This Strawberry Pretzel Salad recipe is the perfect sweet and salty combination! A light cream cheese filling, crunchy pretzel crust and fresh strawberry JELLO topping make these bars totally irresistible.
Save some strawberries to make this Strawberry Eclair Cake Recipe next! Or give our no bake strawberry cheesecake recipe a try soon.
Why This Dessert is Best
You’ll love the combination of salty pretzels, sweet creamy cheesecake filling and tangy-sweet strawberries in this easy dessert!
No potluck is complete without my aunts famous strawberry pretzel salad (or sometimes we call it strawberry pretzel jello).
Originally, my aunt always made these bars with JELL-O spread on top. But when strawberries are in season, you can swap the JELL-O for the ripest, juiciest berries.
- Layers of sweet, salty and creamy flavor.
- Make it with strawberry JELL-O or fresh strawberries!
- Tastes like no bake cheesecake with a pretzel twist.
- A refreshing chilled dessert perfect for summer!
Making today’s recipe is simple enough with ingredients you may already have in your pantry. Be sure to scroll down all the way to the recipe card for a complete list with exact measurements.
- Pretzel crust – Crushed pretzels are combined with sugar and melted butter.
- Strawberries – You can slice them and arrange them right on top of the bars, or mix them into the JELL-O.
- Strawberry Gelatin – You’ll use this if you want to make the JELLO topping.
- Cool whip – Makes the cheesecake filling light and fluffy. Or use my homemade stabilized whipped cream instead!
- Cream cheese – It’s beaten with the cool whip and powdered sugar to make a simple no-bake cheesecake filling.
Tips and Tricks
- Plan ahead. You’ll want to get a head start on making the gelatin so that it’s slightly thickened as you add it to the bars.
- Measure the pretzels before crushing them. This gives you an accurate measurement.
- Bake and cool crust completely. While the crust is cooling, prepare the filling and topping.
- Chill before serving. Strawberry Pretzel JELLO is best served cold! I let mine chill for at least 4 hours before slicing and serving.
Fresh whipped cream won’t give you the same results as stabilized whipped cream (Cool Whip). The “stabilizers” give the cheesecake filling a light, fluffy consistency while holding its shape. Regular whipped cream loses air as its sets, so the filling will end up runny.
Yes, you can swap the strawberries for blueberries, raspberries or other sliced fresh fruit. Feel free to change up the JELL-O flavor too.
I used salted pretzels for the strawberry pretzel salad crust. The saltiness complements the sweetness of the filling and topping for a super satisfying dessert. If you don’t like salty-sweet desserts, you can use unsalted pretzels instead.
Yes, strawberry pretzel jello is a great make-ahead dessert idea. Assemble the bars and keep them covered in the fridge until ready to serve. Enjoy within 3 days for best taste.