This strawberry pretzel salad is always a hit. The layered salad makes a nice fruit salad to serve with a holiday dinner. Or serve it as a dessert with any meal. Take this strawberry pretzel salad to a potluck supper or party.
The original recipe called for a 10-ounce box of sweetened strawberries with juice, but a 15-ounce tub would work fine. For the recipe pictured, I used frozen sliced strawberries and added a small amount of water to make up for the syrup. See the tips and variations below the recipe for how to prepare it with fresh strawberries and some other alternatives.
- 2 cups crushed pretzels, about 6 ounces of pretzels*
- 3/4 cup melted butter
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 package (6 oz) strawberry gelatin
- 2 cups boiling water
- 20 to 24 ounces sliced frozen strawberries (do not thaw) or a 15-ounce tub of frozen strawberries in syrup
- 1/2 cup very cold water (if using sliced frozen strawberries)
- 1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
- 2 cups whipped cream or whipped topping
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- Heat the oven to 400 F.
- In a bowl, combine the crushed pretzels, melted butter, and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Press into a 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Let the crust cool completely.
- In a bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese with1 cup sugar. Fold in the whipped topping. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cooled pretzel layer. Cover and refrigerate for 15 to 20 minutes
- In a large bowl, combine the strawberry gelatin with the boiling water; stir until dissolved. Add the frozen sliced strawberries and cold water. Mix and refrigerate for a few minutes to gel just slightly, or until it is about the consistency of egg white.
- Spoon the cold gelatin and strawberry mixture over the chilled cream cheese mixture.
- Cover the pan with plastic wrap and chill thoroughly. Garnish with fresh strawberries or more whipped cream, if desired.
*Crush the pretzels with a rolling pin or in a food processor.
Serves 10 to 12.
Tips and Variations
- Thaw the frozen sliced strawberries, if desired, and sprinkle with about 1/3 cup of sugar. Mix and let stand for 20 to 30 minutes. Add them to the gelatin and omit the cold water. Chill until slightly thickened, about the consistency of an egg white. Spoon the gelatin mixture over the chilled cream cheese layer.
- Replace the whipped topping with sweetened freshly whipped cream.
- Use one to two 10 to 15-ounce containers of sweetened strawberries in syrup (thawed) and omit the water. Refrigerate until the gelatin is the consistency of egg white. Spoon over the chilled cream cheese layer.
- To use fresh strawberries, clean about 1 1/2 to 2 pints of strawberries; hull, slice, and put them in a bowl. Sprinkle the sliced strawberries with about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of granulated sugar. Stir and let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Add the strawberries and their juices to the gelatin mixture and omit the 1/2 cup of cold water. Chill until slightly thickened, about the consistency of egg white. Spoon the gelatin mixture over the chilled cream cheese layer.
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