Fluffy Cranberry Salad

During the holidays we tend to eat a lot of deserts. Why not eat some delightfully fluffy cranberry salad with fresh cranberries and cream cheese to add a little more fresh and light food into the mix.

Holidays are our favorite time of the year. So much fun with family and friends. And of course all of the great food, this cranberry fluff salad is no exception. 

Fresh cranberry salad is a staple in our family’s Thanksgiving dinner. This recipe is one that we always serve at Thanksgiving dinner. It could also work as a dessert!

Speaking of Thanksgiving dinner this cranberry salad recipe for Thanksgiving is not the only recipe in our lineup. Check out our best Thanksgiving recipes to make the most exquisite dinner:


What do you need to make this light and tasty cranberry fluff salad?

Cranberry salad ingredients: 

  1. 12 ounce package of fresh cranberries
  2. Sugar
  3. 8 ounce can of crushed pineapple
  4. 4 ounces of cream cheese
  5. 2 cups of heavy whipping cream
  6. 2 cups of mini marshmallows

We have only made this cranberry pineapple salad recipe using fresh cranberries, but you could probably use frozen as well (just make sure to thaw them first). 

Key tools to make this fresh cranberry salad

  • Food processor (check THIS one out)
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Can opener
  • Cling wrap (any of THESE will work wonderfully!)
  • Stand or hand mixer

How to make the cranberry salad recipe for Thanksgiving

With a food processor or a blender, you are going to add the fresh cranberries and pulse them until they are finely chopped. However, if you like bigger pieces, you can pulse the fresh cranberries as much or as little as you like. 

Then, move the chopped cranberries into a large mixing bowl and add the sugar and pineapple chunks to the bowl. Mix it all together until they are well combine and then cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least an hour to let all of the flavors meld together. THIS IS KEY!!

While you are waiting for the cranberries mixture to essentially marinate, let’s make up everyone’s favorite part, the whipped topping!

Take the room temperature cream cheese and beat it in your mixer until it is smooth. Then, add in the whipped cream and continue mixing until the cream cheese and whipped cream are completely combined. 

You’ll know the whipped topping is done when it begins to create stiff peaks. This should normally only take 3-4 minutes. 

If your cranberries are not ready yet cover the whipped topping and put it into the fridge until the hour is up. 

Once the cranberries have been chilling for at least an hour add in the cream cheese mixture and mix it very well. Then fold in the mini marshmallows and put the cranberry salad back into the fridge for another 3-4 hours to let the salad set up. 

PRO TIP: You can also make this salad a day in advance – just give it a quick stir before serving it.

A little more information

  • This recipe makes enough for 12 but can be doubled if you need more than that!
  • Make sure to give yourself adequate prep time when making this recipe and then extra time to allow for the salad to set up. 
  • This is a great recipe to make the day before Thanksgiving to help your day be less crazy!
  • If you want to add another texture to this fluff salad, consider making this Easily Toasted Almonds recipe to chop up and sprinkle on top just before serving. 

Watch how to make another amazing fluff salad!

We have a YouTube channel where we show you how to how to make a recipe from start to finish in our kitchen. Our recipes are even picky eater approved! Our video on how to make strawberry jello fluff salad is a favorite recipe of ours and gets great reviews all the time!


Need more FLUFF recipes? 

Serves: 12

Fluffy Cranberry Salad

4 hr, 20 Prep Time

4 hr, 20 Total Time

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  • 1 (12 ounce) package fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple (do not drain)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese (room temp)
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows


  1. Add fresh cranberries to a food processor or blender and pulse until they are finely chopped (if you like bigger pieces, you can pulse as little or as much as you desire).
  2. Place the chopped cranberries into a bowl and mix in sugar and pineapple. Cover bowl and place in the fridge for at least an hour to let the flavors meld.
  3. While the cranberry mixture is in the fridge, beat the cream cheese until smooth and then add in the whipped cream. Continue to beat until stiff peaks form (usually takes 3-4 minutes).
  4. Add the cream mixture to the cranberries and mix well. Fold in the marshmallows and then place back in the fridge for 3-4 hours to let salad set up.
  5. You can also make this salad a day in advance - just give it a quick stir before serving.

Recipe source: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe (her recipes are amazing!)

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