Most parents struggle when it comes to getting their kids to eat healthy foods like fruits and veggies. What if I told you that you could hide two cups of spinach right in their afternoon snack? This gelatin recipe makes a healthy, whole-foods, fruit snack that is a favorite for a few different reasons, but that’s the main one.

These are super easy to make for the parent on the go. You simply blend everything, pour into a pot, lightly heat and then chill  in the fridge. And if you want to skip the straining step, it’s a simple switch from raspberries to strawberries (see my Chef’s Note). The only downside to these squares is that they can’t be stored in a lunchbox or outside the fridge for too long.  The gelatin will soften when too warm—but that makes them a special snack that the kids will look forward to eating at home, and not while out on the road. Adults will, too!

This is the grass fed gelatin I use, which you can find on Amazon if its not in your local store. Gelatin is excellent for your bones, nails and hair.

Great Lakes Gelatin container with measuring spoon

The berries are packed with antioxidants and also contain ellagic acid, a compound with anti-cancer properties. This gelatin recipe is made from 100% real food (nothing processed and no additives), which makes me feel good feeding it to the young ones.

You have a lot of options for what to use for the fruit and juice as well as how sweet you want it to be. If you have fruit that’s really ripe (which is often sweeter), or just prefer a less-sweet snack, then you can remove the honey. Or, if you like the sweetness, add more!

These will keep for about 1 week in the fridge, but I don’t see them lasting that long before getting gobbled up. Just make sure they stay in the fridge until they’re ready to be eaten.

Here are some notes about the recipe:

 

I blend the berries in two batches, with half the spinach and half the liquid each time. Then pour the mixture into a strainer over a medium size pot. My pot is 5 quarts, just to give you an idea of size.  This strainer is perfect to catch the raspberry seeds that I don’t want to end up in my gelatin squares.

Pouring blended berries into strainer over a pot

Then I stir the puree with a rubber spatula to help it flow through the strainer. All the seeds may cause the puree to just sit and not drain through. Just stir and press the liquid through the mesh. I do this in two batches as well so as not to overflow the strainer.

stirring berry puree with spatula

And then your strainer will eventually look like this!  I did a blend of blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries in this batch, so there were a few kinds of seeds in here. I press on the seeds to get as much moisture through the strainer as possible. Now just discard the seeds and rinse your strainer immediately so none of that dries on it and makes it tough to wash later.

seeds from berry puree in strainer

 

Once you have heated the puree, added the gelatin and any sweeteners, line a baking sheet with saran wrap and pour the puree in slowly. It will have some bubbles in the top, and create this pretty swirly look. This more cloudy side of the gelatin is what ends up on bottom when you flip it over and pop it out of the baking sheet. The underside is more clear and glassy, which is what you see in the picture in the recipe below. Let this sit on the counter for 30 mins before moving to the fridge, so it cools and starts to set up.

 

Berry gelatin puree in a baking sheet

If you are looking for another recipe that hides veggies and makes a great snack for the kids, try these Carrot Zucchini Mini Muffins. Also gluten and dairy free, and uses honey and maple syrup as the sweeteners.

PRINTER FRIENDLY RECIPE

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Cut Berry Gelatin Squares on a white cutting board

Homemade Berry Gelatin Squares

  • Author: Andrea Sprague
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 50 minutes
  • Yield: 30 squares 1x

Description

These are easy to make and a big hit with kids!. Serve them up as an after-school treat for you and the kids. A big serving of fresh berries AND fresh, green spinach.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 4 cups fresh apple, grape or watermelon juice (or a combination of all)
  • 3 pints raspberries
  • 1 pint blueberries
  • 2 handfuls spinach, about 4 cups when slightly pressed down in a measuring cup
  • 7 Tbsp grass-fed gelatin
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp to ¼ cup honey, depending on how sweet the fruit is

Instructions

  1. Place 2 cups of juice, half the berries and half the spinach into a blender. Blend on medium speed until the fruit and spinach are broken down, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  2. Place large mesh strainer over a large pot and pour berry mixture through to strain out the raspberry seeds. Push the liquid through with a rubber spatula
  3. Repeat with the remaining liquid, berries and spinach. Pour some of the strained liquid back into the blender if needed. Blend well until you no longer see pieces of the spinach, about 1 minute on high speed.
  4. Pour the rest of the puree into the strainer over your pot.
  5. Slowly sprinkle the gelatin into the pot while continuously stirring with a whisk. This will help to incorporate the gelatin without creating any clumps.
  6. Place the pot over medium heat and whisk frequently until the gelatin is completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. (Note: The gelatin dissolves easily. While it’s still hot, it won’t appear to thicken, but it will as it cools. You are looking to heat the mixture just to the point that it feels warm, but it does not need to come to a simmer.)
  7. Remove from the heat and let the pot sit for about 30 minutes to cool.
  8. Line a 15 ½ x 10 ½ baking sheet with plastic wrap. Pour the puree into the baking sheet until about 1-inch deep. Let sit on the counter again for another 30 minutes to help it set.
  9. Place in the refrigerator to cool for at least 3 hours, best to let it cool overnight.
  10. Place a cutting board over the baking sheet and then flip it over so the cutting board is on the bottom. The gelatin should easily release from the baking sheet. Peel off the plastic wrap and cut into squares. Keep in a tight lidded container in the fridge for up to a week.

Notes

If you don’t want to use raspberries, or want to skip the straining step, swap in 1 large container of strawberries or more blueberries (about 1 quart).

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