some of our other popular raspberry recipes are White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake and Raspberry Macarons.

A slice of raspberry pretzel salad on a plate with a bite taken out of it.

Ingredients for Raspberry Pretzel Salad

  • Pretzels - Sticks, twists, or squares - it's all good since they are going to be crushed up.
  • Salted butter - This dessert is all about the combination of sweet and salty, which is what makes it so good!
  • Granulated sugar - For just the right amount of sweetness in the creamy middle layer.
  • Cream cheese - Use full-fat cream cheese for best results.
  • Cool whip - Or if you want to go the extra mile you can make a batch of homemade whipped cream.
  • Raspberry jello - Use two small packages or one of the larger boxes of raspberry jello powder.
  • Raspberries - Fresh or frozen raspberries will work in this recipe.
An image of the ingredients for raspberry pretzel jello salad.

How do you make Raspberry Pretzel Salad?

  1. Make the Crust:  Give your kids a rolling pin (affiliate link) and a bag of pretzels and let them go to town. Then mix that up with a little butter and melted sugar and press it into a 9x13-inch baking dish and bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees F.
An image of a pretzel crust in a 9x13-inch baking dish for raspberry pretzel salad.
  1. Make the Filling:  Beat cream cheese and sugar together in a bowl using a hand mixer until smooth. Then fold in a carton of Cool Whip and spread it in an evenly layer over the cooled pretzel crust. Be sure to go all the way to the edges of the baking dish so the top layer doesn't seep through. Chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  1. Make the Raspberry Layer:  Heat water to boiling, either in a pan or in a microwave safe dish, then add the jello and stir until dissolved. Add the frozen raspberries, then carefully pour over the chilled cream cheese layer and refrigerate for 2-3 hours until completely set. Slice and serve!

Can you make Raspberry Pretzel Salad ahead of time?

Raspberry pretzel salad is a great, easy recipe to make in advance! I usually make it the night before, which also gives it plenty of time for the jello to completely set.

I don't recommend making this more than 2 days in advance though, because the pretzels will lose their crunch, which is one of the best parts. Making it 24 hours in advance is best.

Pretzel Salad Variations

There are many iterations of this dessert salad recipe, but really any fruit combination will work.

  • Strawberry Pretzel Salad:  Use strawberry jello and sliced strawberries (this might well be the most popular version of this dessert).
  • Pineapple Pretzel Salad:  Use pineapple or lemon jello and 2 cans of crushed pineapple that has been drained well.
  • Blueberry Pretzel Salad:  Use berry blue jello and frozen blueberries.
  • Peach Pretzel Salad:  Use peach jello and fresh or frozen sliced peaches.
  • Mandarin Pretzel Salad:  Use orange jello and mandarin oranges. This is probably my kids' favorite.
  • Mixed Berry Pretzel Salad:  Use cherry jello and frozen mixed berries (usually a combination or raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries).
An image of slices of raspberry pretzel salad on dessert plates.

Why use frozen raspberries instead of fresh?

You can absolutely use fresh fruit in this recipe. The main reason I use frozen raspberries is that they can be added while the jello is still hot and immediately start to cool down the jello, shortening the time to make this by quite a bit. They also are often quite a bit cheaper, and better tasting if it doesn't happen to be raspberry season where you live.

If you want to use fresh raspberries, let the jello cool down for 30 minutes before pouring it over the cream cheese layer.

Tips for the best Raspberry Pretzel Salad

  • Be sure you have enough time.  This raspberry pretzel salad recipe isn't difficult, but it does take a while for each layer to set up in the fridge.
  • Spread the cream cheese layer right up to the side of the pan.  This will help seal the layers so the jello layer doesn't seep down into the pretzel crust when it gets added.
  • Pour the jello onto a spoon when pouring over the cream cheese layer. This will help it disperse a bit so it doesn't drill into the cream cheese layer.
  • You CAN substitute real whipped cream for Cool Whip, but I wouldn't unless using stabilized whipped cream.  I'm typically a huge advocate of homemade whipped cream, but it gets runnier than Cool Whip and makes the pretzel crust go soft much faster.
An image of a raspberry pretzel jello salad on small dessert plates.

More Easy Jello Dessert Recipes

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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.

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Raspberry Pretzel Salad Recipe

5 from 20 votes
Amy Nash
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 25 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings
Everybody loves this irresistible Raspberry Pretzel Salad recipe with it's salty-sweet combo of crunchy pretzel crust, creamy cool whip and cream cheese filling, and sweet-tart raspberry jello top!  It's a summertime and holiday favorite!



  • 2 ½ cups pretzels
  • 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ½ cup salted butter, melted


  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 8 ounces Cool Whip, thawed (or 1 ½ cups heavy cream, whipped)


  • 2 (3-ounce) boxes raspberry jello (or one 6-ounce box)
  • 2 cups water
  • 12 ounces frozen raspberries


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Place pretzels in a large ziploc bag and crush with a rolling pin (affiliate link). Transfer to a bowl and add sugar and melted butter, stirring to combine. Press into the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish with the bottom of a measuring cup. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from oven and cool completely.
  • In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar with an electric hand mixer until smooth. Fold in the Cool Whip with a spatula, then spread over the pretzel crust in an even layer, taking care to press all the way to the edges of the pan to create a seal that will prevent the jello layer from seeping through. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • While the middle layer chills in the fridge, microwave the water for 3-5 minutes, until boiling, then stir jello into the hot water until dissolved. Add frozen raspberries and stir.
  • Once the cream cheese layer has chilled and the jello has cooled, gently pour the raspberry jello mixture over the cream cheese layer. Refrigerate until the jello is completely set, around 2 to 3 hours.
  • Slice into squares and serve.


Calories: 353kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 44mg | Sodium: 421mg | Potassium: 116mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 533IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Show me on Instagram!Mention @HouseOfNashEats or tag #houseofnasheats!

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About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

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Reader questions and reviews

  1. Fantastic recipe! My dessert hating husband LOVES this so much. Making it again for Thanksgiving. Have used frozen blueberries and frozen cherries instead of raspberries and they were both well received. 💕💕💕

    1. I'm so glad you (and your dessert hating husband, lol) love this recipe! I haven't tried it with blueberries and cherries yet but they sound so good! Strawberries are our other go-to!

  2. My FAVORITE dessert! We make this for almost every holiday. Love it!! Can be made with strawberries too, but raspberries are my favorite. 

  3. I made this for Easter brunch. It made a nice,light dessert after so many rich casserole dishes. I used fresh raspberries and it was delicious. I, myself, wasn’t too fond of the pretzels but it seemed to be enjoyed by everyone else.

  4. Hey! I made this for Christmas Eve but I’m confused. The recipe calls for 2 boxes of 6oz jello but I looked at other comparable recipes and hair made it with one 6oz box. Is that an error or is there really 2 jello boxes in the recipe?

    1. I'm sorry! I worded that really poorly. I usually just have the small 3-ounce boxes so I meant to use two of those for a total of 6-ounces. I fixed the recipe card to be more clear. Thanks for pointing that out.

      1. 5 stars
        I used 2 -6oz. Boxes of sugar free and it was good. Don’t need more sugar. Why does the recipe call for 4, 3ounce boxes or 1, 6 ounce? Doesn’t make sense to me. Four three ounce boxes equals 12 ounces not six. Please explain. Is the water amount accurate? 4 cups total?

        1. Hi Nancy! Not sure where you are looking, but it's just 2 of the smaller boxes of Jello or 1 of the bigger boxes (not 4 small boxes vs. 1 big box). And you need the water amount listed in the recipe, not what is written on the box (so 2 cups total, not 4 cups). I haven't tried this recipe with sugar-free Jello so possibly some of the confusion comes from there?

  5. I'm not a fan of Cool Whip . Is there a way to sub fresh whipped cream for the Cool Whip ? Thank you . It sounds yummy!

    1. Yes you can..... but in this recipe I wouldn't substitute fresh whipped cream unless it is stabilized whipped cream. If you use regular whip cream it can get a little runny and make the pretzel layer soggy. To make stabilized whipped cream you need to add unflavored powder gelatin. I would use 1 1/2 cups of whipping cream and 1/2 teaspoon of powder gelatin (make sure you dissolve the mixture before using it). Let me know if you need more help!

  6. Delicious. I doubled the recipe and didn’t need so much cool whip and cream cheese, or there wouldn’t be room for the jello. Decorated the top with berries.

    1. I think I see what happened with your previous comment about 4 small boxes of Jello. If you used the feature to double the recipe by clicking the double recipe button rather than doing the calculations on your own, it would tell you 4 (3-ounce) boxes of Jello but it wouldn't change the note I added about using one (6-ounce) box of Jello instead. I'm sorry if that was confusing.

  7. When I poured the cooled jello over the middle layer some of it floated to the top. Can anyone tell me why? I’m sure it tastes better than it looks!

    1. Try pouring the jello over a spatula or spoon to disperse the liquid so it doesn't drill a hole through the middle layer, which can cause it to float to the top.

  8. 5 stars
    Amy……. If I use fresh raspberries instead of frozen do I need to add any additional water to the jello other than the 2 cups of boiling water??