17 Recipes That Use Fresh Pineapple

This sweet-tart fruit isn't just for piña coladas. Bring the tropics home with recipes for other cocktails, as well as smoothies, sides, and mains.

fresh pineapple recipes image graphic photo fruit receipts food cooking
Photo: © 2014 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, licensed to About.com, Inc.

It's not known for its subtlety, and to prove it, we compiled a list of 17 recipes that use fresh pineapple to pack a punch of flavor. This tropical fruit boosts any recipe—whether it's for an appetizer, dessert, or anything in between—with an unmistakable sweet tang.

The next time a recipe calls for pineapple, skip the canned fruit aisle and reach for a fresh one. They may look intimidating, but they're easy to carve into wedges, rings, or chunks. Fresh pineapple comes with no added sugar or preservatives, and lasts for a week or two in the fridge.

If you choose canned pineapple because of how long it lasts in your pantry, fresh pineapple can compete on that angle too, because it's easy to freeze. Spread wedges, rings, or chunks on a parchment-lined baking sheet and set them in the freezer. After 1 to 2 hours (or overnight), store the pineapple pieces in freezer-safe containers or bags to use within a year.

So don't shy away from the next 10-for-$10-sale on fresh pineapples. Peruse our list of pineapple-centric recipes, light your tiki torches, and let us help you pull off the best tropical-themed party of the summer.

01 of 17

Baked Cinnamon Roasted Pineapple

Cinnamon Roasted Pineapple
Steve Giralt

These sweet, tangy roasted pineapples are a triple threat:

  • They make breakfast a treat when served atop yogurt, granola, or a shmeared bagel.
  • Plate them for dinner alongside pork, ham, or chicken for a sweet tropical vibe.
  • Try them as a dessert topping for ice cream or pound cake.
02 of 17

Chicken Adobo

Chicken Adobo
Victor Protasio

Arguably the signature dish of the Philippines, "adobo," which is Spanish for "dressing," refers to the spicy marinade or seasoning typically made from chili peppers, vinegar, spices, and herbs. In this pineapple-forward version, fresh pineapple sweetens the marinade and doubles as a garnish.

03 of 17

Carrot-Pineapple Smoothie

Carrot-pineapple smoothie
Grant Cornett

Pineapple teams up with orange juice and banana to create this smooth and frothy refresher. Healthy and dairy-free, you can whip this up in just 5 minutes, making it an any-time-of-day pick-me-up.

04 of 17

Kale Smoothie With Pineapple and Banana

Kale Smoothie With Pineapple and Banana
Christopher Baker

Drink your veggies! Coconut milk gives this smoothie a creamy, rich consistency while pineapple and banana add sweetness. Swap out the kale for spinach or use a little of both.

05 of 17

Tropical Fruit Salad

Tropical Fruit Salad
Victor Protasio

If you could take a bite of a tropical vacation, it would probably taste like this dreamy salad. Pineapple shares the spotlight with papaya, mango, and kiwi in a lime juice-based dressing that sits atop a bed of creamy coconut yogurt. Finish with a dusting of coconut flakes, and enjoy in a tropical print sundress and wide-brimmed hat.

06 of 17

Shrimp and Pineapple Tacos With Black Bean Salad

Shrimp and Pineapple Tacos With Black Bean Salad
José Picayo

Thread shrimp and pineapple onto skewers and broil for a quick, tasty taco filling. Alternatively, keep the oven turned off and set the skewers and tortillas on the grill for a light, bright summer supper.

07 of 17

Pork and Pineapple Tacos

Pork and Pineapple Tacos
Charles Masters

Swap the canned pineapple in this recipe for fresh to lift this dish to greater heights. Pineapple lends a sweet juiciness while chili powder and jalapenos bring the heat.

08 of 17

Cauliflower Tacos al Pastor

Cauliflower Tacos al Pastor
Victor Protasio

For a vegetarian version of a Mexico City favorite, this recipe swaps pork with cauliflower florets. A flavorful marinade coats the cauliflower, onion, and pineapple while they roast, and then these veggie tacos are topped with a drizzle of zesty avocado salsa that'll make them your new favorite.

09 of 17

Tropical Pizza

Tropical Pizza
Charles Masters

You knew it was coming. When it comes to pineapple, nothing is more hotly contested than its suitability as a pizza topping. Maybe this is the recipe that turns pineapple pizza nay-sayers into yay-sayers.

10 of 17

Boozy Dole Whip

boozy dole whip
Debbie Galbraith/Getty Images

This adults-only, pineapple-banana-flavored cross between a smoothie and soft-serve mimics the mega-popular treat that used to be sold exclusively at Disney parks. Skip the coconut rum to make this smooth, creamy treat kid-friendly.

11 of 17

Sweet and Tangy Baked Beans

Sweet & Tangy Baked Beans
Greg DuPree

The "tangy" comes from your favorite BBQ sauce, while the "sweet" comes from—you guessed it—pineapple. With an assist from brown sugar, fresh pineapple chunks sweeten and brighten this standard side with an unexpected twist.

12 of 17

Glazed Chicken and Pineapple

Glazed Chicken and Pineapple Recipe
Victor Protasio

Winner, winner, grilled chicken and pineapple dinner! Pineapple juice joins ketchup, honey, and soy sauce for a classic Hawaiian-style chicken marinade. Skin-on chicken thighs share the grill with fresh pineapple half-rings for a sweet 30-minute summer entrée.

13 of 17

Maple-Glazed Salmon With Pineapple

Maple-Glazed Salmon With Pineapple
Sang An

This dish balances sweetness from a maple syrup glaze and fresh pineapple chunks with Dijon and jalapeno, resulting in a spicy-sweet main course. Instead of broiling the salmon, pineapple, and jalapeno, consider giving them a turn on the grill for a smoky, charred twist.

14 of 17

Sparkling Pineapple Ginger Ale

Sparkling Pineapple Ginger Ale Mocktail Recipe
Yunhee Kim

Garnished with fresh pineapple triangles, this mocktail helps turn your backyard party into a tropical island retreat. Add a little rum to this refreshingly fizzy drink for an instant cocktail.

15 of 17

Piña Colada

Pina Colada
Charles Masters

If you're looking for a tropical escape, you can't go wrong with this classic cocktail. Forget the mix and blend your own with cream of coconut, fresh pineapple juice, fresh pineapple garnish, and of course, rum.

16 of 17

Pirate Passion Fruit Mule

Mule Passion Fruit Cocktail

You don't have to drink this tropical cocktail with a parrot on your shoulder or an eyepatch, but it would make for a fun party! This recipe calls on fresh pineapple and passion fruit to give a classic Moscow mule a tart, tropical twist.

17 of 17

Celery, Cucumber, and Pineapple Juice Smoothie

Celery, Cucumber, and Pineapple Smoothie
Levi Brown

It takes only 5 minutes and a blender to make this non-dairy, fruit-and-veggie smoothie. For best results, freeze pineapple chunks on a baking sheet for 1 to 2 hours before tossing them in the blender.

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