Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

This is one of my favorite desserts of all time. Growing up, it was a staple at all of our family picnics. Strawberry pretzel dessert always makes me think of summertime cookouts and family gatherings. I even had this dessert at my bridal shower! This is a wonderful combination of salty and sweet – the crunchy pretzel crust, the sweet cream cheese layer, and the strawberry jell-o all come together to create a mouthwatering treat. This is a great dish for cook-outs and picnics. Plus, it’s usually classified as a jell-o salad rather than a dessert, which just means you can eat more of it. 🙂

Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

Strawberry Pretzel Dessert


2 cups finely crushed pretzels
1/2 cup sugar, divided
2/3 cup butter, melted
1-1/2 pkg. (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
2 Tbsp. milk
1 cup thawed cool whip
2 cups boiling water
1 box (6 oz.) strawberry jell-o
1-1/2 cups cold water
4 cups fresh strawberries, sliced


Pre-heat oven to 350°F. In a medium sized bowl, mix together the pretzel crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar and the melted butter. Press onto the bottom of 13x9-inch pan and bake for 10 min. Cool completely.

In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, remaining sugar and milk until blended. Stir in the cool whip. Spread the mixture over the crust and refrigerate.

In a large bowl, add boiling water to the jell-o mix and stir 2 min, or until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water. Refrigerate 1-1/2 hours or until thickened. Stir the berries into gelatin, then spoon over the cream cheese layer. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.

from Kraft Foods

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  1. I love this stuff. My mom makes it alot for summer gatherings we have. I could eat the entire pan myself.

  2. What a fun little dessert item! I bet that cheesecake-jello combo is to die for!

  3. Do you know what’s funny? I’ve always looked at it (and call it) Pretzal Salad LOL It’s a dessert??

  4. this is a great dessert! my aunt makes it, but whenever i’ve tried, it’s flopped. maybe i’ll give it another shot!

  5. I made this for a family Christmas dinner years ago, and my step-sister named it Reindeer Jello!

  6. I never knew of this treasure until moving to Western PA. My mother-in-law volunteered to bring it to a summer dinner gathering. I was planning my menu and informed my husband that I didn’t need to make a dessert because his mom was bringing Strawberry Pretzel Dessert. Fortunately, he clarified that said dish was not a dessert but in fact a “salad”. Sure enough it was served with the meal and we were prepared with an appropriate after dinner dessert 🙂

  7. A classic bbq dessert that I’ve actually NEVER tried before! and I love pretzels in dessert. Gotta have my first taste sometime this summer. 🙂

  8. How long will this last in the fridge? Say I make it one day in advance, will it still be good?

    • Yes, it should be fine to make it a day ahead. I’m not positive how long it lasts. I know we’ve eaten leftovers for a few days after serving it and it’s been fine. I hope you like it! 🙂

  9. Take out the second amount of water (1 1/2 C.) in this recipe as any other recipes I found on the internet don’t use so much water. My dessert using this total amount of water ended up all watery liquid on top of the cream cheese layer.

    • Thanks for the comment. I’ve made this recipe multiple times with the amount of water listed and it hasn’t been watery. Are you sure you used the larger size (6 oz) box of jell-o? You also want to wait until the jell-o is slightly thickened before stirring in the berries and pouring it on top of the cream cheese. I’m sorry it didn’t turn out well for you. Feel free to email me (whatmegansmaking[at]gmail[dot]com) and I can try to troubleshoot with you!

  10. I made this for memorial day. I added orange zest to the cream cheese, toasted coconut to the pretzels, and used cold orange juice instead of the water in the jello. It was divine!

  11. Hi Megan, my question is can you use frozen strawberries rather than fresh? I know fresh would be better, however being 4th of July, fresh red berries are bound to be sold out… Thanks for your help, and I’m sorry this is so Last minute!

    • Yes, I’m guessing frozen berries would be fine. Just make sure you thaw them and get all the excess water off them. I hope it turns out for you! 🙂

  12. My aunt made this for us last year and I could not believe how fantastic it tasted! I made it for my family a couple of times since and it really is awesome. Those salty pretzels, the cream cheese, the whipped cream and the sweet berries are delicious together!

  13. Hmmm….this sounds like fun to try. I may try using Flipz (chocolate covered pretzels) for the crust! 🙂

  14. Made this last week! We love this dessert!! (Sharing my revision tomorrow, based off yours. Thank you!!) xoxo

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  16. we are not fan of cream cheese is there any other cream that i could use with the whipped cream? like vanilla custard??

  17. Can you please tell me how many servings this makes? Thank you!

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  20. I turned this recipe into a gluten free raspberry torte….delicious! All i had to do was substitute gluten free pretzels for crust & used our own backyard raspberries…Thank you for the idea!

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