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Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad

4.94 from 32 votes

This Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad is an old-fashioned Southern recipe. It features whole blueberries and crushed pineapple suspended in a jello base topped with a mixture of sweetened cream cheese, sour cream, and walnuts for a wonderfully sweet and tart dish.

A serving of congealed salad on a white plate.

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No traditional Southern meal would be complete without at least one gelatin-based dish on the menu. At potlucks and church dinners, you’re likely to find several dozen delightful creations on offer just like this Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad.

Now in the part of the south where I grew up, we’d be just as likely to serve a jello-based recipe as a side dish or salad as a dessert. It mostly depends on whether there are any vegetables in the mix.

If your jello mold recipe includes onions, celery, or carrots, it’s a salad. If not, it’s probably a dessert. Although that’s not a hard and fast rule, mind you.

And another thing. Where I grew up, we always call these recipes “congealed salad.” Whether served as a side dish or dessert, it’s still a congealed salad.

🤔 Is This a Salad or a Dessert?

I started out always using the term “congealed salad” on the blog, but I had so many people correct me or either state that the word “congealed” was disgusting (though I have yet to understand why) that I now sometimes use the apparently more popular terms “jello mold” or “jello salad.” It’s still congealed salad to me, but you call it whatever you like.

Over the past few years, I’ve posted several gelatin-based recipes on the blog. There’s the classic Sunshine Salad, the old standard Lime Congealed Salad, our family’s favorite Polly’s Pink Stuff,  and the popular Strawberry Banana Jello Mold. I’ve even posted a Tomato Aspic which is, essentially, a congealed salad :-)

This Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad falls squarely in the dessert category. Not a carrot or bit of celery in sight.

This one uses black cherry jello chock full of blueberries and pineapple and is topped with a sweetened, tangy cream cheese and sour cream combination. Yum!

You probably noticed that even though it’s quite sweet and contains no veggies, I still called it “salad.” I know…we southerners and our idiosyncrasies :-)

❤️ Why We Love This Recipe


  • It’s easy to make. No cooking required!
  • All occasion recipe – Perfect dessert or side dish for almost any occasion.
  • It’s a crowd pleaser Both adults and children enjoy this recipe.

🛒 Ingredient Notes


All ingredients needed for the recipe.

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  • Crushed Pineapple (You’ll also need the juice from the can.)
  • Blueberries (I use frozen but you can also use fresh.)
  • Cream Cheese (Should be at room temperature.)
  • Sour Cream (Either reduced fat or regular.)
  • Walnuts (Substitute pecans if you like.)

You’ll find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the recipe at the bottom of this post.

🔪 How to Make Blueberry Jello Salad:


Prep Work

Although this recipe is quick and easy to make, there are a few steps you should take ahead of time to make the assembly easier.

  1. Take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes in advance so it can come to room temperature.
  2. Remove the blueberries from the freezer and let them thaw completely before you begin.
  3. Start a kettle (or pot) of water boiling.
  4. Chop the walnuts.

STEP 1. In a 2-quart heat-proof serving dish or casserole, add the jello and boiling water.

STEP 2. Stir until the jello is completely dissolved.

STEP 3. Add the pineapple with its juice and the blueberries. Stir until evenly combined.

STEP 4. Cover and refrigerate until firmly set.

STEP 5. Add the cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar to a medium bowl and mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in the walnuts.

Topping spread over jello layer.
STEP 6.

STEP 6. Spread the topping evenly over the set jello layer.

A serving of congealed salad on a white plate.

STEP 7. Cut into squares to serve.

🍽️ Serving Suggestions


This delicious, fruity dessert goes well with almost any main dish. Try it alongside fried chicken, slow cooker pulled pork, or a pot of beans. It also pairs well with other desserts like fresh strawberries and angel cake for an afternoon tea party.

🔀 Substitutes and Variations


  • Try adding 1/2 cup flaked coconut to the topping.
  • Substitute canned mandarin oranges for the crushed pineapple.
  • Substitute raspberries, blackberries, or strawberries for the blueberries.
  • Try different jello and fruit combinations to make a unique recipe all your own.

🍚 Storage and Make Ahead Information


  • Make Ahead: This recipe must be made ahead to allow time for the jello to set up. You’ll need to plan 4 to 6 hours for that.
  • Storage: Keep it stored in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to three days.
  • Freezing: Not recommended.

❓ Questions About Blueberry Jello Salad


Can I use fresh blueberries in this recipe?

You can definitely use fresh blueberries here. Substitute an equal amount of fresh for frozen.

Can I use a different flavor of jello?

If you can’t find black cherry jello, you can easily substitute raspberry or strawberry.

Is there any substitute for the sour cream?

The sour cream can be substituted with plain yogurt or plain Greek yogurt. If your diet doesn’t allow dairy products, try using coconut milk yogurt with vegan cream cheese to give it a thicker consistency.

What does “congealed” mean?

It just means that something is semi-solid, like Jello. Congealed foods hold their shape at room temperature. Congealed salads originated in classic French cuisine and gained popularity in the U.S. when gelatin became widely available in grocery stores.

Lana Stuart.

More Questions? I’m happy to help!

If you have more questions about the recipe, or if you’ve made it and would like to leave a comment, scroll down to leave your thoughts, questions, and/or rating!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

📖 Recipe

A serving of congealed salad on a white plate.

Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad

This Blueberry Pineapple Congealed Salad is topped with sweetened cream cheese, sour cream, and walnuts for a wonderfully sweet and tart dish.
4.94 from 32 votes
Print It Rate It Save
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: Southern, Vintage
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Inactive Time:: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 368kcal
Author: Lana Stuart

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces black cherry jello (two 3-ounce packages)
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 8.25 ounces canned crushed pineapple with its juice
  • 12 ounces frozen blueberries thawed and lightly drained
  • 8 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Instructions

Prep Work:

  • Although this recipe is quick and easy to make, there are a few steps you should take ahead of time to make the assembly easier.
    — Take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes in advance so it can come to room temperature.
    — Remove the blueberries from the freezer and let them thaw completely before you begin.
    — Start a kettle (or pot) of water boiling.
    — Chop the walnuts.
  • In a 2-quart heat-proof serving dish or casserole, add the jello and boiling water. Stir until the jello is completely dissolved.
  • Add the pineapple with its juice and the blueberries. Stir until evenly combined.
  • Cover and refrigerate until firmly set.
  • Add the cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar to a medium bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Stir in the walnuts.
  • Spread evenly over the set jello layer.
  • Cut into squares to serve.

Notes

  • Make Ahead: This recipe must be made ahead to allow time for the jello to set up. You’ll need to plan 4 to 6 hours for that.
  • Storage: Keep it stored in the refrigerator in a covered container for up to three days.
  • Freezing: Not recommended.

Nutrition Information

Serving 1 | Calories 368kcal | Carbohydrates 46g | Protein 6g | Fat 20g | Saturated Fat 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat 6g | Monounsaturated Fat 4g | Cholesterol 39mg | Sodium 203mg | Potassium 178mg | Fiber 2g | Sugar 41g | Vitamin A 510IU | Vitamin C 7mg | Calcium 62mg | Iron 1mg

Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.

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— This post was originally published on May 30, 2014. It has been updated with new photos and additional information.

This blueberry jello salad is an old-fashioned southern recipe with blueberries and pineapple topped with a sweetened cream cheese and sour cream mixture. https://www.lanascooking.com/blueberry-jello-salad/

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Recipe Rating




51 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Has anyone ever made this as a pie with a graham cracker crust? Would you need to bake the crust first and then cool

    1. Hi Beth – I’ve never made this as a pie, and I’m not sure I’d enjoy it that way. However, if you wanted to try that, it would need to go into a cooled crust and then be refrigerated until set.

  2. 5 stars
    I have always gravitated to your recipes because being Southern, they are so true and authentic to what I remember. I have always made this from an older family recipe that called for blueberry pie filling & when I wanted this, I thought to check in with you first and I’m so glad I did 👍 I love that yours calls for frozen/fresh blueberries & you did not disappoint!! So much better than my older recipe & the one I’ll use/go to from now on! As a side note, I do keep the one addition from my older recipe and added a tsp of vanilla to the cream cheese topping. Thank you!

  3. Been a while since I’ve made this salad. Thanks for reminding me with blueberry season coming. Love your newsletter.

  4. 5 stars
    Love love love this salad. It can be for a springtime dessert or a delicious side for your Turkey dinner at Thanksgiving.

  5. Barb Cooksey says:

    5 stars
    A GO to in our family, mysister in law introduced this into family dinners, get together s, and I and my daughter have carried on the tradition. Love this salad, so easy to make and the flavors blend together fantastically !!!!!

    1. One of our go-to’s and a family favorite for years! Glad to know you enjoy it as well.

  6. 4 stars
    I will be making this for a Christmas dinner this year and from reading the posts and how delicious it looks I bet it will be a hit! I love blueberry anything!

  7. 5 stars
    My mom made this for us when we were kids. I make it often too. Just not a fan of the word congealed in the title. Lol. We just call it blueberry salad.

  8. 4 stars
    This was so good! The topping is what makes it special. You could use any flavor of jello and any fruit and put the topping on it and it will be delicious.

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Patti! And you’re right, you could probably use just about flavor gelatin you like and it would be just as delicious.

  9. Ginger Wills says:

    5 stars
    I started making this in HS in the late ‘80’s. I actually made it for a local cheese factory festival held every year. I renamed mine too “Blueberry Heaven” and the only thing different was I used Blueberry Pie Filling instead of fresh blueberries. The first time I made it, I actually received a superior & a 1st place ribbon for it. I’ve made it at least once a year in my adult life.

    1. The pie filling sounds like a great idea, Ginger. I’ll try that sometime.

  10. Karen Seay says:

    5 stars
    Something very close to this has been my Thanksgiving salad since I was in high school in SC and it was served to me by the mother of a dear friend. Her recipe differs a bit, in that it uses a can of blueberries and a half cup of the syrup from them and drains the pineapple before adding to the Jello. Also, the topping is 2 3-oz packages of cream cheese (I don’t think you could find an 8-ounce package of cream cheese in 1963!) plus a small container of sour cream and a half cup of sugar. A dollop of topping goes onto each serving, and chopped pecans (I toast them a bit) are sprinkled on the top. I will be making it again this year for Thanksgiving at age 75. It never fails to be a hit.

    1. Your version sounds delicious, Karen! And, you’re right, it’s always a hit.

  11. This was a favorite for all the Tupperware, candle and other gal-only parties back in the day. The one time I didn’t make it the girls were so disappointed. I never made that mistake again.

    I also made a lemon jello dessert w a shortbread crust. Have you come across something like that?

    1. Monica Beasley says:

      5 stars
      This Thanksgiving was the first time I made this and it was so delicious that it will definitely become a staple!m at every holiday. Thank you so much for sharing it! ❤️

  12. My husband’s family’s Thanksgiving Jell-O salad is so close to the same…just switch out the Sour Cream for Cool Whip. They also change up the gelatin flavor according to the preference for the year. I’ve been hooked for 16 years! I’m glad to hear others enjoy the same great flavor. Thank you for sharing this great substitution and the addition of walnuts. Maybe I can try that change for a Summer salad and still keep the tradition for Thanksgiving.

  13. NannieJ21 says:

    How lucky I was to find this recipe and know who posted it. Yay! I’ve been craving Bell Buckle Cafe’s blueberry salad recipe and you had it. While I can’t drive quickly to TN for a serving, I can make it at home. Yipeeeeeeee! (Jeanie from Kathleen’s periscope crew)

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      Hope you enjoy it, Jeanie!

  14. Looks yummy and making today for a Potluck Lunch tomorrow.
    When you say 2 quart casserole dish is that 9X13 or 9X9 or 8X8?
    Your picture looks like it is prepared in and 8X8.

    Please let me know
    Thank you

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      Kathy – the dish I used for the post was 8×8.

  15. Connie | URBAN BAKES says:

    I always enjoy learning a bit of history to peoples’ comfort foods. This is great and I’d say, stick to the term of what you grew up with. That’s how you keep family traditions still alive. ;-)

  16. Nutmeg Nanny says:

    Hooray for summer and hooray for blueberries!

  17. Rose | The Clean Dish says:

    I have lived in the South for almost 4 years now but have never come across this lovely dish!! Thanks for introducing me to Blueberry Jello Salad – I’d love to give this one a try :)

  18. Melissa from HungryFoodLove.com says:

    My mom makes a similar salad but with pineapple I bet blueberry has to be fantastic.

  19. Lana, another one of our most loved “salads” but eaten as a tasty dessert.
    I use grape or blackberry jello. In years past, I even used blueberry pie
    filling. That was before our area had access to fresh or frozen blueberries.
    Talk about sweet but very delicious! We love it.

    1. I grew up making this and used the pie filling. I am not a big fan of fresh/frozen blueberries as a rule, but the pie filling makes them squishier so I will still do it that way.

  20. Perfect for this time of year!

    Miss P

  21. Kirsten/ComfortablyDomestic says:

    As a life-long Northerner, I’m not so well versed in the ways of jello salads. However, anything containing this much fruit and cream cheese has got to be a winner.

  22. claire @ the realistic nutritionist says:

    I’m not ussually a huge fan of jello, but yes to this!

  23. Paula - bell'alimento says:

    I have three boxes of gelatin in my pantry. Yep. Southern girl here.

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      I can’t imagine being without a box or two :-)

  24. Lauren Kelly Nutrition says:

    Love the color!! Almost too pretty to eat ;)

  25. Baby June says:

    That actually looks really good! :) I’m one of those people who doesn’t like the word congealed, mainly because I tend to think of certain bodily…things…when I hear it, but I would definitely love this congealed salad! :P

  26. Can’t wait to try this recipe–sounds delish!

  27. Amanda @the_kitcheneer says:

    Oh my! This looks tasty! I’m a sucker for jello anything #1, #2 anything with cream cheese! So, this looks perfect for me! Will definitely be making this at my next cook out to share with the family!

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      Hope you all enjoy it, Amanda!

  28. foodwanderings says:

    This blueberry jello salad is all sorts of wonderful. In fact I can’t believe the timing I made more simple jello blueberry sauce to top a cheesecake recently. Great minds.

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      Blueberries and cheesecake are just a fabulous combination, aren’t they?

  29. Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes says:

    This looks awesome and I love that it can be a dessert or side dish!

  30. Nancy P.@thebittersideofsweet says:

    All of the layers going on here look incredible! This sounds super easy too!

    1. Lana Stuart says:

      Thanks, Nancy! And you’re right, it is very easy.