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Make good summer fruit salad recipes that taste like ambrosia and honey…Yummy!

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That whole food of the gods thing got your attention, didn't it? If it didn't, you've never tasted a summer fruit salad recipe that's so delicious, you forgot it was actually healthy and filled with nutritious ingredients. Here…Let me help you out. Imagine crunchy pieces of fresh fruit dipped into yogurt and honey fruit salad dressing or sweetened cream cheese. Or even more decadent, dipping chocolate.

Ok. The last part isn't exactly a summer fruit salad recipe, but you get the idea. The best summer salads recipes that I've found of late are easy, cold enough to stave off the summer heat and created around a fun theme. How I arrived at the last criterion is a funny story unto itself.

The Time in Which Buffy Learned That Actors Love Fruit Kabobs, Fun Summer Salads & Improv

When I was 16, I did a stint at the Idaho Shakespeare Festival. It wasn't where it is now. No, it was out by the Plantation Golf Course, a place that attracted as many ducks during a performance as it did theater goers. This was in part due to the delicious foods that people brought with them to enjoy Shakespeare Under the Stars.

Due to the hot conditions, all manner of cold summer salads recipes made their way across the grounds as people clammered for a spot near the front. You name it. Tortellini salads. Taco salads. Green salads. And of course, both simple and elaborate fruit salads. Can I get a "Yummy! Yummy?"

How Many Calories in a Fruit Salad? Who Cares??

One night during the green show, the actress on stage spotted a girnormous bouquet of fruit floating in the aisle. I've never seen fruit kabobs like that. The sticks holding the fruit pieces had every kind of fruit you could imagine -- apples, grapes, orange slices, strawberries, star fruits, kiwis, banana chunks, marshmallows and melon balls. Talk about a fruit salad ingredients list!

These summer fruit salads on sticks were stuck into a half a watermelon. It was decorated with mint sprigs and probably had some cream cheese dip or vanilla pudding in the center. The fresh fruit kabobs reminded me of the fruit salad version of Excalibur in its famous rock. The fruit salad trees stuck into the watermelon were show-stopping. Literally.

The green show host stopped the show long enough to go steal one of the fruit kabobs from its melon home before inviting the rest of the audience to sample as well. The Pied Piper probably never had such a long line. You gotta love improv.

But I Want an EASY Summer Fruit Salad Recipe!

Never fear. I'm not suggesting that you go over to your neighbor's blanket at the Shakespeare Festival and steal their fruit. A cup of wine, maybe, but not their fruit.

Instead, I'm going to impart some summer fruit salad wisdom your way. I've learned how to make fresh fruit salad with only a few ingredients when I don't feel like doing much. I've also learned how you make some more involved cold summer fruit salads that are just right for a crowd, that please kids and even taste great when you take 'em along on a picnic. In short, I have all sorts of fruit salad ideas plus a few recipes that you'll want to tuck into your recipe box under "best summer salads."

Summer Fruit Salads for a Crowd, for Parties and for Barbecues

The ingredients in fruit salad varies, of course, depending upon the recipe for the fruit salad. Fruit salad calories will also vary, based upon the ingredients and whether or not you have additions like sugar, fruit dip, chocolate dip and the like.

Additionally, if you're like me and want something light to eat in the coming months, I love to slice up some fruit and have a healthy and delicious summer fruit salad for dinner. You'll find a couple of recipes below that fits this nicely.

15 Summer Fruit Salad Recipe Ideas + 5 Fruit Dips and Dressings

Mojito fruit salad by Mom on Time Out (This makes an excellent topping for sponge cake, too!)

Ambrosia fruit salad with marshmallows, cream, coconut and pineapple, and pecans by Alton Brown

Fluffy pistachio fruit salad with bananas and pudding by All Recipes

Tropical fruit salad recipe with honey, kiwis and red grapes by Jamie Deen from Food Network

Watermelon fruit salad in fruit bowl (add a scoop of sherbet to this to make dinner out of it!)

Filipino fruit salad with Nestle cream (I've not tried this, but it looks SERIOUSLY delicious!)

Fruit and Jello salads on Pinterest (I just followed this board. No kidding, the Jello fruit salads look that good)

Frozen fruit salad recipe with whipped cream (very similar to Jello salads)

Hawaiian fresh fruit salad recipe with honey ginger dressing by Trisha Yearwood

Mexican fruit salad with chile de árbol

Mandarin orange fruit salad (similar to 5 cup salad)

Vanilla pudding fruit salad from Cooks.com

Berry fruit salad (garnish with mint leaves for extra taste)

Apple fruit salad with cranberries, nonfat yogurt and walnuts

Fruit tray with dip by Paula Deen

Chocolate fondue dipping sauce for strawberries, apples and other summer fruit salad ingredients

Strawberry-flavored fruit dip

Fruit dip with marshmallow creme and cream cheese

Brown sugar and coffee fruit dip

*This is another part of my fun and healthy summer salads recipes series. If you have ideas for the types of cold salad recipes you'd like to see in my column, add your comments below.

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