Home Recipes Ambrosia Fruit Salad Recipe

Ambrosia Fruit Salad Recipe

Ambrosia Salad is a sweet and creamy fruit salad made with pineapple, mandarin oranges, cool whip, coconut and mini marshmallows.

It’s perfect for potlucks, holidays, and family get-together’s. Best of all, this recipe can be whipped up in 15 minutes or less.

Creamy Ambrosia Salad with Mandarin, Oranges, Marshmallows and Shredded Coconut
Enter your email below & we'll send it straight to your inbox.

What is Ambrosia Salad?

Ambrosia salad is also known as the food of the gods, not because it gives whoever takes a bite immortal life, but because it tastes unbelievably divine.

Easy to make – Ambrosia salad comes together quickly and easily using just 7 simple ingredients.

Holiday favorite – Serve this sweet fluff salad as a side dish or dessert. It’s a family favorite at Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

Make-Ahead – Prep this salad up to 1 day ahead of time for the best results. The flavors meld together overnight for a sweet and creamy treat.

Delightful and Refreshing – Ambrosia salad is a delightful and refreshing dessert that combines a variety of sweet and tangy flavors.

Ambrosia Fruit Salad Ingredients - Canned Pineapple and Mandarin Oranges, Shredded Coconut, Cool Whip, Sour Cream and Mini-Marshmallows


Here are all the ingredients in the traditional Southern Ambrosia Fruit Salad. But of course, feel free to add in your favorites as well.

  • Canned drained pineapple tidbits. Crushed pineapples work well, too! And fresh pineapples are very much welcome as well.
  • Canned mandarin oranges. Drain the oranges well, otherwise, you’ll end up with a soupy salad.
  • Shredded coconut. Toast the coconut shreds to bring out their natural flavors. Plus, it gives the salad a hint of crunch, complementing the softness of the pineapples and oranges.  
  • Cool Whip. This is what makes this fruit salad irresistibly sweet and creamy. Of course, you’re also welcome to make your own whipped topping. All you need is heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla.
  • Sour cream. If you’re used to eating Ambrosia salad with whipped cream, you’ll be surprised to know that fruit slices taste spectacular with sour cream. If you find it odd pairing a tangy dressing with fruit salad, don’t worry! You don’t really taste the sour cream. It just cuts down the sweetness of the fruit.
  • Mini-marshmallows. These tiny pillowy sweets add an interesting texture to your fruit salad. Plus, it pairs well with sour cream – the two create a wonderful balance of flavors.
Mandarin Oranges, Pineapple Tidbits, Sour Cream, Shredded Coconuts and Mini Marshmallows in a Glass Bowl

How to Make Ambrosia Salad

With this simple ambrosia fruit salad recipe, you’ll have a fool-proof dessert ready to go in less than 15 minutes. Perfect for your next potluck or get-together.

  1. Mix the ingredients. In a large bowl, mix together crushed pineapple, mandarin oranges, Cool Whip, sour cream, marshmallows, and shredded coconut. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
  2. Chill. Refrigerate the salad for at least two hours to give the fruit flavors ample time to blend. If you can, let the salad sit in the fridge overnight: this will allow the marshmallows to soak up any excess liquid.

It’s as simple and easy as that! Who knew something so delightful could be such a breeze to make?

Tips For Ambrosia Salad

  • Fresh is best. Fresh fruits equal a more refreshing salad!
  • Spice it up with nutmeg and cinnamon.
  • Don’t overmix. Toss the ingredients gently so they stay whole and crunchy.
  • Make-Ahead. Make this salad ahead of time for best results. The flavors will meld together and soften the marshmallows.
  • No sour cream? There’s always Greek yogurt! It tastes just as good, and it’s a healthy alternative, to boot.
  • Top with toasted nuts. Add some crunch with pecans, pistachios, cashews, walnuts, or almonds. Toast them first to bring out more of their wonderful flavor.
  • Marshmallows: The MVP of fruit salads. Use colored mini-mallows to get the kids excited about eating fruit.
  • Mix in the maraschino cherries last. If you’re adding cherries, do so only right before serving the salad, unless you’re okay with the cream turning red.
Bowl of Sweet Ambrosia Salad

How Long Does the Salad Last in the Refrigerator?

Ambrosia salad will last for as long as 3 days when stored in the fridge in an air-tight container. So, feel free to make it in advance. 

Do not leave the salad on the counter for over two hours, or the dressing will start to melt. It’s best served chilled, so be sure to place it back in the fridge should there be any leftovers.

Make Ahead Instructions

This classic ambrosia salad is best when you make it ahead of time. Allow the fruit salad to chill in the fridge for several hours or overnight. This allows the flavors to meld together for a delicious sweet and creamy treat.

More Fruit Salad Recipes

Ambrosia Fruit Salad



Prep time


Enter your email below & we'll send it straight to your inbox.



Ambrosia salad features crushed pineapple, mandarin oranges, whipped topping, marshmallows, and shredded coconut. And it’s just as tasty as it sounds!


  • 1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple (drained)

  • 1 (11 oz) can mandarin oranges (drained)

  • 1 (8 oz) container of Cool Whip (thawed)

  • 1 (8 oz) container of sour cream

  • 1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows

  • 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut (or to taste)


  • Mix pineapple, mandarin oranges, Cool Whip, sour cream, marshmallows, and shredded coconut together in a bowl.
  • Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until flavors blend. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Tastes even better when chilled overnight.


  • You can serve this salad immediately, but it tastes best after chilling for a few hours.


  • Calories: 254kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 27.2g
  • Protein: 1.9g
  • Fat: 16.3g
  • Saturated Fat: 12.6g
  • Cholesterol: 12mg
  • Sodium: 55mg
  • Potassium: 158mg
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Sugar: 22.2g
  • Calcium: 44mg
  • Iron: 0mg
Ambrosia Salad (The BEST Fruit Salad)

Did you like the recipe?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 4.8 / 5. Vote count: 873

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


Share on social media:

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

10 thoughts on “Ambrosia Fruit Salad Recipe”

  1. This recipe is the BEST. We didn’t have much growing up, but mom somehow found away for us to enjoy this favorite treat.

  2. The classic ambrosia of my childhood! I sometimes add sliced green grapes as well for some color contrast. Thank you for the recipe.


Leave a Comment