Have you ever heard of pretzel salad before? If not, it might sound completely confounding…but that’s probably just because it’s a very retro recipe that was popular in the 1960s and that isn’t really a salad at all. That’s right, although it’s most commonly referred to one, this dish is a dessert that doesn’t look anything like a salad – although it does have pretzels in it, so at least that part of the name makes sense. So what’s in this dessert? A deliciously buttery and cinnamon-y pretzel crust, topped with a thick layer of sweetened cream cheese, and, finally, a jello layer speckled with your choice of fruit.
Not only does this dish look amazing – hello, gem-like, fruit jello layer – but it’s also insanely yummy. The pretzel crust still has the perfect touch of saltiness, but the cinnamon adds an unexpected flavor that balances everything out. Add to that a smooth, sweetened cream cheese layer, and the refreshing fruit top layer. We used peach jello with canned peaches (although feel free to use fresh peaches when they’re in season!) and LOVED the final product. Everything balances each other out perfectly and we’re left with a dessert that checks all of our boxes: crunchy, sweet and salty, creamy, fruity…it’s got all we could want!
2 hours to prepare serves 8-10
- 2 cups pretzels, crushed
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 cans peaches, drained, peaches pat dry
- 2 cups water, boiling
- 1 (8 oz.) container frozen whipped topping
- 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 (6 oz.) package peach jello
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Preheat oven to 400ºF, and grease a 13×9-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
- In a medium bowl, combine pretzels, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir in melted butter, and mix thoroughly.
- Transfer pretzel mixture to baking dish, and gently press into an even layer. Bake crust for 8-10 minutes, then set aside to let cool.
- In a large bowl, cream together cream cheese and sugar, then gently fold in whipped topping.
- Spread mixture over cooled crust, then refrigerate 1 hour, or until set.
- In a large bowl, combine jello packet with boiling water and stir thoroughly until completely dissolved. Let cool to room temperature.
- Top the cream cheese layer of the cake with peach slices, then gently pour gelatin over cream cheese layer.
- Refrigerate until set, 2-3 hours. Serve chilled, and enjoy!