Try old-fashioned cranberry souffle salad recipes from the 50s for a super retro-style Thanksgiving

Vintage cranberry surprise recipe from 1958 (1)

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If you want to serve something different this year for Thanksgiving or Christmas, a retro cranberry souffle salad like this may be just the thing!

Bring back some of the flair of the fifties with these once-popular but now, uh, unusual little side dishes to accompany your holiday feast.

Cranberry souffle salad can be the highlight of your meal

The Monroe News-Star (Louisiana) November 14, 1957

Almost a year has passed since a new member of cranberry souffle salad is here to take a proud bow.

So tart-sweet, so colorful, so quick to prepare, this new salad starts with the fresh pack of canned whole-cranberry sauce now on every grocer’s shelves. It’s perfect as a side enhancement of chicken, turkey, duck, pork or lamb for dinner.

As the main attraction for a luncheon or afternoon party, it needs only thin chicken or turkey sandwiches along with it to present a pretty and satisfying plate for man, woman or child.

Like all molded salads, this one is fine for doing ahead. It stores beautifully in the refrigerator for whipping out with other prepared ahead foods by a hostess who has been enjoying her own party right up to serving time.

ALSO SEE: Check out these savory jello salad recipes from the 50s

But also this cranberry souffle salad is the lifesaver of the woman who learns at five o’clock that she’s to have spur-of-the-moment dinner guests. She needs a fast luxury touch to make the meal special.

Time is short, but fruit-flavored gelatin and real mayonnaise, basic to every souffle salad, can in combination be popped right into the freezing unit without changing controls for the necessary 15 to 20 minutes.

It was the discovery of this possibility that changed the whole concept of a molded salad from one which required hours from starting to serving time to one which can be served handily a little over 60 minutes from the moment its ingredients are put together.

How to make a vintage-style cranberry souffle salad


1 package lemon-flavored gelatin
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup real mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
One 1-lb. can whole-cranberry sauce
12 cup chopped celery
1 9-oz. can crushed pineapple, drained


Dissolve gelatin in hot water. Add real mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt and 1/2 cup of the cranberry sauce. Blend thoroughly with rotary beater. Turn into freezing tray of automatic refrigerator and chill (without resetting control) 15 to 20 minutes, or until firm about 1 inch from edge but soft in center.

Turn into bowl and whip with rotary beater until fluffy. Fold in remaining cranberry sauce, celery and pineapple. Pour into a 1-quart mold. Chill until firm (about 1 hour). Unmold and garnish with salad greens. Serve with additional real mayonnaise, if desired. Yield: 6 servings.

Wait - what? How to make edible cranberry candles as your holiday salad (1960s)

Old-fashioned cranberry souffle salad recipes from the '50s

Classic cranberry souffle salad (1959)

1. Empty 2 one-pound cans cranberries, sauce or whole into a saucepan.

2. Sprinkle 2 envelopes Knox Unflavored Gelatin on cranberries to soften.

3. Place over heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until gelatin is dissolved.

4. Remove from heat and let cool until syrupy.

5. Fold in 1/2 cup Hellmann’s-Best Foods Real Mayonnaise and 1/2 cup finely chopped nuts.

6. Turn into a Kaiser Quilted Foil-lined 8″ x 5″ x 3″ loaf pan. Garnish top with mint or watercress if desired. Chill until firm.

7. To serve, lift salad out of pan and serve on salad greens. Makes 6 servings.

MORE: Serve cranberry ‘candles’ as your salad for the holidays (1960)

Cranberry souffle salad recipe (1959)

1950s recipe: Exciting new cranberry surprise! (1958)

Cranberry holiday surprise — it’s new and easy!

Serve with your holiday turkey, ham, chicken — or any meal. This colorful salad blends the tartness of cranberries with the delicate creaminess of Hellman’s Real Mayonnaise. A topping of Hellman’s, too, provides the final distinctive flavor garnish.

Yes, Cranberry Surprise is a delightfully tasty holiday treat — and even easier to make than regular fruit-gelatin salads!

A dozen divinely delicious classic cranberry sauce recipes from the seventies
Cranberry souffle salad recipe


1 envelope Knox unflavored gelatine
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup very hot water
1/2 cup Hellmann’s Real Mayonnaise
1 apple or orange, peeled and diced, or 1 8-1/2 ounce can pineapple tidbits
1/4 cup chopped walnuts


Mix gelatine with sugar and salt. Add hot water. Stir until dissolved. Add real mayonnaise, lemon juice and lemon rind. Blend with rotary beater.

Pour into refrigerator tray and quick-chill in freezing unit 10-15 min., or until firm about 1 inch from edge but soft in center.

Beat until fluffy. Fold in cranberry sauce, fruit and walnuts. Pour into molds and chill until firm. Unmold on lettuce. Top with real mayonnaise. 6 servings.

Exciting new cranberry surprise - souffle salad with mayo (1958)

Cranberry souffle salad recipe from the 50s

By Alvina Mattes, Food Editor – Des Moines Register (Iowa) Nov 14, 1957

A souffle salad is neither as tricky to make nor as fluffed-up as its name implies. The name merely designates a molded, and often whipped, salad containing mayonnaise.

In season now is cranberry souffle salad, made with canned whole cranberry sauce. It can, of course, be made well in advance.

However, if there should be an occasion when you want to turn it out in a hurry, you can get it to set in about 20 minutes by chilling it in the freezing compartment of the refrigerator with controls set for storage, not for freezing. True mayonnaise rather than a salad dressing should be used.


1 package lemon-flavored gelatin
1 cup hot water
1 pound canned whole cranberry sauce
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 small package cream cheese
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 oranges, diced
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/3 cup chopped nuts


1. Dissolve gelatin in hot water. Heat cranberry sauce until melted. Strain to get 13 cup juice and add juice to dissolved gelatin.

2. Blend mayonnaise and cream cheese. Add to gelatin mixture with lemon juice and salt. Blend thoroughly with rotary beater.

3. Turn into freezing tray and chill, with controls set at storage temperature for 15 to 20 minutes, or until edges are firm to depth of about 1 inch.

4. Turn into bowl and whip with rotary beater until fluffy. Fold in cranberry sauce, oranges, celery and nuts.

5. Pour into mold and chill until firm, about 1 hour. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

VARIATION: Omit cream cheese. Use one 9-oz. can drained crushed pineapple in place of oranges. Omit nuts if desired.

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