When it comes to fruit salads, I'm not sure it gets more Southern than a big bowl of old-fashioned ambrosia. It's such a treat and my favorite version only requires the use of 5 ingredients: fresh orange sections, canned crushed pineapple, sweetened shredded coconut, almond extract and honey. 

I used Minneola tangelo sections this time because we had a bowl full of them. They are so good!

Lots of popular ambrosia recipes include mini-marshmallows, sliced grapes, maraschino cherries, and creamy yogurt-based dressings. Every single time I make this dish I honestly consider adding one or more of these extra ingredients in for a change of pace.

I love my honey bear!

However, when it comes down to it, I just can't do it.

I really love it how it's always been: simple, delicious and exactly how I remember eating it lifetimes ago when I was a kid.

And, whatever you do or don't do when it comes to old-fashioned ambrosia, if you are able to enjoy these little extras, don't forget to garnish your serving with whipped cream and chopped nuts!  Those two toppings really take this dish from modest fruit salad to heavenly dessert!

Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful, hard-working mother's out their who try there best to create memories and traditions with their kids in today's hectic world. I truly hope you had a fun-filled day with family and friends!

yield: 8 servingsprint recipe


prep time: 20 MINScook time: 60 MIN total time: 1 hour and 20 mins
This old-fashioned fruit salad is sure to be a hit for any occasion big or small. When you can, make it the night before to save some time and let the flavors combine!


  • 5 medium, ripe naval oranges (or other orange-like citrus such as Minneola tangelos or tangerines)
  • 1 can (20 oz) crushed pineapple in juice, drained (I used Dole brand in 100% pineapple juice)
  • 1/2 cup sweetened, shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (or sub pure vanilla extract for a nut-free version, dish color will change slightly)
  • whipped topping or whipped cream (for topping)
  • finely chopped nuts, optional (for topping)


  1. Add all ingredients together in a bowl. Mix well, cover and chill for at least on hour before serving.
Created using The Recipes Generator


  1. That looks like a perfectly light and delicious dessert, Marcelle.

  2. though you and i make our ambrosias differently, i suspect they're equally delicious! it's one of my all time favorite sides. :)

  3. Wow, this takes me back, Marcelle! I loved this as a kid - haven't had it in years! About time, wouldn't you say? (Obviously, you did!)

    1. :):) Hi David, thank you! I think I ate the whole bowl by myself this time around...

  4. We used to eat salads like this all the time when I was growing up, I actually forgot how much we used to enjoy this. My mom always added mini-marshmallows, great recipe Marcelle. Hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day!

  5. I haven't had this dish in years! Brings back childhood memories. :-) Yours looks wonderful -- gotta make this soon. Thanks!

  6. Lovely dish Marcel It does remind me of the salad my mom made years ago. Gotta love those memories. Thanks for sharing at Dishing It & Digging It.


Back to Top