Photos of all things food and drink from The Daily Meal
Go ahead, try a Jell-O shot or 20.
The Daily Meal's editors, contributors, and readers dig into some pretty great restaurants, festivals, and meals. There's not always enough time to give a full review of a restaurant or describe in depth why a place, its food, and the people who prepare it are noteworthy, so Snackshot of the Day does what photographs do best, rely on the image to do most of the talking.
Today's Snackshot is of a tray of Jell-O shots. It was on this day in 1897 that Jell-O was introduced to the world. Jell-O is the brand-name product form of gelatin. It's a common dessert, and an even more common fixture at frat parties. Jell-O shots are made just as the packaging directions say, except with vodka in place of half the water (3 ounces gelatin, and 6 ounces each of water and vodka).
Read more about The Daily Meal's Snackshot feature. To submit a photo, email jbruce[at]thedailymeal.com, subject: "Snackshots." Follow The Daily Meal's photo editor Jane Bruce on Twitter.
Shamrocker ‘Ritas Jello Shots
Are you ready to get your St. Patty’s Day on? Nothing better than Shamrocker ‘Ritas to get your celebration rocking! Whether you are rocking your way around a parade, hitting the Irish pub, or going to a green-beer-swilling soiree, YOU will be everyone’s favorite leprechaun if you bring along the best tasting St. Patty’s Day jello shots this side of the rainbow. Everyone is Irish after a few green jello shots! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
1 box pineapple jello dissolved in 1 cup hot water. Add:
1/2 cup tequila (vodka or whiskey work great too)
Green food coloring as needed.
Dissolve jello in one cup of boiling water. Remove from heat. Add the booze. Pour jello mixture in to your Jellinator and fill your shot cups FAST. No mess! No stress!
Refrigerate until set (approx. 3-4 hours). Serve in a sugar-rimmed shot cup. How? Run a piece of lemon around glass edge. Dip in sugar. Refrigerate until sugar hardens before filling with jello mixture.
Like this recipe? Find even more recipes in our Top 100 Jello Shot Recipes booklet. It’s a MUST behind any bar and makes a great gift. BAM! These recipes don’t disappoint.
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Jello Shot Recipes
You obviously know what’s up on the jello shot making scene. You’re not going to waste your time making jello shooters without a Jellinator. Ain’t nobody got time for that! So why not have the best tasting jello shots in town while you’re at it. Every Jellinator jello shots recipe is an easy jello shots recipe, and they taste awesome. How do we know? Because we make them and taste them! Rest assured we are not just pulling recipes out of our, um, hats over here. We’ve got your back.
From a basic jello shooter recipe to our specialty jello shots, you can find the perfect jello shots recipe at Jellinator.com. And we always have a bit of advice…
*All Jellinator recipes and photos are copyright protected.
A Word About Molding your Jello Shots >
How to make Jello Shots >
LuckyTini Jello Shots
You won’t be disappointed with when you make these jello shots for your St. Patrick’s Day festivities. LuckyTini jello shots are the perfect green jello shots in color and in taste. Melon fusion Jell-O brand jello obviously tastes great with Midori melon liquor, but while there are other Midori jello shot recipes out there, cucumber vodka gives our Luckytini jello shots the perfect kick and knocks back some of the melon sweetness.
They really are magically delicious!
Pin this page so you can find your favorite Jellinator recipe when you need it!
LUCKYTINI JELLO SHOTS
1 box melon fusion jello dissolved in
Dissolve jello in one cup of boiling water. Remove from heat. Add the booze. Pour jello mixture in to your Jellinator and fill your shot cups FAST. No mess! No stress! Refrigerate until set (approx. 3-4 hours). Yield: 15 shots
Check our St. Patrick’s Day Party Page for great food recipes to make your party complete.
Find even more St. Patrick’s Day jello shot recipes in our Top 100 Jello Shot Recipes booklet. It’s a must-have in every kitchen or behind any bar.
No matter what jello shot recipe you use, you need the Jellinator. Why? Because unless you like it slow and sticky, you need a Jellinator! And here is the important part: the Jellinator will keep you from spilling and wasting the booze (the secret ingredient, shhhh!). Now grab your Jellinator by the horns and LET’S JELLINATE!
How to Make Peach Crown Jello Shots
Step 1: Boil one cup of water in a large pot.
Step 2: Once the water is boiling, pour in the peach jello packet.
Step 3: Pour in 1 cup of Crown Royal Peach Whisky
Step 4: Once the peach jello is completely dissolved and well mixed, remove the pot from the stove and let cool slightly.
Step 5: Pour the mixture into the mini shot cups. Place the shots in a shallow container or spread them out on a baking sheet and refrigerate until the jello sets up.
Step 6: Top with a peach ring gummy or a fresh slice of peach and serve.
Tip: Another topping idea you could go with is Redi Whip whipped cream (in the place of the peach rings) for a peaches and cream combo. Yum!
The Ultimate Guide to Jell-O Shots
It may be an emblem of Mardi Gras and Spring Break, but we say all summer long is a great time to get back in touch with that classic college drink: the Jell-O shot (which is technically the proper spelling). It’s also appropriate for tailgating season…
A frat party favorite, gateway shot of teenage girls through generations, and instant party starter, Jell-O shots have grown up with you—well, some of them have.
Depending on what vibes you’re going for, you can create classic Jell-O shots in little plastic cups, or make them into elegant squares with more refined flavors. Vodka may be the most popular type of alcohol for Jell-O shots, but rum, whiskey, flavored liquors, grain alcohol, and even wine are all fair game, and allow for maximum creativity with minimum effort. But first, a little history, then a little basic how-to, and then it’s time to experiment.
Who Invented Jell-O Shots?
When did Jell-O shots bust through a brick wall and on to the scene like the goofier kid brother of the Kool-Aid Man?
Well, while Jell-O shots became popular in the late 1980s and early 1990s, when they started appearing on drinks menus at bars, comedic singer-songwriter Tom Lehrer claims to have invented them back in the 1950s, as a way to get around rules against alcohol on the naval base where he was stationed at the time.
He may well have done that—Jell-O was certainly having a heyday in ’50s America, so it would’ve made sense—but like so many great ideas, it had already been done before. In fact, the very first cocktail manual ever published, in 1862, included a recipe for “Punch Jelly” that is basically one big 19th-century Jell-O shot. (Read Supercall’s account of trying out the Punch Jelly recipe to see the results, and check out a digital scan of the 1887 revision of the recipe.)
Jerry Thomas Bartenders Guide: How to Mix Drinks, or the Bon Vivant's Companion, $16.98 on Amazon
Get your own copy if you want to try some more interesting old-fashioned recipes—or at least own a piece of cocktail history.
One major difference between the Jerry Thomas punch jelly recipe and modern-day Jell-O shots? Instead of using Jell-O (or even powdered gelatin, which was definitely around at the time), it relied on fish bladders for the jiggly effect. (And if you instinctively recoil at the idea, you should know that lots of modern beer is still filtered using isinglass—aka, fish bladders, which is why many beers are not suitable for strict vegetarians!)
Anyway, there was definitely some historical precedent for wiggly, jiggly, semi-solid booze, and using fruity flavors of Jell-O as an alcohol delivery system was certainly an improvement on the ’50s-era gelatin salads with their suspended chunks of tomatoes and olives…
Jell-O Shots vs Jelly Shots: What’s the Difference?
This may seem pretty obvious, but allow us to clarify—a Jell-O shot (or Jello shot) is made with the branded gelatin dessert, and they’re easily spotted by their neon hues, while jelly shots are made with plain, unflavored gelatin (not specifically Jell-O). Using unflavored gelatin leaves a lot of…wiggle room, if you will…for more nuanced flavor pairings often lends itself to less rainbow-bright shades and in general results in a higher quality shot that you wouldn’t be embarrassed to serve at an adult party.
Knox Original Unflavored Gelatin, $2.08 at Walmart
For all your custom Jello shot creations (because that's definitely still what you'll call them).
Jell-O shots are most commonly served in small, white Dixie cups, round plastic cups with lids like you might pump condiments into at a fast food joint, or straight out of ice cube trays when made for parties (cheap and easy cleanup FTW) and often lead to a room littered with crushed miniature cups (and passed-out twenty-year-olds).
Plastic Jello Shot Cups, 100 for $7.99 on Amazon
That's a whole lot of Jell-O shots.
Jelly shots are more commonly made in baking pans or casserole dishes and cut into neat little squares for serving.
But you can still create fruity, brightly-colored jelly shots if you want to you just have more flexibility when it comes to flavors and colors.
How to Make Jell-O Shots
To make Jell-O Shots, all you need is the alcohol of your choice, boiling water, and a packet of Jell-O. In our standard, no-frills Jell-O shot recipe, you’ll find the basics. Or you can let Poppy Tooker talk you through how she makes the perfect Jell-O shot in the shortest amount of time (by following the directions for “speed set” on the back of the Jell-O box, but using chilled alcohol instead of cold water):
But if you want to experiment, you’ll need some more specific guidelines, so read on…
How to Make Fancy Jell-O Shots (or Jelly Shots)
When making your own custom jelly shots with plain gelatin, food coloring, flavoring, and more, keep these tips in mind:
- You can experiment with how solid you’d like your Jell-O shots to be (if you use too much gelatin, they’re impossible to slurp out of their containers, but too little and they’re a slippery mess) and vary the ratio of Jell-O to alcohol. General guidelines are to use a 1:1 water-to-alcohol ratio if you use more, you’ll get some very potent Jell-O shots that you’ll have a hard time convincing your guests to consume.
- Try infusing your alcohol with herbs, spices, citrus zest, or other flavor agents before mixing it into your gelatin.
- To make layered Jello-O shots, whether using individual containers or a 9- by 13-inch brownie pan, pour the first layer in and refrigerate until solid. Once set, add a new color or flavor on top of the first layer, and so on til you’re done. (This is a great way to make a deconstructed Jell-O shot version of your favorite cocktails: for example, a margarita Jell-O shot could have one layer of tequila, one layer of lime, and one layer of orange (using triple sec or Cointreau) that you can garnish with sea salt. Or just make rainbow Jello shots!)
- Beware fresh pineapple juice—sounds dreamy, but the enzymes in it will interfere with the gelatin’s setting power this is one case where canned is best. (And we must admit, we got this tip from a Polyjuice Potion Jello Shot recipe—for all us grown-up “Harry Potter” fans!)
Jell-O Shot Tips and Tricks
Michelle Palm, author of “The Jelly Shot Test Kitchen: Jell-ing Classic Cocktails—One Drink at a Time,” has some great tips on her website for Jell-O shot “best practices.” For instance:
- Don’t cut up your Jell-O shots more than an hour before serving, or they may start to melt.
- A boning knife (with a long, thin blade) is the best kind of knife for cutting clean lines in your Jell-O shots. Don’t use a serrated knife as you’ll see tiny zigzags wherever you’ve used the blade. (When using a rectangular pan, we also like to remove the entire jelly block before cutting it for neater lines.)
- Use cooking spray if you’re using a fancy mold to prevent the shots from sticking! (For example, you can make one giant Jello shot in a Bundt pan, as long as you grease it up first.)
- If you’re serving Jell-O shots at a party and made a big batch that won’t be served in individual containers, add a half envelope more of gelatin to keep them extra firm.
Jelly Shot Test Kitchen, $7.49 on Amazon
Reworking classic cocktails into wobbly shots.
Jell-O Shot Recipes
When it comes to Jell-O shots, the sky’s the limit. You can mix and match any flavors you can think of and even get creative, cutting them into shapes (Jell-O jiggler style) or serve them layered in clear shot glasses. Jell-O shots are also a perfectly convenient item to bring to a picnic, bonfire, or camping trip, and you can pack them easily in Ziploc bags for travel. Check out these recipes for some all-star Jell-O shots that are sure to start the party:
Hurricane Jello Shots
Named after the popular New Orleans Mardi Gras cocktail, these shots require advance preparation to make the two layers, as well as dark and light rums. Hurricanes are a fruity, boozy rum drink made popular by Pat O’Brien’s in the French Quarter, party central of New Orleans. Get our Hurricane Jello Shots recipe.
Ramos Gin Fizz Jello Shots
This 1880s vintage cocktail made famous by New Orleans bartender Henry Ramos gets a makeover. The recipe is something delicious, with orange blossom water and all. Get our Ramos Gin Fizz Jello Shots recipe.
Sazerac Jello Shots
One more jiggly take on a classic New Orleans cocktail, this one has Peychaud’s bitters, Angostura bitters, absinthe, and rye—plus a littler ed food coloring for a ruby tint, and sanding sugar on top for sparkle. Get our Sazerac Jello Shots recipe.
Jameson Jello Shots Recipe
- 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, packed
- 1/2 cup + 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
- 3 drops green food coloring
- 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
- 1 cup Jameson Irish Whiskey
- fresh additional mint leaves for garnish
- Begin by placing mint leaves in a small dish. Add 1 tsp of sugar and muddle together with the leaves. This will release the mint juice in the leaves. Repeat until the mixture smells minty.
- Add lime juice and water in a medium sauce pan. Add the gelatin powder and whisk to combine. Let sit for 5 minutes
- Add the muddled mint leaves plus 1/2 cup of sugar to the sauce pan. Whisk together. Over medium-high heat, cook the mixture for 5 minutes. Whisk gently until the liquid is hot and the gelatin is all dissolved. Then, remove it from the heat and let it cool for 15 minutes.
- Strain the liquid and remove the mint leaves. Add the liquid back into the pan and add your whiskey and green dye.
- Lightly spray silicone molds with cooking spray and wipe any excess with a paper towel. Carefully add the liquid into the molds.
- Put the molds into the fridge for at least 3 hours or until fully set.
- Remove from the molds and garnish with mint leaves or edible gold for an extra festive treat! Enjoy!
Try making these whiskey jello shots and see how much your guests will love them! Be careful not to overindulge, as these tasty treats are easy to eat one-too many. Worried about how many calories are in these shots made with Jameson? Keep this in mind: 10 grams of Jameson Whiskey contains about 70 calories.
Interested in learning more about liquor? Check out our other blog posts:
3 Jello Shot Recipes — Whiskey Shots
St. Paddy’s Day is coming up fast, and if you’re more of a partier than a sipper (or maybe both!), you may a tasty, fruity alternative. Also, St. Paddy’s Day this year is on a Saturday! So there’s plenty of time to sleep off a whiskey shot hangover on Sunday (or repent to St. Patrick himself, if that’s more your style).
Whiskey Sour Jello Whiskey Shots
A whiskey sour is a classic cocktail. If you don’t have time to sit and sip one because you’re on your way out to a Flogging Molly concert this year, look, we get it. This shot will make you feel far from sour. (pictured above, Image courtesy of liquor.com)
4 oz of Jameson
16 oz of boiling water
2 small packages of orange Jello
12 oz of cold water
Once your water is boiled, remove your pan from heat. Mix in the orange Jello powder as directed on the box. When you go to add the cold water, include the Jameson. Pour into festive, disposable shotglasses and let sit in the fridge for four hours.
Rotten Apple Jello Whiskey Shots
This witch’s brew might be more appropriate for Halloween, but we still love to make it with Jameson. If you can find apple-flavored Jello for this one, it’ll melt your mind. However, that’s become a rarity lately, so if you can’t find it, stick to unflavored gelatin. The cider will do the rest.
6 Granny Smith apples
2 packages of Jolly Rancher green apple gelatin
2 tablespoons of sugar
1/2 cup of cold water
12 ounces of boiling water
1/2 a cup of Jameson (we’ve also tried Crown Royal Apple and Crown Royal Salted Caramel to great success!)
Cut the apples in half, then scoop out the guts with a spoon. Put the guts into a large saucepan with hot water, mulling spices, and honey to taste. Boil for 30 minutes until all the flavor has sunk into the water and it’s become cider. Strain out the guts (you can use the remains to make applesauce or apple pancakes!). While it’s boiling, take the half apples without the guts and brush the insides with lemon juice and set, hole-side up, in the muffin pans. Refrigerate until ready to use again.
Once the cider is ready and still hot, mix the gelatin with cold water until it’s evenly mixed. Pour the whiskey into the cider, then pour the cider into the gelatin/cold water mix. Add the sugar and mix evenly.
Now, remove the apples from the fridge and pour the mix into them. Set the muffin tin with apples in the fridge and let sit for four hours. Then, remove and slide into apple slices.
Irish Coffee Jello Shots
Nothing makes a girl swoon more than Irish coffee. But here’s the real kicker: this Jello shot looks just like a little, tiny pint of Guinness!
3/4 cup of coffee (I prefer to use mint-flavored coffee, buuuuut that’s me)
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of heavy whipping cream
3 packets of unflavored gelatin
1 cup of Jameson
1/2 cup of brown sugar
Clear, plastic shot glasses
Image courtesy of Slimpickinskitchen.com
Start by turning the brown sugar into simple syrup. Mix it with half a cup of water in a small saucepan, and boil until the sugar is gone. Take it off of the heat and store it in a jar.
Now, mix 1/4 cup of the brown sugar simple syrup with coffee in the saucepan. Put two of the three packets of gelatin on the top of this mixture and let it sit for about two minutes, before stirring over a low heat until dissolved. Take it off the burner before it boils and add whiskey, then stir all of that together.
Fill your clear, plastic shot glasses 2/3s of the way up, leaving plenty of space for the froth of the Guinness. You’ll need to put them in the fridge for at least two hours for the gelatin to set properly. Don’t start the next part until you’re sure it’s set. Trust me on that one.
Once it’s set, put half the whipping cream and the last gelatin packet into the stove, letting it activate for a couple minutes or as directed on the packet. Then, start the heat on low and stir until everything is dissolved. This is important: don’t let it boil! Once it’s dissolved, take it off the heat and add the rest of the cream. Then, pour this mixture on top of your already-set coffee-layer and give it a couple more hours to set in the fridge.
Jell-O Shot Syringes
I made Jell-O shots in college.
I made lots and lots of Jell-O shots in college.
My Jell-O shots were not this fancy.
And apparently, I cannot hold my liquor.
Which is why I rarely drink.
And if I do drink . it's usually a half a beer every 6 months.
I know, I'm such a freaking party animal.
I bet you haven't seen Jell-O shots like these?
These are for Halloweeeeeeeeeen folks.
Round up your Jell-O because we're making grown up Jell-O shots ya'll.
Halloween Syringe Jell-O Shots
3 oz Strawberry, Cherry, or Raspberry Jell-O
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup (4 ounces) vodka (or other distilled spirit)
1/2 cup cold water
(1.5oz - 2oz) Jell-O Shot syringes (You can buy these at the top of this page)
1. Combine your liquor and cold water and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
2. Pour gelatin into a bowl and add boiling water, stirring until the gelatin completely dissolves.
3. Add chilled liquor and water mix, stir until combined.
4. Sit syringes upright in a small bowl and pour in the Jell-O mix. Leave about 1" of space at the top of your syringe. Refrigerate until the liquid sets. (At least 4 hours, but overnight refrigeration is recommended)
Popsicles are my favorite during the summer. Don’t get me wrong, I love ice cream too, but my love for popsicles has never gone away. Growing up, my elementary school would even sell popsicles after school on Fridays. I got to help at the popsicle sale and my payment was a free bomb pop. Yeah. How awesome is that?! Now I’ve turned a childhood favorite into unique jello shots that are perfect for parties and for adults only. Why should kids get to have all the fun?
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I did take a few liberties with these jello shots. The original Bomb Pop flavors are cherry, lime, and blue raspberry. While I could reproduce the cherry and blue raspberry layers, making a lime layer that’s white was a challenge. Instead, I opted for a classic cherry, coconut, orange, and rum flavor combination. These shots were a hit at my friend’s party. I brought 4 different jello shots with me and while they all disappeared almost as soon as I walked in the door with them, these jello shots were his favorite.
If you want to do something a little more fun than the regular old plastic cup for your jello shots, a silicon mold is a great option. (Yes, food grade silicone.) I made a set of these shots in a rounded mold for a popsicle vibe, but with their red, white, and blue coloring, star-shaped shots would be awesome for a Memorial Day or Fourth of July party! And if you want to add a little more red, white & blue flare, serve up these Pina Colada Jello Shots on a blue plate!