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Cream Cheese Strawberry Pretzel Dessert (oh yum!!)


I’m not sure when I tasted this dessert for the first time.  Maybe college?  But I’ve loved it ever since.  But I haven’t had it in a while.  A very long while.  And that’s because this whole Celiac/gluten free thing takes away my most favorite things.  Urrrgh. ;)  And the most important ingredient in this delicious little dessert, is the pretzels (aka: full of gluten)…….so I haven’t had it in a while.  And yes, there have been gluten free pretzels on the market for a while but well, let me put it nicely, they weren’t my favorite.


However {{{{cue angels singing}}}}, my cousin (who is also gluten free……yes, we have a lot of bad Celiac genes in our family! ;) ) told me that the Snyder’s Pretzel brand came out with a gluten free variety!  Hooray!  And guess what?  I found some at Whole Foods and they actually taste like real pretzels.  They are the best by far.  Thanks Whitney! 




Anyway, one of the very first things that I thought of after trying these pretzels, was that I could make this yummy crunchy strawberry cream cheese-y pretzel dessert.  I know, I have issues!  So I looked online and found one that was similar to what I remembered, made a few adjustments, and then made a whole pan of this Creamy Strawberry Pretzel Dessert.  Oh yes, it blew my socks right off.  Just like it used to! :)



And nothing beats using fresh summer strawberries. (However, you can use frozen too.)



My little ones gobbled and gobbled and gobbled it up.  Connor kept asking for more Strawberry Cake.  Whatever you call it, it’s delicious! :)




  There’s something about the sweet juicy strawberries and the salty crunch of the pretzels that really does a number on your taste buds. (I guess the sweet cream cheese filling doesn’t hurt either!)




I intended on making this for the 4th.  But plans changed, we traveled last minute, and this had to wait until the weekend. 


And yum, every bite tastes like summer!



Wanna bite?


First of all, this recipe works with regular ‘ol gluten FULL pretzels too.  Not just gluten FREE. ;)


I found these pretzels at Whole Foods.  My sister found them at Kind Soopers and my cousin found them at WalMart.  So, be on the lookout if need some gluten free pretzels.  (And yes, there are other brands of gluten free pretzels….but none taste this good.  And no, this isn’t a sponsored post.  I really just love them THIS much!)


They even have sticks too.  Cool.



Full recipe is written out below.


First, mix 2 cups of boiling water and 1 package (6 ounce) strawberry flavor gelatin.  Stir until dissolved. 


Set aside and let cool to room temperature.  Then begin working on the next steps.


Next, crush an 8 ounce bag of pretzels (or crumble in food processor) and mix that with 5 tablespoons of sugar and 3/4 cup of melted butter.  Mix well and spread mixture into a 9 x 13 pan.  Press into bottom.  Bake at 400 (F) for 7-10 minutes, or until lightly browned.


I like to leave big chunks of pretzels mixed with smaller bits.  I love a good hearty pretzel bite!  But you can keep crushing the pretzels to make a finer crust.


Allow the crust to cool completely.


While that’s cooling, place 8 ounces of cream cheese (room temperature) and 1 cup of granulated sugar.  Mix completely.  Add 3 cups of whipped topping (I used cool whip) and mix that in.  Poor over cooled crust.


Spread around, until an even layer covers the crust.  Place pan in the fridge while you work on the next step.


Next, slice fresh strawberries (frozen can be used as well).


Add 3 cups of sliced strawberries to your room temperature gelatin.  Mix together.  Place in fridge to allow gelatin to thicken just a bit.


Pour mixture over cream layer.  Distribute strawberries evenly.


Place the entire pan into the fridge until the gelatin layer is completely firm.


Then beat about 2 cups of heavy whipping cream in a mixer until soft peaks form.  Add 1/2 cup of powdered sugar at a time to sweeten up your whipped cream, adding more sugar if desired.  Add a dollop of whipped cream to top of each serving of dessert.  (Or whipped topping can be used as well.)



Serve and enjoy. 


And then serve another piece.  Because your guests will want more! :)





Creamy Strawberry Pretzel Dessert


(adapted from this recipe)


  • 8 ounce bag of crushed pretzels
  • 5 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 package (6 ounce) strawberry flavor gelatin
  • 8 ounces (1 package) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 cup whipped topping
  • 3 cups sliced strawberries, fresh or frozen
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream (optional)
  • 1/2-1 cup powdered sugar (optional)



Preheat oven to 400 F.


Crush pretzels with a rolling pin or food processor. Combine crushed pretzels with 5 tablespoons sugar and melted butter. Press pretzel mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking pan to form a crust. Bake 7 to 10 minutes until lightly browned. Cool completely.  While the crust is cooling, combine 2 cups boiling water with gelatin in a bowl. Stir until dissolved and let cool to room temperature. Set aside.  Using a mixer, beat cream cheese, 1 cup sugar, and whipped topping, until combined. Spread evenly over cooled crust.  Place in fridge until needed.  Add strawberries to cooled gelatin and place in fridge to let it thicken slightly.  Then spread strawberries and gelatin over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate until firm.


Whip the heavy whipping cream in  mixer until soft peaks form.  Add a 1/2 cup of powdered sugar at first, then stop there or add more to taste.  Mix again. 


Cut into squares, add dollop of whipped cream on top, and serve.


**I used “whipped topping” in the filling mixture because it tends to hold its shape better.  However, homemade whipped cream can be substituted.





Ashley Johnston

Administrator at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with the craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!

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Hi, I'm Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

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