Five-cup Salad Recipe - A Classic American Dish

Five-cup Salad

Five-cup Salad Recipe - A Classic American Dish
Region / culture: USA | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 0 minutes | Servings: 6


Five-cup Salad
Five-cup Salad

Five-cup Salad is a classic and refreshing dessert that is perfect for any occasion. This simple recipe requires just five ingredients and minimal preparation time, making it a convenient and delicious option for a sweet treat.


Five-cup Salad has been a popular dish in Southern cuisine for decades. Its origins can be traced back to the mid-20th century, when it became a staple at potlucks and family gatherings. The combination of sour cream, marshmallows, coconut, pineapple, and mandarin oranges creates a unique and flavorful dessert that has stood the test of time.


Recipe default

How to prepare

  1. Combine all ingredients and place in the refrigerator for 12 hours.


  • Add in chopped nuts for extra crunch.
  • Use different flavors of marshmallows for a fun twist.
  • Swap out the sour cream for Greek yogurt for a healthier option.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Be sure to thoroughly mix all of the ingredients together to ensure that the flavors are evenly distributed.

- For a lighter version of this recipe, you can use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.

- Feel free to add in additional fruits or nuts to customize the salad to your liking.

Serving Suggestions

Five-cup Salad can be served as a dessert or a side dish at a barbecue or picnic. It pairs well with grilled meats and other summer dishes.

Cooking Techniques

This recipe requires no cooking, simply mix all of the ingredients together and chill in the refrigerator.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you don't have all of the ingredients on hand, you can easily swap out the pineapple or mandarin oranges for other canned fruits.

Make Ahead Tips

Five-cup Salad can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Serve Five-cup Salad in a glass trifle dish for a beautiful presentation, or in individual serving cups for a more elegant touch.

Pairing Recommendations

This dessert pairs well with grilled chicken, burgers, or barbecue ribs.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Leftover Five-cup Salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Do not freeze.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Five-cup Salad contains approximately 200 calories.


Each serving of Five-cup Salad contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.


Each serving of Five-cup Salad contains approximately 10 grams of fat.


Each serving of Five-cup Salad contains approximately 2 grams of protein.

Vitamins and minerals

Five-cup Salad is a good source of vitamin C, thanks to the pineapple and mandarin oranges.


This recipe contains dairy (sour cream) and coconut, which may be allergens for some individuals.


Five-cup Salad is a sweet and creamy dessert that is relatively low in calories and provides a good amount of vitamin C.


Five-cup Salad is a classic and easy dessert that is sure to be a hit at your next gathering. With just five simple ingredients, you can create a sweet and creamy dish that is perfect for any occasion.

How did I get this recipe?

I can still remember the exact moment I discovered this recipe. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my dear friend Martha in her cozy kitchen. As we chatted and sipped on iced tea, Martha suddenly pulled out a bright, colorful bowl filled with a vibrant mixture of fruit and marshmallows.

"Have you ever tried Five-cup Salad?" she asked with a twinkle in her eye. I shook my head, intrigued by the enticing sight before me. Martha proceeded to tell me all about this delightful dish - a simple yet delicious combination of five ingredients: pineapple, mandarin oranges, coconut, marshmallows, and sour cream.

She explained that the salad was a family favorite, passed down through generations and always a hit at gatherings and potlucks. Martha graciously shared the recipe with me, and I couldn't wait to try it for myself.

I followed Martha's instructions carefully, chopping the pineapple and draining the mandarin oranges before mixing them together in a large bowl. I added a generous amount of shredded coconut and a handful of fluffy marshmallows, gently folding everything together with a dollop of tangy sour cream.

The finished salad was a sight to behold - a colorful medley of flavors and textures that seemed to dance on my taste buds. I couldn't wait to share this newfound recipe with my own family and friends.

Over the years, Five-cup Salad became a staple at our family gatherings. My children and grandchildren grew to love the sweet and creamy concoction, always eager to dig into the bowl whenever it made an appearance on our table.

As time passed, I found myself experimenting with the recipe, adding my own twist with a sprinkle of chopped pecans or a splash of vanilla extract. Each variation brought a new depth of flavor to the classic dish, keeping it fresh and exciting for years to come.

I also discovered that the beauty of Five-cup Salad lies not only in its taste but in the memories and traditions it invokes. Every time I prepare the salad, I am transported back to that sunny day in Martha's kitchen, surrounded by laughter and friendship.

I have shared the recipe with countless friends and neighbors, each one eager to add their own personal touch to the beloved dish. It has become a symbol of joy and togetherness, a reminder of the simple pleasures that can be found in a shared meal with loved ones.

As I sit here, reflecting on the journey that led me to discover Five-cup Salad, I am filled with gratitude for the friendships, memories, and moments of pure bliss that have come from a simple recipe. It serves as a reminder that sometimes the most profound joys can be found in the humblest of dishes, and that the act of sharing food with others is a powerful way to connect and create lasting bonds.

So, the next time you find yourself in need of a delicious and easy-to-make dish, I urge you to give Five-cup Salad a try. Who knows - perhaps it will become a cherished tradition in your own family, just as it has in mine.


| American Recipes | Cathy's Recipes | Coconut Recipes | Mandarin Orange Recipes | Marshmallow Recipes | Pineapple Recipes | Salad Recipes | Sour Cream Recipes |

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