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Pretzel Gelatin Dessert

This is one of my mother's absolute favorite desserts. The salty pretzel crust is the perfect complement to the sweet cream cheese filling. —Erin Frakes, Moline, Illinois
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. + chilling
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 2 cups crushed pretzels
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 carton (8 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 2 packages (3 ounces each) strawberry gelatin
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • Optional: Fresh strawberries and additional whipped topping


  • Preheat oven to 350°. Mix crushed pretzels, melted butter and sugar; press onto bottom of an ungreased 13x9-in. baking dish. Bake 10 minutes. Cool completely.
  • For filling, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Stir in whipped topping; spread over crust. Refrigerate, covered, until cold.
  • In a small bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in cold water; refrigerate until partially set. Pour carefully over filling. Refrigerate, covered, until firm, 4-6 hours.
  • Cut into squares. If desired, serve with strawberries and additional whipped topping.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 401 calories, 22g fat (14g saturated fat), 50mg cholesterol, 401mg sodium, 48g carbohydrate (37g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.

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  • Elaine
    Jul 10, 2019

    I used raspberry jello for more flavor, and I sprinkled fresh blueberries on the cream cheese filling and topped with jello mixture.

  • Rachel
    Jun 29, 2019

    This has been a family favorite for 50 years. Try adding frozen unsweetened strawberries on the top before pouring on the jello. You will only need 1sm. pk. of jello. Also substitute pineapple juice for the water in the jello. We also spread on the cream cheese and sugar layer then a layer of whipped topping. My great aunt Tilly was in charge of the kitchens for Howard Jones back in the 60' or 70's. Family lore is that's where this recipe originated.

  • Kimberli
    Jun 10, 2019

    No comment left

  • rob
    Apr 29, 2019

    I grew up with this, although it’s usually a side, not dessert. And we always added sliced, sweetened strawberries to the gelatin. It can be made with gluten-free pretzels as well. One of my family’s favorites!

  • Gina
    Dec 31, 2018

    Can i ask a question? Can i add juice to unflavored gelatin to make this dessert or must i use flavored? Any ratio advice?

  • Micheline Ann
    Jul 10, 2018

    HAVE been making this dessert for a very long time :) Nice to see it up here again for all of the "newer" Generations! Amnd ANYONE can make this adding "new" tastes twists! :) I like reading recipes that someone changed with different ingredients, and then they ARE'T fake, just THEIR renditions ;) Yeah, seems like Rinty WAS having a bad day...maybe her cake fell ;)

  • Jechapman50
    May 16, 2018

    Just made this Jello Dessert on Monday, as my Potluck Dish and it was a BIG HIT!

  • Karen
    Mar 25, 2018

    Love this recipe. I make it with orange jello and place mandarin oranges in place then carefully pour on the slightly jelled jello. People can’t figure out what’s in the crust and are amazed that it’s pretzles!

  • 4Breyer
    Nov 16, 2017

    Looking forward to making this. I'm going to use raspberry jello and raspberries from my garden. Will let you know how it turns out.

  • fhquilting
    Aug 31, 2017

    Wonderful dessert...especially with raspberries and raspberry jello. I have also made it on a corn flake crust.I think Rinty's problem is anger and she probably strikes out often. Her review was tasteless and unnecessary.