Jell-O in its many forms Feed

Retro Holiday Baking: Jell-O Spritz Cookies

Jell-O in cookies. Who knew?

Use this recipe to make spritz cookies — that is, cookies you form with a cookie press — or just drop the dough by spoonfuls for soft pillow-like cookies. 


Fruity Cookies
Old recipe from vintage Jell-O advertising

4 cups sifted flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 3-oz. pkg. of Jell-O gelatin, any flavor
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 400˚F.

Sift flour and baking powder. Cream butter. Gradually add sugar and gelatin, creaming well after each addition. Add egg and vanilla; beat well. Gradually add flour mixture, mixing after each addition until smooth.

Press dough through the cookie press onto ungreased baking sheets. Sprinkle with colored sugar or candy sprinkles if desired. Bake for about 13 to 14 minutes or until golden brown at edges.

Makes about 5 dozen cookies.


Thank heavens, my mother never did this to us.

  Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 1.09.08 PM

 Retro Dad totally phoned it in with that tie.

Recipe via Scout901
Image via Awkward Family Photos

Thanksgiving twofer

Here are two Thanksgiving-worthy recipes from 1952.


Walnut Pumpkin Cake

1 pkg. spice cake mix
1 tsp. baking soda
canned pumpkin
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

Add baking soda to cake mix. Substitute pumpkin for liquid called for on package in same amount; combine with the 1/2 cup water. Mix cake as package directs, using a little over half the pumpkin-water mixture for first addition of liquid. Add walnuts last. Bake as package directs. Fill layers and frost with whipped cream, sprinkling more chopped walnuts between layers. Decorate with whole walnuts.

Walnut Cranberry Quickie

Dissolve 1 pkg. lemon gelatin in 1 3/4 cups boiling water; cool until syrupy. Put walnut half in each of 6 individual molds. Arrange banana slices over walnuts. Spoon 2 tbsp. gelatin into each mold. Mix remaining gelatin with 1 cup whole cranberry sauce and 1/3 cup chopped walnuts. Fill molds with this mixture; chill. Serve with balls of seasoned cream cheese rolled in chopped walnuts.



Step back, Junior. That oven's very hot.


Recipe via tikitacky
Image via Carl Guderian

There's always room for coconut

I love coconut, don't you?

Recipe coconut jello 1970

Jazzed-up Jell-O Gelatin
Old recipe from 1970 Jell-O advertising

Prepare one package (3 oz.) Jell-O, any flavor, as directed on the package. Chill until thickened, not firm. Stir in 1 cup drained sliced or cut-up fruit (just no pineapple — I don't know why) and 1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut. Pour into serving bowl, chill until firm, spoon in dessert glasses. Sprinkle with additional coconut. Serves 6.


Since Jell-O's a relatively guilt-free dessert, I thought I'd share with you these groovy weight scales from 1970. They're very cool — except for the one that says, "Hey, fatso." Bite me, Hey Fatso scale.


Image via Sweet Jane

Retro Holiday Happy Hour: Modhouse Punch (made with or without alcohol)


Modhouse Punch
1960s recipe from old Sprite advertising

1 6-oz. pkg. lime Jell-O
2 cups hot water
1/2 cup to 1 cup bottled lime juice (though I bet fresh lime juice would be better)
2 12-oz. cans frozen concentrate for limeade
90 oz. Sprite
1 tsp. almond extract (this is mentioned in the ingredients list but not the recipe; use your discretion) 

Dissolve gelatin in hot water. Then stir in frozen limeade concentrate. Add lime juice.

To serve, pour into bowl over 1 1/2 quarts of cracked ice. Add Sprite.

If you like, add a fifth of vodka.

Makes about 48 4-oz. servings.


A little mod inspiration — Carnaby Street in London, all decked out for Christmas in the 1960s.


Via Shelf Life Taste Test
Photo via Wiggle That Wotsit

Show someone you love them. With Jell-O and bananas.

As you may have guessed, I haven't had a lot of luck in procuring vintage Valentine's themed recipes.


The desserts in this ad look like something my mother-in-law might have served her guests. She hated cooking and was a big fan of convenience foods. 

She's still living — she's 93! — but she's now in an assisted living situation where someone else does all the cooking. And she couldn't be more pleased.


This is my mother-in-law, Dorothy Reynolds, on her wedding day in the 1940s. She was, and still is, very beautiful.


Sugar-Frosted Dainties a.k.a. homemade gum drops

This vintage ad has a photo of something called "Sugar-Frosted Dainties." To get the recipe, one would have had to write to Knox for the recipe and I didn't do that because, well, I was born after this ad ran.

However, I recently found a neat little recipe that makes homemade gum drops that look just like the Sugar-Frosted Dainties. 

The recipe is very easy and the results are a delight. I'm making lots and lots of them as Chrsitmas gifts this year.


Homemade Gum Drops

1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup apple juice
1 package Jell-o Gelatin, 4 serving size-color of your choice
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
extra sugar for rolling

Coat a Loaf pan with cooking spray. You can also use an 8x8 pan, though the gumdrops will be thinner. Place pan in refrigerator until ready to use.

Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan, let sit for 1 minute. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Once you reach a steady boil, continue to boil for 1 full minute. Pour into chilled pan and return to refrigerator for 3-4 hours.

Once gelatin is set, run knife around edges to loosen. Using a spatula, remove gumdrop slab to wax paper and cut into desired shapes using a sharp knife. If knife starts to get sticky, run under hot water. Transfer cut gumdrops to a tray lined with fresh wax paper to dry at room temperature for at least 10 hours, preferably overnight. I placed my tray in the cold oven to dry. Roll gumdrops in granulated sugar and store in airtight container.


If you want to go vintage all the way, you can put your homemade gum drops into a milkglass candy dish, like this one.


Ad via my other blog Found in Mom's Basement
Recipe via Chocolate Chocolate and More

Jack-O-Lantern Salad

Trick? Or treat?

Retro halloween salad
Jack-O'-Lantern Salad
retro recipe from 1981 Litton Microwave advertising

2 cups hot water
1 pkg. (6 oz.) orange gelatin mix
2 cups cold water
1 lb. carrots, shredded
curly endive
pitted dates

Pour hot water into medium bowl; cover. Microwave at High 4 to 6 minutes or until boiling.

Stir in gelatin until dissolved. Add cold water. Chill 1 to 2 hours, or until soft set.

Stir in shredded carrots. Pour into 9-in. round cake dish. Chill until firm.

To serve, unmold gelatin onto plate covered with curly endive. Us dates to form pumpkin face and celery for stem.


Here's a cartoon my husband Gary John Reynolds created a few years ago. Enjoy.



Recipe via Retro Food

Elegant and easy retro dessert

My mother used ladyfingers in many of her homemade desserts.

Vintage recipe in old ad

Delight Fantastic
old recipe from vintage Kraft advertising

1. Dissolve 1 3-oz. pkg. lime-flavored gelatin and 1 3-oz. pkg. raspberry-flavored gelatin using 1 1/2 cups boiling water for each. Pour each into an 8" square pan. Chill overnight; cut in cubes

2. Dissolve 1 3-oz. pkg of lemon-flavored gelatin using 1 cup boiling water. Cool, while you soften 1 8-oz. pkg. of Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Add gelatin mixture gradually blending until smooth. Chill until slightly thickened.

3. Fold in cubed gelatin and 6 cups (1 pkg.) Kraft Mini Marshmallows. Pour into 9" spring form pan lined with 2 3-oz. pkgs. of split ladyfingers. Chill until firm. Serves 10 to 12.


1950s moms knew a playboy when they saw one.



Recipe via Shelf Life Taste Test
Image via Mid-Century Modern Freak

Easy-as-Pie Ice Cream Pie

This is so easy, you could throw it together tonight.


Easy-as-Pie Ice Cream Pie
recipe from old Jell-O advertising

1. Blend together lightly in bowl one pint of vanilla ice cream and one cup milk.

2. Add package of Chocolate Instant Pudding. Beat until just mixed.

3. Pour at once into 9-inch pie shell. Let stand in refrigerator abut one hour.

Retro Lush-ious: Daiquiri Pie

Sorry I haven't been around much lately. But my staycation starts tomorrow, which means I'll have time to scan and post some new goodies in the coming week.


Daiquiri Pie
recipe from old Jell-O advertising

1 pkg. (4-serving size) Jell-O Lemon Pudding and Pie Filling
1 pkg. (3 oz.) Jell-O Lime Gelatin
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups water
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup Bacardi light rum
1 3/4 cups thawed Cool Whip Non-Dairy Whipped Topping
1 baked 9-inch graham cracker crumb crust, cooled

Combine pudding mix, gelatin and sugar in a saucepan. Stir in 1/2 cup of the water and the eggs.; blend well. Add remaining water and cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a full boil. Remove from heat; stir in rum. Chill. Thoroughly blend Cool Whip into chilled mixture. Spoon into pie crust and chill until firm, about 2 hours. Garnish with additional Cool Whip and lime slices, if desired.

Via Eudaemonius