This twist on fruit salad made with pineapple, mandarin oranges, maraschino cherries, and Rosa Marina pasta is fluffy, sweet and delicious! It makes a tasty salad addition to any potluck or holiday gathering!
Rosa Marina fruit salad is made with pasta, but don’t let that scare you away! It’s actually quite delicious and the orzo pasta thickens it up similar to rice in rice pudding. Add in pineapples, oranges, and cherries? It’s a delicious, fluffy fruit salad that makes a tasty side dish or dessert!
Why is it called Rosa Marina Salad?
Great question! This twist on a fresh fruit salad is made with orzo pasta. Rosa Marina is another rice-shaped variety of pasta nearly identical to orzo. Since this salad is made with Rosa Marina pasta (also spelled rosamarina), it got the name Rosa Marina Salad!
You can also call this recipe an Orzo Pasta Fruit Salad too. I’ve even heard it referred to as frog eye salad.
How to Make Rosa Marina Salad
- Cook your orzo (or rosa marina pasta) according to package instructions. I like an al dente orzo.
- Drain, rinse and set pasta aside while you whip up the thickened juices. Use all the juices from the cans of pineapple chunks, crushed pineapple and mandarin oranges. Don’t forget the juice from the maraschino cherries too! Reserve your fruit, covered, in the fridge!
- In a saucepan over low to medium heat, combine the juices, eggs, sugar, flour and cornstarch. The flour and cornstarch help the juices thicken nicely, it’ll coat the back of a spoon when thickened.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Pour over orzo and refrigerate overnight.
- The next day, remove orzo mixture from fridge, stir in the fruit, along with whipped topping (such as Cool Whip) and ta-da! Dreamy, creamy and delicious Rosa Marina Fruit Salad!
- Serve salad in small bowls and garnish with mint sprigs and extra fruit (optional).
Salad Recipe Tips & Variations
- Be sure to let the juices thicken before pouring over your orzo!
- Don’t skip the overnight refrigeration. Just make a note that this salad needs to be prepared a day in advance. The pasta soaks up the juices and lets the flavors blend. It’s delish!
- Swap in your favorite fruits. Try cut up strawberries, blueberries, grapes, even apple chunks would be good! You can also use fresh fruit cocktail instead of just pineapples and mandarin oranges.
- Don’t want to use canned fruit? Use fresh fruit and fruit juices if you like.
- Give your salad a Hawaiian twist with the addition of shredded coconut.
Storing Leftover Rosa Marina Salad
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
The combination of the fruit and whipped topping is a dreamy, creamy fruit salad that is perfect for potlucks, backyard parties, and family meal nights! Serve this as a side or fruity dessert. It’s one of the best recipes if you love fluffy, creamy fruit salads.
I hope you’ll give this delicious salad a try! It’s called a “salad” but it’s actually more like a dessert! Enjoy!
If you’re looking for another fruit salad to try, you must make my low carb fruit salad, it’s easy and delicious!
Rosa Marina Salad
- 1 16-ounce box orzo pasta
- 2 15-ounce cans mandarin oranges
- 1 20-ounce can pineapple chunks
- 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple
- 1 8-ounce jar maraschino cherries stems removed
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 16-ounce container whipped topping (ex. Cool Whip)
- 2 large eggs lightly beaten
- Cook orzo pasta to al dente, according to package instructions. Drain pasta, rinse and allow it to cool.
- Drain the juices from the mandarin oranges, pineapple chunks, crushed pineapple and maraschino cherries into a large sauce pan (so you'll have mandarin orange juice, pineapple juice and maraschino cherry juice).
- Reserve the fruit in a separate mixing bowl, cover and refrigerate. Over low to medium heat, whisk in the eggs, sugar, flour and cornstarch to the juices in the sauce pan.
- Allow juice mixture to simmer for 5 to 7 minutes. It will thicken up during this time, stir occasionally.
- Once thickened, remove from heat and set aside to cool for about 20 minutes.
- Add orzo pasta to a large mixing bowl and pour thickened juices over top. Stir well to evenly coat pasta. Cover tightly and refrigerate overnight (or at least 8 hours).
- When ready to serve, remove pasta from refrigerator, uncover, and use a large spoon to fluff the pasta. Stir in the reserved pineapple, mandarin oranges, and maraschino cherries along with the whipped topping.