Frog eye salad is like the dessert salad rendition of classic nostalgia. It’s one of those cold creamy salad recipes with a sweet pop of flavor and enough fruit to make it one of the best Easter side dishes ever. I store this with my Easter recipes, but I pull it out to blast the boring off friendly taste buds year-round!
Taking a walk down memory lane, you may recall the yummy Watergate salad of yesteryear. I have fond memories of my sweet grandma showing up with her famous concoction. Now I like whipping up my famous strawberry pretzel salad and strawberry cheesecake salad, alternating with this delicious recipe.
You’ll definitely want to put this one in the summer rotation!
Check it out!
- Totally flexible recipe
- Light-n-fluffy texture
How To Make Frog Eye Salad Recipe
Whipping up this frog eye salad is so super simple. It only requires a little fridge time to set up. Simply boil your pasta and mix up your pudding, then chill it overnight separately from your fruit. Blend it all together just before serving along with cool whip and other goodies. Top with whipped cream and cherry and enjoy!
You’ll want to blend your pudding mixture with your acini di pepe and let it firm up in the fridge overnight. Chill your fruit in a separate container overnight in the fridge so it’ll all be cold and creamy when you serve it.
Acini de Pepe – To cook it, you’ll boil a big pot of water, with just a touch of salt, just like you would when cooking any other type of pasta. The difference for this particular recipe is that I’m going to break all the rules and laws when it comes to cooking pasta and tell you to overcook it.
Yes, this is one of the few times I suggest cooking the pasta past al dente since I want it to be nice and soft in this salad. We’re NOT looking for mushy here, but you want to boil it for a good 10 minutes to make sure the final texture adds to the creamy consistency of the salad instead of creating that “bite” you’re usually after when you cook pasta. Once it’s perfect, rinse it under cold water to preserve that texture without going into the soggy froggy zone.
Serving up this sweet salad doesn’t require any crazy ingredients. The acini di pepe may sound out of the ordinary but it’s really quite common. It’s a small pasta similar to couscous which is often used in soups and salads.
Also, you’ll want to reserve the juice from your crushed pineapple because you’ll use it to blend up your vanilla pudding. It is Ah-ma-zing!
Tools to Make
You only need a couple of things to whip up this light-n-lovely frog eye salad. Really the main thing is an electric mixer to whip up the instant pudding. It’s all downhill from there.
How Long Can You Keep This In The Fridge?
Your sweet delicious salad will keep for 1-2 days in the fridge once it’s assembled and ready to go. I like to serve it as soon as I get it all blended up, but it’ll keep for a day or two.
I prefer to blend the acini di pepe with the pudding and store it separately from the mixed fruit in the fridge. Then, I mix it all together and add the other goodies just before serving time.
If you have some leftovers after serving, it’s best to cover with cling wrap to protect it from air and ‘fridge odors’.
Can You Freeze This?
Unfortunately, frog eye salad doesn’t freeze well but it’s so incredibly simple to make you really don’t need to think about freezing it. It only takes a few minutes to assemble and you’re on your way to creamy dreamy bliss!
Make Ahead Tips
Since you need most ingredients chilled before blending together, its easy to split this into steps. Simply slide your pasta/pudding mixture into the fridge along with your fruit in a separate container. They’ll keep like this for a day or two. When you’re ready to serve, pull it out, and blend it all together with the other goodies. Easy Peasy!
Your crave-worthy salad goes from the fridge to the table in a matter of minutes. I like to serve mine as a dessert in pretty little goblet glasses but that’s just one idea. This sweet little recipe is perfect for potluck lunches too!
This delicious salad has such a flexible recipe it’s easy to tweak into something a little different. Here are some simple options.
- Omit the pasta and swap the vanilla pudding for sour cream to make a scrumptious ambrosia salad.
- Swap out the vanilla pudding for lime gelatin to work up a fabulous seafoam salad.
- Use cranberries, omit the pasta, coconut… add cream cheese and walnuts now you can make cranberry salad!
Frog Eye Salad Recipe
- 1 cup Acini di pepe
- 1 (3.5-ounce) box instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained with juice reserved
- 1 (20-ounce) can pineapple tidbits, drained with juice discarded
- 1 (11-ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained with juice discarded
- 2 (15-ounce) cans fruit cocktail, drained with juice discarded
- 3 cups colored mini marshmallow
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- 1 (8-ounce) container cool whip thawed
- Reddi wip
- Cook pasta in lightly salted rapidly boiling water for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Drain well.
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together Instant pudding mix, 1/4 cup reserved pineapple juice, sugar and milk for 2 minutes.
- Add drained pasta to pudding mixture and fold gently until combined. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Place all drained fruit in a bowl or a 1-gallon resealable bag and refrigerate overnight.
- When ready to serve, add cold fruit, cool whip, mini marshmallows and coconut to pasta mixture and fold to combine. Serve in a large bowl or individual serving dishes. Top with Reddi Wip if desired.
There are lots of reasons to love this sweet creamy salad. Here are some other Easter side dishes you may enjoy.
- Pineapple Casserole – A sweet unique twist on the classic casserole dish.
- Italian Potato Salad – Tangy herbaceous flavor in a warm potato salad.
- Corn Pudding – Rich, velvety, and oh so scrumptious!
- Kale Quinoa Salad – A truckload of delicious nutrition in every snack or lunch.
- Crispy Brussel Sprouts – Crazy amounts of flavor in this little dish.
This light and creamy concoction is full of sweet dreamy flavor with colorful little marshmallow clouds, bits of shredded coconut and plenty of fruit. No amphibians were harmed during the making of this fondly named Salad with a classic recipe that’s been passed down through the years.
Spread the smiles and show the love with this intensely delicious Frog Eye Salad.