Thursday, June 26, 2014

Jell-o (Vegan)

Jell-o seems like a childhood novelty.  I have fond memories of those brightly colored jello jigglers at almost every holiday, just in different bright, radiant colors . BUT now I would rather my girls not be ingesting the gelatin and food dyes found in most of those tasty little treats geared to kids.  I have played around with homemade jello for the last couple of years.  My girls have usually liked it but recently I nailed it. It's so easy and quick and I feel way better about serving this to the little ones in my life.

This recipe uses Agar Agar, which is plant based and derived from sea vegetables. Over the past year I have learned so much more about good quality gelatin and it's health benefits that I would actually like to try that as well. Either way it's creating a snack with a quality ingredient that doesn't have all the extra dyes, chemicals, and preservatives.

The recipe I used had 3 ingredients.  Below is the base or skeleton of the recipe. Start there and play around.  Adjust the flavors.  Get creative.

It would work to combine different juices, fruit purees, or even add fruit pieces (which I haven't tried but everything I have read online says it will work).  Sweetener could also be added.  I have been using 1 cup of elderberry tea  that I make from simmering whole elderberries with water.  Elderberries are  immune boosting so I will be making these this fall when the nasty colds and flu start rearing their ugly heads again.
I then add 1 cup of 100% Organic Grape Juice.  My girls seem to think it is sweet enough so we roll with it. I personally think the trick is what the jello is poured into to set.  I have been using little silicone molds I picked up at Ikea and Michaels, and my silicone muffin cups.  This has made a world of difference. Not to mention they turn out cute and are in fun little shapes.  Yep, move on over Jell-o Jigglers.
  If you come up with a favorite combination please do share.  This is becoming a staple at our house, and I would love to experiment with some different flavors and fruits we haven't used yet.


2 cups of fruit juice
2 tsp Agar Agar powder

Heat juice on stove.  Before it boils add agar agar and stir constantly until it boils. Once it reaches boiling make sure agar agar has been dissolved and then allow the mixture to simmer on low for 5-10 minutes. Finish by pouring into molds.  Allow to cool on counter top and then serve.

*if using agar flakes you will need to add 2 TBS 

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