Just like how appetizers start that show, desserts ultimately ends and complete a meal course. One of the most popular and longest standing dessert in every household tables are Jello. A rich fruity-flavor dessert, Jello has been very popular to children and adults alike. Even I enjoy taking a bite of this favorite dessert every now and then.
However, at one time, a relative of mine asked me, “Can you freeze jello?”
And I was like, “Wait, I didn’t think about that?”
Can You Freeze Jello? Should You Do It?
I recently found the answer and decided to write this article in order to shed some light on this particular question.
But first things first:
What is a Jello?
Jello is actually a brand name owned by Kraft Foods. Today, the name is commonly used to market a broad range of desserts and snacks. It also refers to gelatin-based desserts with sweeteners, coloring and fruit flavorings.
The dessert’s main constituent, gelatin, creates a network of unsecured bonds with other molecules of gelatin in order to hold it together in place. The dessert is soft since the network is not that strong.
The gelatin’s collagen comes from boiling hides and bones of animals processed for their meat (typically cows and pigs).
With Jello, there are so many ways you can enjoy its rich fruity flavor. You can eat it as it is, top it with whip cream or add some fruits to further enhance its fruity flavor. You can either make one of your own or buy it in the grocery store.
Can Jello Go Bad?
Jello, like all foods, can go rancid.
Because of its high sugar and water content, spoilage for this tasty treat is inevitable.
As a matter of fact, storing Jello in the fridge would only extend its lifespan for the next 7 to 10 days. And opened Jello cups has a shorter lifespan due to the presence of fruits and will likely last for the next 2 to 3 days if refrigerated.
Pre-packaged and sealed cups, however are a different matter. When stored at room temperature, these sealed jello cups can last for up to 4 months. You can put them in the fridge if you want and can be safe to eat past a year.
How To Tell If Your Jello is Spoiled or Bad?
While we enjoy munching onto this sweet, fruity dessert, no one wants to taste spoiled food, right?
So, when identifying if your favorite Jello is already spoiled, the first sign you need to look out for is the pockets of watery liquid in the Jello. When you take a bite, if you tasted a bitter, sharp flavor instead of the sweetness and fruity flavor, then that’s the clearest sign of all.
Moreover, formation of dark mold and light bacterial marks will start to show on its surface, overtime. This makes the Jello unsuitable for eating and can cause specific health risks if ingested. So, it is advisable and of common sense to throw spoiled foods away.
Can You Freeze Jello?
And because we all want to extend the shelf life of these tasty desserts, here now comes the highlight question of the day:
Can you freeze Jello?
The simply answer is YES, you can!
But eating it afterwards? It will never be the same again!
This is because of the fact that Jello is made up of gelatin that will not allow the dessert to harden like ice cubes.
Instead, freezing Jello would cause it to lose its texture since freezing can damage the network of gelatin molecules. Thawing them will separate and alter the appearance of the dessert as a whole.
The taste, however, is not affected by the freezing, so if you don’t mind the appearance of a supposedly squishy and gelatinous Jello looking like watery lumps of gels, then you can definitely freeze it— but it’s still weird. Take a look at this YouTube video for you to get what I mean.
Also, it is important to know that freezing Jello does not help in extending its lifespan. Jello— refrigerated or frozen will still go stale after 7 to 10 days.
Proper Storage of Jello
So, how do you store Jello?
For prepared Jello is advised to be covered in a plastic wrap in order to prevent moisture and air from spoiling it. Also it is recommended to store it in an airtight container before you place it in the refrigerator.
For unopened Jello cups, it is recommended to be stored in the refrigerator. If you choose to store them in a cupboard, make sure that the temperature does not exceed to 23 degree C. Also, sealed cups should always be kept away from any heat or water sources.
For dry Jello mix, you need to keep it safe from moisture, heat and light sources and store it at room temperature. Also, it should be tightly sealed in order to prevent contact to moisture. Packages of Jello mix don’t need to be refrigerated since it cannot extend the lifespan of the product.
For homemade Jello, keeping it fresh for a longer period of time can be done by storing it in the fridge immediately. Make sure to store it in air-tight conditioner in order to keep out any moisture and other contaminants. You also need to make sure to only use clean and dry utensils when serving in order to avoid cross contamination.
So to answer the question “Can you freeze Jello?”— Most certainly yes, you can! But, should you do it? With all things considered, I do not recommend freezing Jello since it basically changes the adorable appearance and consistency of this favorite dessert.
If I were you, I’d rather eat these tasty treats as soon as I get them and keep any leftovers in the refrigerator and consume them within 7 to 10 days.