Recently a friend told me she has been using gelatin as a dietary supplement. I was immediately intrigued. I use gelatin occasionally when making homemade marshmallows and a few other recipes but had never thought of it as a “health food” I should be adding to my diet.
Gelatin comes from collagen, which is derived from animal by-products (vegans and vegetarians might want to skip this post!). It is extracted in several ways for commercial use and usually comes from pork, beef, or even fish. It’s also easy to extract at home by making a long-simmered bone broth (I usually put last night’s roast chicken bones in my slow cooker with water for 8 to 10 hours on low).
Or you can skip all that and just make these natural fruit gummies. They’re mostly collagen, so you get all the good-for-you effects, like healthy skin and nails. But they taste like dessert, which means if you have a sweet tooth like me, then they’re the best of both worlds.
Natural Fruit Gummies Recipe + Benefits of Eating Gelatin
Back in the old days on the farm, all animal parts were used as part of a healthy diet. That included those homemade bone broths. Our diets have since changed, and we’ve lost the benefits that come from consuming the collagen that’s used in gelatin. Collagen is the main protein found in our connective tissues, including bones, tendons, ligaments, skin, blood vessels, the gut, and even our corneas—and those are the places that benefit most from consuming more of it.
As we age and with exposure to the elements over time, our skin loses its tautness and starts to sag [source]. Our joints ache, and our bones can become brittle. Our hair and nails start to show signs of aging. Most of these things can be helped by adding collagen back into our diets.
Most of those gelatin skin creams don’t work, but eating or drinking collagen peptides does [source]. To DIY your own collagen supplement, you can make your own bone broth, or you can add certain kinds of gelatin to smoothies, hot and cold beverages, cereal, and other foods like these natural fruit gummy snacks.
Even if you aren’t sold on the benefits of gelatin, these natural fruit gummies are a fun homemade treat made with all-natural ingredients – honey, gelatin, lemon juice, and ginger. I normally cringe when my kids ask for gummy candies because they are usually loaded with sugar and food coloring.
These are a sweet snack alternative with health benefits to boot. Plus, making them is as easy as boiling water!
How to Make Lemon-Ginger Natural Fruit Gummies
Some types of gelatin need to be dissolved before you consume them. For these gummy snacks, you want to use the kind that needs to be dissolved in hot liquid. This is usually the one you find on the shelf of your grocery store, or you can order grass-fed beef or pork gelatin online.
You don’t have to use a mold, but I think it makes them turn out kind of cute. This recipe makes 12 to 24 cubes, depending on the size and depth of the molds.
-Candy mold, ice cube tray, or a pan lined with parchment
-6 tablespoons gelatin powder
-2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
-6 tablespoons honey
-1–2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
Whisk the honey and lemon juice together first, and then sprinkle the gelatin on top. This will ensure there aren’t any dry spots on the bottom of the pan, which can (and will) burn rather than dissolve.
Cook it over medium heat, but don’t let it boil. Keep it at a bare simmer—you just need it hot enough to dissolve the gelatin. The liquid will turn clear (and smell kind of funky), and it will get thicker.
Next, take it off the heat and pour it carefully into the molds.
Let your natural fruit gummies sit until they cool completely. You can also speed up the process by putting the molds in the freezer. In about 10 to 15 minutes, they’ll be ready to pop out and eat!
Keep refrigerated for up to 5 days.
How can I make vegan gummies?
Turns out you can make tasty fruit gummies without the gelatin. All you need is fresh juice, a natural sweetener, and agar agar powder to make a pretty convincing vegan dupe.
-1 cup fresh lemon juice
-2 tablespoons agar agar powder (be sure to use powder and not the flakes)
-2 tablespoons honey
-1 teaspoon grated ginger
1. Combine the ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Whisk until the agar agar powder has dissolved.
2. Remove from the heat and let cool for 5–10 minutes. Then pour the mixture into your molds.
3. Let cool completely before removing from the molds and/or cutting into squares.
Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Or freeze for up to 3 months.
Try these activated charcoal gummies for upset stomachs.
Have you used gelatin as a supplement? What benefits have you seen?
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Lemon Ginger Fruit Gummies
- Candy mold or ice cube tray
- 6 tablespoons gelatin powder
- 2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons honey
- 1–2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
- Combine lemon juice, honey, and ginger in a nonreactive saucepan. Sprinkle the gelatin powder over the top. Whisk well.
- Place over medium heat. Whisk constantly as the mixture comes to a simmer. Let simmer for a few minutes until it starts to thicken and the gelatin dissolves. Once the gelatin is dissolved, the mixture will also be clear.
- Remove from the heat and pour into an 8- by 8-inch square pan (lined with parchment) or candy molds.
- Let cool completely before cutting into squares or removing from the molds.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified physician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical reviewers here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.182