Frozen Fruit Cups are a refreshing and delicious treat that can be made anytime of year. They’re easy to make, customizable, and a great choice for a holiday menu.
This vintage Frozen Fruit Cups recipe is from my mother-in-law’s collection. She used to serve them on her Easter menu and I immediately fell in love with the recipe the first time I had them all those years ago.
These pretty little cups of sweet and slushy fruit are an unexpected and very fun way to brighten up a menu.
Table of contents
- All Season Recipe – The ingredient list consists of canned and frozen fruit so this recipe works regardless of what’s in season. Perfect for summer cookouts and holiday menus all through the year.
- Make-Ahead – The cups are assembled a day in advance and ready to serve the next day.
- Customizable – The base recipe can be adapted with a variety of fruit to suit your taste.
- Kid-Friendly – These refreshing slushy fruit cups are guaranteed kid-friendly!
When I’m preparing holiday meals, I can’t help but feel a strong connection to the women who influenced me the most in life. My own mom, Margaret, and my mother-in-law, LaVerne.
I was very fortunate to have these two amazing, strong, women in my life. I channel them both in the kitchen constantly. Their recipes are always included in our holiday meals so that everyone in the family can feel that connection. Funny how a simple Frozen Fruit Cup can create such a nostalgic feel!
The tradition of family recipes is a piece of their legacy that I will always cherish and do my best to keep alive.
- Apricot nectar – Look for individual cans of apricot nectar in the juice section of your store. I use Kern’s brand.
- Simple syrup – You’ll create a simple syrup with granulated sugar and water.
- Strawberries – Sliced frozen strawberries in syrup are usually packaged in a tub or box. Allow them to thaw in the refrigerator and don’t drain them.
- Pineapple – Canned crushed pineapple in 100% juice, undrained.
- Pears – Canned pears, drained and chopped.
- Blueberries – Since fresh blueberries are available most of the year, I like to add some for a pop of color.
This base recipe can be customized with a variety of different fruit. See below for some delicious variations.
How to Make Frozen Fruit Cups
- Simple Syrup– Make your simple syrup by bringing the sugar and water to a low boil. Let the mixture simmer for about 10 to 12 minutes, until slightly syrupy.
- Cool – The simple syrup will thicken and become even more syrupy as it cools.
- Fruit – Add of the fruit and the apricot nectar to a large mixing bowl.
- Combine – Stir in the cooled syrup and stir to combine.
How to Freeze and Serve
- Freeze – Place the cups on a rimmed baking sheet and spoon the fruit and juice mixture evenly between them. Transfer the baking sheet to the freezer for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Serve – When ready to serve, remove them from the freezer and allow them to sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes to soften just a bit.
- Flavor – Try different flavors of nectar like mango or peach nectar would be delicious
- Frozen Fruit – Mix it up with mangoes or use frozen pears in place of the canned. Any type of fruit you love will work.
- Fresh Fruit – Use in-season fruit like raspberries, blackberries, or small pieces of chopped kiwi for a tropical twist. Chopped bananas are also delicious in these fruit cups.
- Canned Fruit – You can use canned peaches in place of the pears.
Tips for the Best Frozen Fruit Cups
- Choose fruit in a variety of different colors for the prettiest fruit cups.
- Leave a little head space when filling your cups as the mixture may expand a small amount when it freezes.
- Place the cups on a baking sheet for easy transfer in and out of the freezer. If using foil muffin cups, place them in the wells of a muffin pan to help them keep their shape.
- Let the fruit cups sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes to soften slightly before serving.
- Make the Frozen Fruit Cups a day in advance so they have plenty of time to freeze solid.
More Fruit Side Dish Recipes You’ll Love
- Fruit Salad with Sweet Lime Dressing
- Strawberry Spinach Salad
- Fruit Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
- Chicken Berry Pasta Salad
Frozen Fruit Cups
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 2 cups apricot nectar, like Kern's
- 10 ounces frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed and undrained
- 8 ounces canned crushed pineapple in 100% juice, undrained
- 8 ounces canned pears, drained and cut into small pieces
- ½ cup fresh blueberries, optional
- Bring the sugar and water to boil in small saucepan. Reduce the heat and simmer until syrupy, about 10 to 12 minutes. Set aside to cool. The mixture will become more syrupy as it cools.
- Meanwhile, combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Stir in the cooled syrup.
- Place 16 sturdy 5-ounce plastic dessert or wine cups on a large baking sheet. Spoon the fruit and juice evenly between the cups, leaving a little head space.
- Transfer the baking sheet to the freezer. Freeze until firm for at least 4 hours or overnight. Let stand 5 minutes at room temperature before serving.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated using generic ingredients, and is an estimate not a guarantee. For more accurate results, please refer to the labels on your ingredients at home.
This post was originally published on December 24, 2011. It has been updated with new text and images.