Halloween as an adult means one thing to me — party time! It used to be all about dressing up and going door to door for free candy, but as an adult I get to upgrade to house parties filled with shenanigans and booze. Of course where there’s booze, there has to be Halloween jello shots. Those creepy, jiggly sweet cups of joy are the perfect libation for Halloween.
When I was in college, my friends and I strictly stuck with cherry jello and vodka for our jello shots. It was all we knew at the time, and we weren’t ones to stray from the comfort of drinking something we already loved. However, I’ve been experimenting with jello shots over the years, and inevitably, they always pop up around Halloween. This is why I put together the ultimate guide to jello shots for your Halloween party.
Here you’ll find the run down of the best alcohols to pair with different jello flavors. Whether you’re a gin girl or strictly a whiskey fan, you’ll find your favorite libation and the jello flavor that pairs flawlessly with it. Plus, I’m throwing in some techniques and recipes as bonus material, so if you really want to take it to the next level this year, you can. It’s time to let the Halloween festivities begin!
1. Basic Recipe
Let’s get started with this basic recipe slightly adapted from The Kitchn:
1 cup liquor + 1 cup boiling water + 2 envelopes of jello (5 1/2 tsp)
X 4 hours to chill
= 16 1 oz. jello shots
Now that you have the recipe, it’s time to pick the flavor…
2. Vodka + Cherry
Red as the devil, and just as evil once you’ve downed a few of them. The cherry and vodka combination is a classic must-have jello shot, especially on Halloween.
3. Spiced Rum or Dark Rum + Tropical Fruit
Spiced or dark rum screams for a tropical playmate in a jello shot. Thankfully Jell-O eliminates the need for deciding between all the tropical fruits with its tropical fruit flavor blend!
4. White Rum + Pina Colada
If you ask me, it's always a good time for a pina colada. Pineapple jello mixed with rum is the tropical shot your party needs.
5. Gin + Lime
Just like the classic gin and tonic, gin lends itself wonderfully to lime. If you are really feeling ambitious, you can even chill the jello mixture in empty lime rind halves, so you can cut them into slices later. Just think of the ghoulish smiles everyone will have!
6. Whiskey + Black Cherry
Whiskey lovers fear not — you finally have a jello shot that isn’t too cloyingly sweet! The taste and the color of these jello shots is nice and dark, perfect for All Hallows’ Eve…
7. Bourbon + Pineapple
Bourbon and pineapple go together like a witch and her broom. The deep bourbon flavor pairs wonderfully with the bright and acidic taste of pineapple jello.
8. Cinnamon Whiskey + Green Apple
What’s a fall holiday without some cinnamon apple tasting goodness? These shots dangerously taste like spiked cider, and they’ll slide down your throat just as easily.
9. Tequila + Orange
Where is the orange for Halloween you ask? Don’t worry; I wouldn’t leave you without an orange-colored shot for your holiday fun! This play on a tequila sunrise is exactly what you need to liven up your party.
10. Absinthe + Unflavored Gelatin
Given the flavor of absinthe, you don’t want to pair it with any fruit-flavored jello. Just reach for the plain unflavored gelatin so you get the full punch of absinthe taste in each shot. If you see the green fairy, know she may just be real this time…
11. Brandy + Apple
I like to call this the more sophisticated of the jello shots, because let’s be real, only sophisticated people indulge in brandy. This is the one to pull out if you’re trying to wow some fancy folks. Trust me, they’ll be impressed.
12. Soju + Strawberry
Some of you may have no idea what soju even is, which is why I’m daring you to try it this Halloween. Soju is Korean liquor that tastes better than sake, and packs a harder punch. If there was ever a night to get your freak on and try something new, this is it.
13. Layered Jello Shots
If you’re feeling particularly ambitious and want to make some layered shots (think orange and black — use food dye to get the colors you want!), The Kitchn has an awesome guide to make gorgeous layered shots. You’ll be deemed the best host/hostess of all time.
14. Red Velvet Shots
Endless Simmer has red velvet shots that break the traditional jello shot recipe, giving you more flavor and more of that bloody red color. Talk about spooky!
15. Spiced Rum Jello Shots
These spiced rum jello shots from Food Nasty come with an extra layer of black sprinkles to give you the classic orange and black Halloween look. They’re to die for…
Get ready for a wicked Halloween party! You’re going to kill it with these tips!
Images: Jason Dean, SunGodServant, Francisco Anzola, Randy Robertson, Steve Hopson, Ruocaled, Roberto Verzo, Stuart Webster, free photos, jb, betancourt, Graham Hills/Flickr; The Kitchn; Endless Simmer; Food Nasty