They say there’s always room for Jell-O, but what if you’re a vegan? If you are, you might want to snack on something else, because there certainly is no room for gelatin – the main ingredient in Jell-O – in a vegan diet. Gelatin is what gives Jell-O its jelly-ness, which is understandable considering gelatin is actually collagen, the connective tissue in animals that some people also inject into their lips. Yum!
Furthermore, not only is gelatin a thickening agent for jello, but it’s also used in candies like gummy bears and jelly beans, and dairy products such as yogurt. It helps to manipulate the texture of the food so that it’s easier to chew and swallow. Unfortunately, gelatin is created by boiling the skin, cartilage, and bones of animals that have been slaughtered for leather, food, or other reasons. Therefore, gelatin is one of the many animal products you should stay away from. But on the bright side, there are some delicious vegan alternatives you can try.
VEGAN JELLO BRANDS
Many people think that “jello” is the name of the chilled gelatin dessert, but it’s simply the brand name of one specific food company. In other countries, what we call “jello” they refer to as “jelly.” While Jell-O is not vegan, the good news is that other jellies are. We were able to find some vegan “jello” alternatives online by searching for “gelatin free jello.”
WHAT IS VEGAN JELLO MADE OF?
Now that you’re aware of the jello animal products to avoid, it’s time to move to dessert ingredients you can trust.
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This gelling agent derives from cooked and pressed seaweed, and comes in powder, flake, or bar form. It’s best to grind it in a blender and then cook it. Stir the liquid until it dissolves and gives it approximately an hour to set. You don’t need to put it in the refrigerator. If you prefer a firmer texture, put in more aga-agar.
This particular seaweed is typically known as Irish moss and it’s found in the coastal waters of France, North America, and Ireland. Plus, it’s great for softening the texture of the gel and food such as pudding. To make carrageen, carefully rinse it off and soak it until it puffs up. Add in the liquid of your choice, boil it for ten minutes, and take out the carrageen. One cup of liquid only requires one ounce of carrageen.
You can buy kosher gelatin from the store and many of them are vegan and therefore don’t contain animal products. You can try food brands like Lieber’s or KoJel’s
WHAT BRAND OF JELLO IS VEGAN?
If you’re someone who isn’t interested in making your own vegan dessert, there are some vegan jello brands that you can buy from a retailer. Thankfully, there are companies out there that make food with ingredients that are safe to eat.
SIMPLY DELISH NATURAL STRAWBERRY JEL DESSERT
This jel is great for a quick snack or a tasty after-dinner treat. It has no dairy, no GMO, and it’s free of fat, sugar, and gluten. It comes in strawberry, peach, orange, and raspberry flavors, and you can add in fruit to take it up a notch. It’s available on Amazon, so try it for yourself!
BAKOL VEGAN JEL DESSERT
Bakol has all-natural ingredients and takes no time to set. It comes in six flavors and is best prepared at room temperature. Top it with coconut whipped cream to boost the taste. Order it here, on Amazon.
ZELLEE ORGANIC FRUIT JEL
Zellee is the perfect snack for kids and adults. You can grab it before heading to your workout or toss it in your child’s lunchbox before school; it’s super convenient. It comes in pear, blueberry, grape, strawberry, orange, and peach flavors, and provides a dose of Vitamin, A, C, and D. These grab and go snacks are amazing. Check it out on Amazon.
A DELICIOUS VEGAN JELLO RECIPE YOU’LL LOVE
So far you’ve learned how to make gelatin and gotten the names of few vegan brands. Now, it’s time to give it some pizzazz. Most people think Jello is something that only kids and elderly hospital patients eat, but that’s far from the truth. There are so many delicious and creative ways of utilizing it. That’s right, ice cream isn’t the only treat that can make your taste buds happy.
If you’re having a party and you don’t want to do the usual fruit tray, infuse it with vegan jello. It’s a fun and decorative way to enjoy your favorite childhood snack. Here’s what you need:
- A box of your favorite flavor of vegan jello
- The fruit of your choice (strawberries and oranges are good options)
- Slice an orange in half or cut off the tops of a carton of strawberries
- Once the fruit is cut, carve out the middle. Take the flesh of the orange out and spoon out the inside of the strawberry.
- Place the orange peels and the hallowed strawberries in a muffin tin (it will keep the fruit from falling over).
- Next, pour the vegan jello into the fruit. Be careful not to fill it to the rim and cause it to spill over.
- Allow it to set inside of the fruit. Once the orange halves are done, you can cut them into quarter slices.
Feel free to mix and match the flavors as you see fit. You can put peach jello into the strawberries or strawberry jello into lemon wedges. Do what you’d like!
You might not be into baking or spending too much time in the kitchen. If that’s you, not a problem. There are so many other ways to have fun with vegan gelatin that don’t require you to be an expert at baking.
- Make a pan of Bakol or Simply Delish, and use a cookie cutter to carve out cool shapes.
- Create a parfait with a layer of jello, fresh fruit, and coconut whipped cream topped with granola.
- Put together a rainbow bowl. Make at least three different flavors of jello. Once they’re done, cut it into cubes and enjoy multiple flavors at the same time.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON VEGAN JELLO
You may never think about gelatin or Jell-O the same after reading this article. Sure, you might cringe when you see gummy bears and jelly beans, but on the bright side, there are plenty of organic alternatives to all candies and treats. Not to mention, there are countless ways to enjoy vegan gelatin. How do you plan to spruce up your jello recipes?