While Jello appears to be a simple enough food that is safe for everyone to enjoy, most Jello brands contain animal-based gelatin that makes Jello unsuitable for certain diets.
If you want to make Jello desserts but are not sure whether Jello adheres to Jewish dietary regulations, you might be wondering whether Jello is kosher. Here is what I found!
Is Jello Kosher?
Some Jello brands are kosher, and some are not. Jell-O by Kraft Foods and Kool-Aid Gels are certified kosher while Great Value Gelatin Desserts are not. Ultimately, whether a Jello or gelatin is kosher depends on the animal used to produce the gelatin, if any, and how the Jello is manufactured.
In case you are curious to learn more about the suitability of Jello in Judaism and what Jello brands are considered kosher, keep reading!
What Does The K On Jell-O Mean?
Jell-O and other Jello brands that have a letter “K” on the packaging are certified kosher. However, the K in Jell-O must not be confused with Ks in circles and stars.
If the K is not contained in a circle or star, as is the case with Jell-O, it means the gelatin may contain eggs, fish, or honey even if the Jello does not have any meat or dairy.
Additionally, the letter K means that the Jello brand’s manufacturing has been approved by a recognized orthodox Rabbi.
When Did Jell-O Become Kosher?
It was around 1974 when Jell-O started printing packaging with the letter “K” on them. However, before the 1950s, the general public believed that Jell-O was already kosher.
With the way gelatin was manufactured, it was agreed that the Jello product was transformed and does not contain pig elements anymore.
Nonetheless, the Orthodox rabbis insisted that Jello is not kosher, and in 1969, the Conservative Rabbinical Assembly claimed that gelatin is kosher. Five years later, Jell-O included the letter “K” in Jell-O’s packaging.
How Do You Know If Jell-O Is Kosher?
To know whether Jell-O and other Jello brands are kosher, you have to look for the letter “K” on the box.
Sometimes, you will find just a K, and other times the K is inside a circle or a star. All these symbols refer to kosher certification, although each letter refers to a certain type of Kosher.
What Jell-O Brands Are Kosher?
Jell-O by Kraft Foods is considered kosher. While some Jello brands are Kosher, more gelatins are kosher and later turned into Jello by consumers.
Here are some of the most popular kosher Jello and gelatin brands:
- Lieber’s Clear Unflavored Jello
- Pure Fish Gelatin Powder
- Great Lakes Unflavored Gelatin
- O’Creme Kosher Fish Gelatin
- Cape Crystae Agar Agar Powder
- Gefen Clear Unflavored Jello
- Custom Collagen Unflavored Marine Gelatin Powder
- Foods Alive Agar Agar Powder
- Fat Stone Farm Beef Gelatin Powder
- Zen Principle Grass-Fed Gelatin Powder
Is Jell-O Okay For Passover?
While Jell-O does not have the OU label on Jell-O’s packaging which signifies that the food is certified kosher for Passover, Jell-O is permissible for Jews to eat during Passover.
This is because Jell-O does not contain grains, and Jell-O’s Kosher certification means that the Jello is manufactured in a way that adheres to Jewish dietary regulations.
Is Snack Pack Jell-O Kosher?
All Snack Pack flavors are considered kosher although it is unclear whether the Snack Pack Jell-O cups are considered kosher for Passover.
As for other Jello brands that sell ready-to-eat Jello desserts in cups, there is no guarantee that all Jello is kosher.
Consumers will have to check the packaging for the Jello brand’s kosher certification or the ingredients to be sure.
Is Sugar-Free Jell-O Kosher?
Sugar-Free Jell-O comes in eight different flavors, namely orange, raspberry, peach, cherry, lemon, lime, black cherry, and strawberry, and all of them are certified kosher.
Some Jello brands offer sugar-free formats of their products. However, there is no guarantee that all sugar-free Jello products are also kosher.
Additionally, a Jello brand may claim that they are kosher, but without the certification on their packaging granted by the appropriate agencies, the Jello product is not considered kosher.
Is Kool-Aid Jell-O Kosher?
Kool-Aid Gels come in multiple flavors such as Cherry, Tropical Punch, and Blue Raspberry, and all Kool-Aid Gels are certified kosher.
Is Great Value Jello Kosher?
Great Value Gelatin Dessert comes in numerous flavors and formats, and none of them are certified kosher. Additionally, you will find that Great Value Gelatin Dessert’s packaging has no kosher label whatsoever.
Currently, Great Value Gelatin Dessert uses beef, pork, and poultry to produce their gelatin, and the gelatin is not slaughtered in a way that adheres to Jewish laws.
Is Strawberry Jello Kosher?
Whether strawberry Jello is considered kosher depends on the brand. Jell-O and Kool-Aid produce kosher-certified Jello products, so their strawberry Jellos are guaranteed to be kosher.
Nevertheless, the same cannot be said for brands like Great Value that do not produce kosher-certified products.
Is Royal Jelly Kosher?
While some people regard Royal Jelly as similar to honey, OU kosher organizations insist that Royal Jelly is different from pure honey and cannot be considered kosher.
Can Jews Eat Gelatin Pork?
There are different opinions in the Jewish community about whether gelatin is kosher by default or not. Currently, some people believe that even pig-based gelatin is kosher.
At its core, this belief sprouts from the idea that inedible animal bones are kosher because gelatin pork has been manufactured in a way that they do not smell or taste like pigs.
However, since pigskin is edible, if the gelatin is derived from pig skin, the gelatin is automatically not kosher.
Meanwhile, some people do not consider pig-based gelatin as kosher at all, and brands that usually use pig parts do not receive kosher certifications.
Is Knox Unflavored Gelatin Kosher?
Knox Unflavored Gelatin is fish-based gelatin, making Knox Unflavored Gelatin kosher. Moreover, Knox Unflavored Gelatin has the OU label, meaning it is kosher for Passover as well.
Take a look at our other articles to find out if Jello is vegetarian, if Jello is halal, and if Jello is hydrating.
Whether Jello is kosher or not depends on the brand and there are brands like Jell-O and Kool-Aid that produce kosher-certified Jello snacks.
However, there are a lot of Jello brands that are not certified kosher, and if the packaging does not have the K or OU label on the packaging, it is best not to consume the Jello product.