Creamsicle Cups

Are you a lover of the creamsicle flavor? If so you have to try my creamsicle cups recipe. These have a shortbread cookie crust layer, filled with orange vanilla fluff pudding, topped with a layer of mandarin oranges, and Cool Whip for a decadent and creamy dessert that melts in your mouth.

A layered dessert cup reminiscent of a creamsicle, with whipped cream on top, featuring layers of orange segments, cream, and cookie crumbs, all placed on a blue polka-dotted napkin.


 

These dessert cups are inspired by the orange creamsicle ice cream you would get as a kid. Vanilla and orange flavor all-in-one scoopable dessert that is great for all occasions. Weeknight after dinner dessert, pool party treat, or birthday party bash where you don't want cake!

I wanted to share a few more orange dessert ideas! Try out my orange spice sugar cookies, blood orange curds, or even my popular chocolate orange brownies!

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Why You'll Love This Recipe

SIMPLE - These pudding cups only require 5 ingredients plus water and time. It really is an easy dessert recipe with such an amazing flavor.
SINGLE SERVING CUPS - These cups are great to take on a picnic, to a get-together or party, and even just to have in the freezer just in case a craving hits.
CUSTOMIZABLE - One of the things I really love about this recipe is that if you don't like orange and vanilla, you can always switch to strawberries and cream with a similar flavor as my strawberries and cream fudge or cherries and cream by switching the orange jello to strawberry/cherry and the fruit to sliced strawberries/cherries (maraschino cherries would be delicious!)

brownie mix cookies
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Ingredients Needed

Shortbread Crumbs - I used Keebler's Sandies for this crumb. Simply toss cookies in a food processor for the perfect crumbled crust.

Orange Jello - Reach for orange jello as the base for the creamsicle cups. I prefer classic over sugar-free.

Water - I do recommend using filtered water over water that isn't. You will find water can sometimes add flavor to the dessert if it has a metal taste to it straight from the faucet.

Pudding - Vanilla instant pudding is what you will reach for. It needs to be instant and not the cook-and-serve style of pudding.

Cool Whip - Reach for Cool Whip for the fluffy component to the fluff filling.

Mandarin Oranges - Buy canned oranges drain them well and use them for the perfect pop of that tart and sweet in each bite.

Substitutions and Variations

Here are a few changes you can consider for altering the flavor of these creamsicle orange cups.

  • Cookie Crust - You can use Golden Oreos, Lorna Doone, or even a classic graham cracker crust. Feel free to change up the style of crust you use.
  • Crustless - Want a crustless dessert? Then skip the crust altogether and do the orange cream, whipped cream, and mandarin layers. This makes it an even more fluffy texture.
  • Sugar-Free Dessert - Use sugar-free cookies, jello, pudding, etc. You can make this a sugar-free version that is still as delicious and velvety in terms of texture.
  • Fruit Added - Use a mixed fruit cocktail instead of just mandarin oranges for a twist in flavor.
  • Mix in Items - Shredded coconut, maraschino cherries, or even sliced pineapple could add more sweet fruity flavors. You can also top with some nuts like pistachios or cashews for a crunchy factor. Have fun with what you add to the cups.

NOTE: This recipe has not been tested with other substitutions or variations

How to Make Orange Creamsicle Cups

Add your shortbread cookies into a food processor and pulse until crushed like a sand-like texture. Or you can place it in a storage bag and use a rolling pin to crush the cookies.

Next, you will grab a medium bowl and add your boiling water into the bowl. Add jello mix and stir for 2-3 minutes or until all the jello is dissolved. Then when the jello is dissolved, add in the cold water and stir to combine. Place the gelatin in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Next, you will add in the vanilla pudding and mix well to combine. You want the mixture to thicken.

Then whisk in half a tub of the Cool Whip, and mix to combine. Place it back in the fridge and allow it to set up a bit.

Once it is set up, add the remaining tub of Cool Whip to thicken even more. Pour into a piping bag.

Next, you will assemble the cups. Grab these dessert cups and see the photo and instructions below.

A baking tray with six glass cups numbered 1 to 6. Each cup contains a different ingredient or mixture, including crushed crumbs, fruit slices, whipped cream, and two creamy dessert substances reminiscent of a creamsicle.
  1. Add some cookie crumbs to the bottom of each cup. Press firmly.
  2. Add a layer of the creamsicle fluff to each cup.
  3. Add a layer of mandarin oranges that have been drained and patted dry.
  4. Add a layer of whipped topping.
  5. Add more cookie crust crumbs
  6. Add a swirl of creamsicle fluff, mandarin oranges, and then finish with whipped topping. Refrigerate the cups until you are ready to serve.

Tips For Success

Here are a few tips to help set you up for success when making this no-bake orange dessert.

  • Use a spoon to flatten out the layers when you pipe and add in whipped cream if you feel it is too tall and hard to add the next layer.
  • You can make these ahead of time if you would like. Just whip them up and store them in the fridge until you are ready to serve.
  • Make sure to fully dissolve the jello in the hot water, or you will not get your mixture set up properly, and you will have crunchy bits of gelatin when you eat it.
  • Cool Whip holds up better than making homemade whipped cream to fold into the mixture. You can do homemade but plan to serve sooner as it won't hold up as well.
  • Make sure to drain all the liquid off the mandarin oranges, or they will cause the layers to separate really fast in the cups.
A layered creamsicle dessert cup with whipped cream topping. Layers include crumbled cookies, whipped cream, and an orange filling, garnished with orange segments and a dollop of whipped cream.

How To Store/Freeze

These orange creamsicle cups can be stored in a covered dish in the fridge for 4-5 days. You will find that the fruit will leak a little juice the longer it sits in the fridge.

Now you can cover each cup individually on a cookie sheet or even casserole dish, and then cover with plastic wrap or foil.

To freeze these creamsicle cups, place the cups in a freezer container or freezer bag and place in the freezer. It will last up to 3 months in the freezer.

To thaw, just place on the counter for 30 minutes or in the fridge overnight.

A close-up of a spoon holding a bite of creamsicle dessert with a piece of orange fruit and whipped cream. The background is blurred, featuring multiple cups filled with desserts on a blue surface.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a creamsicle? 

Creamsicle is the pairing of orange and vanilla! Often you will find the creamsicle flavor is in ice cream or ice cream desserts. But now, you can have cookies, cakes, and more all creamsicle flavored.

Can I use a different flavor of jello?

If you are looking for a cherry or even strawberry dessert, go right ahead and swap the orange for any flavor of jello you would like. Then swap out the fruit as well if you want a different flavor.

Can I double this recipe?

Go right ahead and double or even triple the recipe if you would like. Just mix up as much of the ingredients as you need. Then store all the containers in the fridge until you are ready to serve. This dessert doubles well.

Can I make this in an 8x8 dish?

Yes! I think it would work well as a layered dessert in a small square pan and would be similar to my lemon delight dessert. You may need to double the recipe to fill the pan though.

If you try this recipe, be sure to leave a rating below and also share it on Instagram, and tag me! You can also find me on Facebook and stay up to date on recipe releases by joining the Newsletter!

A layered dessert cup reminiscent of a creamsicle, with whipped cream on top, featuring layers of orange segments, cream, and cookie crumbs, all placed on a blue polka-dotted napkin.

Orange Creamsicle Cups

These creamsicle pudding cups are a shortbread cookie crust filled with orange vanilla fluff pudding, mandarin oranges, and whipped topping.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 6 cups
Calories 326 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups shortbread crumbs 16 shortbread cookies (I used Keebler sandies)
  • 3 ounces orange jello
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • ½ cup cold water
  • 3.4 ounces instant vanilla pudding
  • 16 ounces (two 8 ounce containers) whipped topping thawed and divided
  • 23.5 ounce container mandarin oranges drained well

Instructions

  • Add the shortbread cookies in a storage bag or a food processor. Crush using a rolling pin if using a storage bag or pulse on high if using a food processor until fine crumbs form. You can leave some larger pieces if you would like.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, add the boiling water and orange jello mix. Stir until the jello is completely dissolved.
  • Add in the cold water and stir until combined.
  • Place the jello in the fridge to cool for 15 minutes. The gelatin will still be completely liquid but cool enough to continue to the next step.
  • Add in the instant vanilla pudding and whisk until the mixture becomes a thicker consistency and smooth.
  • Whisk in half of an 8 ounce container of whipped topping until fully incorporated.
  • Place back in the refrigerator for 20 minutes to firm up.
  • Add the remaining 4 ounces from the first 8 ounce container to the chilled orange mixture. Whisk until fully combined and no white streaks are left. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix in any remaining white.
  • Place the orange mixture in a disposable piping bag or storage bag. Cut a corner or tip of bag large enough to make a nickel sized hole.
  • Place the remaining 8 ounces of whipped topping in a second disposable piping bag or storage bag. Cut a corner or tip of the piping bag off making a nickel sized hole.
  • Using 8 ounce container, add 2 tablespoons shortbread crumbs to the bottom of 6 containers. Press the shortbread crumbs until flattened.
  • Pipe a level swirl of orange fluff mixture on top of the crumbs making sure to from the side of the container all the way to the center making an even, sealed layer of orange fluff mixture.
  • Lay 6 to 7 mandarin orange slices in one layer on top of the orange fluff mixture.
  • Pipe a level swirl of whipped topping on top of the mandarin oranges starting from the side of the cup and working the swirl to the center making an even, sealed layer.
  • Repeat adding another even layer of 2 tablespoons of shortbread crumbs, a level swirl of orange fluff mixture, 6 - 9 mandarin oranges, and a tall swirl or cloud of whipped topping on the top.
  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Notes

Use a spoon to flatten the orange fluff mixture or whipped topping if needed.
Storage: These orange creamsicle cups can be stored covered in the fridge for 4-5 days. You will find that the fruit will leak a little juice the longer it sits in the fridge.
Freezing: Freeze these cups in an freezer bag or container for up to 3 months.
Thaw: Thaw on the counter for 30 minutes or in the fridge overnight. 

Nutrition

Calories: 326kcalCarbohydrates: 56gProtein: 4gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 2mgSodium: 229mgPotassium: 232mgFiber: 1gSugar: 52gVitamin A: 1513IUVitamin C: 38mgCalcium: 69mgIron: 0.4mg

(Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.)

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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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