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The Standard Jello Shot Recipe

Orange and blue jello shots made with the standard jello shot recipe

This is the generic, standard recipe for jello shots.


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  • 1 small (3-ounce) box of jello
  • 2/3 cup of alcohol. Vodka is the traditional choice, but you can use other kinds of alcohol if you prefer.
  • 1/3 cup juice or cold water

How To Put Jello Shots Together

1. Pour jello crystals into a bowl (preferably one with a pour spout as this will make it easier to fill the jello cups without spilling).

2. Boil water.

3. Add 1 cup of the boiling water to the jello crystals.

4. Mix until the jello sugar has dissolved.

5. Add 1 cup of alcohol of some kind to the mix. Traditionally, it’s vodka.

6. Stir again to mix.

7. Pour into jello cups.

8. Wait for a few minutes for the jello to cool somewhat before putting on the lid or covering the jello (otherwise you will get condensation on the lid…it won’t hurt the jello but it doesn’t look as good when handing them to out guests).

9. Put in the refrigerator to chill.

But if you prefer a higher alcohol content, feel free to go with the standard amount.

How long does it take for Jello shots to set in the fridge?

It usually takes between 2 and 4 hours for the jello shots to set. So you can make them the day of your party if you have to.

However, I always try to make mine at least a day in advance (less last minute prep work!). They will keep in the refrigerator for a few days with no problems.

How many jello shots does a 3 oz box make?

One 3-ounce box of jello (which is the small package) makes about 16 2-ounce jello shots.

Of course, it all depends on how much jello you put in each shot cup. You can stretch it out to about 20 if you fill them 3/4 full.

Green and blue jello shots

How To Serve Jello Shots

I almost always make jelly shots in these 2-ounce jello shot cups with lids*.

They can be stacked for storage in the fridge, are easy to hand out to your guests and don’t spill or break if they’re dropped (which always seems to happen at some point during the party!)

jello shot with mini spoon

I serve jello shots with these mini tasting spoons*. 

Although some people like to use the no-utensils approach to downing them, a lot of my friends appreciate having a spoon. These ones are the perfect size for eating from a jello shot cup.

blue, green, yellow and orange jello shots

The Best Jello Shots

Wanda Simone
This recipe gives you the outline for creating your own masterpieces that you can add to the best Jello shots list.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cooling Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Servings 16 jello shots
Calories 46 kcal


  • 1 kettle or pot for boiling the water
  • 1 mixing bowl preferably with a spout to make pouring easier
  • spoon
  • 16 jello shot cups with lids


  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 3-oz (small) package flavored jello
  • cup vodka, liqueur or other alcohol
  • cup juice or cold water


  • Mix 1 cup of boiling water with a small 3-oz package of jello. Stir until all of the crystals have dissolved.
  • Add in ⅖ cup alcohol and ⅕ cup juice or cold water.
  • Pour the jello mixture into about 16 plastic shot cups with lids.
  • Refrigerate until set, usually about 4 hours.


  • If you’re not sure what kind of alcohol or juice to use, look up a cocktail recipe with the same flavor as your jello and see what it uses.
  • Depending on how strong you like your shots, the amounts of alcohol and juice can vary. Just make sure the total amount of cold liquid comes out to 1 cup. Otherwise they may not set.
  • The exact number of jello shots you get will vary depending on the size of your shot cups, and how much you put in them.


Serving: 1 jello shotCalories: 46 kcalCarbohydrates: 5 gProtein: 0.5 gFat: 0.01 gSaturated Fat: 0.001 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.002 gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.002 gSodium: 26 mgPotassium: 11 mgFiber: 0.01 gSugar: 5 gVitamin A: 10 IUVitamin C: 3 mgCalcium: 1 mgIron: 0.02 mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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This post was originally published on May 9, 2019 but was updated with new content on March 8, 2023.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Yvonne McDaniel says:

    I don’t know how you get 16 2 oz shots out of a small box of jello. You add 8 ozs (1 cup) boiling water and 8 ozs ( 3/4 cup booze and 1/4 cup water) that’s only 16 ozs total. And 2 ozs per Jell-O shot only gives you 8 shots. What am I missing?

    1. Wanda Simone says:

      Hi Yvonne…the number is how many I normally get out of 1 box of jello based on actually doing it :). The jello shot cups aren’t filled all the way up to the top, so there isn’t 2 ounces of liquid in each one. (I haven’t measured exactly how much there is). Also, maybe dissolving the Jello in the water causes the volume to expand? (Again, I have never tried measuring the total amount of liquid after the Jello crystals are mixed in).