Jello is one of those things I loved as a kid, but grew very scared of as I aged (jello molds anyone?) The truth is, most jello you should be scared of; it’s usually loaded with sugar (or artificial sweeteners), preservatives, food coloring and … gelatin. Surprisingly, out of all these ingredients it’s the gelatin that most people are scared of, including my former self.
However, gelatin, in theory, is the most nutritious part of jello. The caveat here is that it must be from grass-fed, ethically raised animals: I only use Great Lakes Grass-fed Gelatin, which is very different from the Knox brand you’ll see in your local supermarket. Gelatin is the purified protein derived from the collagen of animals and cannot be found from plant sources. High quality gelatin from grass-fed cows is great for gut healing, joint health, skin and hair. Jello is back!
Now the trick is to prepare this gelatin without red 40, refined sugar and preservatives. Luckily this is really easy to do. In this recipe I used unsweetened cranberry juice because that’s what I had on hand, but any juice or liquid will work. You can also naturally sweeten to your taste.
WHY IT’S HEALTHY// Along with the health benefits of grass-fed gelatin, a complete protein and high in amino acids, the pomegranates and cranberry juice are a source of vitamin C. Vitamin C aids in the formation and maintenance of collagen, supports the adrenal glands and improves the immune system. Both pomegranates and cranberries contain polyphenol antioxidants and have anti-clotting properties, which may reduce heart disease risk factors and reduce infections (most notably UTIs).
Keep the liquid to gelatin ratio the same, but feel free to experiment with your favorite juice or tea.
- 1 cup unsweetened cranberry juice
- 1 cup water
- 1½ tablespoons grass-fed gelatin
- 2 tablespoons raw honey (or sweetener of your choice, to taste)
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- In a saucepan whisk together the 2 cups of liquid and the gelatin.
- Allow to sit for 5 minutes and then turn the heat to medium, whisking until it dissolves.
- Remove from heat and whisk in sweetener.*
- Spread half of pomegranate seeds onto the bottom of a dish or bowl.
- Pour over liquid jello mixture and chill until set, about 4 hours.
- When set, sprinkle remaining pomegranate seeds on top.