If you’ve been missing your favorite snacks from your childhood, you can continue to love them into your adulthood, guilt-free. These homemade fruit snacks are exactly like the Gushers you packed for lunch in sixth grade, with a grownup twist.
Gushers, popular in the 1990s and early 2000s, are candy fruit snacks with a delicious gushy liquid center. These copycats, however, are homemade fruit snacks created with clean fruit flavors minus all the sugar you consumed as a teen. The center still gushes a sweet, gooey liquid, but now it’s healthy and won’t require a guilt-trip to the gym.
These are good on-the-go, or even packed in a brown bag for work — to share at the lunch table just like you did when you were a kid. Watch the video below for all the flavor variations and how to make the recipe.
Healthy Homemade Gushers
1. Lightly coat candy molds with cooking spray, and place on a baking sheet. Set aside.
2. Process orange marmalade and lemon juice in a food processor until smooth, about 5 seconds. Strain mixture through a fine wire-mesh sieve into a small bowl. Spoon marmalade mixture into a small piping bag or a ziplock plastic bag, and twist end of bag tightly to secure; set aside. Chill until ready to use.
3. Process carrot juice blend, orange segments, and agave nectar in a blender until smooth, about 30 seconds. Pour mixture into a small saucepan over medium-low. Stir together water and gelatin in a small bowl; spoon into saucepan. Cook, whisking constantly, until gelatin dissolves, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour gelatin mixture into a liquid measuring cup. Pour into molds halfway, reserving 1/2 cup mixture. Refrigerate molds, uncovered, until gelatin is set, about 1 hour.
4. Hollow out a small hole in the center of each gusher using a 1/8 teaspoon measuring spoon. Snip off tip of piping bag. Pipe a small amount of marmalade mixture into each hole. Set molds aside.
5. Heat reserved gelatin mixture in saucepan over low until melted and warmed through, 2 to 3 minutes; pour mixture into liquid measuring cup. Pour over marmalade layer in molds to fill completely. Chill until firm, about 1 hour. Remove from molds, and serve.
Prepare recipe as directed, substituting 1/2 cup strawberry jam in place of marmalade. Omit straining. Substitute 3/4 cup strawberry-apple juice blend and 1 cup thinly sliced fresh strawberries in place of carrot juice blend and orange segments.
Prepare recipe as directed, substituting 1/2 cup blackberry jam in place of marmalade. Omit straining in step 2. Substitute 3/4 cup strawberry-apple juice blend and 1 cup fresh blackberries in place of carrot juice blend and orange segments. Strain mixture through a fine wire-mesh sieve into a small saucepan in step 3.
Prepare recipe as directed, substituting 1/2 cup blueberry jam in place of marmalade. Omit straining. Substitute 3/4 cup strawberry-apple juice blend and 1 cup fresh blueberries in place of carrot juice blend and orange segments.