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Pistachio Salad

This recipe for pistachio salad or Watergate salad is simple, delicious, and perfect for the spring and summer months. If you need a recipe to take to your next potluck try out this tasty dessert!

When it comes to desserts its best to keep it simple, right? This easy dessert recipe for pistachio salad is great for sharing. It’s indulgent and light, packed with flavor and texture. A classic treat that everyone will love.

If you’ve never made a Watergate salad before you’ll want to try out this pistachio salad! It’s such a simple dessert or potluck dish.

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Pin showing the finished pistachio salad recipe with title in the top left.

This is one of those salads that I think everyone has eaten at some point in their life but is never quite sure where the recipe comes from! It’s a family favorite for parties and gatherings so if you’ve never made it for yourself before, you aren’t alone!

Try out this simple way to throw together a really delicious dessert salad. This pistachio fluff is so easy to make you can whip it up right before serving. I don’t usually make mine too far in advance or the marshmallows will eventually break down entirely. It’s best eaten on the same day…tho that’s not usually an issue once everyone gets a taste.

A top down look at a serving of the pistachio salad with the full recipe in back.

What is Watergate salad?

Traditionally Watergate salad is made with pistachio pudding, canned pineapple, whipped cream, crushed pecans, and marshmallows. It’s known by several names like shut the gate salad, green goop, and even green fluff or pistachio delight.

It’s a sweet salad recipe that is creamy and delicious. The pecans give it texture and the marshmallows get soft and creamy after a few hours. Usually we make this recipe for parties and family gatherings. It’s great to share!

A close up of the full bowl of pistachio salad ready to s serve.

What is in a pistachio salad?

Making this pistachio salad is really easy, you’ll need a few simple ingredients to get started. All of this is stuff you can keep on hand until you are ready to prepare the salad. It makes it one of the best recipes to make when you aren’t really planning on needing a dessert!

This recipe uses pistachio instant pudding, crushed pineapple, mini marshmallows, chopped nuts, cool whip and cherries for the top if you want!

That’s all you will need to make this really simple recipe. Trust me, you’ll love it and it’s family friendly. Not everyone loves pistachios but this recipe will change their tune about pistachio flavored dessert I can assure you!

Ingredients needed for pistachio Watergate salad.

Kitchen essentials for tasty recipes like this Watergate salad:

When you head into the kitchen to make some of these great recipes (like a Watergate salad) you’ll want to have the best tools on hand.

I like half sheet baking pans that are quality (hello no noisy pops or sloshed cookie dough from twisting), I line my cookie sheets with silicone baking mats. These are a must when doing cake mix recipes which can settle and become thin at lot easier than traditional cookie dough. 

Of course mixing bowls, a mixerspatula, and some whisks should be on your list if you don’t have ones that you love. I also like to have a set of cooling racks so that my recipes can properly cool before they’re scarfed down by my family!

When it comes to desserts like this one you can’t go wrong with a mixing bowl that is cute enough to work as a serving dish as well! I like these ones!

A plate with some pistachio salad on it ready to eat

How to make pistachio fluff salad:

You’ll love how easy it is to make this simple salad. Pistachio fluff is great to make and share. It’s just four or five steps and you will have this recipe ready to enjoy! Let’s take a look at just how simple this dessert is to make at home.

Place pudding mix, pineapple, marshmallows & nuts into a large mixing bowl.

more ingredients being mixed for the pistachio salad.

Mix well.

Fold in the cool whip and mix.

ingredients being mixed.

Transfer to a serving bowl.

A plate of salad held up and ready to be enjoyed.

Top with a cherry & enjoy!

Looking for even more delicious desserts that require no baking?!

If you like no bake desserts you have landed in just the right spot. This is a list of some of my favorite no bake desserts that I think you will really enjoy. Try out some of these simple dessert recipes and let me know which ones are your favorites.

Don’t miss out on No Bake Pumpkin Dessert, Easy No Bake Cracker Candy Treats, No Bake Peanut Butter Cookies, No Bake Chocolate Pudding Dessert, Cookies and Cream No Bake Dessert, Delicious Cannoli Dip, Easy No-Bake Chocolate Pudding Cake Recipe, Nutella Cheesecake, White Chocolate Cheesecake Dip and Strawberry Cheesecake Fudge!

A finished salad in a serving bowl ready to serve.

Printable Pistachio Salad Recipe:

Yield: 12 Servings

Pistachio Salad

Featured image showing the finished pistachio salad ready to be enjoyed.

This recipe for pistachio salad or Watergate salad is simple, delicious, and perfect for the spring and summer months. If you need a recipe to take to your next potluck try out this tasty dessert!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 3.4 oz pistachio Jell-O instant pudding mix
  • 20 oz can crushed pineapple
  • 1 cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (your favorite)
  • 8 oz container Cool Whip
  • Cherries (for garnish)


  1. Place pudding mix, pineapple, marshmallows & nuts into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Mix well.
  3. Fold in the cool whip and mix.
  4. Transfer to a serving bowl.
  5. Top with a cherry & enjoy!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 201Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 100mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 2gSugar: 16gProtein: 4g

I am not a medical expert. These calculations are provided as a courtesy.

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One Comment

  1. I will enjoy this as a lovely dessert. I visited you via November Craftastic Monday Link Party
    I linked up this week with = 98+99. Hope you will join us M-S SeniorSalonPitStop and W-S #WordlessWednesday. You will find both under BLOGGING.

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