Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Rum Cocktails

Jell-O Shot

green and yellow Jello shots in plastic shot cups
Image: / Tim Nusog

Just thinking about Jell-O Shots probably reminds you of a college party or other event where cheap beer dominated and trash cans doubled as punch bowls. But who says Jell-O Shots have to end after college? These tried-and-true party drinks are fun, easy to make and instant crowd-pleasers. And, with a little effort, you can create better-than-usual shots featuring quality liquor and complementary flavors, rather than grain alcohol and a flash of neon.

When making Jell-O Shots, you just need three ingredients: gelatin, water and liquor. Any flavor of gelatin will work, but do not use the unflavored variety, or you’ll be the unwitting creator of sad, tasteless shots. Vodka and white rum are both great options for your alcohol, although other spirits, like gin, whiskey, tequila and brandy are all fair game. Vodka is the most neutral, so it will allow the Jell-O to shine, while other spirits will infuse more of their own essence into the final product.

If you’re feeling ambitious, you can even make Jell-O Shot cocktails, like a Whiskey Sour, Margarita or Daiquiri. In that case, you need to match the cocktail ingredients with the liquid requirement in the recipe. For example, if you’re making a Daiquiri and using one package of gelatin, the rum, lime juice, and simple syrup should maintain their proper ratios while keeping the total volume of non-boiling liquid (cocktail plus cold water) to eight ounces.

Jell-O Shots are a blank canvas for creativity, so mix it up with different colors, flavors and shapes. Your friends will love them.


  • 3 ounces Jell-O or other flavored gelatin

  • 8 ounces boiling water

  • 4 ounces vodka or white rum

  • 4 ounces cold water


  1. In a medium bowl, stir together the Jell-O and boiling water until the Jell-O dissolves.

  2. Add the vodka or rum and cold water, and stir to combine.

  3. Pour 1 ounce of the mixture into each of the 16 shot glasses (small plastic or paper cups will also work) and chill until solid.