If you want a healthier version of Jell-O, here it is. If you don’t want healthier, just cheaper, then use Kool-Aid instead of juice. It’s really easy. Plain gelatin is a very versatile thing to have in the kitchen. It’s cheapest when bought in bulk, and though it seems really expensive per pound, it lasts forever. You only use it by the tablespoon, and it has a really long shelf life.
Regular Fruit Juice Gelatin
Sprinkle the plain gelatin into the water:
2 T. gelatin
6 T. water
The gelatin will soften by soaking up the water and getting really mushy.
Heat up on the stove until boiling:
2 c. juice or prepared Kool-Aid (See note below).
1/4 c. honey if using juice (Omit for Kool-Aid.)
Pour the boiling juice in with the gelatin and stir for 1 minute. Add and stir:
2 additional cups juice, as cold as possible
Stir thoroughly and pour into a 9 X 13 pan. Let chill until set. Mine takes about 2 hours.
Note: I’ve tried the pricier frozen juice, but I didn’t like the resulting flavor. Usually, I use juice I’ve saved from canned fruit, like pineapple and/or pear juice (not syrup). It’s a little different than eating the Kool-Aid flavor, but it’s tasty. My toddler gobbles it down.
You will need Kool-Aid or juice that is 2x as concentrated (or has 1/2 the water) as normal. This can be accomplished in several ways.
If you are starting from a powder (like Kool-Aid), use the amount of powder and sugar for 4 c., but only use 2 c. of water.
If you are using fresh juice, simmer 4 c. of juice until it reduces by half, stirring occasionally.
Follow the recipe as written, but do not add the cold juice. Instead, pour the hot gelatin mixture directly into a greased 9 X 13 pan and chill it until it hardens. Cut the jigglers into shapes, if desired.