Retro Desserts – How to Make Watergate Salad

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Watergate Salad
I was born with a serious sweet tooth. Dessert has always been my favorite part of every meal and as much as I love the fancy confections I learned to make in cooking school, I’m still prone to craving the desserts I devoured and longed for as a kid in the 70s, like Watergate Salad. I’m talking desserts full of all the sugary, processed foods that make nutritionists cringe and dentists jump for joy.

My mother’s recipe for Watergate Salad contains a trifecta of things that are an edible time capsule of my childhood — instant pudding mix, mini-marshmallows and — wait for it — non-dairy whipped topping! In keeping with the retro trend of quick and simple, this ‘salad’ stirs up in seconds.

I’ll be celebrating National Dessert Month by opening up my mother’s recipe box and sharing one of my favorite retro dessert recipes each week.

So, next time you get the urge to wax nostalgic about the 70s, turn on the BeeGees and have a bowl full of memories and Watergate Salad.


Thaw your Cool Whip if it’s frozen when you buy it. It needs to be soft in order to mix with the other ingredients.

Drain the crushed pineapple to prevent a soggy ‘salad.’ 

Mix the instant pistachio pudding and Cool Whip well, until the pudding dissolves completely or you’ll end up with a grainy consistency.


Large Bowl

Wooden Spoon or Spatula

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Stirring. You can do it!

This Watergate Salad is the perfect retro recipe for summer! It's a delicious mix of flavors straight from the 1970s and it stirs up in minutes!

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