Can Jell-O be Made With Just Warm Water Instead of Boiling Hot and Then Cold?

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Updated on Mar 26, 2014

Grade Level: 3rd - 6th; Type: Food Science/ Chemistry


In this experiment, we will find out if making Jell-O is possible with just warm water instead of adding boiling hot water.

Research Questions:

  • What is gelatin, how is it made, and what is it used for?
  • What are the properties of a gel? What does it do?
  • Is a gel considered to be a solid, a liquid, both, or neither?

Gelatin is a protein substance that is created by boiling connective tissues, bones, skins of animals or stem roots from plants with a similar structure. It is used in many applications such as to create the much-loved Jello, taffy, marshmallows, wines, capsules for medicine, and much more.

Gelatin has beneficial properties such as transparency, strength, flexibility, easy to digest, soluble in hot water, and great binding properties. The directions say to add boiling add--but is that really necessary? Let's find out if merely warm water will do the job.


  • 2 boxes of Jell-O or gelatin mix (any flavor)
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • A stirring spatula or whisk
  • Boiling hot water
  • Cold water
  • Warm water
  • Measuring cup
  • Saran/plastic wrap
  • A refrigerator
  • Timer/Clock
  • An adult to help you

Experimental Procedure

  1. In one mixing bowl, pour the packet of gelatin mix in.
  2. Carefully add 1 cup of boiling hot water inside. Stir until the powder is dissolved.
  3. Now slowly stir in 1 cup of cold water.
  4. Cover the bowl with saran wrap.
  5. In the other mixing bowl, pour the packet of gelatin mix in.
  6. Carefully pour 2 cups of warm water inside and stir until the powder is dissolved. You may have to stir longer.
  7. Cover the bowl with saran wrap.
  8. Refrigerate both bowls until the gelatin is set in at least one of the bowls- about 4 hours.
  9. After 4 hours...check on the gelatin and see which one has set and which one is firmer and has the “correct consistency.”

Terms/Concepts: Viscosity; Gelatin/ Gel; Protein; Collagen; Hydrolysis; Freezing/Melting Point; States of Matter


Sofia PC is currently a college student with a deep interest in science who is aspiring to become a writer. She writes about all sorts of things across all subjects including, but not limited to; science, crafts, and fashion. She hopes to become a good writer so she can share her thoughts and experiences with the world and future generations.