Cookie Salad

5 from 10 votes

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This cookie salad is one of my favorite summertime desserts. It’s not your typical potluck “salad” but trust me, your guests won’t mind one bit!

Top view of Cookie Salad with fudge stripe cookies and mandarin oranges on top.
Featured with this Recipe
  1. Ingredients for Cookie Salad
  2. Cookie Salad Dessert Mix Ins
  3. With buttermilk or without buttermilk?
  4. Can this Salad Be Make Ahead of Time?
  5. Even More Salads
  6. How to Make Cookie Salad
  7. Fudge Stripe Cookie Salad Recipe

Even though this isn’t your typical salad, by definition, it can still be considered a salad. A salad can be any mixture of small pieces of food combined that may or may not be combined with a dressing. Yes, I will admit, it is a stretch. It probably qualifies as more of a dessert, but bringing this as a “salad” to a potluck will make you a rockstar. I don’t think you will get any complaints.

Fudge Stripes Cookies, Cool Whip, milk, can of mandarin oranges, vanilla Jello pudding mix, and a can of crushed pineapple to make Cookie Salad.

Besides some of those delicious Keebler fudge stripe cookies, you only need a few other ingredients to make a yummy cookie salad recipe. This is how we start but keep reading for suggestions to add in!

  • Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix – Make sure it’s instant and not the cook and serve kind.
  • Milk – We love using whole milk but you can use a cup buttermilk or regular milk or whatever you have on hand.
  • Frozen whipped topping – thaw out a tub of whip cream or Cool Whip before you start assembling the salad.
  • Mandarin oranges – drain the juice
  • Crushed pineapple – drain the juice on this as well. You can also use pineapple tidbits.
Golden spoon scooping out cookie salad from the serving bowl.

I love the combination of the mandarin oranges and pineapple mixed with the vanilla pudding in this recipe. It really doesn’t need more. This is the classic version of cookie salad, but here are some more yummy ingredients you can toss in to this dessert salad:

  1. Add sliced banana or pineapple chunks (be sure to drain fruit).
  2. Add mini-marshmallows to the mixture. 
  3. Use a splash of lemon juice for a tangy flavor.
  4. Try shortbread cookies or crushed Vienna fingers instead of the chocolate cookies.
  5. Sub greek yogurt for the pudding.
  6. Use Oreo cookies to make an Oreo fluff salad.
  7. Add some candied nuts like almonds or pecans.
Top view of two small bowls with Cookie Salad. Garnished with fudge stripe cookies and mandarin oranges.

With buttermilk or without buttermilk?

This seems to be the great debate with Cookie salad. Some love buttermilk others just like plain milk. I actually like it with milk because the buttermilk makes it a little too rich for my liking. Plus I feel like I am saving a few extra calories by sticking with skim milk. Granted, I know it’s not MUCH healthier, but a little healthier nonetheless.

Two serving bowls of Cookie Salad garnished with a fudge stripe cookie.

Can this Salad Be Make Ahead of Time?

You can assemble some of the ingredients ahead of time, but do not add the cookies, or they will get soggy. This salad is best made right before you need to serve. You can, of course, chill it in the refrigerator in an air tight container for a few hours before serving.

Close up of spoonful of Cookie Salad with fudge stripe cookies and mandarin oranges.

Even More Salads

Make even more amazing salads for your next barbecue or family get together by trying some of these recipes (traditional and non-traditional) below.

Top view of Cookie Salad with fudge stripe cookies and mandarin oranges on top.
5 from 10 votes
This cookie salad is one of my favorite summertime desserts. True, it’s not your typical potluck “salad” but trust me, your guests won’t mind one bit!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Dessert, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings



  • 6.8 oz instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 c. milk
  • 16 oz frozen whipped topping thawed
  • 22 oz mandarin oranges drained
  • 20 oz crushed pineapple drained
  • 25 fudge stripe cookies


  • In a large bowl, combine vanilla pudding mix and milk. 
  • Beat with an electric hand mixer until thick (about 1 minute).
  • Fold in whipped topping.
  • Stir in mandarin oranges and crushed pineapple.
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Immediately before serving, crush fudge stripe cookies and stir into the pudding mixture. 

Nutrition Information

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About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her three beautiful girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

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  1. 5 stars
    Love it and it is good for potluck picnics. I take it to our church is memorial day picnic every year.

  2. Can this be made a day ahead with the cookies added….I’m limited on refrigeration when cookies are added the next day? Thank you.

    1. Thank you for sharing – and for being adventurous enough to try this recipe! We love it!

  3. 5 stars
    I served it for dessert using fresh whipped cream instead of Cool Whip. It is so good, everyone scraped their bowls clean!

  4. 5 stars
    I had never heard of this, but after one bite it’s all I can think about making again and again.