Fruit Soup

So this recipe definitely ranks up there in The List of Recipes I Wish I Could Force You to Make. Not because I’m a big meanie authoritarian or control freak (ahem) but because I want everyone to experience the amazingness, and I have a feeling the idea of fruit soup may be a foreign one to many of you. I get it. Before my sister-in-law, Erin, introduced this to me nearly a decade ago, I don’t think I ever once found myself craving soup filled with fruit. And now here I am. Craving soup filled with fruit. It is so ridiculously yummy – not to mention unique and lovely (I’m warning you now to be prepared for the onslaught of recipe requests you’ll get when you make it; trust me on this one).

Fruit Soup

Served chilled, it’s perfect for brunches, bridal/baby showers, holiday dinners, and, well…you get the picture. It’s also made mostly ahead of time which is perfect for when you’re running around with half your sanity trying to prep for your party or holiday dinner. One experience with fruit soup and I think you’ll follow me willingly on board the fruit soup train. I’ve randomly served it over the years for this and that but this holiday season, I’ve decided to make it an official part of our Christmas Eve dinner. It deserves a permanent place in our traditions, plus I just really want my kids to think I’m the best mom in the universe. Fruit soup will do those kinds of things for you.

Fruit Soup

Although the base of the soup is a sweet mixture of juice and tapioca, don’t be fooled in thinking it mimics thick, creamy tapioca pudding. Instead, the little bits of tapioca help thicken the soup just slightly and enhance the texture while still allowing it to be fully classified as soup (read: you’ll want to serve it in small cups or bowls with a spoon).

Consider this a must-make sometime in your life. And then be prepared to sit down with your planner to figure out all the ways you can continue incorporating it into your food routine. Fruit soup! It’s a thing. Don’t let yourself be the last one to this party.

Fruit Soup

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Holiday Fruit Soup

Yield: Serves 8

Holiday Fruit Soup

I use fresh fruit for the strawberries, raspberries and blueberries but you could definitely try subbing frozen fruit. You could also change up the fruit you'd like to use. My sister-in-law, Erin, loves to add bananas and I believe she uses frozen raspberries which gives the soup a pretty red color.

The base of the soup can be made several days in advance and refrigerated. Simply stir in the fresh fruit before serving. Also, the overall sweetness of the soup will be determined by the peach juice/nectar you use as well as the type of fruit (and how ripe or in-season it is). I've reduced the sugar from the original version but if you feel like it may not be sweet enough, up the sugar to 3/4 cup.

If you want a thinner consistency, cut the tapioca down to just 3 tablespoons and/or add additional peach nectar or orange juice at the end.


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup peach juice or nectar (like Kern's brand)
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons minute or quick-cooking tapioca (not large or small pearl)
  • 1 1/2 cups orange juice
  • 2 cans (11 ounces each) mandarin oranges, undrained
  • 1 quart bottled or canned sliced peaches, drained (cut the peaches into smaller chunks, if needed)
  • 2 cups sliced strawberries
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup blueberries


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, water, peach juice/nectar, and tapioca. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 12 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat and pour into a bowl or other container. Stir in the orange juice and cover the dish. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours until completely chilled or up to several days.
  2. Stir in the mandarin oranges, sliced peaches, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. Chill until ready to serve (no longer than an hour or so once the fresh fruit has been added).

Recipe Source: adapted a little from my sister-in-law, Erin (original version posted on The Sister’s Cafe – the Melanie referred to in that post isn’t me, BTW, it’s my sis-in-law’s sister; I know, confusing!)

36 Responses to Holiday Fruit Soup

  1. Sheila says:

    Goodness, this sounds like the perfect recipe. You can make it ahead of time and it’s chilled. I, more times than not, take fruit salad to covered dishes or as a dessert when invited to dinner. There is always so many “heavy” dishes that a light, refreshing option is generally very well received. And, besides, I would like to change my kids’ sometimes attitudes of mom’s a meanie to my mom’s the best mom in the universe. 🙂 Who knew I could do this through fruit soup? 🙂

  2. Rhonda says:

    so sorry mel, but you lost me at tapioca.

    • Sondra says:

      Rhonda, you don’t even taste the tapioca in this recipe. It’s used as a thickener. Please try it before you write it off! This is a really delicious recipe!

  3. Elise says:

    Yes! My parents make this recipe quite a bit for special occasions. Except we add some orange sherbet to make it a bit more like a dessert. It’s a yummy addition 🙂

  4. Charlotte Moore says:

    Well, this is sure something I have never made nor have I eaten. Looks yummy though. I am not much for blueberries or raspberries, but love peaches, strawberries and bananas.

    • Mel says:

      Hi Charlotte – you could take out the blueberries and raspberries and just add more of the others or choose other fruits you like. It’s super adaptable!

  5. Lauren says:

    We host a Christmas Eve brunch. I am adding this to the list of recipes to try. You have yet to steer me wrong on a recipe so I will try this!

  6. Sylvia says:

    Mel, thanks for soup recipe. I make a similar mixed fruit dessert/soup. Mine calls for Chunk pineapple. Mix a box of instant pudding & pie filling (vanilla or pineapple or your choice of flavor) with pineapple liquid. Fruits of your choice to fill a bowl (I use pineapple, sliced bananas, sliced strawberries, maraschino cherries). Add pudding mix and let set for several hours. Delicious!

  7. Debbie A says:

    Thanks Mel for posting the Fruit Soup recipe. Being Swedish we served up fruit soup at Christmas (served warm), though a bit different the idea is the same. And yes, I hope your readers will give it a try, it is delicious! Try it with dried apricots.

  8. Hilary says:

    This looks delicious!!!! My 8 year old
    will go nuts for this and I have to admit, it’s right up my alley too! 🙂 can’t wait to make this and i will report back to you!! 🙂

  9. Abi says:

    Does this soup make good leftovers? I’m trying to decide how much to make. 🙂 Looks delicious!

    • Mel says:

      Yes, it makes great leftovers! The fresh fruit gets a little softer but we eat the leftovers for days (if there is any!). I prefer adding the fresh fruit right before serving (or to chill just for a few hours) when serving to company but the leftovers are still tasty.

  10. Jennifer says:

    Hi Mel!
    My mom is German and I grew up eating fruit soup and loving it! We serve it warm – in the winter, my mom often had some made and waiting on the stove as an after school snack that really hit the spot and warmed us up! We never made it with chunks of fruit, instead we would puree a bottle of homemade canned peaches (liquid and all) and sometimes add some orange juice concentrate and thicken with tapioca.
    I think we even had it occasionally as dessert after dinner with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

  11. Lauren says:

    Oh, my gosh…I can’t wait to make this!!!!!

  12. Ann says:

    We often start with any kind of canned fruit – home canned peaches & pears, or the large can of tropical fruit from store – then add all kinds of fresh fruit – apples (chopped up), grapes, bananas, pineapple, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, etc, etc
    Served at our school for dessert on the monthly hot dog lunch day. All the fresh fruit helps make it not so liquidy or messy and sure is tasty!

  13. Natalie says:

    If you were making this for dinner what would you serve it with?

  14. Karen says:

    I have made a recipe very similar to this and have served it for brunch. Always a favorite with my family.

  15. Beth says:

    Looks delicious and brings back memories. My mom made Swedish Fruit Soup at Christmastime when I was young, with dried fruit and cinnamon. We ate it either hot or cold, both ways were good. I preferred it hot since we live in MN. 😉 I can’t wait to try this!

  16. Jill says:

    Does this soup freeze well?

  17. Ashlee says:

    My husbands family has been making something like this for years, and I’m still not a 100% convert… But that’s most likely due to my MILs recipe. It’s got some weird fruit combinations. So I’ll give this a try. But I wondered if you have a stockpot recommendation. I have a stainless steel as part of a set, but it’s not big enough for doubling some soups. I looked on your favorites page… Also do you have a smaller skillet you love? I bought the 12″ one you recommended, but sometimes I just need a few eggs, so a 8″ size? Thanks Mel!

  18. Heidi says:

    My two year old and I would eat this up.

  19. Isabelle says:

    It’s so fun to see this because my grandma makes it as the appetizer to Christmas dinner every single year, and has for at least 20 years I believe! Guests are always a little freaked out but I love it! Sadly the grandparents are on a mission in Nauvoo and won’t be here for Christmas this year. I might have to take on the tradition and make it myself!

  20. Jamie says:

    I was wondering what a good substitute for the peach juice/nectar might be? I don’t like peach flavor but this looks like it would be good.

    • Mel says:

      You could try subbing in another flavored juice, I suppose. I’ve never made it without the peach nectar so I don’t know how it would affect flavor and texture but I’m sure it would work fine.

  21. Zena Thomas says:

    I made this soup for my bridge group and it was a huge success. Every one of them wanted a copy of the recipe. I am so glad that I doubled the recipe so I could have another bowl tomorrow. Thank you for sharing this wonderful dish. Zena

  22. Lise says:

    I’m a fruitoholic and decided I’d try this for a change instead of making regular fruit salad. I was very pleased with the result. My family loves it! The first time I made it as stated and while I enjoyed it I found it too sweet. The second time I omitted the sugar and made it with fresh mandarins given the season and will continue to omit the sugar from here on in. Great recipe, thanks for sharing! Haven’t tried it as a topping on oatmeal but looking forward to it!

  23. Hilary says:

    Oh my gracious, this recipe is a keeper!!!! My kids were asking for this for dessert!!! Delicious!!

  24. Jessica says:

    Mel, this recipe was amazing!!! I wanted to make sure I got on and told you so. My kids devoured it and ask for it every night now! I made it Christmas eve to go with our homemade Chimichangas and Mexican rice. It was the perfect side dish. I loved that I could make it ahead of time too. It is now part of our traditional menu. It really was perfect. Thank you for always sharing such great recipes. My husband and four boys thank you! Happy New Year.

  25. Andrea says:

    I have made this soup from my Taste of Home cookbook. My family is a big fan.

  26. Carrie says:

    I made this as a pretty side for our Christmas dinner. It was a hit and all of it was finished. I couldn’t find peach juice or nectar at my local grocery store so used mango nectar and it turned out great!

  27. Andrea L. says:

    Well Mell, surprise surprise, another hit! I’ve been waiting to try this until fresh berries are in season and this has become a fresh, summer dessert hit at our house. I honestly can’t really imagine making it in the winter when fresh berries are not as good and cost a pretty penny. But we’ll be eating our fill in the spring/summer months! I must confess, we did find it to be much too sweet the first time with 1/2 c sugar, and still the second when I cut it to 1/3 c. So, I’ll likely omit the sugar altogether next time. I think that the OJ, peach nectar and canned mandarin juice have plenty of sugar. I’m thinking to freeze any leftovers in popsickle molds. My kiddos will flip!

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