Refresco de Ensalada de Fruta (Fruit Salad Juice)

Quench your thirst with this refreshing Salvadoran drink, refresco de ensalada de fruta.

Quench your thirst with this refreshing Salvadoran drink, refresco de ensalada de fruta.

Last January, due to what I refer to as the January blahs, I toyed around with this Strawberry-Lime Margarita recipe. It was a hit, it was one of my top most viewed posts of the year.

This year, due to a trip to the Bahamas earlier this month, I’ve been craving fresh fruit. I ate tons of fresh pineapple, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, grapefruit, papaya everyday on my trip and it left me thirsty for more.

I’ve been having a craving a drink that’s just as refreshing as a margarita (minus the tequila) so this weekend was the perfect time to try it out. It is a Salvadoran drink called refresco de ensalada de fruta, or fruit salad juice. It is made entirely from fresh fruit. Think of it as a sangria minus the wine.

I found my mom’s recipe which I haven’t had since my childhood and it was a little bit of heaven on this cold January day.

If you’re looking for a healthy, refreshing, fruity drink, this one is sure to quench your thirst any time of year.

I made a few substitutions because the only problem with my mom’s recipe is that some of the exotic fruits it called for, aren’t available where I live. The marañon in particular was one that takes away from the traditional taste a bit, but I managed to find a substitution. Marañon is the Spanish word for cashew; that is because this is the fruit cashews come from. They grown on trees and have a soft skin and are so flavourful they are often used for juice or to flavour other drinks.


Marañon is a delicious, juicy fruit where cashews come from. Photo credit:

For this recipe I’ve substituted the marañon with mango or cantaloupe based on its similarity in softness.

The first step is to mix all your chopped up fruit together into a large bowl. The lime and orange juice are added to keep the fruit from browning since you will let it sit a while. Since we’re using a mix of sweet and sour fruits, a little sugar helps balance it out. A pinch of salt is also added to offset the citrus.

Ensalada de fruta 1

Mix all the chopped fruit together, add the juices, sugar, a pinch of salt and let sit.

Let it half an hour before adding the fruit to a large pitcher (you might need to divide it in two smaller pitchers) and then pour the water.

Refresco de ensalada de fruta


  • 1 20 oz. can pineapple slices in 100% pineapple juice or 1.5 cups of chopped fresh pineapple
  • 2 apples, unpeeled and chopped
  • 2 oranges, two peeled and chopped
  • juice from one freshly squeezed orange
  • juice from one lemon or lime
  • 1 cup of mango or cantaloupe, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 8 cups of water
  • a pinch of salt


  1. Place chopped apples, oranges, mango or cantaloupe and pineapple (with juice if using canned) into a large bowl.
  2. Add the lime and orange juice to fruit.
  3. Add sugar, a pinch of salt and stir.
  4. Let sit for half an hour to allow the flavours to blend.
  5. Pour fruit into a large pitcher and add the water.
  6. Stir and refrigerate for an hour.

It’s served best fresh, but can last in the fridge for two days. Any longer and the citrus give sit a sour taste.

I found it was sweet enough with the natural sweetness from the fruit and only 1/4 cup of sugar but if  it’s not sweet enough, add more sugar to taste.

Ensalada de fruta

Salvadoran ensalada de fruta.