Cooking with the Kids: Healthy Eating with Fruity Jelly

A few weeks ago we had a surplus of fruit after an afternoon making fruit hats! So, the next day, K, 3, was inspired to make fruit jelly by one of the cards on his Orchard Toys Tummy Ache game.

If you’ve not tried making fruit jelly, it is easy and fun for the kids to do, with a little help with the hot parts. All you need is fruit and a packet of jelly.

Pick a selection of fruit and cut into small pieces. K can help cut using a ‘safe cutter’ from Pampered Chef (see below) which allows kids to cut with a knife that won’t cut fingers.

Pampered Chef Safe Cutter

We used apples, bananas, melon and blueberry. Only use apple and banana if you plan to eat the jelly the same day as they can go brown. With 3 kids this isn’t a problem! Watch out for fresh kiwi fruit and fresh pineapple, though, as they contain an enzyme that stops the jelly setting.

I microwaved the jelly for about 50 seconds, then top it up with cold water according to the pack instructions. This method speeds up the setting time and makes it safer compared to dissolving the jelly in boiling water. The kids can pour on the cold water and give it a good stir – just supervise to make sure they don’t get splashed with the hot jelly. For even faster setting, use a mix of cold water and ice cubes.

Get the children to add the fruit, then leave in the fridge to set. Ours took 3-4 hours… we played more Tummy Ache while we were waiting! It’s a good game to help kids learn about healthy eating.

D, J and K all really enjoyed the mix of fruit in the jelly, but you can also go for plainer combinations, like orange jelly with satsumas, for example. If you have some fun recipes for desserts that the kids can help make, let me know.

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