Fruit salad with pudding is an easy dessert loaded with fresh fruit swimming in a sweet and silky pudding-based sauce.
If you are looking for an effortless dessert for your next party or potluck, this fruit-filled wonder is absolutely addicting! It can also be easily tweaked and customized to fit your tastes.
Fruit Salad with Pudding
Like a traditional fruit salad, this recipe features an array of fresh fruit tossed together in a sweet sauce. My sauce is a vanilla pudding-based sauce that combines with the fruit juices to make a sweet and silky coating that nicely complements the fruit flavor.
How to make the fruit salad sauce
There is no reason you can't make a packet of instant vanilla pudding and use it to coat the fruit, but this particular sauce is even better when you use the juice from the canned pineapples instead. Simply drain the juice from a 20 ounce can of pineapple chunks and whisk it in with the instant pudding powder along with two tablespoons of maraschino cherry liquid.
Tip: It isn't called for in my recipe, but you could also substitute orange juice for more citrus flavor, in place of the cherry juice or in addition to it.
You will notice the sauce seems gritty at first. This is normal. After it sits for 30 minutes it will become silky smooth.
What fruit goes in fruit salad
My fruit salad with pudding features pineapple, bananas, strawberries, blueberries, and maraschino cherries. However, you can customize it with your favorite fruit. I recommend sticking with pineapple chunks since you need the juice to mix with the puddle, but the remaining fruit can be customized by substituting 4 cups of your favorite fresh fruit.
Additionally, rather than using fresh fruit you can use frozen instead once it is thawed out. The texture won't be as good though. However, the liquid from the thawed fruit can also be added to the sauce for additional flavor.
Fruit salad with pudding
- 5 ounce package instant vanilla pudding mix
- 20 ounce can pineapple chunks
- 1 cup jarred maraschino cherries (drained)
- 2 tablespoons maraschino cherry juice
- 2 bananas (sliced)
- 1 ½ cups sliced strawberries
- 1 cup blueberries
- Drain juice from pineapple can and add juice to a bowl along with pudding powder and 2 tablespoons of juice from the maraschino cherries. Whisk everything together until combined.*
- Add fresh fruit to the bowl and gently stir everything together until the fruit is fully coated with sauce.
- Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes then enjoy.**