Best Summer Fruit Salad Recipe With Vanilla Dressing

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

This Summer Fruit Salad is tossed in a homemade cinnamon vanilla simple syrup. Make this easy fruit salad as a new staple at family gatherings, picnics, and more! In my opinion, this makes the best fruit salad! 

titled: Summer Fruit Salad


Capture a rainbow of colors and all of the best flavors of summer with this easy fruit salad recipe!

When I’m craving the best summer fruit salad, I know that this summer salad is a winner.

I love the fresh pineapple paired with the rest of the in-season fruit. I’ll make a big bowl of this simple recipe because it’s the perfect summer side dish. 

You can also add your favorite fruits to create this salad in the best way that you want. It’s one of those healthy recipes that make great side dishes for a summer BBQ! 

fresh fruit and berries for fruit salad

Summer Fruit Salad

A good summer fruit salad recipe is essential for any successful cookout, and this one is sure to become your new favorite!

It has a tantalizing combination of tropical flavors and fresh, ripe berries that is guaranteed to please even the pickiest of eaters.

The subtle spice of vanilla and cinnamon in the syrup enhances all of the natural sweetness of this summer fruit salad while adding a little extra interest. 

Try my honeydew fruit bowl as well — it’s easy, eye-catching, and delicious! 

Want to try a different fruit salad dressing? 

I have recipes for a combination of honey and orange juicecitrus and ginger, and even one that is reminiscent of a mojito cocktail!

Easy Fruit Salad Tips and Tricks

  • Prep the fruit salad dressing in advance. Homemade simple syrup will keep for up to a month in the refrigerator in a sealed jar. 

    Feel free to make this on a different day so all you have to do is pull it out and pour it on!
  • Slice grapes in batches. Halve these in no time by placing a handful between two lids and running a knife in between. Check out this post for more info.
  • Quickly hull strawberries. Insert a plastic straw into the bottom and push straight up to remove both the core and leaves on top.
  • Time-saving tip: Chop up all of the produce the night before or the morning of, then add the oranges and syrup just before serving this summer fruit salad.

Follow the simple step-by-step instructions to create this salad. It’s one of the best things to eat on hot, sunny days! 

fruit salad recipe in a bowl

How To Wash Fresh Berries

I recommend doing this first so they can properly dry while you prepare the rest of the vanilla fruit salad ingredients.

  1. Fill a large bowl with a mixture of 3 parts water to 1 part white vinegar. 
  2. Place the berries in a mesh colander.
  3. Dip the colander into the vinegar solution to wet the berries, then lift it back out immediately. 
  4. Transfer everything to a paper towel and gently spread berries into a single layer to dry.

This not only removes any lingering dirt and debris, but it extends the life of the berries as well! 

Plus, it is gentle enough for the more delicate varieties (like raspberries) that would otherwise be squished under the pressure of a faucet.

Summer Fruit Salad Recipe FAQ

Can I double this recipe? 

You sure can! Doubling this summer fruit salad recipe is a great option for occasions when you will be feeding a larger crowd.

I do recommend sticking to the amounts listed for your first attempt since these types of recipes always seem to turn out larger than expected.

Should I use overripe fruit for this easy salad? 

I wouldn’t. The summer fruits should be ripe and ready but not overripe. The key to a great fruit salad is to add the right amount of fruit that is perfectly ripe and ready to eat. This takes this healthy snack to a whole new level. It also means that it will have the best flavor. 

Should I add a little bit of lemon juice to the recipe? 

Lemon juice or lemon zest is the perfect way to add a citrus flavor and also keep the fruit from browning in the bowl. The citrus flavor is a good pairing with the sweet fruits, and the fresh lemon juice or fresh lime juice is a nice addition on hot days. 

How long does summer fruit salad last in the refrigerator?

Because the mandarin oranges, kiwi, and raspberries are more delicate, I would finish it up within a day or two of making it.

Otherwise, those ingredients will begin to fall apart and the whole vanilla fruit salad will start to get a bit soggy.

When you have to store leftovers, be sure to add the fresh fruit salad recipe to an airtight container and eat within 1-2 days of storing it. 

summer fruit salad in a bowl

With love, from our simple kitchen to yours. 

Don’t miss a thing! Follow us on
Facebook | Twitter Pinterest | Instagram 

bowl of fresh berries grapes and other fresh summer fruit

summer fruit salad, close up

Best Summer Fruit Salad Recipe With Vanilla Dressing

Donna Elick
Summer Fruit Salad is tossed in homemade cinnamon vanilla simple syrup. Make this easy fruit salad for family gatherings, picnics, and more!
5 stars from 3 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Method Stovetop
Servings 8


  • 11 ounce can mandarin oranges
  • 1 cup grapes, halved
  • 2 kiwis, chopped
  • 1 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cinnamon sticks


  • In a small saucepan, bring simple syrup ingredients to a boil, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • Chop the pineapple, strawberries, and kiwi into bite-sized pieces and add to a large bowl.
  • Add the remainder of the fruit to the bowl.
  • Remove cinnamon sticks from the simple syrup and pour over the fruit.
  • Toss the fruit gently to stir and serve immediately for best results.

Donna’s Notes

The recipe can easily be doubled for a larger occasion.
Fruit salad can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 day after making it.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 142cal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 5mg | Sugar: 29g | Fiber: 5g | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled image for summer fruit salad

Originally published May 2021, updated and republished May 2024

Disclosure: Posts may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product through an affiliate link your price will remain the same and The Slow Roasted Italian will automatically receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting us, it helps us keep creating new recipes.

The Simple Kitchen cookbook affiliate linked banner


  1. 5 stars
    Who can resist a fresh fruit salad like this? Very easy, and lasts 2-3 days in the fridge, although it does turn a dark red if kept longer than that. My family loves fresh fruit like this with breakfast, and this colorful salad is so appetizing in appearance and taste, it really makes the meal! Prep the dressing in advance for convenience if you want; or chop the fruit the night before, then add the oranges and dressing just before serving in the morning. Made it for my family when we were all on vacation this summer and they loved it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating