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15 Delicious Jello Dessert Recipes for Thanksgiving


These Jello Desserts for Thanksgiving are full of flavor, easy to make and always a crowd-pleaser for holiday meals. Whether you have a crazy sweet tooth or need a fun sweet side dish for your Thanksgiving meal, Jello desserts are a delightful addition to your holiday table. These nostalgic treats bring joy to any gathering. 

Collage of Jello desserts to serve a Thanksgiving.
You’re going to love these Jello desserts for Thanksgiving and beyond.

You’ll love these dessert recipes with Jello

Jello desserts and old fashioned Jello salad recipes offer a burst of flavor and are sometimes the best things about your holiday meal (I am NOT a turkey fan). The combination of sweet, fruity flavors with the smooth texture of Jello creates a unique and enjoyable sensory experience. 

Not only are these gelatin desserts delicious, but they are also incredibly easy to make. With just a few basic ingredients and simple steps, you can create impressive Jello recipes that will leave your guests wanting more. And they are great for any skill level! 

My grandfather-in-law loved Jello (anyway he could get it!) so it was always on the Thanksgiving (or Friendsgiving) table.

Related: Strawberry Jello Angel Food Dessert

A Jello pretzel salad always stops me in my tracks (there are a few flavor options in this list – such a classic). And because this collection of Jello desserts is specifically for Thanksgiving, there are a few recipes that have a tangy flavor from cranberries.

I’ve skipped the savory versions in favor of holiday desserts and easy recipes for sides that are on the sweeter side.

These Jello desserts are perfect for a variety of occasions. Whether you’re hosting Thanksgiving dinner or a casual fall party at home, these delicious recipes make a great addition to the menu.

The vibrant colors and playful appearance of Jello desserts also make them an excellent choice for kids’ parties or festive celebrations. So, no matter the event, these desserts are sure to be a hit with your guests.

From Jell-o salad recipes to gelatin desserts, you will find crowd-pleasing dishes that everyone will love. 

Jello Salads for Fall

If you're looking for fall desserts for the holiday season, you're going to love this collection of recipes with Jello. From traditional Jello fluffs and salads to layered desserts, we've got a tasty selection of new recipes to choose from! For most of these desserts you'll need boiling water so get that pot on the stove! 


Chilling Time: After making your Jello recipe, it’s essential to allow it to chill in the refrigerator for the recommended time. This ensures that the Jello sets properly and attains the desired texture. Make sure you have ample space to store the dishes while they chill and solidify.

Adding Fruit: If you plan to add fresh fruits to your Jello dessert, make sure to let the Jello cool down slightly before incorporating the fruits. Adding fruits to hot Jello can cause them to become mushy or sink to the bottom. 

Greasing the Mold: If you’re using a Jello mold, it’s a good idea to lightly grease the mold with non-stick cooking spray. This helps in easy unmolding and ensures that the Jello releases smoothly without sticking to the edges.

Experiment with Layers: To create visually stunning Jello desserts, try layering different flavors and colors. Allow each layer to set before adding the next one. This adds a fun and vibrant element to your dessert, making it even more enticing.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are savory Jello dishes called?

Savory gelatin dishes are often referred to as aspic. These dishes are made by combining savory ingredients like meat, vegetables, or seafood with gelatin to create a jiggly and flavorful dish. Um, no thank you. I am sure that there is a recipe that must be tasty if people make these over and over but I think it’s a no for me. 

Why can’t you put certain fruits in Jello and what are they?

Certain fruits, such as pineapple, kiwi, figs, and papaya, contain enzymes that prevent gelatin from setting properly. These enzymes break down the gelatin structure, resulting in a runny or liquid-like consistency. It’s best to avoid using these fruits in Jello desserts that are prepared in a ring mold. They work ok in fluffs or salads where you can serve it in a bowl.

What is the best fruit to put in Jello?

The best fruits to add to Jello desserts are those that are naturally high in water content, such as berries, diced peaches, diced oranges, and grapes. These fruits add a burst of flavor and texture to the Jello while maintaining its structure.

Can you use fruit juice instead of cold water for Jello?

Absolutely! Using fruit juice instead of cold water adds a delightful burst of flavor to the Jello dessert. You can choose a juice that complements the fruits used in the recipe for an extra layer of taste.

Essential Tools for Making Jello Desserts

You’ll need a few basic tools for you Jello dessert-making. Here are some essential tools you’ll need:

1. Mixing Bowls: Have a set of mixing bowls in different sizes to prepare the Jello mixture and mix in additional ingredients if necessary.

2. Whisk or Spoon: A whisk or spoon will be your trusty companion for stirring the Jello mixture until it dissolves completely.

3. Measuring Cups: Accurate measurements are crucial for successful Jello desserts. Use measuring cups to measure water, fruit juice, or any other liquid required for the recipe.

4. Jello Mold: If you plan on creating molded Jello desserts, invest in a Jello mold. These molds come in various shapes and sizes, adding a fun and festive touch to your desserts. My mother-in-law has an amazing collection of holiday molds that are really fun.

6. Knife and Cutting Board: Depending on the recipe, you may need to slice or dice fruits or other ingredients. Keep a sharp knife and a cutting board handy for these tasks.

8. Serving Utensils: Remember to have appropriate serving utensils such as dessert plates, spoons, or forks readily available to serve and enjoy your Jello desserts.

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