Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Let me start off by saying that I rarely use recipes that come from Kraft Foods, mostly because it seems that almost all of them use the same bottled or prepackaged ingredients, and I really have come to respect and enjoy things that are truly homemade and from scratch. That being said, I LOVE THIS DESSERT. I started eating this sometime in high school when my aunt would bring it to any family gathering that occurred in the summer. I immediately fell in the love with the combination of salty and sweet and would have to restrain myself from eating the whole pan. In all the time that has passed, this is the first time that I have ever made this myself and having leftovers in the house = pure heaven!

The ingredients to this dessert are really simple and this doesn’t take much time to throw together, and can be made a day in advance and left to set in the refrigerator (I actually think it’s better this way). The crust consists of crushed pretzels, sugar, and melted butter. On top of that sits a combination of whipped cream cheese and sugar, with Cool Whip folded in. And on top of that, a layer of strawberry jello with fresh sliced strawberries floating throughout. The result is a dessert that tastes light and refreshing, and is also something that can be modified to suit individual tastes. Switch up the Jello flavor and berries, or the crumbs that are used as a base. Whatever you do, TRY THIS! It’s definitely one of my all-time favorite summertime desserts.

More fabulous summer desserts:
Strawberry Mirror Cake
Perfect Party Cake
Ambrosia Cupcakes (award-winning!)
Fresh Orange Cream Tart
Apple Hand Pies
Fresh Blueberry Pie
Strawberry Tart

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Yield: 12 servings

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients:

2 cups finely crushed pretzels
½ cup sugar, divided
2/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
1½ pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
2 Tbsp. milk
1 cup thawed COOL WHIP
2 cups boiling water
1 pkg. (8-serving size) Strawberry Jell-O
1½ cups cold water
1 qt. (4 cups) strawberries, sliced

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix pretzel crumbs, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the butter. Press onto bottom of 13x9-inch baking pan. Bake 10 min. Cool.

2. Beat cream cheese, remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the milk until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread over crust. Refrigerate until ready to use.

3. Meanwhile, stir boiling water into dry gelatin mix in large bowl at least 2 min. until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water. Refrigerate 1½ hours or until thickened (spoon drawn through leaves definite impression). Stir in strawberries. Spoon over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm. Cut into squares to serve. Store leftovers in refrigerator.

(Source: Kraft Foods)