I am sure at least once in your life that you have had a Strawberry Pretzel Dessert. You know, that one that someone brings to the picnic and is always the first to be devoured.
I can understand why. That salty, crunchy crust is made out of crushed pretzels. Then topped with a sweet layer of cream cheese. And of course, the iconic topping made from a mixture of strawberry Jell-O and sliced fresh strawberries.
Who could resist that combination?
Some people call this recipe Strawberry Salad. I prefer to call it what it is, a dessert. I guess I could make myself feel better by calling it a salad but let’s be real. It’s a dessert.
So this year, instead of having to rely on someone else to make this popular summer time dessert, learn how easy it is to make it yourself.
How to Make Strawberry Pretzel Dessert Squares
Instant strawberry Jell-O
Although preparing the strawberry pretzel dessert requires a lot of ‘wait’ time, this recipe is super easy to make.
First, preheat your oven to 350°F. Then lightly grease a 9 x 13 baking dish and set aside.
Next, place your pretzels in a zip-lock bag and using a rolling-pin to crush them. You can also use a food processor and pulse them into coarse crumbles.
Once the pretzels are crushed place them in a medium size mixing bowl. Then add the sugar and melted butter and mix until well combined.
In the prepared baking dish, push the pretzel crust tightly into the bottom of the pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 9 minutes. Once the time is up, remove the pan from the oven and let it cool completely.
In a large bowl place the box of Jell-O powder in a large bowl and add the boiling water. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved, approximately 2 minutes.
Once the Jell-o powder is dissolved, stir in the cold water. Mix the fresh, sliced strawberries into the Jell-O liquid.
You can certainly slice the strawberries by hand. However, my Pampered Chef Egg Slicer makes quick work of slicing the strawberries in a fraction of the time.
Once the strawberries are submerged in the Jello-O mixture place the bowl in the refrigerator for 1 ½ hours to let it partially set.
Cream Cheese Filling
While the Jell-O mixture is chilling, make the cream cheese filling for your strawberry pretzel dessert. However, before you begin mixing the ingredients, be sure that your cream cheese is at room temperature. This will prevent any clumps from forming and it will be easier to mix with the sugar.
Use the paddle attachment of a stand mixer, or a hand mixer to beat the cream cheese and sugar together until creamy. This will take 4-5 minutes to become light and fluffy.
Then fold the cool whip into the cream cheese mixture. Once the mixture is evenly incorporated spread the mixture over the top of the pretzel crust.
Be sure that the cream cheese mixture is spread completely to the edges so that it prevents the Jell-O from seeping down to the pretzel crust.
When the Jell-O and strawberry mixture has set up to an egg-white consistency it is time to top your strawberry pretzel dessert.
This consistency will allow you to be able to spread the mixture on top of the cream cheese before it completely sets.
Carefully pour the Jell-O mixture over the cream cheese and sugar layer and refrigerate until it completely sets. This will take approximately 3 hours.
When you are ready to serve, remove it from the refrigerator and cut into squares and serve. Keep leftovers in refrigerator.
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- 2 1/2 cups pretzels, crushed
- 3 Tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 cup butter, melted
- 1 box instant strawberry Jello, 6 ounces
- 2 cups boiling water
- 1 1/2 cups cold water
- 1 pound fresh strawberries, sliced
- 1 8 ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 container of cool whip, 8 ounces
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a mixing bowl, combine crushed pretzels, sugar, and melted butter.
- Lightly grease a 9x13 pan and push the pretzel crust tightly into the bottom of the pan.
- Bake for 9 minutes and remove from oven and let cool completely.
- Place the Jello powder in a large bowl and add the boiling water. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved (approximately 2 minutes). Stir in the cold water.
- Mix the fresh strawberries into the Jello liquid. Place it in the refrigerator for 1 ½ hours to let it partially set.
- Beat the cream cheese and sugar together until creamy. Fold in the cool whip.
- Spread the mixture over the top of the pretzel crust completely to the edges so the Jello cannot reach the pretzel crust layer.
- Pour the Jello mixture over the cream cheese and sugar layer and refrigerate until Jello has completely set (approximately 3 hours).
- Cut into squares and serve. Keep leftovers in refrigerator.
Recipe provided by Make Your Meals
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 351Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 300mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 1gSugar: 25gProtein: 3g
Nutritional Information is to be used as a general guideline only . Nutritional calculations will vary from the types and brands of the products used.