Gelatin Salads and Molded Salads Article -
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Jello-O® Salads and Molded Salads

Fruity, cool gelatin salads are just plain fun--and easy to make!

Many Flavors

To create a multi-layered gelatin salad, first make sure you have enough pans and refrigerator space, as each layer will need its own pan for the initial chilling phase.

  • The gelatin should be the consistency of cold egg whites. If the base layers get too firm before adding additional flavors, the layers may slip apart once you unmold the salad.
  • For a "broken glass" style of dessert, in which gelatin cubes are suspended in yet another flavor of gelatin with a creamy base, you must let the cubed gelatin set up completely before combining them with the "binding" flavor.
  • The secret to separate layers of gelatin: let each color get semi-firm before attempting to combine them.

Creamy, Dreamy Salads

You can add whipped cream, whipped topping, softened cream cheese, sour cream, cottage cheese and even mayonnaise to gelatin salads.

Before folding in cream or cheese, prepare the gelatin as usual and chill it slightly. Next, beat in your additions until the mixture is smooth and evenly colored.

To make your gelatin light and fluffy without any additions, just whip in air with an electric mixer. Make the gelatin according to the package directions and allow it to set up until very thick, but not completely firm. Whip on medium-high speed until about double in volume. Chill again before serving.

Fruits and Nuts

Mixing in chopped fruit, nuts, or marshmallows adds texture, flavor, and visual appeal.

Allow the gelatin to set until it is semi-firm ("egg white" consistency) before pushing in the fruit pieces. By allowing the gelatin to set, the fruit will stay right where you put it instead of sinking to the bottom.

Read the box: some fruits have naturally occurring enzymes that will break down the gelatin's structure and prevent it from setting. Avoid fresh pineapple, kiwi, figs, ginger, papaya, guava, and mangoes.

Canned fruits are perfectly fine--such as canned pineapple--and cooking the fruit will also break down the enzymes.

Rings and Molds

To add a fancy touch, pour it into a Bundt cake pan, a baking dish or a special mold.

  • VIDEO: Rainbow Salad Jell-O® Mold

  • Metal molds will allow quicker set-up than plastic ones.
  • If you're making a large gelatin mold, use about ¼ cup less liquid for each three-ounce box of flavored gelatin you use. This will allow the gelatin to retain its shape once you unmold it.
  • Before pouring gelatin into a mold, try spritzing the mold lightly with cooking spray to make sure the gelatin slips out easily. Wipe out excess with a paper towel.
  • Make sure the gelatin is totally firm before unmolding: the top should feel dry, not sticky, and the gelatin shouldn't move toward the side when you tip the mold.
  • Moisten a serving platter with a damp paper towel. This will allow the salad to slide around a little so you can center it perfectly on the plate.
  • Dunk the mold in warm water for about 10 seconds. (Make sure that the water is just warm, not hot, or the gelatin will melt!)
  • Loosen the edges with a table knife to break the vacuum. Invert the plate over the top of the mold and carefully flip it over. Gently lift off the mold.

Apr. 10, 2010 5:22 pm
I need a recipe for cherry jello salad made with 1 can of cherry pie filling and can of coke cola. I would appreciate if you could help me out. Thank you,
gilberto moreno 
Apr. 25, 2010 9:10 pm
i need recipe for a jello salad with cottage cheese,pineapple ,evaporated milk topped with pecans
Nov. 19, 2010 12:39 am
Gilberto, I hope this is the one you were wanting Lemon-Lime Jello salad 1 sm. package. of both lemon and lime Jello 1C. crushed pineapple drained) 2 C liquid =( drained pineapple juice + water) heat to boil 1 C. miracle whip or mayonaise 1 C. cottage cheese 1 C. evaporated milk 1 C. chopped nuts Dissolve jello in Hot liquid Let partially set in refrigerator. Mix other ingredients together and fold into jello mixture. Mix well. pour into a 9 x 13 pan and return to fridge til well set. Nuts can be mixed through or sprinkled on top.
Feb. 6, 2011 7:41 pm
My family is on a Jello Mold Kick. We have tried Pineapple Cream, Blueberry Pie/Pecan, Cherry Pie/Hazelnut, Cranberry Thanksgiving Mold, Strawberry Banana Ribbon Mold, Watergate Salad (2x), we plan to try Sunshine Salad (Pineapple Carrot) and Valentine Jello Mold, Lime Cottage Cheese (my mom used to love to make that one), Cinnamon Candy Apple Jello Salad, Apricot-Orange with the Colby Cheese.....and I have a few new ideas in my imagination. If they turn out well and everyone likes them I may submit them. I am seeking recipes that use some of the more unusual, new, or 'hard to find' jello flavors like Peach, Watermelon, Pineapple,Blackberry Fusion, Berry Blue, Raspberry...I wish jello would make a different green flavor like maybe Green Apple, Kiwi, or Mint.I also want to try the 'Love my Pear Salad'. If you have an Asian Grocery Store Around you can find even a wider variety of gellatin flavors and "adgers (sp?)" (I think they call them that) (almond, coffee, flowers, etc...
Apr. 21, 2011 3:01 pm
Years ago, JELL-O put out a "wheel type recipe booklet". The grocery store was giving them away free with purchases of Jell-O and I had two of them. The way it worked was, you chose the type of meat you were serving, and on the inside wheel there were 4 jello salad recipes for you to choose from. I have since lost them in my moves and wish they would bring them out again.
May 8, 2011 11:31 am
cteta80, I will post the recipe I think you are looking for on here, but will also send it to you. Cherry Coke Salad 1 can (20oz) crushed pineapple 1/2 cup water 2 pkgs (3oz each) cherry gelatin 1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling 3/4 cup cola Drain pineapple, reserving juice; set pineapple aside. In a saucepan bring pineapple juice and water to a boil. Add gelatin; stir until dissolved. Stir in pie filling and cola. Pour into serving bowl. Refrigerate until slightly thickened. Fold in reserved pineapple. Refrigerate until firm. Hope this is what you are looking for!
Jul. 9, 2011 2:04 pm
I am looking for a jello recipe we made years ago that used dry jello mixed into cottage cheese. I think we added whipped topping and possibly fruit also, but it has been so long I just don't remember.
Jul. 9, 2011 5:15 pm
I wonder if someone might be able to help me. I'm looking for a recipe that our homemaking teacher had us make back in the 60's. It was made with jello, green goddess salad dressing and lots of celery. would love to make this for my grandchildren. Thanks to anyone who might help
Aug. 5, 2011 9:39 pm
avonladyjudy Here are two version - hope they are what you are looking for. 1 medium carton cottage cheese 1 pkg. Cool Whnip 1 can mandarin oranges, drained well Add small pkg. of dry orange jello Stir together, chill and serve. Also Delicious Salad 1 (2 lb.) carton cottage cheese, small curd 1 large size Cool Whip 1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained Small marshmallows, as many as desired 1 (3 oz.) pkg. orange jello. Combine cottage cheese and Cool Whip; add pineapple and marshmallows. Add dry jello. Chill.
Nov. 10, 2011 9:45 am
i am looking for an old receipe my grandmother made in the early 1970s it had a layer of jello and i thing it was cream cheese pineapple and another layer of jello know gelitin was also in it
queen bee 
Nov. 17, 2011 6:05 pm
Cherrie, My Mom called this ribbon salad: Make layer of green jello, and chill until firm, Mix 8 oz. cream cheese, small can of pineapple(well drained)to 1 cup boiling waterand 1 box of lemon jello. Pour this ixture over the green jello, after it has cooled. Let this layer chill, unhtil firm. Then make another layer of just red jello,pour on top of the lemon mixture, after it has cooled. Then let the whole thing set in the refrigerator, until firm. Hope this is what you were looking for!
Nov. 17, 2011 8:58 pm
I am looking for a jello salad mold recipe which contains, cranberries, pomegranate seeds, nuts, and either cherry or any dark flavor. You can also have a toping to put on top. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Happy Thanksgiving to all.
Nov. 23, 2011 10:12 am
Hope this helps. A coworker just brought this to our office pot luck and it was delicious! Cherry Cranberry Salad. Combine 6 oz box cherry jello and 1 cup sugar. Add 2 cups boiling water, stir until dissolved. Stir in 1 can 20 oz crushed pineapple (undrained), 3 cups chopped fresh or frozen cranberries, 1 1/2 cups diced apples, 1 cup chopped celery, and 1 cup chopped walnuts. Pour into 2 qt serving bowl. Chill until firm, 3 to 4 hours. Yield 12 - 15 servings. I plan to make it as a mold, so understand from this site I should reduce water by 1/2 cup. Will let you know how it turns out!
Dec. 2, 2011 8:44 am
Avonladyjudy --- Is this what you are looking for. Jello Salad --1 box jello, 1 can pineapple tidbits,9 oz. cool whip, 1 can fruit coctail-drained, 8 oz. cottage cheese. Mix drained fruit, jello and cottage cheese, stir in cool whip. Refrigerate.
Dec. 25, 2011 8:35 pm
Hi crazycatlady, how did your cherry cranberry salad turned out in the mold? Thank you.
Jan. 1, 2012 10:09 pm
Does anyone have a glorified rice made with jello recipe? I lost mine. Thank you.
Mar. 22, 2012 2:38 pm
zach's g-ma: check and do a search for glorified rice. there are several different versions of this recipe. hope one of them is the one you're looking for.
Nov. 3, 2012 5:14 am
Hi All! Looking for a recipe for a dessert/salad called 25 hour salad, popular in early 70's. Don't know the ingredients, but it was pink, had fruit, maybe nuts?, baby marshmallows.Deceased sister-in-law made it every X-mas.She cut it in Squares and served on a lettuce leave. From the looks of it, must have had cottage cheese in it...I was a teenager, never asked for the recipe, until it was too late....
Dec. 8, 2012 5:43 pm
i am looking for a receipe that has about three layers of different jello's and includes oreo cookie crumbs can anyone help
Apr. 19, 2013 12:44 pm
I'm looking for a recipe that was in one of the older taste of home magazines. A jello mold. it used lemon or lime jello, a can of lemon and lime soda, cream cheese and I think fruit
May 14, 2013 5:36 am
Hi, Years ago at our local hospital, they served a recipe that I think had set jello (different flavors) ,angel food or maybe pound cake, cut into small squares. All these we're folded in whipped topping. Maybe even had some kind of fruit. I would be so thankful if anyone has an idea of this recipe.
Jun. 8, 2013 8:40 pm
To AvonladyJudy, My sister used to make a recipe like you are looking for. I usually doubled the recipe as it goes fast. She used 1 small 16 oz. container of cottage cheese, 1 small box of jello (any color or flavor however she usually used cherry or strawberry with one small container of cool whip,and one small can of fruit cocktail. Mix jello with whip topping first until well blended. Add cottage cheese but do not overblend. Add fruit cocktail last. It is very easy and refrigerate for 4-5 hours before serving. You can also add walnuts or pecans however she didn't. I have made this both ways and is delicious either way. Hope this helps. Danamar
Jul. 15, 2013 6:42 pm
I used to have a recipe for a dessert that used lemon jello with 1/2 can of lemon pie filling mixed in. It was put in a 13x9 casserole dish and chilled until firm. Spread 8 oz of sour cream (then bananas, or pineapple tidbits, or walnuts could be put on the sour cream), lastly another layer of lemon jello and lemon pie filling were added, and chilled. I just don't remember how much jello, how much water, etc. Can anyone help? thanks!
Oct. 5, 2013 10:39 pm
I am looking for a jello dessert recipe from the 60's that my aunt made often for Christmas dinner. It was a jello mold of a dark jello, with no fruit or nuts that I can remember (perhaps there were cherries). But it was topped with a special sauce that was sweet and pink and creamy and may have tasted like cherries. I think it had mini marshmallows in it. This sauce was to be poured over the serving of jello, and did not itself contain any gelatin. So, two-part dessert. Very sweet. Thanks for any memories.
Nov. 21, 2014 10:30 am
I lost my cranberry mold recipe. Here's what I remember fresh cranberries, navel orange include peel, can pineapple, lemon lime soda, sugar, jello. I can't remember how much of anything. How can I get the concistancy right?
Nov. 26, 2014 4:25 am
My Grandma used to make a ribbon jello that didn't have marshmallows or pineapple or anything like that. The center was lemon or pineapple jello (your choice), cream cheese and something else. Maybe sugar? Maybe cool whip? I can't remember! Can anyone help?
Apr. 2, 2015 9:58 am
I'm looking for a lemon jello mold recipe that we used to demonstrate the Tupperware jel-ring mold. It was just lemon jello mix and a can of clear lemon pie filling, but I think you needed to reduce the amount of water for dissolving the jello. Does anyone remember this?
Apr. 4, 2015 9:11 am
Can anyone tell me if you whip the whipping cream before adding to the mixture or do you just pour it in?
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