Joys of Jell-O

August 27, 2009 at 5:46 pm | Posted in RecipeBook | 18 Comments
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Joys of Jello

My parents found this vintage gem of a recipe book for 50 cents at a library sale in Virginia. The Joys of Jell-o, circa 1960-something, proves that people in the 60s had some funny ideas about food (as well as a kitschy aesthetic for food photography).  The book contains the usual, some silly (re: Birthday Surprise), candy-colored jell-o recipes but also a large number of savory jell-o salad recipes. While I am curious to try some of these recipes I have to admit that the idea of a gelatin mold containing mayonnaise and shrimp makes my stomach turn.   Thanks Mom & Dad!


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  1. hi! i just discovered your blog and love it. i am a huge appreciator of jello and have been collecting jello cookbooks for years. you can see some of my collection here: also, did you hear about this competition in brooklyn earlier this year?

    • Love your blog! You a have great collection of stuff, especially your jello cook books. Its funny how both original owners of our Joy of Jello cookbooks wrote there name in top right corner.

  2. I made so many recipes out of that cookbook when I was newly married. It was one of my first cookbooks.

  3. Is it possible to get the recipe for the rainbow cake in the second picture? It looks like a lot of fun!

    • 1 package (3oz) each Black Raspberry , Lime, Lemon, Orange, and Strawberry Jello.
      5 cups boiling water.
      2 1/2 cups cold water
      1 cup whipped cream

      Dissolve each package of jello separately in 1 cup boiling water. Add 1/2 cup cold water each. Chill raspberry jello until very thick. Smoothly line sides of a 9 or 10 inch spring-form pan with wax paper, cut to extend 3 inches above pan. Whip black raspberry jello until fluffy (using an electric mixer). Spoon into pan. Chill until set but not firm. Chill, whip, and layer remaining flavors into pan, letting each layer chill until set, but not firm before adding the next layer. Chill until firm or overnight. Loosen around the edges and remove sides of pan and paper. Spread whipped cream over sides and top of cake. Good luck!

  4. My friend just moved his parents out of their house, which they had lived in for the last 60 years. One of the treasures his mom gave to us is a jello cookbook with an especially fun design element for jello “pairings.” We both think you should have it. If you will email me a mailing address, I’ll send it your way. (came across your blog via The Splendid Table)

    • Wow, sounds neat. Thanks!

  5. […] recipe came from the classic Joys of Jell-O recipe book and boasts a new way to make the old fashioned confection. These strawberry, cherry, […]

  6. Hello Victoria,
    I would love to know if there is a miniature mold that Jell-O might have so I can make Candy Jelly Rings. The ones you buy by the pound & come in fruit flavors.

    Orginially from Bayridge, Brooklyn, NY now in Ft. Myers, FLorida

    Thank you,
    Maria “BklynTomato68”

  7. […] housewarming/engagement party I wanted to create one the of vintage recipes from the Joys of Jell-O recipe book.  I don’t know what it is about the Under-the-Sea Salad that screams domestic […]

  8. […] to try a recipe from it. The New Joys of Jell-O, a 1973 follow-up to the original 1960′s Joys of Jell-O, takes jello from the suburbs to the city and features photographs of sophisticated, swinging, […]

  9. i”ve been looking for that jello book for years! it’s exactly the same book i remember as a child!! how can i purchase one to have

  10. I still have mine that I ordered in 1963!

  11. Can you tell me if this book has Frozen Strawberry Salad? It’s layered with lemon jello, pineapple, cream cheese and heavy whipped cream? The bottom layer is strawberry jello and frozen strawberries. My mom made it in the 70’s and I would like to get a copy if you will share. Donna

    • Hi Donna. I don’t see that recipe in this book but I’ve attached some similar recipes. Hope this helps!

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