Bobby’s Lighter Strawberry Pretzel Salad

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By Bobby Deen

358 Fewer Calories
24g Less Fat

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

1 1/2 cups unsalted crushed pretzels (about 15 pretzel rods)
4 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons applesauce
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 (8-ounce) package reduced-fat cream cheese
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup reduced-fat nondairy whipped topping
2 cups boiling water
2 (0.30-ounce) packages sugar-free strawberry gelatin
2 cups cold water
1 cup fresh sliced strawberries
1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.

Combine the pretzels, melted butter, applesauce, and 2 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl until blended. Press the mixture into the pan. Bake until just set, 5 – 7 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar in a large bowl with a hand mixer on medium speed until smooth. Fold in the whipped topping. Spread the filling over the cooled crust. Refrigerate until well chilled, 30 – 40 minutes.

Pour the boiling water over the gelatin in a medium bowl, stirring until the gelatin dissolves completely, 1 – 2 minutes. Stir in the cold water until blended.  Add the strawberries and crushed pineapple, stirring to combine well. Pour the gelatin mixture over the cream cheese mixture. Refrigerate until set, 3 – 4 hours.

Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Difficulty: Easy
Yield: 12 servings

Per Serving: (1/12th of salad): 211 Cal; 3 g Protein; 9 g Tot Fat; 6 g Sat Fat; 2 g Mono Fat; 30 g Carb; 1 g Fiber; 22 g Sugar; 28 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 238 mg Sodium; 25 mg Cholesterol

Bobby’s Tip:
An easy way to crush the pretzels is to place them in a food storage bag and crush them lightly with a rolling pin (or baseball bat) until the pretzels are finely crushed.

Original recipe courtesy Paula Deen:  Strawberry Pretzel Salad
Lightened Up recipe courtesy of Bobby Deen and the Paula Deen Test Kitchen

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Reader Comments:


this is a lighter but has artificial sweeteners that my daughter can not have. People eat real food in moderation 80% healthy veggies and fruit and lean meat or fish then 20% indulge and enjoy life...

By christy on August 14, 2013


I have not tried this recipe yet. I am a bit confused about the ingredient amounts of sugar. The directions say different amounts than the ingredient list does. Which is correct?

By Annette on June 15, 2012


So I may be dumb but I am on Weight Watchers and whoever said this recipe would be good...Am I look at this wrong but is that the nutrition info for the whole dish or for one serving? Usually things are given is info per serving but this seems kind of high...Anyone know?!?

By Rachel on March 28, 2011

Copy and paste the recipe in a program like Microsoft Word, then print.

By SweetShay on August 29, 2010

Is there a Light cookbook in the future??

By Debbie on August 11, 2010

Hi!  Wonderful lighter recipes but can’t carry my computer to the kitchen. Help!!  I need a way to print them out.  Thanks and keep up the good work.

By Corinne G on August 03, 2010

this is so good and thank you Bobby for doing this.  I am on Weight Watchers and will share this with everyone there.

By Sonja Swift McCarn on July 12, 2010

I also would like to know how to print the Lighten Up versions of Bobby’s recipes?

By Linda Barnes on July 06, 2010

I love the lighter recipes from Bobby but would
like to print then like I do Paula’s

Any suggestions on how.

By RACHEL MERCER on May 25, 2010

Does anybody think we could use Splenda instead of sugar when it calls for it?  Or is that a bad idea?

By Leslie on May 21, 2010

I absolutely adore your moma`s cookin but over the years have tried to make them lighter also.Have you tried using Splenda in any of them,it cuts more calories and is also delicious.My husband is in the Army,I have made your family`s recipes for our friends all over the world.I hope we get to meet you all one day.

By Shelia Badger on May 18, 2010

This strawberry pretzel salad is one of my all time favorites but since I have become diabetic I have given it up. NOW I can have it again with this lighter and sugar free version. Thank you so much for re-working this one.

By Michele on May 17, 2010

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Paula, I love watching you and your family. I miss seeing your show, I watched you everyday. My son lives in Charleston S.C. He took me to the Lady & Sons to eat. Oh my goodness! People are always telling me that I look just like the cooking lady Paula Deen. I always tell them that you are my hero. May God Bless You Mary Ann
Mary Ann Tharp in A Summer of Burgers on August 15, 2014 at 10:48 pm

Add a few spoonfuls of parmesan cheese to the flour and cornmeal breading and it kicks the tomatoes up another notch. Bev
in Crispy Fried Green Tomatoes on August 15, 2014 at 10:33 am

I just bought Paula's Peach Salad Dressing and wondered if anyone has a good recipe that they use it in?
Melissa in Taste Testing 101 on August 13, 2014 at 8:36 am

Congrats Bobby. Loved the family picture miss you Paula on TV will be watching online. Jack is getting big. Looks like his mom but Matt aka moose has your face. Your eyes cheeks hair even falls to his face like yours except to the left. Good luck on your next venture. You give us other 60+ yr women strength to move on. Keep up the good work.
Carol Bryant in Love at Last on August 11, 2014 at 6:12 pm