4th of July Recipes: Superfood Star Gummies

The 4th of July. America’s Independence Day! A time for family, parades, fireworks, BBQs, and lots of sugary 4th of July recipes! Right?

Not at the Mama Natural house 😉

Instead, I’m making a big batch of these kid-friendly gummy stars. My brother’s kids are coming into town over the holiday, and hopefully these sweet treats will help them forget about all the high fructose corn syrup.

Gelatin is a superfood

These stars taste great, and the kids will barely know that they’re eating a nutrient-dense food. Gelatin is a healing food for so many reasons (see all my gelatin posts here). Some of its top benefits include:

  • Improves digestion by drawing gastric juices to itself
  • Helps joint and cartilage health since it contains supportive proteins
  • Heals intestinal tract by coating and calming irritation and inflammation
  • Contains a wonderful amino acid balance not found in most protein sources

I’m loving the Vital Proteins brand because it’s derived from pastured-raised cattle. They also support animal well-being and sustainable eco-friendly practices. As their website says “Our happy cows openly graze on lush natural grass pastures providing the highest quality of protein.” This is also the only gelatin I’ve found that clearly states on packaging that its from “pastured-raised cattle,” an important distinction in my mind since cows are supposed to eat grass not grains!

OK, off my soapbox, without further adieu, here is the recipe.

4th of July Recipes: Gummy star ingredients

The 4th of July! A time for family, parades, fireworks, BBQs, and lots of sugary sweets, right? Not at my house! Instead, I'm making these awesome gummies.

  • 12 oz. organic blueberries (I used frozen)
  • 12 oz. organic strawberries (I used frozen)
  • 8 oz. coconut milk
  • 10 oz. filtered water, divided
  • 11 TB gelatin (where to buy), divided
  • 5 TB maple syrup (where to buy), divided
  • Star gummy mold (where to buy)

4th of July Recipes: Gummy star directions

Let your frozen berries totally defrost. Put the blueberries and 4 ounces of water into blender. Add 2 TB maple syrup. Blend well. Pour mixture through strainer or cheesecloth. Take your strained liquid and pour into a sauce pan. If you have 8 ounces of liquid, add 3 TB gelatin. If you’re able to get 12 ounces liquid, add 4 TB gelatin. Mix in gelatin until mostly dissolved. Then turn on low heat and keep stirring until gelatin is completely dissolved. Let cool slightly and pour into star mold. Put in refrigerator until your gellies set. You can also put in freezer for 5 minutes for a fast mold. Make 6 large stars.

Next, put your strawberries and 4 ounces of water into blender. Add 1 TB maple syrup and 4 ounces of water. Blend well. No need to strain mixture. Pour liquid into saucepan and add 4 TB of gelatin till mostly dissolved. Then turn on low heat and keep stirring until gelatin is completely dissolved. Let cool slightly and pour into star mold. Put in refrigerator until your jellies set. You can also put in freezer for 5 minutes for a fast mold. Makes 9 large stars.

* Keep in mind, you can use store bought organic blueberry and pomegranate juices for a short-cut alternative to the above jellies 🙂 You would still want to add the maple syrup as you need a sweeter liquid to offset the gelatin.

Then, put your coconut milk and 2 ounces of water into saucepan. Add 2 TB of maple syrup and 3 TB gelatin. Mix well. Then turn on low heat and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved. Let cool slightly and pour into star mold. Put in refrigerator until your gellies set. You can also put in freezer for 5 minutes for a fast mold. Makes 6 large stars.


How about you?

What are your favorite healthy 4th of July recipes?


About the Author

Genevieve Howland is a childbirth educator and breastfeeding advocate. She is the bestselling author of The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth and creator of the Mama Natural Birth Course. A mother of three, graduate of the University of Colorado, and YouTuber with over 75,000,000 views, she helps mothers and moms-to-be lead healthier and more natural lives.


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  1. Hi – These look great. Question on the Vital Proteins. It doesn’t appear they have the same product shown in your picture. do they still carry it or what would you recommend. From other posts, it doesn’t seem Peptides is right, so is it their Whey product? Thanks so much

    • I’m thinking you need gelatin. We’ve made these before.

  2. I’m confused. Will colleges peptides work, or do I need specifically the extracted gelatin?

  3. If I use juice, do I still need to add the water to the mixture?

  4. Collagen proteins vs peptides? What’s the difference? Thanks

    • Proteins will “gel” and peptides won’t. 🙂

      • I have had such a hard time getting mine to set, not realizing I have collagen peptides, not proteins. Thank you! Makes so much sense now!

  5. Hi Genevieve, I’m sending this comment again because I’m not sure if my first one went through (sorry if I’m repeating myself, but I wanted to make sure you were okay with me mentioning this recipe in my round up post as follows!):

    These gummies look so delicious! I’m currently putting together a round-up post of Paleo 4th of July recipes on my blog and I’d love to share your recipe. I hope you don’t mind if I include a link to your recipe, along with a photo that is clearly credited and linked back to this page. (I will not reprint any part of your actual recipe.) If you have any objections, of course, please let me know! Thanks in advance! 🙂

  6. I’m thinking of taking these to a reunion in July. Will they hold up? Will they melt into a puddle? Will people be able to pick them up? Do I need to set them on ice?

    • They should be just fine for a few hours out in the heat. Just keep them cool when you transport them. Happy 4th!

  7. Can you sub raw honey for the maple syrup?

  8. Thank you so much for this recipe! Maybe I can get my SAD-eating family to enjoy it on Friday. I’m so excited. 😉

    Mine took more than five minutes in the freezer to set — somewhere around 15 to 20 minutes instead. I’m using the Wilton star mold you recommend (six large stars per tray). Also, how did you get your coconut gummies so white? I used grade B maple syrup and they look light brown.

  9. What’s the difference between Vital Proteins and Great Lakes? Is Great Lakes not grass fed anymore? Which brand do you prefer?

  10. Hi,
    This is a great idea! Is there a plant base gelatin you can recommend for a vegan/vegatarian?

    • You can use seaweed gelatin as the vegan alternative.

      • Irma, I believe that if you do more research you will find that seaweed “gelatin” is not true gelatin (which is only animal based). It gels, but does not have the same benefits as the collagen based product with its amino acid profile.

        Vegetarians who eat fish should google fish gelatin sources.

    • Hello Fatima. There is no plant sourced gelatin. It is an animal product. Agar, from seaweed, will gel but not give the same benefits. If you eat fish, there is fish gelatin available…google it.

      Remember no animal was killed for its collagen (used to make gelatin). It is actually a byproduct and allows the animal to be used more efficiently and completely, without waste…and that’s a good thing.

  11. Correct intestinal track to intestinal tract. I like your blog and like making my own gummies as well.

  12. Are these like fruit snacks/gummy bears, or more like jello? If the latter, could I just add more gelatin to make them like gummy candy?

    • They are in between. You can add more gelatin but I’d add a bit more sweetener to offset it.

  13. Do you use the canned Coconut Milk (the dense stuff) or actual coconut milk. I always get hose confused.

    • I used coconut milk in a can for this recipe.

      • Thanks! That’s what I thought but wanted to make sure!

  14. Hi Genevieve,

    I want to use raspberries instead of strawberries because I have them on hand. Would I follow the recipe as written, or strain the pulp like you said for the blueberries?

    Elisabeth 😉

    • Hmmmm…. I would try to strain. If it’s too thick, you can just use as is.

  15. Can I use Organic Sugar Cane Sugar instead of Maple Syrup? I’m out of Syrup, but I have Sugar. How would I switch them? Should I add extra water?

    • You could use the sugar but be sure to heat up with your fruit purees so that it liquifies. You could also use honey.

  16. What is the shelf life of these gummies?

    • I would love to know this 2

      • I keep in fridge and eat them within 7 days.

  17. Hey there! Any reason you switched brands of gelatin?!

    • Hi Stephanie!

      Vital Proteins sent me their gelatin so wanted to try it out. I like that they’re so explicit about using only pasture-raised cattle 🙂

      • Thank you for this cool looking recipe. Wondering whether: 1) collagen and peptides are similar with the difference of one being able to be mixed into cold foods, and the other more with hot foods; 2) Would you recommend buying from the seller directly or ok from Amazon? Thank you.

        • Ordered the green one. Is there an alternative to using maple syrup? It makes me sooo sleepy! Could I use honey? Thanks! Look forward to trying it.

  18. I am thinking of making this as a 3 layer treat! Anyone try that? I am thinking I would put each layer in the fridge while I made the subsequent layer…

    • Ooooo…. that’s a great idea! If you do it, send me a picture and I can add it to this post 🙂 mama at mama natural dot com.

  19. I just love your site.
    I have made some of your recipes for my 6 years old son and he was very happy.
    You are right he doesnt know what I put in the sweets.
    Thanks for all and I will keep coming on your site!!!

    • Oh good!!!! Thanks so much for sharing!

  20. Hi Genevieve!
    I am new to your site and a new Crunchy Mama! 😉 I have a three year old boy and I just had twin boys in March. Can I just say, I love you and all you stand for! Thank you for all of the great tips. advice and honesty! Blessings to you and your beautiful family!

    • Thank you Sarah! Welcome, blessings to you too, and congratulations on your newly full house!!!

  21. Do you really have to add 4 oz of water, and then add another 4 oz of water?

    • No. Sorry! You add the 4oz just the one time. THANK YOU for pointing this out! Just updated the post.

      • oh no! It’s still the same, and i added 8 oz. I hope it will set!

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