This Creamy Fruit Salad Recipe is made with a Homemade Vanilla Fruit Salad Dressing — no pudding mix here!
See the step by step recipe video down in the recipe card.
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Warm weather is on the way and that means it’s fruit salad season!
This Creamy Fruit Salad is made with a homemade vanilla fruit salad dressing that we absolutely love.
It is the perfect sweet treat when you have some fruit you need to use up, or you’re trying to keep things on the healthier side.
It’s a great way to end your summer cookouts or barbecues!
What fruit can you put in fruit salad?
Whatever you want! But here are some tips:
- Skip the bananas: I know, there are some who throw them in but I find the whole salad tastes like banana, and they tend to get soft and mushed pretty quickly.
- Stick to fruit you enjoy! This seems like an obvious one, but if you don’t enjoy the flavor or texture of a certain fruit, even one in the recipe below, just leave it out! Chances are you won’t enjoy it in fruit salad either.
- Aim for an equal amount of each fruit, though I like to go a little heavier on the strawberries here because we love them.
Fruit Salad Tips & Tricks:
- This fruit salad is naturally vegetarian, egg free and gluten free, just be sure to check all of your packages and ensure nothing has been contaminated before serving to those with allergies.
- You can easily make this fruit salad recipe dairy free and vegan by using almond or coconut milk.
- You can boost the protein by adding a little plain Greek yogurt to the dressing before serving.
- Fruit salad generally doesn’t keep and shouldn’t be made in advance, though I’ve included a few tips below to prep the different components ahead and make your life a little easier!
Tips to Prep Ahead:
- If you want to make the recipe and have it keep for several hours, be sure to use strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, grapes and stay away from the very juicy or citrusy fruit like oranges, pineapple and kiwi. They will release a lot of juices in just a few hours, so if you add them, be sure you are serving right away and won’t have a lot left over. Otherwise, stick to berries and grapes to be safe.
- Make the dressing a day or two in advance, store in the fridge and then just combine before serving. The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 1 week if you use the freshest ingredients possible.
- You can also simply have your fruit washed and chopped in the fridge, then you are ready to throw this fruit salad together at a moment’s notice.
More fruit salad recipes!
- Christmas Fruit Salad is delicious any time of year — it’s made with red and green fruit!
- Hawaiian Fruit Salad is full of fun, tropical flavors!
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Creamy Fruit Salad Recipe with Homemade Vanilla Dressing + VIDEO
- 1 ½ cups 1% milk
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (reduce to 3 tablespoons for less sweet dressing)
- 1 ½ tablespoons corn starch
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups fresh strawberries, quartered (260 grams)
- 1 cup fresh blueberries (150 grams)
- 1 cup fresh blackberries (135 grams)
- 1 cup mandarin oranges canned, drained of juice (189 grams or 284ml can)
- 1 cup fresh pineapple chunks (155 grams)
- 1 cup red grapes (173 grams)
- 2 kiwi peeled and sliced
- In a medium skillet, whisk together milk, sugar and corn starch. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 8-10 minutes (it won't be thick like pudding, it is a dressing — but it will thicken considerably).
- Stir in vanilla. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature (you can speed this up by refrigerating for 30 minutes).
- In a large bowl combine strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, oranges, kiwi, pineapple and grapes. Whisk the cooled dressing and pour over fruit. Toss to coat (be gentle — you don't want mush!).
- Serve at room temperature or chill to serve later. If making ahead, only add the dressing 1-2 hours before serving.
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