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Jello Cream Cheese Dessert

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We are kicking it old school today with this Jello cream cheese dessert made with pineapples and cherry pie filling!

Jello Desserts at Grandma’s House

Is this a recipe you remember from your childhood? Or maybe it just brings back fond memories of eating Jello on your grandma’s floral-print couch watching Jeopardy? Just me?

Grandma Thelma's Jello Cream Cheese Dessert

Grandma Thelma

So, I still love Jello. And when I recently asked my family to send me their favorite childhood recipes, this is one that I got pretty excited about. This one came from my mom’s side of the family from my cousin’s partner, Anita. Her grandma, Thelma, used to make this dessert and they enjoyed it at a number of their family gatherings.

An Easy, No-bake, Cheesecake-like Dessert

This Jello dessert is almost like an upside down, no-bake cheesecake. The bottom layer is a mixture of cherry gelatin and pie filling lightly gelled together with crushed pineapples. The second layer is a sweetened mixture of whipped cream cheese and Greek yogurt.

Some modern healthier tweaks

Greek Yogurt. Now, the original recipe called for sour cream but I was out and I thought Greek yogurt would do the job while lightening up the calorie count of the dessert. Win-win. One other change I made was to the topping.

Granola Topping. Grandma Thelma’s original recipe called for chopped nuts but the hubs is allergic to peanuts and most nuts have a trace amount of peanuts, so I opted for a peanut-free granola topping. Up to you what you want to use. Both are delicious or leave them off all together if you have picky eaters.

My favorite brand of granola is Mason St. Super Seed, Fruit and Nut Granola. You can find it at Sam’s Club. It’s peanut-free and it has a great variety of grains, nuts and seeds and it’s got an ever so slightly chewy texture. It’s so good you could east if by the spoonful!

Shop Mason St. Granola at Sam’s Club

Why is this Jello cream cheese dessert such a classic?

There’s so much to love about it, really.

Here’s what love about this jello dessert:

  • It’s super easy to make. Like literally takes 10 minutes of prep all said and done.
  • This recipe contains real fruit and cream cheese so it’s a dessert with actual nutritional value.
  • It’s so versatile. Not a huge fan of cherries? Try using strawberry pie filling or any other fruit you prefer then choose a matching jello flavor. You could also swap out the pineapples for a different fruit. Get creative! Any fruit combo works.
  • You don’t need a Jello mold. You could put this in a mold if you’ve got one. But I opted to use my glass casserole dish. You can still see the pretty layers, but you don’t have to hold your breath hoping it stays in one piece while you flip it.

Here are a few tips for success if you’re making this for the first time:

Grease your casserole dish with butter and the Jello wont stick to the sides, making it come out much easier when you go to cut a slice.

Also, you’ll want to use a pretty large casserole dish. I used my Pioneer woman casserole dish, which I love because it’s so pretty, but the jello mixture just barely fit so moving it from my kitchen counter to the basement fridge without spilling any was a real challenge because the mixture is very swishy before it sets.

Watch the video how-to to see how to make this step by step:

Hungry for more dessert recipes?

Do you have a sweet tooth but strive to stay healthy? Browse my other dessert recipes. I typically keep them pretty light and/or somewhat healthy! Yes, it’s possible. 🙂

This Jello Cream Cheese Dessert recipe was featured on South Your Mouth.

Jello Cream Cheese Dessert

Jello Cream Cheese Dessert with Pineapple and Cherries

Jello Cream Cheese Dessert

This Jello dessert is almost like an upside down, no-bake cheesecake. The bottom layer is a mixture of cherry gelatin and pie filling lightly gelled together with crushed pineapples. 
Author: Angela G.
5 from 5 reviews
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Print Pin Rate
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Skill Level: Easy
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 12 minutes
Servings: 12 Servings
Yield: 1 casserole dish


  • 2 boxes cherry Jell-O 3 oz each
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 21 oz cherry pie filling
  • 20 oz crushed pineapple


  • 8 oz whipped cream cheese
  • 8 oz Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
  • cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup chopped nuts or granola


  • Mix Jello into with boiling water (I microwaved the water in a large glass bowl until bubbling).
  • Stir in pie filling and pineapple. Mix well then pour into a greased baking pan. Carefully move to the fridge and chill until set (about 2-4 hours).
  • To prepare the topping, beat whipped cream cheese, Greek yogurt (or sour cream), sugar and vanilla using a hand mixer until smooth.
  • When Jello mixture is set, spread cream cheese mixture on top, then layer with granola or chopped nuts and serve immediately. Use a thin spatula to slice and serve.


Nutrition Facts

Calories: 270kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 143mg | Potassium: 187mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 26g | Vitamin A: 381IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 1mg
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Monday 28th of February 2022

Do you drain the crushed pineapple or include the entire can drained? Recipe is not very clear. Please clarify.

Angela G.

Monday 28th of February 2022

Hi Alison, you do not need to drain the crushed pineapples. Just go ahead and add in the entire contents of the can. Thanks for asking!

Danielle K.

Thursday 25th of November 2021

Are you use a 9x13 dish?

Angela G.

Thursday 25th of November 2021

Hi Danielle, Yes. I use a 9x13.

Allen Jeffery

Saturday 13th of November 2021

When it says grease the pan what do you use to grease the pan

Angela G.

Saturday 13th of November 2021

I would use vegetable oil or an oil without flavor. Thanks for asking!


Thursday 9th of September 2021

Thank you for sharing this recipe. My mom made this alot during the 60s and 70s she topped with a few broken pretzels. I loved this. Made it now and it is still great.

Angela G.

Thursday 9th of September 2021

You’re welcome! I love recipes that remind me of times past. Pretzels sound like a yummy topping idea.

Debra C.

Saturday 28th of August 2021

I have made this recipe twice and it is a so good! Its quick and easy to make with ingredients I usually have on hand. I made it with strawberry pie filling and strawberry jello.

Angela G.

Saturday 28th of August 2021

Hi Debra, I’m so glad you’ve been enjoying it! Thanks for the feedback :)