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Nothing says Spring like Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad! With tropical flavors of pineapple and coconut, this fluffy salad will have you daydreaming of a sunny, sandy beach and fruity drinks with umbrellas!

This recipe makes an easy side dish or light dessert.

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad

I took the always-popular Ambrosia Salad and made it tropical. It’s quickly become a favorite. Kids and adults like it and it’s simple to make. Literally, it takes about 5 minutes to mix together.

This is a great alternative side dish for Mother’s Day, Easter, brunch, and Spring cookouts.

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad

There are six ingredients in this recipe, instant pudding, pineapple, coconut, marshmallows, pecans, and Cool Whip.

  1. If you don’t like coconut, you can leave it out.
  2. I used crushed pineapple, but you can use pineapple tidbits. However, you’ll want to use the same amount which is 20 ounces.
  3. You can substitute pecans with walnuts or almonds. However, personally, I would not omit the nuts completely because it adds a nice crunch.
  4. I used sugar-free vanilla instant pudding. However, you can use regular instant pudding. If instant pudding isn’t available at your local store, I recommend ordering it here. There really isn’t another substitution in this recipe.
  5. Finally, you can use regular or light Cool Whip.
  6. You can add a splash of rum if you really want it to taste like Pina Colada, just don’t serve it to kiddos.

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad,

An easy make-ahead dish

Another reason why this recipe is so good for entertaining, it needs to be refrigerated at least an hour before serving. You can make it up to a day in advance but I wouldn’t make it over that time frame.

Additionally, I recommend servings this salad chilled so put it out last on the buffet table.

While you’re here, check out these recipes

  1. Instant Vanilla Pudding Fruit Salad
  2. Favorite Fruit Salad
  3. Peach Caprese Salad
Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad

Pina Colada Ambrosia Salad is cool, light, fluffy and has tropical flavors of pineapple and coconut. It takes just a few minutes to stir together.
Author: Paula
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Servings: 8 servings
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  • 1.5 ounce sugar free vanilla instant pudding it's the small box, if you're using regular the weight will be different but it's the small box
  • 20 ounces pineapple crushed, undrained
  • 8 ounces Cool Whip
  • 1.5 cups mini marshmallows
  • cup coconut shredded, sweetened
  • ½ cup pecans chopped


  • In a large bowl, mix the pineapple and juice with the instant pudding with a large spatula.
  • Fold in the Cool Whip, marshmallows, coconut, and pecans.
  • Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. (up to 24 hours)
  • Garnish with coconut and pecans to serve. Serve chilled.


Calories: 193kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 258mg | Potassium: 157mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 91IU | Vitamin C: 34mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. 5 stars
    Love the sound of this. I pinned it to make for later. It reminds me of the Watergate pistachio salad which was my Mom’s favorite. I will definitely try this one soon. On your point #3, I think you meant you would not omit the nuts, right? I love pecans-will use them. Thanks for making it with less sugar.

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Your email address will not be published. Have you tried this recipe? Consider giving it 5 stars!