Homemade Gummy Bears

I make gummies at home every so often, my kids like them, and it's easy to add vitamins or minerals to them. The other day I posted a photo of them, and had a lot of requests for the recipe. I didn't think my photo would cause such interest, because a quick Google search will turn up many recipes online, and they are all pretty much the same: usually it's gelatin, fruit juice, honey, and optional additions like vitamins, minerals, probiotics, etc., and of course, silicon molds in cute shapes. 

My own way of making them is a little bit different from the recipes that I have seen online.  For example, I prefer not to use fruit juice because juice is basically just fruit-flavoured sugar water: the small amounts of vitamins and antioxidants in juice do not make up for the large amount of sugar.  Even though it's such a small amount in a small gummy bear, I still prefer to maximize nutrient value as much as possible. (I will make an exception for Ningxia Juice, however, as it is a proven nutrient dense drink; it's like a whole food multivitamin that tastes delicious. You are welcome to ask me about it). 

Here are the ingredients that I usually use to make gummies and how I lay them out in preparation:

The gelatin is the ingredient that makes these "gummy". Gelatin is the stuff that makes bone broth (or a good chicken soup) gel. The most cost effective and nutrient dense way to consume Gelatin is in the form of homemade bone broth. But if you're not drinking that daily, using the powder is another option.

If you're going to get gelatin powder and use it, I suggest getting a good brand. I use the Great Lakes brand, which seems to be the least expensive of the better brands (ie. from grassfed cows, non-GMO). The least expensive I have found it is on iHerb (where costs me less than purchasing it in the local store, even with the exchange rate and shipping costs added). If you are interested - if you create a new iHerb account with code BQT517, you will receive $10 off your first order of $40 or more, or $5 off orders less than $40. :) 


Gelatin has many health benefits, such as:

  • Digestive Aid: it can sooth and help heal the digestive tract (which is why bone broth is often at the core of a gut healing protocol). 
  • Supports skin, hair and nail growth.
  • Good for joints and can help joint recovery 
  • Can help tighten loose skin.
  • Can improve digestion because it naturally binds to water and helps food move more easily though the digestive tract.
  • Great source of dietary collagen (note: collagen is too large to be absorbed by the skin, so the skin creams don't do much…)
  • Source of protein.
  • Helps absorption of other minerals. 

I use gelatin powder daily if I'm not drinking homemade bone broth, often adding a tablespoon to my Bulletproof coffee. 

Ingredients:

3/4 cup boiling water
1 tea bag (I usually use an herbal tea like dandelion, nettle or horsetail). I like to use herbal tea as the liquid ingredient in the gummies because of their many health benefits. 
1-2 tsp Magnesium Calm (optional, although know that most people are deficient in magnesium).
1/4 cup tart cherry concentrate: I use tart cherry concentrate for flavour. This is not the "juice" that I prefer to avoid (see above). First of all, because it is a concentrate, it composes 1/4 the total liquid amount in the recipe. Tart cherry is also something that is used as a supplement, as it offers a variety of potential health benefits. I got the one pictured above ("Dynamic Health" brand) at Ambrosia Natural Foods which is my local health food store. 
3 tbl unflavoured gelatin (I plan on experimenting with Agar Agar sometime soon for those who won't use the gelatin). 
 

Instructions:

1) Put the tea bag in the 3/4 cup boiling water and allow it to steep, as per it's directions. 
2) After the tea is steeped and tea bag removed, add the Magnesium Calm (if using). 
3) In a separate cup, add gelatin powder to cherry concentrate and mix well. The mixture will thicken. (the gelatin mixes best when it is added to cold liquid first, and then it must be gently warmed up before it is refrigerated again). 
4) Combine the tea mixture with the cherry mixture and mix well until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
5) Pour into the molds of your choice: (I got mine from Amazon, and they come with an easy fill dropper). 
6) Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Serve and enjoy! 

If you want to make it even simpler: use 1 cup of liquid plus 3 tbl gelatin. Add the gelatin to the cold liquid and stir. If you want it sweeter, add 2 tablespoons of honey (optional).  Gently warm it up on the stove over low heat and stir some more. Pour into molds and refrigerate at least 1 hour.