Raspberry Ribbon Salad

Last holiday season, one of the most popular recipes I posted was this Cranberry Fluff Salad. Have you made it? It’s a little splurge-worthy what with the cream and marshmallows but man, it’s delicious and has quickly become a family favorite for the holidays (perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas).

For those of you who love a good sweet salad (does that famed raspberry jello pretzel salad dessert thing come to mind for anyone else?), I have another doozie for you today. My sweet friend, Bonnie, introduced us to this delight in Minnesota and it didn’t take very many little snitches for our family to fall in love.

Raspberry Ribbon Salad

I haven’t used jello in years (again, just like the cake mix discussion, nothing against it, we just don’t keep it on hand) but I make the exception for this creamy concoction. Bonnie’s family has been making it for years and years (I believe it’s her mother’s recipe) and I have a strong suspicion that family ties and friendships are forged and strengthened over sweet jello salads.

In this case, the tangy and sweet raspberry mixture compliments the luscious creamy layers beautifully, and like a good jello salad, even though it looks a bit messy on the plate, it tastes like heaven.

Raspberry Ribbon Salad

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Raspberry Ribbon Salad

Yield: Serves 5-6

Raspberry Ribbon Salad

It's really important to let the raspberry mixture start to set up before layering or else the layers will blend together instead of being separate.

The layers are on the thin side (and you won't need an overly large bowl or dish) - if you want thicker layers, double the recipe.


  • 1 1/4 cups boiling water
  • 1 (3-ounce) package red raspberry gelatin
  • 10 ounces frozen raspberries
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cold heavy whipping cream


  1. In a medium bowl, pour the boiling water over the raspberry jello and stir with a spoon until dissolved. Add frozen raspberries and lemon juice and mix well. Refrigerate the mixture until it starts to thicken (1-2 hours) - you don't want it completely set up, just thicken like spreadable pudding. If you want to speed up this process, stir the jello mixture over a bowl of ice water to cool faster.
  2. In a blender or in a bowl with a handheld or stand mixer, whip the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and sour cream until smooth. Add the vanilla and whipping cream and whip until thick and creamy.
  3. In a glass bowl or dish, layer the raspberry jello mixture and cream, two or three layers of each, depending on the size of the dish. I use an 8-inch bowl and the three layers of each are rather thin, it doesn't have to be perfect.
  4. Cover and chill the salad for 2-3 hours until set.

Recipe Source: adapted just slightly from my dear friend, Bonnie E.

25 Responses to Raspberry Ribbon Salad

  1. Linda Gifford says:

    Can I use fresh raspberries?

  2. Linda Gifford says:

    Can I use fresh raspberrues

  3. Noelle says:

    I tripled this recipe for Thanksgiving. Jello mixture was great but the cream mixture was way too runny so I added 2 boxes of instant vanilla pudding, then it was perfect! So delicious! Thank you!

  4. Holly says:

    Just added this to our Thanksgiving menu (swapped out another favorite). My friend’s 16 year old son is in charge of jello so he and I are going to team up on this since it’s a new recipe for us. We might have to quadruple it for this group!

  5. LaurieB says:

    Are the frozen raspberries in this recipe the kind with syrup or not?

  6. Kami says:

    Mine didn’t turn out as pretty (not surprised). But I also thought it was mostly cream and the raspberries got lost in there. I’d probably half the cream mixture when I make it again.

  7. Katie says:

    This was Sooo delicious! Had it Christmas Eve…New favorite!

  8. Adrienne says:

    Do you think I could double this? If so, what sized dish would you recommend using? It just doesn’t look like enough for my family of 8 with just one serving!

    • Mel says:

      Yes, I think you’d definitely want to double for your family of eight. Just a medium size bowl or 8X8-inch pan should do the trick. The layers are pretty thin.

  9. Rachel says:

    Quick question! Does this call for 1 (3 ounce) package of cream cheese or an 8 ounce package?

    Love your recipes! You’re family around here!

  10. Paige says:

    Yum! My husband loves all things jello… must be his Idaho roots?! I’ll have to make this for him soon!


  11. Ellie says:

    I have a question – as a Brit – are these “salads” things you eat with a main meal or is it a dessert? Might sound obvious but for us this is a bit like a “trifle” and it would be a dessert (or, as we call it, a “pudding”!)

    • Mel says:

      That’s a great question, Ellie. I would say for the most part (can’t speak for everyone), here in the US we eat these as part of the meal as a side dish. Having said that, every single time something like this is served I think “this would be way more appropriate for dessert.” 🙂

  12. There’s nothing quite like a good jello salad for holiday meals! This looks delish!

  13. Diane says:

    Man, Mel, you are killing me with these wonderful holiday recipes! I have NO kitchen! We are remodeling and it is taking forever….:) and you’ve made me spend money…i.e. spoons from Harmons, “stuff” from Amazon…AND Perfectly Posh items…from none other than your famous Aunt Marilyn! 🙂 she took care of me! Merry Holidays!

  14. Melissa says:

    I am not a fan of raspberry, could I use strawberry jello and frozen strawberries?

  15. Debbie K says:

    Ooooh, this sounds yummy and just right for my family of raspberry lovers! Will it hold together to be made a day ahead of time? Your blog is one of my favorites and I can always depend upon you for a good recipe. And thank you for doing the video tips…I find them to be really helpful.

    • Mel says:

      The most I’ve made this ahead of time is about 4-5 hours so you’d have to experiment. Sometimes whipped cream can get a bit liquidy if left in the refrigerator too long – that would be the only thing I’d worry about with this recipe.

  16. Katie says:

    Oh my! This may have to replace my layered red and green jello salad this year for Christmas Eve. The combination of jello and cream is one of my favorites!! Can’t wait to try!

  17. Helen says:

    Thanks for this!! It looks divine!! And I’m glad to know that you make occasional exceptions for a creamy fruity jello salad… This looks like it’s a must try

  18. Sheila says:

    And it seems like an easier, quicker recipe than the pretzel salad one not having to mess with the bottom pretzel layer. Our family enjoys the adventure of going wild black raspberry picking during the summer so I have bags of black raspberries in the freezer. I’ll have to investigate to see if there is black raspberry flavored jello. Thank you Bonnie E. and Mel for sharing.

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