Watergate Salad, pistachio pudding fluff, that green stuff, no matter what you call it, this classic dessert is a year round favourite! If you love pistachio pudding this is the dessert for you! I first published this recipe when we were staying in Phoenix a few years ago and it was time for new photo and a how-to video as well!
Classic Pistachio Pudding Watergate Salad Recipe
It actually took me until 3 years ago to make Watergate Salad myself. When we were at the Phoenix House (which is what it is referred to in our house) I turned over a package of my beloved pistachio pudding in my hands and read the recipe which was on the box. I can’t believe that I had never read the package and made Watergate Salad. How could I have been ignoring a fabulous retro recipe all those years? Granted, I do only allow myself the pistachio pudding indulgence every few months, otherwise it might get out of control and you’d start seeing pistachio pudding chicken, pistachio pudding beef…it might get a little crazy on here.
How to Make Watergate Salad Video
My little Rose was my photography assistant that day many years ago and while her brother definitely loves helping me, she has always been the one who loves getting behind the camera. Sometimes it’s nice to take a moment in the flurry of working on everything and see the joy in what I do, through her eyes. The Rose loves to tell me how she wants to do what I do when she grows up and I’m unsure all the time on what to tell her -other than “sure honey, after you go to University and get a degree”.
Her photo is SO cute and not bad at all for a 9 year old little girl!
Why do they call it Watergate Salad?
It has been guessed that when this was debuted by Kraft as “Pistachio Pineapple Delight” a smart and wily editor for a Chicago newspaper called it “Watergate Salad” instead, as this recipe came out in the 1970’s. It is thought that he/she was trying to grab the public’s attention as the Watergate scandal was in all of the news at the time. Apparently they reprinted the recipe with the new name of Watergate Salad – and it has stuck ever since!
What is Watergate Cake?
Watergate Salad Cake is an amazing concoction that uses pecan cake mix, pistachio pudding mix and pineapple to bake up what is honestly one of my favourite cakes ever – because pistachio pudding, amiright? My recipe has a decadent pistachio pudding icing recipe to top the cake as well but you can always make my Pistachio Pudding Buttercream Icing for another delicious frosting.
Karlynn’s Tips & Tricks for Making Watergate Salad
- This is best when left in the fridge for a few hours, but not overnight! The pineapple juice will eventually make everything watery instead of jelled together. Aim to make it the morning of an event or a few hours beforehand.
- You can switch the pecans to another type of nut if wanted.
- Top with extra whipped cream, maraschino cherries, whatever you desire!
This is definitely an evil recipe that I can only make every once in a while, as I could eat it for a week straight, no regrets. (Ok fine, I am sure I would regret it.) It’s up there with my Pistachio Pudding Cookies as one of my favorite pistachio treats!
Love you more than
chocolate pistachio pudding,
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Watergate Salad Recipe
Watergate Salad, pistachio pudding fluff, that green stuff, no matter what you call it, this classic dessert is a year round favourite! If you love pistachio pudding this is the dessert for you!
- Prep Time
- 10 minutes
- Total Time
- 10 minutes
- Karlynn Johnston
- one 20 .oz can crushed pineapple in juice undrained
- one 3.4 . oz pkg. JELL-O Pistachio Flavor Instant Pudding
- 1 cup Miniature Marshmallows
- 1/2 cup chopped Pecans
- 1-1/2 cups thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping OR homemade whipped cream
Homemade Whipped Cream
- 3/4 cup whipping cream
- 1 tbsp white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Combine the crushed pineapple and pudding mix in a large bowl. Stir until the pudding mix is dissolved into the juices.
Stir in the marshmallows and pecans.
To make the whipped cream if you are using it, combine the whipping cream, sugar and vanilla in a medium bowl. Beat on high speed until soft peaks form.
Stir in the Cool Whip or homemade whipped cream and refrigerate for at least one hour. Scoop out and serve in bowls, topping with cherries or more whipped cream if desired.
You can mix and match the nuts or leave them out entirely!
All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.