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5 Cup Salad

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Vintage 5 cup salad is a perfectly easy fruit salad that will tick all of the boxes. Mandarin oranges, pineapple, and coconut are featured in this easy side dish or dessert.

Serving spoon filled with creamy 5 cup salad, ready to eat.

There is something extra special about a dressed fruit salad. It’s so much more fun than just putting cut fruit in a bowl.

This old-fashioned five cup salad recipe was actually mentioned by a reader in the comments of another post. So I figured I had to make it.

Ingredients including oranges, pineapple, coconut, sour cream and marshmallows ready to be made into 5 cup salad.

It is named 5 cup salad because it is made out of 1 cup each of 5 ingredients. Pretty simple, huh?

A Few Notes About 5 Cup Salad

It may seem strange using sour cream as a dressing for fruit salad. Somehow, it works, though.

The little bit of tang balances nicely with the sweet ingredients. And as it chills some of the sugar from the marshmallows and coconut soak into the sour cream, making it slightly sweet.

Just be sure to give it at least an hour in the refrigerator to let the flavors come together. If you don’t want to use sour cream, you could use Greek yogurt instead.

We love the classic mix of pineapple, mandarin oranges, and coconut, but you can easily change out the fruit. Fresh mandarin oranges work instead of canned if you prefer.

Refrigerated five cup salad showing how the dressing looks thicker, ready to eat with antique serving spoon nearby.

You could also use grapes or chopped apples. You can either replace the original fruit or add more.

Adding maraschino cherries adds vintage flare, color, and flavor. So you can toss a few in whole or add chop some up and stir them in.

Spoon with a bite of five cup salad over a small bowl of served five cup salad showing fruit coated in creamy sour cream dressing.

The pastel fruity marshmallows are a fun addition instead of the plain ones. They add both flavor and more color.

There are so many great ways to make this 5 cup salad your own, but we like it just the way it is written. Sometimes, the classics are perfect without adjustments.

More Fun Fruity Salads

Frog eye salad is another vintage treat. The fruit based custard is mixed with fruit, pasta, and more. It has a really retro feel but still tastes yummy.

Or try making fruit salad with condensed milk. It coats a mix of fresh and canned fruit in a yummy condensed milk based dressing.

If condensed milk isn’t your jam, try layered fruit salad. It is topped with a sour cream and vanilla pudding mixture that is lightly sweet and really delicious.

Serving of five cup salad in antique china with big bowl of salad in the background.

Fruit salad with pudding is another super simple option. It is really delicious and another easy one to put together.

Check out my full collection of fruit salad recipes for more inspiration.

Serving spoon filled with creamy 5 cup salad, ready to eat.

Five Cup Salad

Vintage 5 cup salad is a perfectly easy fruit salad that will tick all of the boxes. Mandarin oranges, pineapple, and coconut are featured in this easy side dish or dessert.
5 from 9 ratings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Fruit Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 10 1/2 Cup Servings
Calories 238 kcal


  • 1 cup pineapple tidbits
  • 1 cup mandarin oranges
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows
  • 1 cup sour cream


  • Drain the liquid from the fruit. Save 1 Tablespoon of the pineapple juice.
    1 cup pineapple tidbits, 1 cup mandarin oranges
  • Stir the pineapple juice into the sour cream. Add the fruit, coconut, and marshmallows. Mix until everything is evenly coated.
    1 cup shredded coconut, 1 cup sour cream, 1 cup mini marshmallows
  • Chill for at least one hour before serving.


Fee free to try using different fruit or additional fruit if desired.
You can use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.


Serving: 1ServingCalories: 238kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 2gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 72mgFiber: 3gSugar: 21g
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Recipe Rating

Karen @karenskitchenstories

Friday 28th of April 2023

How fun is this! And it's guilt free because it's a salad, right? =)


Friday 28th of April 2023

of course! Salads are good for you!

Jeff the Chef @ Make It Like a Man!

Thursday 27th of April 2023

You know you're old when "old-fashioned" things remind you of the stuff your mom made when you were a kid! This salad sounds so nostalgic!


Thursday 27th of April 2023

That's not a bad thing! I love making these classic recipes for my son now too, so it doesn't have to mean anything about your age. 😉

Andrea Nine

Wednesday 26th of April 2023

My mom and I have been making this for years, we call it orange fluff and ours has orange Jell-O in. It is so much easier without it, lol! Yum Yum Yum!


Wednesday 26th of April 2023

That sounds delicious!