Minnesota Berry Cheesecake Salad

Whether it’s July 4th or you’re just on salad duty for the next potluck, trust me, this one’s a winner. Around here, we know salads can be sweet too, and this Berry Cheesecake Salad is as Midwest as it gets. Get ready for a creamy, cheesecake-like creamy, dreamy dish stuffed with the sweetness of ripe berries!

Friends, we are in the middle of our Minnesota “salads” celebration. Because there isn’t anything quite like Minnesota’s way of defining salads and many of you have spent your lives never enjoying these gems. Here are some of the other “salads” that are on the site (and be on the watch for more in the coming weeks!)…

ingredients for Minnesota Berry Cheesecake Salad

Key Ingredients:

  1. Strawberries: These add sweetness and a juicy texture to the dish. You can substitute with other berries like blackberries or sliced peaches for a similar effect. Just ensure they are ripe and fresh for the best flavor. If substituting, adjust the sweetness accordingly by adding more or less powdered sugar.
  2. Blueberries: Blueberries contribute a burst of tartness and vibrant color. If you don’t have blueberries on hand, you can use other berries like cranberries or diced apples. Just keep in mind the tartness level may differ, so adjust the sweetness accordingly.
  3. Raspberries: Raspberries offer a slightly tangy flavor and a beautiful red hue. You can replace them with sliced strawberries or blackberries if needed. Again, adjust the sweetness to your taste if substituting.
  4. Cream Cheese: Cream cheese provides a creamy and tangy base for the fruit salad. If you prefer a lighter option, you can use Greek yogurt instead. Just note that Greek yogurt is tangier than cream cheese, so you might need to adjust the sweetness to balance the flavors.
  5. Powdered Sugar: Powdered sugar sweetens the cream cheese mixture and helps create a smooth texture. If you’re trying to cut down on sugar, you can use honey or maple syrup as a substitute. Start with a smaller amount and adjust to taste, as these alternatives can be sweeter than powdered sugar.
  6. Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract enhances the flavor profile of the dish with its warm and aromatic notes. If you don’t have vanilla extract, you can omit it or use almond extract for a different flavor dimension. Just use a smaller amount of almond extract, as it tends to be stronger than vanilla.
  7. Cool Whip: Cool Whip adds a light and fluffy texture to the fruit salad. If you prefer to use homemade whipped cream, you can substitute it for Cool Whip. See below for instructions and tips for using whipping cream instead of Cool Whip.

Tips and Tricks:

  • Ensure the cream cheese is softened before mixing to achieve a smooth and creamy consistency.
  • When folding in the Cool Whip or whipped cream, do so gently to maintain the airy texture.
  • If you’re making substitutions, taste the mixture as you go to adjust the sweetness and tartness levels according to your preference.
  • Garnish with additional berries just before serving for an extra pop of color and freshness.
  • Refrigerate the fruit salad for at least an hour before serving to allow the flavors to meld together and for a refreshing chill.

Whipped Cream Substitution:

  1. Ingredients:
    • 1 cup whipping cream
    • 2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar (adjust to taste)
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  2. Directions:
    • In a mixing bowl, combine the whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.
    • Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, whip the mixture on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Be careful not to overwhip, as it can turn into butter.
    • Once the whipped cream is ready, continue with the recipe as instructed, folding the whipped cream gently into the cream cheese mixture.

Tips for Substituting Whipping Cream:

  1. Stability: Whipped cream tends to be less stable than Cool Whip, especially if it’s not stabilized with gelatin or another thickening agent. Make sure that you whip the cream until stiff peaks form to maintain its structure.
  2. Sweetness: Adjust the amount of powdered sugar to your taste preference. You may need to add a bit more sugar compared to Cool Whip, because homemade whipped cream can be less sweet.
  3. Consistency: Homemade whipped cream has a lighter and airier texture compared to Cool Whip, which can affect the mouthfeel of the fruit salad. P.S. isn’t mouthfeel a strange word — it really is the best way to describe it, though. However, many people prefer the freshness and flavor of homemade whipped cream.
  4. Storage: Keep in mind that homemade whipped cream tends to deflate over time, so try to enjoy the fruit salad on the same day it’s made to get the best texture and flavor.
Minnesota Berry Cheesecake Salad

Minnesota Berry Cheesecake Salad

| 8 servings
Prep Time | 10 minutes
Chill Time | 1 hour
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
A light and delicious dessert, perfect for summer. This cheesecake salad is loaded with
fresh berries and a flavorful base that makes it taste just like cheesecake.


  • 1 lb strawberries sliced
  • 1 pint blueberries
  • 6 oz raspberries
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 oz cool whip
Check out our Kitchen Reference Guide for help with unfamiliar terms.


  • In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla on medium-high
  • speed for 3 minutes, until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
  • Fold the cool whip into the mixture.
  • Slice the strawberries.
  • Add the fruit to the bowl, and gently toss, until coated. Garnish with additional berries if
  • desired.
  • Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.


Calories: 235kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 4gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 111mgPotassium: 233mgFiber: 4gSugar: 23gVitamin A: 476IUVitamin C: 45mgCalcium: 76mgIron: 1mg

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