My grandma was a farmer and an avid gardener- she always had a flock of chickens and at least one goose that always chased us down her driveway. She had a gorgeous raspberry patch, and I remember her freezer was always full of Cool Whip containers filled with homegrown raspberries. And she made the best homemade raspberry jello! Now, it was made with raspberry flavored boxed Jello, but it had homegrown raspberries in it and was smothered with real whipped cream. AND I LOVED IT! She would serve it at every holiday party and I’d load my plate with it, plus she always let me keep the leftovers… as grandmothers do.
She’s been gone for several years now, and it’s been too long since I’ve had proper homemade raspberry jello. I set out to make my own, except to make it with real, healthy ingredients! No boxed Jello mix with artificial colors and flavors here, this homemade raspberry jello is 100% real food! It is flavored only with raspberries, and is sweetened with apple juice and honey. And while nothing will ever taste quite like your grandma used to make it, this stuff is pretty darn good! Reeeally good!
A Note About Ingredients:
I used previously frozen raspberries that I partially thawed, but you can use fresh also. I only use pastured gelatin because it’s a wonderful superfood, and I like either Vital Proteins or Great Lakes brands. Instead of honey, you can use granulated sugar, though you might want to increase the amount by a couple tablespoons and taste the raspberry mixture once the sugar is dissolved to see if it is sweet enough for you, since honey is sweeter than sugar.
Homemade Raspberry Jello
For the Whipped Cream
1 Tbs granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
Place 4 cups of raspberries and 1/2 cup water into a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat and bring the raspberries to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the raspberries are broken down and juicy, about 20 minutes.
While the raspberries and their juice are still warm, place them into a large sieve set atop a bowl, and use the back of a spoon to work the raspberries around the sieve and push them into it. You have to push fairly hard, and it is more of a scraping motion than anything. This will push the raspberry pulp and juice through the sieve and into the bowl, and leave the seeds behind in the sieve. You should end up with one heaping spoonful of seeds when its done.
Measure out 2 cups of the raspberry puree and put it back into the saucepan. It’s okay if it isn’t quite 2 cups, just as long as it’s close. Don’t go over 2 cups though.
Bloom the gelatin by placing it into a small bowl and pouring 1/3 cup of the apple juice over it. Stir it around a bit with a fork to make sure all the gelatin gets wet and no powder remains- it will turn into sort of a block/blob; set aside.
To the pot with the raspberry puree, add the remaining apple juice (1 2/3 cups), the honey, and a pinch of salt; heat until just about boiling. If using granulated sugar, make sure it gets completely dissolved. Next, add in the blob of hydrated gelatin and keep stirring until it is completely dissolved.
Add in the 2 cups of remaining whole raspberries and stir. If your raspberries are a bit frozen yet, allow them to sit in the warm raspberry puree for a few minutes to completely thaw.
Transfer the mixture into its final resting bowl. My grandma always used a large pretty glass bowl, so that you could see the beautiful jello! Refrigerate at least 4 hours, or until set all the way through.
Do NOT cheat and use whipped cream in a can or Cool Whip. This NEEDS real whipped cream, I promise you. It’s what makes it! Make the whipped cream by placing one tablespoon granulated sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Pour the heavy cream over top and start the mixer, using the whisk attachment. Start the mixer on medium and whisk for one minute, then turn the mixer to high. Keep an eye on the whipped cream, stopping every minute or so to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. The whipped cream is done when it is thick enough to hold it’s shape, about 4-7 minutes. Don’t over-beat the cream or it will turn into butter, which is equally yummy but not what you want.
If serving the homemade raspberry jello at an event or to a crowd, spread the whipped cream all over the top of the jello in the bowl before serving. If eating it over a longer period of time, I prefer to keep the whipped cream separate and add it to each individual serving of the jello. Enjoy!
Want more from the homestead?
This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click through them and end up purchasing an item (any item, not necessarily the one I recommended even!) I may receive monetary or other compensation. The price you pay is unaffected by using this link, and buying stuff you were going to get anyways through an affiliate link is a great way to support your favorite blogger and fellow homesteader! Thanks!