What Is Coca-Cola Salad And Is It Actually Salad

You may be a little puzzled upon hearing the words "Coca-Cola salad." Is it a plate of leafy greens doused in Coca-Cola? Though not exactly a salad most people are accustomed to, Coca-Cola salad is indeed a type of Jell-O salad, a dish that was popular during most of the 20th century. Jell-O salads have largely faded into obscurity, but one variation in particular has withstood the test of time. 

Jell-O salads are known for their abundance of varieties and ingredients and were a popular dish of the 1950s, largely due to their versatility of ingredients. With Jell-O salads infamously known for containing mayo, shrimp, and even tuna, Coca-Cola seems tamer in comparison. That's right, Coca-Cola salad doesn't seem as outdated as some of its contemporaries and is still around today, although it's still relatively uncommon.

A typical Coca-Cola salad is a mishmash of cherry-flavored gelatin, cherry pie filling, crushed pineapple, and of course, Coca-Cola. The resulting flavor of this no-bake dessert is a medley of tartness and sweetness. To make it a stereotypical Jell-O salad from the twentieth century, opt to make the dessert in a bundt cake pan or ring-shaped mold to get that iconic circular shape. Conversely, you can pour the Coca-Cola salad into individual cups for customizable mini desserts.

Coca-Cola salad making a wave on social media

Jell-O salads are being introduced to a whole new generation thanks to social media sites like TikTok. Creators have gone viral on the platform for sharing renditions of Jell-O salad recipes like rainbow cookie salad and Snickers salad.

One such creator, B. Dylan Hollis, is known for replicating retro recipes and shared a viral video making a Coca-Cola salad recipe from yesteryear. The video, which has received a million likes, detailed a step-by-step recipe from the 1970s. This version of Coca-Cola salad contains the soda, cream cheese, orange-flavored gelatin, and assorted nuts. Although it lacks cherries, this variation does not differ greatly from the typical cherry-filled salad.


On this episode of American Horrors #baking #vintage #cooking

♬ original sound – B. Dylan Hollis

This particular Coca-Cola salad recipe also made its round on Reddit with one person sharing a photo of the dessert on the social media platform. A majority of Redditors were confused by the dessert. "I am intensely frowning at this," one person commented.

Make Coca-Cola salad your own

Even though some might not understand the salad, it is still worth trying. Sure you can make a Coca-Cola salad via a recipe, but adding your own twist to the gelatin dessert can elevate its eccentricity. While Coca-Cola salad's gelatin base is usually cherry-flavored, you can substitute your favorite Jell-O flavors like orange, vanilla, or strawberry.

Try adding fresh cherries to the base or use them as toppings on the salad. You can also incorporate fresh slices of plums, apricots, and nectarines into the mix as they have similar flavor profiles to cherries. Nuts like pecans or walnuts can add an extra crunchy texture to the salad, as well.

If you're a cherry lover, amplify that flavor by using Cherry Coca-Cola instead of regular Coke. However, if you're not fond of Coca-Cola, opt for another soda, like Dr. Pepper or Pepsi. Whichever soda you choose to use, the dessert marriage of cherries and Jell-O is bound to make anyone interested enough to give it a try.