Southern Ambrosia Recipe


5 from 4 votes
Jump to Recipe

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Southern Ambrosia makes a classic holiday fruit salad loaded with citrus fruits. A sweet and creamy salad, ambrosia is always a favorite!

Southern Ambrosia makes makes a classic holiday fruit salad loaded with citrus fruits. A sweet and creamy salad, ambrosia is always a favorite! //

Grandmother Verdie would always prepare it a the day before our family Christmas and Easter so that it was perfectly chilled for serving. Filled with so much delicious, seasonal citrus fruit, Ambrosia has to be one of my favorite little recipes that can be considered a side and also works just perfectly as a dessert.

There’s just something about making it now for the holidays that keeps her right there with me with every stir that I make. It’s like she’s whispering to me about making sure that the whipping cream has just the right amount of stiffness before stirring in the fruit. I can’t help myself from pulling out the glasses of hers that she’d serve her ambrosia in. With their worn golden rims, they still are just as beautiful to me as they were as a little girl thrilled to be able to have her ambrosia salad in the “fancy glasses” for the first time.

There’s just nothing like those family recipes to me. And this one is definitely a special one.

Southern Ambrosia makes makes a classic holiday fruit salad loaded with citrus fruits. A sweet and creamy salad, ambrosia is always a favorite! //

Here’s Grandmother’s Ambrosia recipe. I hope you love it as much as my family does!

Ambrosia Recipe

5 from 4 votes
Southern Ambrosia makes a classic holiday fruit salad loaded with citrus fruits. A sweet and creamy salad, ambrosia is always a favorite!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 medium oranges, sectioned
  • 2 medium grapefruit, sectioned
  • 1 cup chopped pineapple, or 1 (8-ounce) can diced pineapple, drained
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flake coconut
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows, optional
  • 1/4 cup roasted pecans, optional
  • 1 (10-ounce) jar Maraschino cherries, drained (optional)


  • Pour whipping cream into a large bowl and whisk until soft peaks begin to form. Slowly add confectioner’s sugar and vanilla and whip until stiff peaks form. Fold in oranges, grapefruit, pineapple, coconut, marshmallows and roasted pecans. Pour into a large glass bowl. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 8 hours before serving. When ready to serve, add cherries to top of ambrosia and serve.


Calories: 248kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 32mg | Potassium: 277mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 1331IU | Vitamin C: 71mg | Calcium: 69mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Robyn xo

From the Add a Pinch recipe archives. Originally published 2012.

Welcome to Add A Pinch

About Robyn

Robyn Stone is a cookbook author, wife, mom, and passionate home cook. Her tested and trusted recipes give readers the confidence to cook recipes the whole family will love. Robyn has been featured on Food Network, People, Southern Living, and more.

5 from 4 votes

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Review


  1. Rachel says:

    5 stars
    Correct ratios for everything, five stars. 

    I’d like to note that the cherries are only optional if you hate your family. 

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      Thanks for the giggle, Rachel! I’m so happy you enjoy this!!! xo

  2. Linda says:

    5 stars
    My mother had these same gold rimmed glasses that would come out every holiday to serve iced tea. She did make ambrosia and it was and still is a favorite of mine. This recipe is delicious. Thanks for bringing back those memories!

  3. Sylvieann says:

    Robyn, these ingredients sound delicious! Thanks for sharing!!!

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      Thanks so much, Sylvieann.

  4. Kate @ Framed Cooks says:

    Aren’t family recipes the best? My very favorite cookie recipe is my grandmother’s version of molasses cookies – they taste like my childhood! Meantime, I cannot believe I’ve never made ambrosia for my Southern husband – his long wait is now OVER! xo

  5. Suzie says:

    So thrilled you posted this again. I thought it would be perfect for Easter brunch!!! Thanks Robyn

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      I hope you enjoy it, Suzie! Happy Easter!

  6. Fran Mueller says:

    5 stars

    Reading your recipes reminds me so much of my Mother’s cooking and relatives. I love Ambrosia and can’t wait to make your’s. Your recipe is different from what I’m used to but looks delicious. I like all the ingredients you include, and I’m sure it’s worth every bite! I hadn’t planned to make it for Easter, but I am very tempted. I love your website and thanks for sharing your wonderful recipes!! I’m rating 5 stars because I’m sure it will deserve it!

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      Aww! Thank you, Fran! I hope you have a wonderful Easter! xo

  7. Cindy Nichols says:

    Love ambrosia, my grandmother always had a big bowl of mainly oranges & coconut at Christmas time, sure do miss those times!!

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      Such special memories, aren’t they? Makes me realize how much carrying on some of those family traditions will be important to my son later in life. (I hope! Ha ha!)

  8. Terry says:

    I love love ambrosia ~ I haven’t had any since my mama and aunts all passed away some 25 years ago. But that was always on the Christmas menu – thank you for a sweet memory!
    Merry Christmas Robyn!

  9. Liz says:

    Thank you Robyn. I love Ambrosia. Happy Holidays to you and your family.

  10. Jenny Flake says:

    This looks heavenly Robyn!!! Drooling 🙂

    1. Robyn Stone says:

      Thanks so much, Jenny! xo