Homemade Fresh Grapefruit or Pomegranate ‘Jello’

Homemade Fresh Grapefruit or Pomegranate ‘Jello’ ~ these very low sugar healthy fresh fruit ‘jello’ recipes are fun for kids of all ages!

This was a real eye opener for me. I’m not a jello eater. My mom’s lime gelatin salads filled with shredded cabbage knocked that right out of me at an early age. Her wobbly tomato aspic studded with green olives clinched the deal in case I had any lingering doubt. No one could be more surprised than me to find out that you can make homemade gelatin with fresh fruit that tastes incredible. I made pomegranate and pink grapefruit, but you can really use almost any fruit juice you want, fresh or not. (Fresh pineapple won’t work though, it contains an enzyme that breaks down the gelatin.)

You can make it in little individual sized jars or dishes, or pour it all in a flat pan and cut it into cubes after it’s set. The more powdered gelatin you use, the firmer it will set up. The color will be softer and slightly cloudier than commercial Jello, unless you are using a perfectly clear juice.

This is refreshing and healthy—the recipes I developed have minimal sugar—there’s no need for it because the fruit, even the pink grapefruit, is already sweet. The pink grapefruit gelatin tasted just like fresh grapefruit, only in a different form. Without excess sugar, color and flavorings, you really get a very bright real fruit taste. Great for kids, great for dieters, but really good enough to make for no other reason than because it tastes great.

I’ve have a secret yen to make one of those beautiful layered jello desserts, but with real fruit gelatin. I can just imagine how beautiful it would be with the natural colors.

I used two slightly different methods for each version here, and both worked, so I don’t think there’s a precise science to this. You will use 1 to 2 packets of unflavored gelatin for about 1 1/2 cups of fruit juice. A little sugar and water, and a squeeze of lemon juice if you want extra tang. I made small quantities, double them if you like.

3.33 from 68 votes

Homemade Fresh Grapefruit or Pomegranate ‘Jello’

Course Dessert
Author Sue Moran


Grapefruit jello

  • juice of 2 large grapefruits 1 1/2 cups
  • 2 packets unflavored gelatin 1/2 oz
  • 1 heaping Tbsp sugar
  • 3/4 cup water

Pomegranate jello

  • 1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice I used Pom
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 packet unflavored gelatin 1/4 oz
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon


  • For the grapefruit jello ~ sprinkle the gelatin over 1 cup of the grapefruit juice, m.ix and let sit to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Heat the water and sugar together, stirring to dissolve the sugar, until the water comes to a simmer.
  • Pour the hot liquid over the juice and gelatin, and add the remaining 1/2 cup juice.
  • Pour into individual serving cups or into one glass pan.
  • Refrigerate until completely firm, several hours.
  • When firm, you can cut the jello into cubes.
  • Keep refrigerated until ready to eat; the gelatin will eventually turn back to liquid at room temperature.
  • For the pomegranate jello ~ dissolve the gelatin in the water and set aside for 5 minutes.
  • Heat the juice and sugar in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves.
  • Pour the hot juice over the gelatin and mix well. Add the lemon juice if using. Taste and adjust the sugar if necessary.
  • Pour into individual serving dishes or into one large pan.
  • Refrigerate until firm, at least several hours.
  • Keep refrigerated until ready to eat; the gelatin will eventually turn back to a liquid at room temperature.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.


  • To slice the gelatin cleanly, dip a knife in very hot water before each cut. For those who don’t eat animal products, there are gelatin alternatives, here is a list from PETA.

I’m going to have to dig out my mom’s old jello mold.

(Did I just say that?)


Don’t forget to pin this Homemade Fresh Grapefruit or Pomegranate ‘Jello’!

Homemade Fresh Grapefruit or Pomegranate 'Jello' ~ these very low sugar healthy fresh fruit 'jello' recipes are fun for kids of all ages! | kids | dessert | gelatin | fruit | low sugar | gluten free |

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  • Reply
    July 12, 2017 at 5:44 pm

    Hi there. Looking to try this recipe. I am curious though, as to why there are different liquid and gelatin amounts between the two recipes you’ve suggested? Thinking of doing this with fresh watermelon. 🙂

    • Reply
      July 12, 2017 at 7:30 pm

      The amount of liquid versus gelatin is flexible, Erin, and in the pomegranate recipe the extra water tones down in the intensity of the pomegranate juice.

  • Reply
    April 20, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    Can agave nectar be used in place of sugar or stevia?

    • Reply
      April 20, 2016 at 6:33 pm

      I haven’t tried, but I would think that would work Judy — let us know if you try it!

  • Reply
    February 28, 2016 at 3:56 pm

    Can you substitute regular grapefruit juice from the juice section at the store?

    • Reply
      February 28, 2016 at 4:02 pm

      Yes you can Maya.

  • Reply
    January 31, 2015 at 11:52 am

    Yum! This looks so beautiful and yummy! What a great snack. Pinning!

    • Reply
      January 31, 2015 at 12:10 pm

      Thanks Tricia!

  • Reply
    January 1, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    I actually went and made this today. I went and squeezed the juice myself but be sure to run the fresh squeezed juice through a strainer to get the little bits out! It tastes delicious and came out exactly like the picture. This stuff is amazing. Can’t wait to make more!

    • Reply
      January 1, 2015 at 3:25 pm

      It’s been a while since I’ve made this, but I remember it was such a kick to do! This is a nice thing to have around in January when we’re all trying to cut down on sweets, too. I’m glad it worked out for you Crystal, thanks for letting me know.

  • Reply
    May 11, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    i like the hue of the grapefruit batch, but dang–that pomegranate jello is GORGEOUS! i’d like to have that color around me at all times, thank you very much. 🙂

  • Reply
    May 10, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    I absolutely love grapefruit. How fun to have it in homemade jello form. What a great idea. I haven’t made my own jello, but this is one flavor that is going to get me to try!

  • Reply
    shannon weber
    May 9, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    okay, i’m going to level with you: probably 90% of the time when i see your posts, i think “i was JUST THINKING ABOUT THIS THE OTHER DAY.” we possibly share a brain, and i wanted you to know that.
    because i’m not kidding when i say i was wandering through my food mind sometime this past week (we have been so busy that it’s all i’ve gotten accomplished for the blog – thoughts) and i thought that i should try and juice something in the juicer to see if i could make homemade jello.
    thank goodness i procrastinated/haven’t gotten to it yet, because now i have a recipe template. 🙂 i love this! i actually have quite the thing for jello, so dig out that old jello mold and let’s get the ball rolling here this summer. 🙂

  • Reply
    Chris Scheuer
    May 8, 2013 at 9:22 pm

    You come up with the most fun and delicious ideas Sue. You are an ever evolving fountain of inspiration!

  • Reply
    belleau kitchen
    May 8, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Beautiful. My mum used to make a grapefruit jelly with pieces if fruit suspended in the jellybut what you’ve done here is the contemporary version. Delightful. Just need to find a veggie gelatin to make it for The Viking!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      May 8, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      I think I read that you can substitute equal parts agar agar for the gelatin. I do think pieces of grapefruit in the gelatin would be good, and pretty, too.

  • Reply
    Mary Younkin
    May 8, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    Sue, my friend, you actually made me snort with the last comment. If I even joked about digging out a jello mold, my family would have me committed. My mom has a history of adding all sorts of fruit (and VEGETABLE!) leftovers to her jellos. With 8 kids, jello appeared on almost every single table she set, as she figured it would help fill out the meal. (I’m fairly certain that the jello did absolutely nothing to fill the bellies of my five brothers!) To this day, jello is a running joke in my family.

    I keep staring at your photos though and actually considering a made-from-scratch updated version. I need to think about this some more. I’m not sure I’m ready to try it myself, although I sure would like to taste your grapefruit version!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      May 8, 2013 at 6:47 pm

      The grapefruit just tastes like cold fresh grapefruit, and I know your boys would love it, but considering your history with the stuff, I can understand your hesitation…
      …FIVE brothers?

  • Reply
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    May 8, 2013 at 5:46 pm

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  • Reply
    La Table De Nana
    May 8, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Really pretty too Sue.

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    May 8, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Wow…so beautiful! I used to love love love Jello Jigglers, i.e. Knox Blocks, Jello Blocks, etc. as a kid. I know I could go to town on your little cubes!

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