Making vegan jello is easy and healthy! Learn how to make it at home without gelatin for the perfect kid snack.
Jello is such a childhood memory for me. I always loved the red and hated the orange. Making it at home can be pretty easy but making sure it is vegan requires a little knowledge!
Traditional jello is made with gelatin, which you may or may not know is not vegan. Luckily for us, there is a plant based alternative! Agar Agar is derived from seaweed, and is a gelatinous substance that is perfect for making vegan jello.
There's only a few simple ingredients needed to make vegan jello, and they are very customizable! Here's what you need:
- Agar agar powder
How to Make Vegan Jello
The process for making plant based jello is very similar to the packaged version you may be familiar with. Here's what to do:
- Boil all ingredients, whisking constantly.
- Pour into a prepared dish and refrigerate until set.
The beauty of this recipe is just how versatile it is! Mix thing up a try a different flavor every time. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
- Lemonade, or flavored lemonade
- Fruit Punch
Tips and tricks
As easy as this recipe is, there are still a few hints to help you get the best results possible:
- The color of your jello will depend on the color of your juice. If the color isn't vibrant enough, you can also use 2-3 drops of food coloring.
- The jello will taste like the juice you use. If it isn't sweet enough, add in a sweetener of choice like maple syrup, honey (not vegan) or your choice of sugar.
- If you use agar agar flakes instead of the powder, you will need approximately twice as much. This isn’t exact so you may need to experiment with the texture you prefer.
- Using half water half juice is a popular method, but we weren't a big fan. Feel free to try it out though.
- Line the pan with parchment paper to make it easier to lift out after it cools.
- Keep this vegan jello in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It will melt at room temperature.
- Jello is not ideal for freezing, as the texture will change.
Yes! There are a number of store bought vegan jello options. But, it is so easy to make your own at home with just juice and agar agar!
Agar agar is a gelatinous substance that is derived from seaweed. It is used as a vegan alternative to gelatin, and can also be used to thicken soups or make jams, pudding, or custards.
Agar agar is a plant based alternative for gelatin that is widely used.
More Vegan Kid Friendly Recipes
Keeping kids full and happy on a plant based diet is easy when you have the right recipes on hand! Here are some of our favorite kid tested and approved plant based recipes:
- Baked Oven Fries
- Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta
- Vegan Hamburger Helper
- Homemade Chocolate Milk
- Vegan Scrambled Eggs
- Easy Vegan Pigs in a Blanket
- Rice Krispie Treats
- Healthy Lunchables
Homemade Vegan Jello Recipe
- 4 cups juice of choice , see note
- 3-4 teaspoons agar agar powder , if you like it firmer go for more (see note)
- ¼ cup tablespoons sweetener , optional for sweeter flavor
- Prepare a square baking dish (8 or 9 inches) with oil/spray or parchment paper. I like parchment because it is easy to lift out after it cools.
- Put all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil, constantly whisking to avoid the agar agar from clumping. About 3-5 minutes.4 cups juice of choice, 3-4 teaspoons agar agar powder, ¼ cup tablespoons sweetener
- Once it is boiling, allow it to boil for about 2 minutes and remove from heat.
- Pour into the prepared baking dish and put in the fridge to set. It takes about 2 hours for it to be fully set and ready to eat.
- The more vibrant your juice is, the more vibrant the end result will be. You can also use 2-3 drops of food coloring if you really want a bright color.
- Agar agar is the vegan substitute for gelatin. If you are using the flakes and not the powder, you will need about twice as much. This isn’t exact so you may need to experiment with the texture you prefer.
- You can do half water if you prefer, this method is used online a lot but it does end up with a less vibrant color and flavor. I experimented a lot with this and I did not prefer the water/juice combo. Our preference was all juice with 4 teaspoons agar for a firmer result.
- If your juice isn’t sweet enough you can add in a sweetener of choice like maple, honey (not vegan) or choice of sugar.
- Make sure to store in the fridge, it melts at room temp.
Recipe by Veggies Don’t Bite, visit our site for more great plant-based recipes.
Nutrition and metric information should be considered an estimate.
Made this with 3 tsp of agar, and it was so gelatinous it was impossible to eat. I made again with half the agar, and it was much better.
Hi Christa, The texture is definitely a preference. I tried it with a range of agar, from 1 all the way up to 5 teaspoons. I landed on the 3-4 that I put in the recipe because any less than that and the texture was too soft for us. I am more a firmer texture fan when it comes to Jello. But you can definitely do what works for your preferences! I will say though, that your stove top can also affect this. If your stove top is hotter it can cook it down faster and affect the texture. Jello can be finicky so I always suggest playing with it to get your perfect texture. I also am wondering about the juice you used. It could have affected it as well! Either way, glad you found the texture that you prefer.
Who knew you could make vegan jello? I'm so excited! We started with fruit punch, excited to try more flavors!