Jello is the name given to a well-known jelly-like dessert. Jello is eaten all over the world.
Many hospitals and schools serve jello for dessert, but most people also enjoy it as a low-calorie treat.
However, if you have trouble digesting gluten, or you know anyone who does, then you’ll be wondering whether jello can be eaten alongside a gluten-free diet.
This article will discuss jello and its gluten status. So, is jello gluten-free? Let’s find out.
Is jello gluten-free or not?
Many companies are involved in the production of jello. However, the trademark “Jell-o” is owned by Kraft Foods Group Inc and includes dessert products such as pudding, jello, among others. Jello is the name for a gelatin-based dessert.
Premade jello is sold in cups. You can as well prepare it by yourself using a packaged powder. Either way, it’s the same ingredients that are used.
The main ingredient in jello is gelatin. Gelatin is derived from collagen, a type of protein found in the joints, skin, ligaments, and bones of animals. Gelatin is mostly gotten from cows and pigs, which is why it is unsuitable for people who don’t eat pork-based products (1).
Other ingredients used include fumaric acid, adipic acid, flavors, artificial colors, artificial flavors, and sugar. They all contribute to improving the quality, texture, and taste of the product.
Although these ingredients do not contain gluten, many companies try as much as they can not certify their products as gluten-free. Why? Because the factory they’re produced in may contain traces of gluten or gluten-based products (2).
Thus, while jello ingredients may be gluten-free, the product itself is rarely produced in a gluten-free facility.
How to identify a gluten-free jello
To select gluten-free jello, carefully search through the stock for a gluten-free notice on the package. If it’s not available, then there’s the possibility that you may be consuming trace amounts of gluten.
The best way to have gluten-free jello is by making it yourself. Preparing jello is very easy, and you need very few ingredients.
To prepare gluten-free jello, here’s what you need:
- Gluten-free gelatin – 2 tablespoons (30 ml)
- A cup (250ml) or two (500ml) of 100% fruit puree or fruit juice
- A cup of water
- Gluten-free sweetener, stevia, or sugar to taste.
Add ½ cup of fruit juice to a saucepan and warm it. Use low heat to warm. Add 30 ml (2 tablespoons) of gelatin and stir properly. After it is dissolved, turn off the heat and allow it to sit for 2 minutes.
Add the rest of the water and juice to the mixture and stir properly. To sweeten it the more, add sugar in small amounts. Add gradually until you’ve reached your desired level of sweetness.
Add the mixture to a mold or a bowl. Cover with a plastic wrap or a lid and refrigerate for 3-4 hours minimum.
Jello contains gluten-free products such as sugar, gelatin, and other preservatives. So, in theory, jello is gluten-free.
But because jello products are made in facilities that contain other gluten products, manufacturers do not guarantee completely gluten-free jello. If you need a product that is free of gluten, then you should make it at home. Making it at home is easy, and you’ll get a healthy product.