Recently, I shared this picture listing the benefits of gelatin, and people were really intrigued and excited. So let’s talk more about gelatin, and learn how to make homemade jello, shall we? Yeah, let’s do this!
Gelatin is for everyone
I mean that – I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t have something to gain from this incredibly healing and nourishing protein. It’s easily digestible, so if you’re someone with digestive issues or if you’re having trouble with animal proteins, give this a try. If you’re a vegetarian who is looking to supplement with some high quality animal products, give this a try. If you’re a smoothie drinker and you’re getting tired of your protein powders…give this a try.
What ails you?
Incorporating traditional foods like gelatin helps the body find balance and heal:
- Its glycine content promotes restful sleep and eases anxiety.
- The collagen protein in gelatin protects your joints, lowers inflammation and joint pain, and it keeps your skin smooth, healthy, and beautiful.
- Gelatin also promotes stomach acid secretion and restores the mucosal cells of the stomach and intestinal lining. What does that mean? Simply put, it heals the gut – and all health stems from the gut.
- Gelatin absorbs water – which you’ll soon see if you make jello – and that helps to keep your digestive process working smoothly (ie. healthy bowel movements, baby).
The list of potential benefits could go on. There’s one more thing I should mention: gelatin balances out the methionine content of meat. For meat eaters, including foods like gelatin and bone broth in your diet will keep methionine levels in check. We don’t want methionine levels too high as that increases homocysteine in the blood, which is considered a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
Grass-fed is always best
I’ve written before about the importance of grass-fed beef. Gelatin is no different! Bovine gelatin should come from grass-fed cows, and porcine gelatin should come from pasture-raised pigs. Quality matters, especially when it comes to animal products which can be highly contaminated if they’re not organic or naturally raised.
I recommend the Great Lakes brand. The exact one pictured above is what will make jello. Great Lakes also has a slightly different variety, a hydrolyzed form, which comes in a green-coloured canister – this one does not gel liquids and can be mixed into cold liquids as well. It could be used as a protein powder in smoothies or mixed into your coffee or other drinks. If you’re looking to make jello, though, get the red-coloured canister pictured above!
So Alex, you’re telling me to make jello?
Yes I am! But not the packaged crap, of course.
I’m talking about Real Food Jello.
Here’s What You Need:
1 TBSP Great Lakes gelatin
2 cups steeped tea of choice (green, rooibos, fruity, etc)
…OR 2 cups freshly squeezed juice (pictured above is a combo of orange, lemon, lime)
Optional berries or fruit of choice (anything goes)
Optional honey to sweeten, if desired
Here’s What You Do:
You have many options here – you can make tea flavoured jello, or classic fruity jello, or your own creative combination!
- In a small pot, mix gelatin with the 2 cups of either tea or juice. Add berries and/or honey if you’d like. Mix to get all the lumps out.
- Warm this mixture on the stove, until hot but not boiling. Stir constantly so no more lumps form during this time. It will probably be about 5 minutes.
- If you have a teabag or loose tea in there, strain your tea now. Pour mixture into either a shallow glass dish or silicone muffin cups (pictured below) or fun silicone molds if you want to make gummy bears or other shapes! You could also add some fruit at this time, if you didn’t add it at the beginning.
- Let it gel in the freezer or fridge (could be a few hours in the fridge).
- Cut into squares, or enjoy straight from your selected muffin cups or mold! Store in the fridge.
I encourage you to be creative and have fun experimenting with this. Try different flavour combinations. Try using different amounts of gelatin – about 1 TBSP will gel 2 cups of liquid to a regular jello consistency, and the more you use, the harder it gets. Try 4+ TBSP for a gummy candy consistency.
For more gelatin inspiration and recipes, see this post here, which is an excellent round-up of delicious-looking drinks, desserts, snacks, and even DIY hair products, all made with gelatin.
Here’s to your good health and happiness!
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