Nana's Lime Delight Recipe

A Southern holiday isn't complete without one of those old-fashioned, passed down from Mama's-Mama dishes that makes the older generations' eyes twinkle with nostalgia and the younger generations' eyes widen with uncertainty. From the delicious pineapple-cheese casseroles to the fascinating tomato aspics, there's no shortage of classic Southern recipes that deserve to live on, if only for tradition's sake. On the top of that list, we have Nana's Lime Delight. Creamy, crunchy, and congealed, this gelatin salad is certified vintage and comes straight from Nana's handwritten recipe card. We see this baby green baking dish throughout the South on Easter tables and at church potlucks. We swear, though you might not expect it, it's always one of the first to start disappearing. Make this traditional dish for your Easter lunch this year, and it'll become an annual staple. After all, Mama always said that you need "something green" on your plate. We think this will count!


  • 2 small (3 oz.) packages lime gelatin

  • 1 cup water

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 1 large can crushed pineapple

  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped

  • Lemon and lime zest (optional)


  1. Mix lime gelatin with 1 cup boiling water.

  2. Beat cream cheese until softened and smooth, then add to the gelatin mixture.

  3. Add milk and mayonnaise to the gelatin mixture and stir until combined.

  4. Add pineapple, pecans, and celery. Mix until completely incorporated.

  5. Pour into a 9- x 12-inch glass baking dish and refrigerate until firm. Garnish with lemon and lime zest if desired!

    Nana's Lime Delight Still
    Southern Living
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