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Is Jello Vegan? What is Jello Made Of?

Jason Hughes
Published by Jason Hughes
Fact checked by Markus Oliver, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: March 22, 2022

If you have wide knowledge and experience in avoiding animal-based products, the answer to the question "Is Jello vegan?" is definitely a resounding no. But what exactly is in this popular dessert, and is there anything like vegan jello?

What is Jello Made Of

Jello is made of gelatin, a protein derived from the collagen in animal skin and bones. Therefore, obviously, jello is not vegan.

However, this does not mean that vegan alternatives are not available. There are vegan-friendly jello options made from agar agar or carrageenan, both of which are derived from seaweed.

Agar agar is a vegetarian gelatin substitute made from red algae, while carrageenan is a vegan thickener and stabilizer extracted from Irish moss. Both are available in powdered and flake form and are used in making vegan jello.

Aga agar is also used in vegan baking to create chewy textures, similar to those achieved with eggs or gelatin. It is also a popular vegan-friendly thickener for soups, stews, and sauces.

Carrageenan is also used as a vegan-friendly thickener and stabilizer in things like ice cream, yogurt, and plant milk.

So if you are looking for vegan-friendly alternatives to jello, there are definitely options available. And they come in a variety of flavors and colors, so you can still enjoy this classic dessert while sticking to your vegan diet.

How to Make Vegan Jello

There are a lot of vegan jello recipes out there, but most of them require homemade ingredients. However, if you don't feel like making your own jello, there are many pre-made jello mix options available.

The best homemade recipe for vegan jello is the one made with agar agar powder, but you can also use store-bought vegan gelatin. Just make sure that it doesn't contain any animal products.

There are many different flavors of vegan jello that you can make at home using fruit juice or fruit puree as the base. You can also use other ingredients like vegan yogurt to make it extra flavorful or give it a different kind of texture and taste.

Alternatively, you can use a pre-made vegan jello mix. However, always read the ingredients label carefully before purchasing the mix to make sure there are no ingredients or additives that are not vegan.

That said, a simple recipe you can make at home is by mixing two cups of fruit juice or puree with one teaspoon of agar powder. Pour the mixture into a pot and bring it to a boil. Then pour it into a container and let it cool, and then put it in the fridge to set.

Variations on The Classic Vegan Jello Recipe

There are many variations you can try with vegan jello. Here are a few ideas:

  • Make layered vegan jello with different colored and flavored juices
  • Use vegan yogurt or vegan ice cream as a topping for your vegan jello dessert
  • Use different types of agar agar for different textures, like crunchy or soft

For a fun and festive twist, you can also make vegan jello shots or vegan jello popsicles. These are easy to make and are perfect for summer parties and picnics.

With vegan jello recipes, you can get as creative as you want. You don’t necessarily need to whip your own recipes, you can use a pre-made vegan mix and still make delicious vegan jello.

Top Vegan Jello Brands

If you are looking for vegan jello brands, here are a few to check out:

Simply Delish

Simply Delish offers a variety of vegan-friendly jello mixes, including strawberry, raspberry, blueberry, and peach. All of their products are vegan, GMO-free, and gluten-free and are available in many health food stores and online.

Living Jin Agar Agar Powder

Living Jin Agar Agar Powder is a vegan-friendly agar agar powder made from sustainably harvested seaweed. It is GMO-free and gluten-free.

The powder can be used to gel or thicken liquids making it an ideal alternative to animal-based gelatin. Plus, it has no taste or smell, so it can be added to any vegan jello recipe without changing the flavor profile.

Lieber's Clear Unflavored Jello

Lieber's Clear Unflavored Jello is kosher gelatin that is made without any animal products, and you can use it to make a variety of vegan jello recipes. It is available in most major grocery stores, and you can also buy it online.

Bakol Jel Dessert

Bakol Jel Dessert is a vegan, gluten-free, and GMO-free jello mix that comes in several different flavors, including raspberry, strawberry, and lime. You can find it at your local health food store or online.

Agar Agar Powder by American Heritage Industries

Agar Agar Powder by American Heritage Industries is a vegan-friendly and GMO-free product. It is used as a thickener and gelling agent, and it is available online and in most major grocery stores.

The Benefits of Eating Vegan Jello

Like many other popular vegan desserts, such as vegan ice cream and brownies, vegan jello is a great way to enjoy a sweet treat that is not made of animal products.

As it was already mentioned, vegan jello is made with agar agar, a plant-based thickener, and stabilizer that comes from seaweed. It is gluten-free and low in sugar. This makes it a great option for people who have dietary restrictions or who are looking for a healthier dessert option.

Vegan jello is also high in fiber, which can help to keep you feeling full and satisfied after a meal. Plus, it is a good source of iron and other vitamins and minerals.

Besides, vegan jello is low in calories and fats, and it is said to help improve digestion and boost energy levels.

Final Remarks

Vegan jello is definitely a thing, even though it might not be as popular as traditional jello. You can find pre-made jello mixes in most grocery stores, or you can make your own homemade jello with the ingredients of your choosing. So if you're looking for a vegan-friendly dessert option, vegan jello is certainly worth a try.


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