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Mandarin Orange Salad

Mandarin Orange Salad

  • Author: Glenda Embree
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 - 6 servings 1x


Creamy, citrus-y and studded with tender, sweet pearls of tapioca, Mandarin Orange Salad is a light, refreshing and luscious family tradition on our holiday tables, as well as at summer gatherings.  It's a fantastic make-ahead salad/ side dish.


  • 1 (3 oz) box orange gelatin
  • 1 (3 oz) box vanilla pudding mix (cook & serve, NOT instant)
  • 1 (3 oz) box tapioca pudding mix (IMPORTANT: Plain pearl tapioca will NOT work. It must be cook & serve tapioca pudding mix and the only brand I have ever seen is Jell-O.)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 (11 oz) can mandarin orange segments, drained
  • 1 cup non-dairy whipped topping (I have never tried homemade whipped cream in this salad, but my suspicion is that it would not hold up in this recipe, changing the texture dramatically.)


  1. Combine the gelatin, vanilla pudding mix and tapioca pudding mix with the water in a medium sauce pan.
  2. Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent sticking and scorching.
  3. Cook until the mixture boils and thickens.
  4. Pour the thickened gelatin mixture into a container to cool and leave on the counter to come to room temperature before refrigerating. 
  5. When cooled to room temperature, cover the gelatin mixture and refrigerate until completely set.
  6. After the gelatin is firmly set (minimum of 4 to 6 hours), stir in the non-dairy whipped topping and mandarin oranges.  Stir until thoroughly integrated into the salad.  Salad will be thick, but light and fluffy.
  7. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


This salad will need to be made at least 4 to 6 hours ahead.  Mandarin Orange Salad can also be made up to 36 hours ahead to save time on the day of a big get-together.

  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Category: Salads, Side Dishes
  • Method: Stovetop and Fridge
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: orange, mandarin, salad, side dish