British Strawberry Jelly (Jell-O)

British Strawberry Jelly (Jello)

The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

Prep: 35 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Infuse and Chill: 2 hrs 30 mins
Total: 3 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
157 Calories
0g Fat
39g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 157
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 7mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 39g 14%
Dietary Fiber 2g 5%
Total Sugars 37g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 44mg 222%
Calcium 16mg 1%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 117mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

British strawberry jelly is a fruit-flavored gelatin dessert, similar to what is known in the United States as Jell-O. Not a jam or fruit spread as the term "jelly" might indicate in the States, British jelly is a beautiful, fruit-forward, and refreshing dessert that can take elaborate forms and be decorated with intricate fruit arrangements. Home cooks usually make this common dessert using a store-bought concentrated flavored gelatin block, which requires only to boil some water—similar to making powdered Jell-O.

The authentic British version, however, uses fresh fruit, sugar, gelatin, and water, such as in our traditional recipe. We chose fresh summer strawberries, but any fruit of your choice that's ripe and sweet, and perhaps in season, will work well. Decorate with fresh fruit, use animal shape molds for little party treats, or make a whole jelly to display as a centerpiece.

Delicious on its own, it goes amazingly with whipped cream, ice cream, or custard, which is a classic dish on the tea-time table. A budget-friendly dessert, this is a great dish for family affairs during hot days and is fun to eat. Layer two or more flavors for an extra treat or use our recipe for a more elaborate and elegant English trifle. If you're planning ahead, be mindful that the jelly needs at least two hours to set, but leaving it in the refrigerator overnight is always best.


  • 1 cup (200 grams) superfine sugar

  • 2 1/4 cups (675 milliliters) water, divided

  • 1 pound (500 grams) fresh strawberries, gently washed

  • 1/4 ounce (11 grams) plain unsweetened gelatin powder

Steps to Make It

Make the Syrup

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    British Strawberry Jelly (Jello) ingredients

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  2. Place the sugar and 2 cups of water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil vigorously for 5 minutes.

    sugar and water cooking in a blue saucepan

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  3. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool off.

    sugar and water mixture in a pan

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

Make the Strawberry Mixture

  1. Set aside 4 or 5 of the fresh whole strawberries and hull the remaining fruit by removing the entire stems of the berries.

    strawberries on a plate, remove stems

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  2. Purée the hulled strawberries with an immersion blender, high-speed blender, or food processor until you've achieved a smooth texture.

    strawberries blended together with an immersion blender

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  3. Transfer the purée to a large bowl and pour over the cooled sugar-water syrup.

    syrup added to the strawberry purée

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  4. Cover with a clean cloth and let infuse for a minimum of 30 minutes, or up to 2 hours, if you have the time. 

    strawberry and sugar mixture covered with cloth an left to infuse

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  5. Once infused, pass the strawberry mixture through a fine sieve to remove any of the strawberry pulp or seeds. Set aside.

    strain the strawberry mixture through a fine sieve

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

Prepare the Fruit Jelly and Refrigerate

  1. Make sure the remaining water is cold and pour it into a small dish. Sprinkle the powdered gelatin over and let sit for 5 minutes.

    gelatin and water in a bowl

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  2. Measure 1 cup of the strained strawberry-sugar syrup mixture and heat it up in a small saucepan.

    strawberry and sugar syrup in a small saucepan

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  3. Stir in the gelatin-water mixture and simmer very gently, avoiding a boil, until the gelatin has completely dissolved.

    strawberry mixture and gelatin mixture together in a saucepan

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  4. Stir this mixture into the remaining strawberry-sugar syrup.

    strawberry sugar syrup being added to the strawberry and gelatin mixture

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  5. Transfer the strawberry mixture to a 3-cup/900-ml gelatin mold or into individual smaller molds if you'd like.

    strawberry and gelatin mixture being poured into a mold

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  6. Place the mold in the refrigerator and let set. This will take a couple of hours but it is best to leave it overnight. The jelly is ready when it wobbles slightly—the fun part of the dessert.

    strawberry jelly in the mold

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner

  7. To unmold, carefully dip the mold in warm water for 15 to 20 seconds and remove. With wet fingertips gently pull the jelly from the sides of the mold. Place a plate on top of the mold and turn the plate and mold upside down so the jelly falls on the center of the plate. Decorate with the strawberries you saved and enjoy!

    British Strawberry Jelly (Jello)

    The Spruce / Nyssa Tanner