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How to Make Healthy Homemade Jello

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Healthy Homemade Jello - www.ohlardy.com

I loved jello as a kid!  Particularly cherry jello.  A big bowl of cherry jello with Cool Whip on top.  Now that I know better, that doesn't sound like the perfect dessert at all!

Check out the ingredients of Cherry Jello:

Sugar, gelatin, adipic acid (for tartness), artificial flavor, disodium phosphate, sodium citrate, fumaric acid, Red 40, Blue 1.

Yuck!  You can bet your bottom dollar that sugar is from GMO sugar beets.  And the chemicals, artificial flavors and colors?  No thanks!

Am I doomed to a world in which I can't eat jello?  Or introduce the delicious treat to my daughter?  Of course not!!  You can still eat jello in a Real Food world?  Healthy, nutrient dense homemade jello!

And it is oh so simple to make!

How can jello be healthy?  Well, because it has gelatin!  And gelatin from properly raised, pastured animals is a very nutritious food.  It contains collagen which is great for skin and joints.  It can help heal your digestive tract and detoxify the liver.  It is good for muscle building and over all care of the body.

One way for getting the benefits of gelatin in your diet is by using lots of bone broth in your daily routine.  The benefits of bone broth are too many to list here, but check out the post I did awhile back on everything you need to know about bone broth.  (Purchase bone broth at Wise Choice Market and have it shipped to your door!)

You can also get the benefits of gelatin by making your own jello!  You just need to be sure you are using a quality gelatin (I like this one or this one), some quality fruit juice, sweetener (optional), lemon extract or oil (optional).

The general rule of thumb is 1 cup juice, 1 tbsp gelatin and 1 tbsp sweetener.  Depending on what juice I am using, I often skip the sweetener!

If you want a firmer, more ‘jello jiggler' type consistency, use more gelatin (2 tbsp or so).

My daughter's favorite is a mixture of grape and cherry but you can use any juice you would like!  I do recommend a juice with a lot of flavor to balance out the flavor of the gelatin.  If you want a tart jello, a drop or two of lemon extract or lemon essential oil is a great idea!

You can double, triple, even quadruple this recipe depending on how much jello you want to make!

Healthy Homemade Jello

An easy and tasty way to get the health benefits of gelatin


  • 2 cups juice choose a quality juice, organic, with few ingredients
  • 2 tbsp gelatin
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup or other sugar optional
  • several drops lemon essential oil or extract optional


  • Pour juice into a saucepan.
  • Sprinkle gelatin on the surface of the juice and allow to sit for a few seconds. This is called 'blooming the gelatin' (so you don't get lumps)
  • Whisk gelatin and juice together and let sit for a few minutes
  • Turn the stove on and heat the juice/gelatin mixture over medium heat, until gelatin is dissolved and mixture is heated through.
  • Turn off heat and add in sweetener and extract if using and stir.
  • Pour mixture into a glass bowl, dish, jello molds...whatever you want!
  • Put in refrigerator for 3-4 hours (or overnight)
  • Enjoy your delicious treat!

What flavor jello will you be making??

Oh Lardy has also made jello before with fermented orange juice!  That was a real treat.   Share the jello you make in the comments

Here are some other amazing recipes for jello to get you started:

Homemade Healthy Jello Snacks from Primally Inspired

Homemade Jello from The Coconut Mama

Fruity Kombucha Jello Bites from The Paleo Mama

Homemade Jello from Whole Lifestyle Nutrition

Homemade Jello Fruit Cups from Homemade Mommy

You can also get an entire recipe book full of healthy gelatin treats (Paleo friendly) from my friend, Caitlin, The Grass Fed Girl.   Check it out!

Easy Paleo Gelatin Treats

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Healthy Homemade Jello - ohlardy.com



  1. My all time fav is blueberry jello with maple syrup! If u havent tried blueberry juice, its insane. The blueberry jello is better than cherry- i guarantee u! Haha im a passionate jello maker.

  2. “And gelatin from properly raised, pastured animals is a very nutritious food. It contains collagen which is great for skin and joints. It can help heal digestion and detoxify the liver. It is good for muscle building and over all care of the body.”

    Absolute nonsense!!!!

    Plus – you can’t “heal” digestion. Heal part of the digestive system (e.g. stomach) perhaps but the phrase heal digestion makes no sense. And the benefits of gelatine listed are absolute nonsense Tamara. There is circumstantial evidence that gelatine peptides may help with stomach ulcer treatment but it does not detoxify the liver (the term detoxify is used far to often these days and has no relevance here). Gelatine is not great for muscle building. I never post comments on sites but your distinct lack of knowledge on this has infuriated me. You present these ‘facts’ which are nothing of the sort.

    Before you reply stating I know nothing, I am a biomedical researcher in the fields of biomedicine and nutrition. I know what I am talking about.

    1. I get my information from numerous places, including the Weston A Price Foundation. This article by Dr. Kayla Daniel (PhD in Nutritional Sciences and Anti-Aging Therapies and is a clinical nutritionist (CCN)) has many of the claims I have made in this recipe post. Granted, my claims on the benefits of gelatin are very succinct as this is basically a recipe for homemade jello.

      Although I will say that ‘healing digestion’ was a mistype and should have been ‘healing digestive tract’ or something to that effect.


  3. Using gelatin is not healthy, use Agar Agar instead, it makes jello vegan. Gelatin is made from the bones of animals. Agar is made from red seaweed.

    1. Agar Agar is not necessarily healthy for everyone, as it is a red seaweed, would likely be in the family of carrageenan which I and a lot of other peoples bodies cannot be tolerated. I choose to use fish gelatin myself.

    2. sorry, but there is no scientific basis for that claim. gelatin is nothing but peptides and proteins and carries no inherent danger. side effects are mild and include stomach upset, stomach gas and bloating. however, agar carries the warnings of: do not use if pregnant or breast feeding, do not use if you have an esophageal or bowel obstruction or difficulty swallowing, agar increases rate of dehydration in electrolytic solutions and when taken with foods that contain tannic acids, do not use if you have thyroid problems because of the high iodine content, do not use if you take oral medications. not only that, but it has been known to cause adverse reactions in people who are allergic to seafood. just because you find it distasteful to use animal products doesn’t mean the alternative is healthier.

  4. Lisa: Why is it unhealthy to use bones from animals? Is this just your personal preference? I supplement with (Green Pastures) gelatin every day and my joints have never been healthier. If I stop for a week or so my joints start making popping noises. If I go 2 weeks without it my joints start aching. Just my experience.

  5. Shelley, I’d love to know what gelatin you’re getting from Green Pastures. I can’t find it on their website.

    1. I suspect Shelley meant Great Lakes; there is a link in the recipe if you click ‘gelatin’. Great Lakes is one of the most used gelatin brands promoted on healthy living sites. Green Pastures is also a brand name of a company that makes fermented cod liver oil, also frequently seen on sites like this. 🙂 Happy gelling!

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