The Best Homemade Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert

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This take on the classic raspberry pretzel jello dessert uses plain gelatin, berry juice, and real whipped cream instead of boxed mix. This dessert is easy, fruity, and perfect for your next potluck! 

[wprm-recipe-jump] [wprm-recipe-print]Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert Close-Up

Can we talk for a minute about what, exactly, constitutes a salad!?

I grew up in Utah, and I grew up eating cookie monster salad, snickers and apple salad, marshmallow salad, and this pretty amazing raspberry jello pretzel salad.

I love all of these things, but, in my opinion, they do NOT a salad make.

It is my completely unqualified opinion that salads must contain:

  • At least 1 vegetable
  • Cannot contain candy bars, sorry.

Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert

Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert Horizontal

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Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about this {affectionately renamed} raspberry pretzel jello dessert for a minute, okay!?

Just because I don’t agree that jello should be served as a side so there is an excuse to also make pie at Thanksgiving, doesn’t mean I can’t get behind this dish.  This is holiday/potluck food at our house (probably because it makes LOTS) and I was always excited to see it glittering up there on the buffet table ready for me to gulp up a giant spoonful.

It sounds a bit strange and disjointed at first, but let me assure you that raspberries+gelatin+pretzels+creamy cheesecake is a great combination.  I especially LOVE the unexpected pretzel crust.

The recipe is pretty basic, but you’ll probably want a hand mixer, and a food processor.  If you’re hand mixer is broken (like mine) you can whip the cream cheese layer by using the trick my daddy taught me aka sticking the whisk in a handheld drill.  Your hand will get tired, but you will look super tough doing it.  Also, a little known tip, an immersion blender is GREAT for whipping cream. You can also crush pretzels with a rolling pin in a plastic bag or cup, but it’s more work, which I avoid. So it’s a food processor FTW for me.

Homemade “Jello”

So before ya’ll get up in my grill for this NOT from scratch “Jello” Recipe, you should know that the Jello layer is made with plain Gelatin and fruit juice. And just a smidge of sugar, you could probably leave it out, but I have a problem, Yo.

Homemade Jello is really so easy, and I especially love that companies are coming out with lots and lots of flavors of juices, all of which you can use to make Jello (except Pineapple, I think it’s something to do with enzymes and Jello not setting, but really the box just warned me not to use pineapple, so I am passing that warning on to you).  Anyway, I used Juicy Juice’s Berry Flavor for this dish. I really can’t tell you enough how awesome Juicy Juice is, all their juices are 100% juice, and they have tons of great flavors.

Okay, I’ll get off my juicy juice soapbox, and back to homemade Jello.  Here are the steps to 100% from scratch homemade jello for this raspberry pretzel jello dessert.

  1. Stir two packages of gelatin into 1 C cold fruit juice. The mixture will be a smidge clumpy.
  2. Bring 3 C fruit juice and 1/2 C sugar to a boil.
  3. Once the juice boils, combine with the cold fruit juice and gelatin mixture, and stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
  4. At this point, refrigerate until it’s cool (1 hr) and add ~3 Cups of Fruit (in our case, raspberries, but strawberries taste awesome as well!)
  5. After you’ve added the fruit, you can go ahead and pour it over the pretzel and cream cheese layers. Easy Peasy.Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert with Slice Taken Out

Make this raspberry pretzel jello dessert, you won’t regret it. But just remember.  Jello is good.  Jello is fun. Jello is not a salad.

Also, if you dig raspberries as much as me, you might also want to try this White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake (spoiler alert: it has an oreo crust)


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Homemade Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert

Homemade Raspberry Pretzel Jello Dessert

Yield: 16
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This from-scratch version of a family favorite recipe is sure to please.  Made with plain gelatin, berry juice, succulent raspberries, and freshly whipped cream, it's definitely a winner!


Pretzel Crust

  • 3 C Whole Pretzel
  • 6 Tbsp Melted Butter
  • 3 Tbsp Granulated Sugar

Creamy Cheesecake Layer

  • 8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 C Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1/4 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Raspberry Gelatin Topping

  • 4 C Berry Juice, I used Juicy Juice 100% Juice Berry Blend
  • 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
  • 2 3-oz pkg Plain Gelatin
  • 12 oz Fresh or Frozen Raspberries


For the Crust

  1. Crush Pretzels in a food processor.  Mix with Melted Butter and Granulated sugar and press into the bottom of two greased cake pans, or a 9x13 casserole dish.  Set aside until ready to use. 

For the Cream Cheese Layer

  1. Whip cream until soft peaks form, then add sugar and vanilla and continue to beat until firm peaks form.  Next beat in softened cream cheese just until well-combined.  Spread over Pretzel Layer. 

For the Raspberry Gelatin Topping

  1. Mix two packages of gelatin with 1 C cold juice in a large bowl.  Set Aside
  2. Bring Sugar and Juice to a boil.  Once boiling, Add to gelatin mixture. Refrigerate about 1 hour. 
  3. Once the mixture has cooled, but has not set yet, stir in the raspberries and pour evenly over the cream cheese layers.  
  4. Refrigerate until set 2-3 more hours. Slice and Serve


This recipe also tastes great with strawberries. 

Calories were calculated using MyFitnessPal

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 234

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  1. Thank you for sharing this recipe! I love the one my Grandma and Aunts make, but now I want to try this version without corn syrup and red 40!

    How long does the whip cream hold up? Can I make this a day in advance?

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