You know what I expect to see in strawberry recipes? Actual strawberries, which unfortunately you won’t find in boxed strawberry jello mix. That’s why I love this homemade strawberry jello recipe, which is made with real strawberries and wholesome ingredients like honey, lemon juice and gelatin, which supports youthful skin, healthy digestion and restful sleep.
Of course, there are a few other ingredients used in the boxed stuff that you won’t find in my recipe – congealed red #40 and artificial flavors, for example – but I think we can both agree that we won’t miss them.
Wiggly and jiggly and full of flavor that kids love, jello is a healthy snack option that’s easy to pack and eat on-the-go. We make several versions that have become a staple at many backyard bbqs, potlucks and picnic . . . and now I’m adding this one!
Oh and the best part? It’s super easy.
How to Make Strawberry Jello
Kind of like this chia seed strawberry jam, making homemade strawberry jello is as easy as 1-2-3:
- Puree strawberries, water, honey, and lemon juice. Mix the gelatin with a little bit of the puree.
- Heat puree and stir in gelatin mixture.
See what I mean by easy?
Homemade Strawberry Jello Recipe
- 2 cups fresh strawberries (previously frozen will also work as long as the strawberries are partially thawed)
- ¾ cup room temperature water
- 5 tbsp raw honey
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 4½ tsp grass-fed gelatin
- a few drops of natural red food coloring (optional – I like this brand)
- Place the strawberries, water, honey, and lemon juice in a blender and puree until smooth.
- Scoop out 1/4 cup of the puree and place it in a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over the bowl and mix it with the puree until well-combined.
- While the gelatin is blooming, place the remaining puree in a small pot and heat over medium high heat. When the puree is hot but not yet boiling, remove it from heat.
- Immediately add the bloomed gelatin and whisk until thoroughly combined.
- Divide the jello mixture between 3-4 small glass jars. I use either 4 ounce mason jars or 7 ounce tulip jars.
- Refrigerate for 2-3 hours, or until the strawberry jello has set.
Can I use other types of fresh fruit?
Yes, raspberries and blueberries will also work. However, they’re not usually as sweet as strawberries so you may want to add 1-2 tablespoons of extra honey.
I made this recipe and it won’t thicken. What went wrong?
There are two types of grass-fed gelatin – regular gelatin and collagen hydrolysate, which is sometimes called collagen peptides. You need to use regular gelatin like this one and not the hydrolysate form which does not gel.
Where can I find the jars shown in your photos?
You can find them on Amazon.
Want more strawberry-inspired easy recipes ?
4 Ingredient Strawberry Popsicles – These popsicles are made with a base of lightly sweetened yogurt and a hint of mint. They’re delicious, easy to make, and pretty too!
Strawberry Shortcake Biscuits – These biscuits are so simple and delicious! If strawberries aren’t in season, the post includes suggestions for different fruits that go well with this recipe.
Strawberry Muffins – These muffins incorporate ruby red strawberries and a crunchy, crumbly streusel topping.
Strawberry Crisp – With a scrumptious crispy topping layered over a juicy, thick strawberry filling, this gluten-free crisp is both easy and delicious.
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What’s your favorite way to make real fruit jello?
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Thank you! I have a wonderful recipe for a pretzel jello dessert that I haven’t been able to have in years because I am allergic to Red 40. You have made my day!!
I love this blog content. The recipes are delicious and have truly helped me on my natural living journey. Thank you Heather 😊
I just tried making a “gummy” recipe that was very similar to this but had about twice the gelatin. The strawberries were not strained– i wonder if that is why my kids did not like it. I will try this recipe and let you know how it goes. Have you ever tried this with more gelatin?
Also I wondered if you thought the bottles tart cherry concentrate would work as a flavoring for jello. I have some leftover that I was using to flavor water kefir. Any thoughts?
I was just thinking cherry would be a great flavor! I now know how to tweak the recipe. Thanks for your comment!
This sounds LOVELY!! I will let you know as soon as we make it. I have a suggestion for a flavor. My family loves black cherry flavor. Black cherry juice?
Yum. I think it’s so funny, I had been craving properly made strawberry jello for weeks, but unable to do anything more than scrounge around the house, I made some with hibiscus blend tea and a splash of orange juice and a handful of strawberries from the freezer. Not as perfect as what you describe, but hit the spot nicely and had a bit of gourmet touch to it. Mmmm…..
Yikes, I didn’t know it was broken! Thanks for letting me know, Sabrina. I’ll ask my husband to look into asap. 🙂
My kids weren’t allowed to have artificial dyes when they were little and it was so hard to find them things that were NORMAL. I used to make “jello” with grapes, strawberries and especially cranberries for holidays. They still ask for cranberry apple salad now as adults. Experiment, it is worth going beyond the sugar and dye box.
Looks great. What is the brand name of gelatin you use? Thank you.
Just curious if I other fruit would it be prepared the same way? And are frozen fruits ok as well? Thanks!!
Strawberries are still in season where we live and this was a delicious summer treat!
I’m wondering about this also. Is it just the seeds that are strained out? Or is most of the strawberry strained and only juice is left?
Thank you for the recipe. Can you let me know what is the shelf life of prepared jellos? Not that it will be allowed to last long because of yummyness. 🙂
I used agar-agar, same amounts as the gelatin, but it didn’t set. It tastes good, just wasn’t jell-o consistency. Should I boil the agar-agar in water first before using it? This was my first attempt at making this.
Hey Jessica, I’m sorry you were disappointed with the color of your jello. I’m not sure what happened, because the photos accurately depict how Kristen’s jello looked after using the method described above. I’ve also cooked strawberries to make homemade jam and it always stays bright red, so again I’m not sure what went wrong here. I hope it tasted good, though.
Same thing happened to me. But I did skip using juice and just used the strained strawberry ? liquid plus filtered water. So maybe that is why it turned a cloudy pink and was not sweet enough ☹️
I think one should macerate the strawberries. This means halving and sprinkling sugar over them over a strainer into a bowl for hours until they bleed. Of course, this means sugar (if you also like that Jell-O taste) but you can find some “honey” or healthy based macerating options. Macerating is a cold process that will guarantee your berries stay bright red. How you strain the remainder pulp is up to you but you will have juice to which you can add water, gelatin (and of course) no more sweetener. Best tip… use beef gelatin for all you elderly, recovering from broken bones and those who need to build bone health, including pregnant moms!
I added extra honey and stevia to taste, and used Vital Protiens gelatin. It was like eating cold strawberries, yum. It’s not exactly like store bought, but my kids gobbled up nearly the whole batch the same day.
Color is affected by the temperature at which you cook the fruit (too high = darker), the length of time (the longer it is cooked, the darker it will be) and the ripeness of the fruit (overripe will yield more brown color; underripe more pink and not red).
I’m thrilled to find a decent alternative to store-bought Jello. Trying to make strawberry pretzel pie without the red #40.
Sounds like a great recipe. I learned from experience that when making strawberry jelly, the recipe just calls for smashing, mixing, then cooking and ended up lacking in flavor! When doing grape jelly, you smash and cook the grapes, then continue with the recipe so I tried this same method with strawberry and it worked great! Smash or blend the strawberries first. Then simmer then in a pot for about 5 minutes. This should increase your flavor. I have made jello with 1/4 bottled black cherry to 3/4 water which was awesome. Tart cherry was too strong so I had to whip up some whipped cream to mix in with it. Tried a Kiwi blend which was mild so needed twice the juice. You just have to experiment and keep notes!
Just made this and it was a hit with everyone! Thanks for your great recipes!
So glad you liked it, Molly! Thanks for taking the time to come back and leave a rating. I always check stars and comments on a recipe I’m interested in trying, and I’ll bet a lot of people considering this recipe will appreciate your feedback. 🙂
Made this morning, still setting but I’m afraid I didn’t use enough gelatin. (Same kind as you recommended). Is there a way I can add more to help it set or should we just enjoy it soupy as is? (Which is delicious!)
Delicious and easy! Used 3T honey with frozen strawberries… plenty sweet! Mixing strawberries with banana today, wish me luck!
Are the portions equivalent to a 3-oz Jello package at the store? For example if a recipe calls for 1 3-oz package can I use one of the 4-oz jars?
It looks like the recipe has been changed since the last time I made it. Would it be possible to have a copy of the old one without as much honey and no dye?
Sure thing, Michelle. Here it is:
1½ lbs fresh strawberries
2 TBSP honey
2 TBSP water
2 small fresh mint leaves (optional)
3 TBSP grass-fed gelatin
Wash the strawberries and remove the stems.
Halve them and place them in a medium size pot on the stove.
Add the honey, water, and mint if using.
Put a lid on the pot, turn on heat to low, and simmer 5 minutes.
Remove the mint leaves and simmer an additional 10 minutes.
Use a blender or an immersion blender to puree the fruit mixture.
Strain out the seeds using a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth.
Pour the juice into a liquid measure and add water if necessary to make 2 cups.
Return the puree to the pot.
Sprinkle the gelatin over the puree and let it sit for 1 minute.
Whisk the puree/gelatin mixture and let it sit for 2 more minutes.
Turn on the stove to low and heat the mixture, whisking occasionally, until all the gelatin is dissolved and the puree is heated through.
Pour into a 6×8 glass pan or silicone molds.
Refrigerate 4 hours or until set and chilled.
Thank you so much!!!
Your recipe says it makes 15 squares, but then it says to pour into 3-4 small glass jars. 32 calories. Contradictions…
What is correct?
Gordeen Darbee Sherwood
Loved this! Would it work with blueberries? How would you go about using just lemons?
This looks SO YUMMY!!! Can I use Serve sweetener in place of the honey? (For keto) I don’t know if it would mess up the consistency, but I also have some vanilla liquid stevia on hand…
What other sweetener can be substituted? Honey is not low fodmap.
Maple syrup would be the closest substitute.
I tried to make flavored jello with gelatinous bone broth. It wasn’t terrible. Have you ever heard of anything like this?
Hi, this recipe looks delicious. Is it possible to make this without the gelatin and maybe use xantham gum?
My daughter wanted to try jello. It actually came out great. I used cream in place of the water and that gave better flavor. The only thing, I might heat the bloomed gelatin a bit to disolve it for easier mixing but it came out good nonetheless.