Mom’s Easy Orange Jello Salad

Easy Orange Jell-o Salad

Happy July! Wow, June went fast. I’m excited for the 4th of July festivities coming up here in Idaho Falls! We’ve got quite the firework show here.

This is one of those recipes that happens to show up at every other eating event in my family. We love it! My older brother especially loves it. The funny thing about this salad is that the name doesn’t necessarily mean it’s MY mom’s orange jello salad. It’s pretty much every mom in Idaho’s jell-o salad. And probably Utah. I want to hear from you if this is a popular thing where you are now or when you were growing up! Of course when I was growing up I believed that anything my mom made was her original recipe. Sure did love Mom’s cookin’!

Orange Jello Salad

If you haven’t heard of this jello salad, this is the deal: It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s kid-friendly, and it’s delicious. You can also make this same salad with strawberries, raspberries, or any other kind of jello and matching fruit you can find. All I can say is that this salad will be present at every other bbq in my family this summer.

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Here’s all you’ll need for this salad when making it for a small group (Can you tell where I went shopping?):

  • 1 (3 oz )package of orange jello gelatin
  • 1 (11 oz) can mandarin oranges
  • 1 (16 oz) container of cottage cheese
  • 1 (8 oz) container Cool Whip topping

If you’re making this for a larger group buy the large containers of all these products to make a larger salad. You’ll have to get two cans of oranges unless you can find a big can somewhere.

Directions (You’ll want to make this in a separate bowl from what you’re serving it in.)

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Begin by putting all the cottage cheese in a medium-sized bowl.

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Next, pour the orange jell-o into the bowl and mix it with the cottage cheese.

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It’s time to add the can of oranges. You’ll want to take out the juice so it doesn’t make the salad into a soup. (Notice I’m pouring the juice into a cup? There’s got to be someone else out there who drinks the mandarin orange juice that doesn’t get used! My husband thinks I’m crazy.)

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Throw in the oranges once the juice is gone.

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Finally, put all the whipped topping in the bowl and FOLD it into the rest of the mixture. If you stir this together it will turn into soup. (Not that orange soup would be bad!)

After everything is combined put the salad into the bowl you plan on serving it in. And that’s it! Fast, easy, and great with a burger and chips at a bbq.

5 from 1 vote
Easy Orange Jell-o Salad
Mom's Easy Orange Jello Salad
Prep Time
15 mins
Total Time
15 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
  • 1 16 oz cottage cheese small curd
  • 1 3 oz box orange jello
  • 1 11 oz can mandarain oranges drained
  • 1 8 oz Cool Whip thawed
  1. Place cottage cheese in the bottom of a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle jello powder over top.

  2. Stir jello and cottage cheese together; add oranges and carefully stir to combine.

  3. Fold in the Cool Whip to combine with other ingredients. Be careful not to mix it too hard or too much so you don't thin it out.

  4. Cover and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour before serving. (I like to put it in a clean serving bowl for parties and get togethers.)

This jello salad is always a favorite when I bring it to a party or get together. Here are a few other party salad favorites…

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Fresh Basil & Pepperoni Tortellini Salad

Fresh Basil & Pepperoni Tortellini Salad

5-Minute Raspberry Jello Salad

5-Minute Raspberry Jello Salad


  1. Deborah Smith says

    I’ve been making this since somewhere back in the 70’s. Always a hit. On occasion I would add some chopped pecans. My daughter now makes this for her own family. Oh yeah, I grew up in Florida.

  2. Kathleen says

    I make a similar salad, but use crushed pineapple, strawberry Jell-O, cottage cheese, cool whip and walnut pieces (optional). My kids and grandkids LOVE it! I’m going to try this one too, it sounds good!

  3. says

    I make this all the time but I also add drained pineapple tidbits. I mix everything together real good and then add the mandarin oranges and just fold them in so they don’t go to pieces.

  4. Shannon says

    This is a staple recipe for us at Christmas time! I do drain the mandarins but I will also either put the cottage cheese in a sieve and let it drain off or just buy the “dry curd” cottage cheese. Doing this means that any leftovers do NOT go runny/watery the next day!

    Oh….and I’m in Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada. 🙂

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