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This recipe for Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad was originally posted in June, 2013. The photos were updated in October, 2017.

I’m always looking for new ideas for quick and easy side dishes, and this one is delicious! The Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad pairs perfectly with ham or other meat on a dinner table, holiday brunch spread, or even as a light dessert.

A side shot of orange pineapple fluff in a blue bowl with a silver spoon

Have you ever tried a classic Watergate Salad? It’s a sweet dish that’s a pale shade of green — thanks to the pistachio pudding mix that’s combined with fruit, Cool Whip, and other tasty ingredients.

The original Watergate Salad inspired this orange-pineapple twist, largely because I was looking for an alternative to that strong pistachio flavor. My kids just don’t always love that taste, so this mild vanilla-based version has been a HUGE hit!

A close up of orange pineapple fluff in a large blue bowl with a silver spoon

As someone who loves a sweet-and-savory combination, I think this fluff salad pairs perfectly with roasted turkey or carved ham for dinner. It reminds me of the ambrosia salad that I grew up with!

An overhead shot of orange pineapple fluff in a bowl sitting on a blue tablecloth

Best of all, it’s easy and versatile! I consider a bowl of this Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad the perfect potluck food — because everyone loves it and it goes with just about anything! Plus, you can prepare this fluff salad in advance and just keep it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to eat. It makes parties, holidays, or quick weeknight dinners so darn easy!

A close up side shot of orange pineapple fluff in a blue bowl topped with marshmallows

I served this on our Easter table this year because the sweet salad was a perfect contrast to the salty Kite’s Country Ham that we enjoyed with biscuits. The salad is a special and fun way for the kids to eat their fruit, too! And if a sweet fruit salad isn’t your “thing” for dinner, then it’s also a great brunch option or a light and refreshing dessert. See what I mean? It’s versatile and appropriate for just about any occasion!

Ways To Serve This Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad;

  • Serve with roast ham or other roast meats
  • Serve as part of a holiday brunch spread
  • Serve as a light dessert or snack

If you’ve tried this Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad or any other recipe on The Seasoned Mom then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! You can also follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest to see what I’m getting up to.

Orange Pineapple Fluff Salad

4.60 from 10 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 193 kcal
This orange pineapple fluff salad pairs perfectly with ham or any other meats on the dinner table, a holiday brunch spread or even as a light dessert!


  • 1 11 oz can mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1 8 oz can crushed pineapple in juice, NOT drained
  • 1 pkg. 3.4 oz vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 cup mini-marshmallows
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 ½ cups frozen whipped topping such as Cool Whip, thawed


  • Stir together first 5 ingredients in large bowl until well blended.
  • Gently fold in whipped topping. Refrigerate 1 hour.


If you want to lighten this up a bit, you can use sugar-free instant pudding mix and a lighter Cool Whip such as Cool Whip Free.


Serving: 1/8 of the recipeCalories: 193kcalCarbohydrates: 30gProtein: 1.3gFat: 7.6gSaturated Fat: 2.7gSodium: 182mgFiber: 1.3gSugar: 23g
Keyword: easy sweet sides, sweet side dish
Course: Sides
Cuisine: American
Author: The Seasoned Mom

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Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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  1. Kristina & Millie says:

    4 stars
    love the sound of this salad, I will be trying this for our Easter lunch 🙂

    1. Teru says:

      5 stars
      Made this salad. I doubled the fruit because I used a large box of sugar free pudding. Everyone loved it. I’m making it again for our Super Bowl party. Thanks for the great recipe

      1. Blair says:

        Excellent! I’m so glad that you enjoyed it, Teru. Thanks for your note!

      2. Michelle says:

        Do you make the pudding up or just use just the packet?

        1. Blair Lonergan says:

          Hi, Michelle! You do not prepare the pudding. Just stir the dry mix right in with the rest of the ingredients. It will combine with the pineapple juice to creat a thick vanilla “sauce,” adding great flavor to the salad without making it too watery. Hope you enjoy!!!

    2. S Lee says:

      5 stars
      I’ve been making this salad for years! It’s a go-to for potlucks at church, and it always gets eaten. I’m so thankful to have saved it all those years ago.

      1. Blair Lonergan says:

        That’s awesome! Thank you so much for letting me know. 🙂

  2. Marissa @ Life is Fantasmic says:

    YUM!!! Pinned! I’d love for you to share this at my Saturday Dishes Link Party this weekend! It’s a themed link up & this week’s theme is Memorial Day & Grilling! This would make a great Memorial Day side dish! Feel free to share other posts that fit the theme as well if you have them! (: https://lifeisfantasmic.blogspot.com/

    1. Blair says:

      Thanks, Marissa! And thanks for the invitation!

  3. Chris says:

    2 stars
    This wasn’t a very tasty salad. A little blah…so I added 1/2 C. Coconut, doubled the Mandarin Oranges, used Pineapple Tidbits instead of Crushed Pinapple and also 2 Tablespoons of Orange Jello right out of the box (not mixed with water)!!!

    1. Blair says:

      Thanks for sharing, Chris!

  4. Nik says:

    Is it okay to make this a few days in advance?

    1. Blair says:

      Hi, Nik! I wouldn’t recommend making it too far in advance. I’d say AT MOST you could make it the day before. Ideally, make it a couple of hours in advance. 🙂

  5. Barbara L says:

    It was excellent, but I also left out the pecans and added coconut. That was excellent too.

    1. Blair says:

      Great! So glad that you enjoyed it, Barbara!

  6. Patti says:

    Do you make the pudding or just use the dry mix?

    1. Blair says:

      Hi, Patti! You do NOT prepare the actual pudding. You just use the dry mix. 🙂

  7. Marla Harker says:

    5 stars
    Excellent! I added a handful of shredded coconut. My new favorite fluff salad.

    1. Blair says:

      Sounds perfect, Marla! So glad that you enjoyed it as much as we do!

  8. Cindy says:

    Your recipe was not the same as pictured. You don’t have the mandarin oranges . I have a a 1.5 oz of vanilla instant pudding. You have listed a 3.40z on picture recipe. So what is correct?


    1. Blair says:

      Hi, Cindy! I’m not sure that I understand your question. The mandarin oranges are pictured and they’re listed as the first ingredient in the recipe.

      My recipe calls for a 3.4 ounce box of the vanilla pudding, so that’s what you need. I’m not sure why you have a 1.5 ounce box — is your box a sugar-free version or some other brand or variety?

      1. Kismet says:

        I wonder if she is using pudding cups. Could explain the size.

        1. Blair says:

          Good point — I didn’t even think about that. I’m not sure what the pudding cups weigh, but maybe that’s the difference. 🙂

      2. Adaileas says:

        There are a lot of different brands of instant pudding and they come in numerous weights. It certainly does not mean that they have a sugar free kind. They could easily have just used two boxes if they had them seeing as the .4oz that would be missing would not even really be noticed all that much. Your reply was a bit rude to be honest. They were asking pretty simple questions. I personally do not see any mandarin oranges in your photos either.

        1. Adaileas says:

          I mean asking why you are not sure they have a 1.5oz box is just silly. They have it because they purchased it from somewhere. There was no reason to say that. All you had to say was that their box would not be enough and that they either would need a 3.4oz box or to use two of them…

    2. Phillip Jones says:

      I looked at the original picture and see both the mandarin orange pineapple . They are difficult to distinguish because the color is so close. I do agree that tid bits would be better than crushed. As for tone of the original reply i am not getting involved in commenting one way or another. I suspect he suffers from th same affliction i and my deceased Dad had. Depending on the spoken or written comment people don’t know know whether lcomment is jokking or in sultin

  9. Jude says:

    To add flavor, I added a package of black cherry jello and also the vanilla pudding.

    1. Blair says:

      Sounds delicious, Jude! Thank you for letting us know. 🙂

  10. Tabitha says:

    Can you use jello mix instead of pudding?I’m wanting more of an orange flavor?

    1. Blair says:

      That’s a good question, Tabitha! I’ve never tried it, and I worry that the Jell-O mix might not thicken the salad in the same way that the pudding sets up. For that orange flavor, I would still use the pudding mix, but add plenty of orange zest (freshly grated orange peel) to the salad. You’ll get all of the orange flavor without watering down the mixture with orange juice. Just make sure that you don’t grate any of the white pith (you only want that thin outer layer of orange peel) because the white pith has a bitter taste that will NOT be good in your salad. 🙂

  11. Patricia says:

    5 stars
    My family really loved this fluff, and I love that it’s fast and taste awesome, I don’t usually eat things like this but I did eat this because of the amount of fruit in it and I was very surprised it was really awesome.
    Thank for sharing with us .

    1. Blair says:

      Wonderful! I’m so glad that it was a hit, Patricia! 🙂

  12. T.W. says:

    5 stars
    I haven’t even put it in the fridge to chill and I already know it’s going to be awesome, just from licking the spatula, that I used to fold in the whipped topping. I can’t wait until it’s ready to eat! Thanks for sharing your recipe!

    1. Blair says:

      That’s great! You’ll love the cake. Thanks for taking the time to leave a note! 🙂

  13. Tess says:

    5 stars
    I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a hit! I doubled the recipe so we would have plenty, plus left overs of course! Yum Yum! 🙂 Thanks…. 🙂

    1. Blair says:

      Wonderful! I’m so glad that y’all enjoyed it, Tess. Thanks for letting me know!

  14. Diane L Van Lanen says:

    Are you for real? You sound rude

  15. Diane says:

    Are you for real? You sound rude

  16. Barb says:

    5 stars
    I have made this a lot and always a hit with everyone! Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Blair says:

      Wonderful! Thanks, Barb!

  17. Gail M Vohs says:

    5 stars
    I made it for Easter and everyone loved it!!

    1. Blair Lonergan says:

      Wonderful! Thanks, Gail. Happy Easter!