Filipino Fruit Salad Recipe with Cream Cheese

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Friends and family are sure to enjoy this easy Filipino fruit salad recipe with cream cheese and condensed milk. It’s a Pinoy style dessert from the Philippines that whips up in minutes using canned fruits.

filipino fruit salad cover image

According to my mom, my grandmother didn’t do much cooking. However, there was a dessert that she liked to whip up often.

It should come as no surprise that the recipe is a breeze to make. That’s because she was super busy with six kids.

My mom shared the recipe with me and it’s super delicious. It’s a Filipino fruit salad with cream cheese and condensed milk that uses canned fruit.

It’s a little different than the standard young coconut buko salad with fruit because my grandmother added extra cream cheese. She loved the flavor and texture it adds to the treat.

It’s really a thick and rich dessert that takes almost no effort at all to make. It’s one of the most popular Filipino recipes because it’s so quick and easy to make.

If that’s you, may may want to check out some useful cooking tips for easy meal preparation. I like to make things as simple as possible.

Ingredients

This simple Asian dessert is made with only six ingredients! They are common foods so you may already have them in your kitchen.

Cream Cheese

The recipe uses two 8-ounce blocks of cream cheese. Although you can use reduced-fat, I recommend using the full-fat cheese for the best taste.

Sweetened Condensed Milk

To offset the tang in the cream cheese and make it creamier, sweetened condensed milk is mixed in. It also adds in a milky flavor.

Canned Fruit

The fruit salad comes together quickly by using canned fruits. I like to use fruit cocktail, mandarin oranges, and pineapples. However, you can use any types of fruits you like.

Dried Coconut

Adding coconut boosts the tropical flavor. Since there’s already sweetness from the fruit and canned milk, use unsweetened shredded dried coconut.

ingredients for the filipino fruit salad recipe

Quick Tips:

  • Soften the cream cheese. The cheese needs to be soften so it blends in but you can do that quickly by microwaving it for about 25 seconds. Or just let it sit out at room temperature for one to two hours.
  • Use popular Filipino fruits. Canned mangoeslycheerambutan, and palm fruit will give the salad a more tropical taste. You can even use young coconut meat strips or macapuno strings instead of the dried coconut for a more traditional style.
  • Add some fresh fruit like sliced bananas or diced pineapple.
  • Try it with table cream. Some recipes for buko salad from the Philippines use canned table cream with or without the cream cheese. You can replace 8-ounces of cream cheese with one 8-ounce can of table cream. Or replace all of the cream cheese with two 8-ounce cans of the cream.
  • Freeze it. The fruit salad is super refreshing on a hot summer day when it’s served frozen! It will freeze hard so you’ll want to let it thaw about 15 minutes before scooping out into dishes unless you freeze it in single servings.

Directions

The process for making the Filipino fruit salad with cream cheese is super simple. It’s one of those dump and stir one bowl recipes. Just follow these simple steps!

preparing the recipe in a mixing bowl
  1. Add two blocks of cream cheese and a can of sweetened condensed milk into a large bowl. Combine with an electric mixer until smooth.
  2. Stir in the drained canned fruit and dried coconut with a spoon until the ingredients are well combined in the bowl.

That’s all there is to it!

pinoy buko salad in mixing bowl

Buko Salad Variations

You can serve the dessert immediately if you’d like. However, it tastes best when chilled so we like to put it in the refrigerator for a couple hours first.

However, you’ll often find us eating a few samples right after it’s done along with licking the mixing bowl clean.

It’s so delicious that you won’t be able to stop yourself. A lot of people think this Filipino fruit salad tastes a little like yogurt.

My grandmother never added coconut. But, my mother wanted it to be more like an ambrosia salad and the traditional young coconut salad.

Since my mom has gone low-carb, she no longer makes this tasty Pinoy dessert from the Philippines. Instead, she came up with a low-carb cheesecake salad made with berries as an alternative.

You can find that recipe on the Low Carb Yum website where my mother shares her keto friendly creations.

filipino fruit salad recipe pinoy in glass dessert dishes

In my mother’s low-carb version, she uses heavy whipping cream and zero carb sweeteners to replace the sweetened condensed milk.

My mom’s favorite sweeteners to use are stevia powder and monk fruit powder. I’m still into consuming regular sugar, though.

Frequently Asked Questions About Fruit Salad Pinoy Style

If you have a question about this Filipino fruit salad with cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk recipe, check here first. I’ve answered many of the common questions below.

Can you freeze Filipino fruit salad?

Because it’s unbearably hot in the Philippines, many Filipinos like to store the salad in the freezer for a cool refreshing treat. If it’s too hard to scoop frozen, just let it sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes to soften.

What type of mixture is buko salad?

The traditional fruit salad served in the Philippines is buko salad. It’s usually a mixture of coconut (buko), mixed fruit, sugar palm, coconut gel (nata de coco), table cream, and condensed milk. The recipe I’ve shared is a modified version that my grandmother created.

How long does the fruit salad last?

The salad will keep for at least 5 days in the refrigerator and up to 3 months when frozen. But it’s so delicious that it likely won’t last that long!

Related Recipes

Although I really love the Filipino buko salad, I’ve moved to a diet without gluten or dairy. So the following desserts have become my new favorites:

If you’ve moved to a low-carb eating plan, I recommend trying one of these low-carb treats instead:

filipino fruit salad featured image
Print Pin
5 from 5 votes

Filipino Fruit Salad with Cream Cheese

An easy fruit salad with cream cheese and condensed milk. It whips up in minutes using drained canned fruits.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Filipino
Keyword Filipino fruit salad, fruit salad with cream cheese
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 16 people
Calories 291kcal

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 14 ounces canned sweetened condensed milk
  • 60 ounces canned fruit cocktail drained
  • 15 ounces canned mandarin orange drained
  • 8 ounces canned pineapple drained
  • 1 cup unsweetened dried coconut

Video

Instructions

  • In large bowl, combine cream cheese and condensed milk with electric mixer until smooth.
  • Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Refrigerate. Serve chilled.

Notes

To avoid clumps of cream cheese, be sure to use softened cream cheese. Cheese from the refrigerator can be softened by microwaving on HIGH power for 15 to 20 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 291kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 132mg | Potassium: 308mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 1024IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 111mg | Iron: 1mg

First published on July 18, 2018. Post updated on April 14, 2021, with new photos and additional recipe information.

  1. I have definitely never had anything like this before. We love regular fruit salad, but now I have to give this one a try!!

    Reply
  2. I bet that is amazing! The condensed milk makes me want to run out and buy the stuff to make this!

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  3. Wow this looks so good! I’ll have to try and make this one day soon. It will be a great summer treat! Anything fruity is a favorite of ours.

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  4. Wow, this is so easy to do. How come I only knew about this now. Gotta give myself a try and make some over the weekend.

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  5. I have never tried a fruit salad like this but it looks delicious. I bet the kids would love this too. I want to try this recipe this weekend.

    Reply
  6. Oh my goodness this sounds good. I love fruit and cream cheese. I make a wonderful fruit salad that is similar to this one. I can’t wait to try yours.

    Reply
  7. 5 stars
    This sounds great! I’ve never tried filipino fruit salad, so I’m excited to try it. These sound like fantastic flavors.

    Reply
  8. 5 stars
    There is nothing quite like a good fruit salad in the summer and this one sounds absolutely delicious – I love the idea of using cream cheese with it!

    Reply
  9. My aunt used to make a salad just like this when I was growing up. I had forgotten it, but I need to whip up a bowl for dinner one day.

    Reply
  10. I had never heard of a filipino fruit salad before but this reminds me so much of a different fruit salad that I loved as a kid. Definitely saving this one for the future! 🙂

    Reply
  11. 5 stars
    I’ve never had this type of fruit salad before. This recipe looks divine. Would love to try making it for dessert.

    Reply
  12. Making salad here in the states is different when I was in the Phils. I learned to use cream cheese and it’s so much better.

    Reply
  13. Wow a bunch of blowing smoke reviews..not one of you who said they was gonna make it,came back and said if was any good SMH..Well guess what I made it and it is very good. I left out the coconut cause I hate coconut.

    Reply
  14. My auntie gave my mom this recipe and we use to INHALE this delectable dessert along with their yummy dishes of lumpia and pancit. My mom gave me the recipe which I lost over the years. Now in her later years, my mom couldn’t remember the recipe so we thought we had lost it. So when I googled ambrosia and Filipino Fruit Salad came up, I knew we had hit the mother load. I am going to the store TODAY to get these ingredients so my family and I can have this for dessert TONIGHT ~~ thank you and salamat po!!!

    Reply
  15. My daughter in law who is Filipino makes this salad using the table cream in place of the cream cheese and we absolutely love it!!

    Reply

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