Secret Fruit Salad

2 Posted by - June 11, 2013 - Food & Drink

Sorry, guys, but the blog is going to be a little food-heavy this month. I was starving when I wrote up my schedule so all the food looked really appealing. Husband and I are doing our darnedest to stick to a Paleo-ish diet. Some days we do better than others. (“Cavemen ate cookies, didn’t they, honey?”)

This one actually sort of qualifies even for a diet, since it’s fruit salad. Cavemen totally had fruit.

Image from Rachel Schultz

Image from Rachel Schultz

The “secret” ingredient is vanilla Jell-o instant pudding, though, and I’m pretty sure the cavemen didn’t have that… But it’s aย secret ingredient, so maybe we can just pretend it’s not in there and eat it anyways.

In college, whenever someone decided we were having a potluck, I always made fruit salad. I lived in a dorm with only a microwave and tiny refrigerator, so cooking anything super ambitious was out of the question. I would get a big take-out box of fruit from the cafeteria (totally not stealing– it was a buffet and they gave you take-out boxes), chop it up, mix it together, and throw a yogurt in there. I’ve never heard of using Jell-o pudding powder instead of yogurt, but I’m game for anything, guys.

At our house, fruit salad is made with whatever the fuck we can find that is not moldy. Today I managed to gather a pretty decent collection.


You’ll note my leftover strawberries from the fruit roll-up experiment. I thought about saving them to make more fruit roll-ups, but no.

chopped fruit

This does not even resemble what the recipe calls for, but hey, it’s fruit, so it totally counts.

Next the instructions said to use two tablespoons of the Jell-o pudding powder.

vanilla Jell-o

Fuck that noise, yo. What am I going to do with the remaining Jell-o pudding powder then, huh? Chocolate chips leftover are fine, but not powdered Jell-o pudding. So I dumped the whole thing in there.

Now, you will notice, perhaps, that my recipe didn’t use as many of the “juicy” fruits as the other recipe did. This did not bother me. I like granny smith apples, and I don’t care what you say. But it turns out that in this case, the juice actually serves a fairly important purpose, and that is to dissolve the Jell-o pudding powder. Oops.

icky fruit salad

So, er, yeah, mine is not the most beautiful fruit salad ever created.

Still, it tastes pretty good, I guess. Nothing special, and I’d pit it against not-stolen cafeteria fruit and yogurt any day, but still, not bad. Even if mine is way uglier.

secret fruit salad


  • Som June 11, 2013 - 2:16 pm Reply

    My mom has been making this for years – a can of diced pineapples in juice is the key ๐Ÿ™‚ The juice makes the sugar free pudding taste amazing and the diced-pineapples-in-a-can thing means no chopping! Mine always turns out ugly (yet tasty) too.

    • Sara June 11, 2013 - 2:37 pm Reply

      I agree, add a can of pineapple and it won’t look like dropped your fruit salad in the sand at the beach. Tasty too.

      • Rissa June 11, 2013 - 6:31 pm Reply

        I make a fruit salad where the vanilla pudding (not the instant kind) is cooked with pineapple juice and it makes an AWESOME sauce- just takes more effort, lol.

  • Llama spit June 11, 2013 - 2:21 pm Reply

    Great. Now you have me wondering what kind of “paleo approved” lube would be marketed. I’ve decided on lard. There, now I’ve put the mental image in everyone’s head and I’m not alone in it anymore. I feel better.

    • Pintester June 11, 2013 - 2:24 pm Reply

      There is actually a thing called paleo showering wherein you shower without soap or shampoo– only water. Apparently it works, after a period of total gross grease-ball-ness during which your body gets used to the absence of soap.

      • KimJ June 11, 2013 - 2:31 pm Reply

        Can you paleo-shave your pits and legs, too? I’m down with being a total grease-ball for awhile, since I’m a stay-at-home mom and my kid won’t notice, but no way am I giving up shaving.

        • Pintester June 11, 2013 - 2:32 pm Reply

          I am definitely an inappropriate person to ask about this… But maybe you could use conditioner instead of soap to shave?

          • cdragont June 11, 2013 - 7:59 pm

            I rarely used soap beyond my hands growing up and that’s held true into adulthood. What I do use is typically a straight lard or aloe vera derived soap. Very soft on the skin and you don’t walk out of the bath smelling of perfume.

          • Godkina June 11, 2013 - 9:32 pm

            Isn’t the perfume one of the benefits of showering? You SMELL clean?

          • cdragont June 11, 2013 - 10:12 pm

            I suppose if you like that it’s fine. I didn’t grow up with it so strong perfumes or heavily scented soaps don’t appeal. When clean I don’t have much of a smell at all, just skin.

        • FakeFakeBreast June 11, 2013 - 4:58 pm Reply

          scrape that hair off with a sharp rock, yo.

          • lovintheday July 10, 2013 - 4:05 pm

            This comment made me laugh so hard I spit tea all over my monitor, lol!

      • katykersh June 11, 2013 - 4:18 pm Reply

        I don’t think that works! Think Survivor!!! They always say they smell and they don’t get to shower or use soap.

      • ChickieD June 12, 2013 - 10:59 am Reply

        Yeah, no, I tried that no poo thing for about a week and my hair was really nasty. I have fine blond hair and I have read that maybe it works for people with thick hair. But me, if I don’t wash it every day with actual shampoo it is gross. You could try that for a pintest. it would be hilarious.

        • Kentagern June 14, 2013 - 9:23 am Reply

          Yeah, I really recommend if you like the “no poo” idea to do the totally not cheating “natural” thing instead, which is to use sodium bicarb/water to clean and vinegar/water to condition. At least in-between using shampoo and using just water. It means you can actually clean your hair, but you’re still avoiding the chemicals

          Chemistry note: sodium bicarbinate and ascetic acid are indeed chemicals, but they are naturally found, if not generally naturally made, and as such conform to the ‘natural’ requirement. Kinda. They don’t completely strip your hair of protection at least, which is the point here.

        • Llama spit June 17, 2013 - 10:29 am Reply

          I dunno. I have thick hair and if I go more than a day without washing my hair, it gets really sensitive and a bit painful. Kind of like when you have your hair up all day really tightly and then let it down, only it lasts for hours after I wash it. First time I heard about people who do the no poo thing without being homeless first, I decided they were crazy.

  • Cwupcake June 11, 2013 - 2:41 pm Reply

    Cavemen would have totally eaten cookies. When I tried doing the paleo-ish thing, I rationalized to myself that the only reason cavemen didn’t eat cookies was that there weren’t any. Take a time machine and a go lay a plate full of Toll House yumminess on the ground in front of Ugg-ugg’s cave and see how fast he down those and goes and finds the nearest she-mammoth for a nice glass of milk.

  • Shila Gillotte June 11, 2013 - 5:05 pm Reply

    I swear I’m not trying to be a wang, but if you’re hungry on paleo (or any low-carb diet), you’re doing it wrong.

    • Pintester June 11, 2013 - 5:06 pm Reply

      … or there’s not enough bacon in the house to tide you over until the next meal.

      • LadyLaPlace June 11, 2013 - 9:45 pm Reply

        Gotta watch it with the bacon, girl – when I started paleo, I ate like a pound of bacon in 2 days and gained 3 pounds of water weight. I could feel the extra jiggle. Ick.

    • rfoust June 12, 2013 - 10:05 am Reply

      Yeah you shouldn’t be hungry *after* the initial 3-4 days. When I started, I was starving, weak, sleepy, couldn’t concentrate, etc. Then after my body finally adjusted, it was awesome. I wasn’t as hungry and I had a shit ton of energy and started dropping weight. I’m definitely a paleo fan.

  • Miss Ginger Grant June 11, 2013 - 6:44 pm Reply

    Fruit salad is hard to screw up. Congratulations!

  • Rocanne June 11, 2013 - 7:57 pm Reply

    Maybe this is a Canadian thing, but fruit salad here is always chopped up fruits in orange juice.

    • Laura Bezzeg June 13, 2013 - 12:54 am Reply

      in new mexico we pour on a can of jumex durazno (peach) or strawberry banana nectar. yum!

      • Catherine June 13, 2013 - 9:19 am Reply

        That sounds amazing!

  • Squirrel June 12, 2013 - 3:23 am Reply

    Why put anything but fruit in a fruit salad? I toss the chopped apple in a bit of lemon juice, but the rest is just naked fruit, including big chunks of watermelon.

    • Claudia Kay June 12, 2013 - 4:06 am Reply

      Exactly. A teaspoon of nut oil of some sort make the body absorb the vitamins even better, but that should be it. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • TheSwede June 13, 2013 - 9:30 am Reply

      Over here it’s pretty common to use a small amount of juice concentrate (usually apple) as a base (to make it a bit sloppier) and then eat it with ice cream or whipped cream.
      Sort of like when you make pizza salad where you let it sit for a day in the juices before it gets to that perfect level.

      • Michelle June 13, 2013 - 9:09 pm Reply

        Pizza salad? Please explain, because that sounds like MY kind of salad!

        • TheSwede June 15, 2013 - 12:58 pm Reply

          Oh sorry, maybe you guys don’t have that either. :p
          Well basically it’s something every single pizza place in the country serves as a side dish.

          You take about half a cabbage which you cut into thin slices (usually using a cheese grater). You then pour about 2dl of boiling water over it to soften it up.
          Add some ground black pepper and pizza spices (oregano and whatnot.)
          Pour in a couple of tablespoons of oil and a tablespoon of (white) vinegar and mix it around a bit.

          Let it sit in the fridge for at least a couple of hours but ideally over night.
          Fish up the salad using a fork and eat. (It’s actually great on top of the pizza. :p)

          • Anna Mae June 18, 2013 - 2:28 am

            You mean coleslaw.

          • TheSwede June 18, 2013 - 2:50 pm

            What I know as coleslaw usually has some form of mayo or other dairy product in it but maybe you call this coleslaw as well.

            Here this particular one is called pizza salad anyway and is generally very sloppy.

      • Kerri June 14, 2013 - 1:28 pm Reply

        Yes, please explain this pizza salad you speak of.

    • Pixie Stix August 5, 2013 - 5:26 am Reply

      I don’t use pudding powder, but I will put in St. Germaine’s. Let it soak for a couple of hours and it is pure ambrosia.

  • Sadface June 12, 2013 - 12:51 pm Reply

    I’m very sad you didn’t follow the proper directions, which resulted in shitty results.

    • Melissa June 14, 2013 - 3:44 pm Reply

      Yeah, but she made it probably how I would have too, so now I know what my results would likely be if I tried this, lol

    • Havana James June 18, 2013 - 9:56 am Reply

      im very sad that you don’t get the point of this blog at all, which resulted in you sounding like a snotty stepford wife.

  • Rebecca O. June 12, 2013 - 7:12 pm Reply

    Some people complain when you don’t follow the instructions, but I think I enjoy it more when you don’t.

  • Kentagern June 14, 2013 - 9:27 am Reply

    Jell-o instant pudding is based on jello.
    Jello is made from gelatin.
    Gelatin is made from animal parts which are not otherwise fit for consumption, such as bones.

    Since it’s commonly held that cavemen sucked bones… to get the bone marrow out, sheesh… lets call this legit.

  • Tatiemo14 June 15, 2013 - 3:02 pm Reply

    I like my fruit salad with Vodka…Particularly pear vodka…It at least looks a lot better than the pudding globs.

  • guest June 18, 2013 - 5:18 pm Reply

    I made this and had the same problem, so I poured in a little pineapple juice to help dissolve the pudding mix and it was fabulous! Got a ton of compliments on it. Will be making again ๐Ÿ™‚

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