My children were very upset with me last night when they saw I was making gummy bears. Why? I told them they could not eat any as I needed them for a morning photo shoot…for you all. The boys will be happy this afternoon when they get home from school and find this healthy candy ready to eat. These gluten-free gummy bears are the perfect thing to pack as a treat in school lunches, make a wonderful after-school snack, and are a great homemade Halloween candy for your little ghosts and goblins.
My boys (both teenagers now) are literally obsessed with these fruit juice-sweetened gummy bears and worked with me as I made them numerous times to perfect both the texture and flavor.
- 1 cup organic grape juice, pineapple, or pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon stevia
- 3 tablespoons gelatin
- In a medium saucepan bring juice to a boil
- Allow to cool for 3 minutes, then stir in lemon juice and stevia
- Very gradually, Whisk in gelatin
- If you do not whisk gradually and thoroughly your bears will be lumpy
- Allow mixture to cool almost to room temperature, then pour into gummy bear molds
- Refrigerate for 2 hours
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days
Each healthy gummy bear candy has close to 2 grams of protein –not bad for a snack food. My older son likes to eat these with breakfast.
I haven’t played with gelatin for quite some time, however, Kelly kept telling me about her gummy recipe using pure gelatin (as in unflavored, without all of the sugar and dyes found in the more commercial product) and now I’m totally on the gelatin bandwagon.
Gelatin is fantastic for gut health and high in protein, which makes it an optimal food for my family. I make sure to purchase the grass fed gelatin and have found it to be very high quality. Here’s to the oxymoron of healthy candy, and gummy, or gummi, bears!
Hi Elana – Your Gummy Bears recipe looks straight forward and I am looking forward to trying it. I don’t care for the after taste of Stevia. Is it possible to use granulated sugar, honey, corn syrup or coconut sugar? Thank you.
JC, feel free to experiment!
Theresa Chivers says
I’ve been making these on the stovetop as directed on and off for years. Today I made them in my Breville electric frother and it worked beautifully. My family will be enjoying these much more often now.
Theresa, my boys LOVE these :-)
Hey, the protein in Gelatin unfortunately is not the kind of protein that makes you muscle recover and grow, like lean meat or fish, but nonetheless gelatin is very useful to recover from a workout specially when doing high impact cardio, nonetheless, thanks for your recipe, just one question, what is the lemon juice for? thanks
Soki, thanks for your comment! The lemon juice gives this flavor, texture, and more :-)
Stephanie Sutherland says
My son made gummy bears last evening using gelatin (basically your receipe) but they have the gelly type texture kind of rubbery….he wants a more realistic gummy bear that you would buy in the store texture. do you have any suggestions?
Stephanie, thanks for your comment. If you follow my exact recipe you will get fantastic gummy bears :-)
Stephanie Sutherland says
A little passive agressive, but okay
I don’t think she was passive aggressive and I think you were very rude… you are the one who said that your son followed basically her recipe.
I found if you first wish your ingredients then use a laser thermometer while heating on medium low stirring regularly until your mixture is 40c/104f gives a good texture. Higher makes more rubbber cooler makes more like jello.
Tip. Use a Pyrex measuring cup to cook for easy pouring to molds.
Right. She could have just said, add more gelatin.
T, thanks so much for your comment! I know it seems totally silly, but I don’t make suggestions that I haven’t tried out myself. Sometimes things that seem very intuitive don’t work in a recipe :-)
Chef Snow says
Add another pack of gelatin or two weird cranky lady who reads into things inaccurately… & maybe add some cannabis oil to the recipe while you’re at it (and eat them), or… just take a chill pill perhaps? Hey maybe you’re older son would dig it too ♂️ ; ) lol cheers! Enjoy
Chef Snow, thanks for your comment, it seems this thread has taken on a life of its own! Now that we’re talking about cannabis, you might enjoy this post:
Oops I think I was a bit vigorous in stirring the gelatin. I wanted to be thorough! Unfortunately I created a lot of foam. Is there a wY to reduce this? Or do I just chalk it up to experience?
Taylor, thanks for your comment! Yes, next time if you don’t stir it as much it won’t be foamy :-)
Chef Snow says
Stir very slowly and after you let the mix sit for a about 5 min, the bubbles will rise to the top, and you should be able to scrape them off with a Just try to avoid whipping as little air as possible into it and you should be good
Thanks Chef Snow! You are a gem :-)
Brian S Parker says
you can also use a fine mesh strainer when transferring the syrup to say a plastic squeeze bottle or piping bag to more easily apply them to smaller molds so as to help remove foam and other particulates if you are over vigorous.. or make a mistake.. straining really helps in this regard as the final syrup can be time sensitive for setting, due to losing heat.. depending on which gelling agent you use..
Avame Grey says
Can we use orange juice, apple juice, or other kinds of juices?
Avame, I haven’t tried that so not sure :-)
I frequently use apple juice (I like to add cinnamon) and orange juice for my gummies. The orange is our favorite. Just make sure you have a cup of each kind of juice. Fresh pureed strawberries also make good gummy bears. You’ll need to dilute them with water. I’ve found approximately 3/4 cup strawberries to 1/4 water.
Thanks for more flavor ideas!!
You’re welcome Alaina!
Chef Snow says
You can use any juice you like or even any liquid you like for the most part. Like wine sweet wines are fantastic in recipes like this. Also, light corn syrup is a great addition (not high fructose, they are two different things and essential to a chewy texture. Also it’s less sweet than sugar. You body will recognize this as just plain old sugar as well, no worries.
I know some of you will object to the above suggestion, but you’d also likely object to using plain old organic sugar for this in place of the Stevia. But that’s what’s in the juice you’re adding most likely anyways. Not all of u maybe… also, if you juice your own fruits or make a strained purée that would be great in this recipe as well. Pineapple or mango would be yum. Or hey why not both ?
P.S. if you’re short on time and want to add a fruit purée, there’s a company called “Smart Fruit” (or maybe that’s just the product name), makes a 100% strawberry purée, and various other delicious fruit purée options with added antioxidants from a few diff super fruits. I think if some of u have a little extra money to spend, you’ll really enjoy this and it would definitely elevate your gummies. You could use half moscato and half of this even if you wanted… yummy.
Cheers Elana, great site! Happy cooking!
Chef Snow, I love all your comments! Keep ’em coming and have an amazing day. :-)
You mention pineapple and mango. Both contain and enzyme that denatures protein and will cause the gelatin to not set properly. This likely wouldn’t be true of pasteurized juices or if you boil your juice to kill the enzymes.
PS I like to toss a little bit of fermented liquid like water kefir into the juice after it has cooled enough to not kill the good bacteria.
Darren, I’ve made this recipe with pineapple juice a number of times and had no problem with it setting up, most likely because as you point out, the juice is brought to a boil in this recipe :-)
Brian S Parker says
high acidity can be an issue with gelatin setting properly.. so like 100% grapefruit juice and other such high acid fruits might cause an issue..
you can use a tiny amount (like a 1/4 tsp) for this size recipe in the juice of Sodium Citrate, before adding the gelatin to help with that.. Modern Pantry sells it.. works wonders.
I made lots and would like to keep them longer than a couple of days. can I freeze them? otherwise how long do they last in the fridge?
Suzanne, I haven’t tried that so not sure, if you do please let us know how it goes :-)
Brian S Parker says
lorann oils makes a mold inhibitor that you can add at the end of making the syrup. it’s polysorbate 80.. just half a dropper will help them keep a lot longer..
Hi Elana! I know this is an older recipe, but I wanted to let you know that my kids favorite snack are gummies and I cringe every time they eat them. So I’ve been wanting to try this for a long time. I finally got around to it this weekend. I don’t know what took me so long…..this recipe is SOOOOO super easy. And the best part, the kids LOVED them! Absolutely no taste of beef either as others have commented. My husband couldn’t believe there was beef gelatin in them. I used silicone molds (actually the mold you recommend for your mini bagels) and they popped right out perfectly. Thank you so much for what you do and for passing your recipes on to us. The best part of your recipes is that they are so much more simpler than other blogger’s. Eating real food means you have to spend more time in the kitchen and your simple recipes make it much more enjoyable to live this lifestyle and cook for my family. Thank you!
Kim, thanks for letting me know that your kids loved these! And thanks for your feedback about my recipes being the easiest out there!