If you love lychee, pineapple and jelly, this simple lychee jelly recipe is perfect for you!
This easy fruit jelly recipe is made using canned fruits and konnyaku jelly powder in a pretty bundt cake tin. It is almost like a cake and makes a great jelly cake too! If you prefer to use agar agar powder and fresh fruit, you can easily substitute the konnyaku jelly powder with agar agar powder and fresh lychee fruits and fresh pineapples.
This easy jelly recipe can also be made into lychee jelly cup for easy individual serving sized lychee jellies.
Table of contents
- What is Konnyaku Jelly?
- What is Lychee?
- How to Make the Jelly
- Do you need to line the jelly mold?
- Why is it important to mix the jelly powder with sugar before adding to the liquids?
- Can konnyaku jelly be substituted with agar-agar powder?
- How long does it take for the jelly to set completely?
- How long can you keep the jelly dessert?
- Is this jelly safe for children and the old?
- Can you increase the amount of fruits in the jelly?
- Can you omit the syrup from the canned lychees?
- Is this jelly suitable for vegans and vegetarians?
- Can you use fresh fruits instead of canned fruits?
- Like this simple jelly recipe? Here are my other posts you might want to check out:
- Recipe (Printable)
What is Konnyaku Jelly?
In case you are wondering what konnyaku jelly is, it is the Japanese term for a plant-based jelly from the plant Konjac. You can read all about it here on Wikipedia. It is often used in a similar way as the agar jelly, but the texture of konnyaku jelly is a lot chewier.
The first time I tried konnyaku jelly was at a Japanese restaurant and the chewy texture of the firm jelly really gained my liking to this jelly.
I have used konnyaku jelly many times now, and particularly love to make it with whole lychees. I have also made the jelly with other fruits, you can check out my konnyaku pineapple and nata de coco jelly here.
What is Lychee?
Lychees are tropical fruits commonly found in the Southeast Asia region. The fruits are small and round, almost the size of strawberries. These fruits have a thin, red and coarse skin that needs to be peeled to enjoy the juicy white flesh on the inside. At the core of each fruit is a long, brown seed that is discarded.
Lychees have a sweet and slightly citrus taste. These juicy fruits are great to be enjoyed fresh and are also often used to make various Asian desserts and delicious drinks. You can make lychee lemonade by mixing lychee syrup and lemon juice or lychee tea by mixing lychee flavored syrup into black tea, green tea or jasmine tea. Served chilled, both drinks are perfect for hot summer days.
How to Make the Jelly
- Konnyaku jelly powder (Japanese jelly/agar agar powder)
- Whole can of lychee + syrup (you can substitute the canned lychees with fresh lychee)
- Canned pineapple
- Yellow food color (optional)
Preparing the bundt jelly mold
- The first step in making this lychee jelly is to prepare the mold. This is because the jelly will start to set as it cools down, so it is important that the mold is ready to pour the jelly solution into. I used a Nordic Ware bundt cake tin to make this pineapple lychee jelly, but you can also use smaller jelly cups to turn this jelly cake into lychee jelly cups.
Cooking the jelly
- Start by mixing the konnyaku jelly powder with sugar. Combine well. Mixing helps the jelly powder to spread out, and this will avoid it from forming clumps when added to the hot liquid solution in the next steps.
- Separate the canned pineapple cubes from the syrup. Discard the syrup. Leave the fruits aside. Next, separate the canned lychees from the syrup in its can. Pour the syrup (lychee juice) into a measuring cup.
- Add water to the lychee syrup until it reaches 950ml.
- Pour the liquid into a pot and turn on the stove to medium heat to low heat. Slowly add the combined sugar and konnyaku powder into the pot. Stir to combine, until the sugar and the jelly powder dissolve completely.
Assembling the jelly
- Arrange a layer of pineapples in a circular row at the bottom of the mold. Scoop the jelly solution with a ladle and gently pour it onto the arranged fruit. Fill the mold until the fruits are almost two-thirds submerged in the first layer of jelly. The reason for not submerging the fruits completely is to make sure they are able to connect to the next layer of jelly. If there is nothing to connect the layers, the layers will separate as you remove the jelly from the mold and when you cut it.
- Let the jelly set (test by touching it lightly, if it is firm to the touch, it is ready) and arrange another layer of the fruit cubes. The hot liquid will only set as it cools down, and if you want the jelly set quicker, place the mold in a larger baking dish or bowl of cold water.
- Add some yellow food color into the remaining jelly solution in the pot. Fill the mold until the second layer of pineapples submerge halfway. Let the jelly set. Using a ladle to spoon the jelly gently into the tin helps avoid causing a hole in the jelly layer underneath.
- Once the jelly is set, arrange the lychee fruits onto the jelly.
- Spoon all the remaining jelly solution into the tin. The lychees should be completely covered in jelly.
- Let the jelly chill and set. Use a jam knife or a plastic spatula to gently loosen the sides without poking the knife in too much or cutting the sides of the jelly. Turn it out onto a serving plate, shaking or tapping the tin lightly to allow the jelly to loosen out. Garnish with rosemary leaves or the remaining fruits if you wish.
Do you need to line the jelly mold?
- Jelly molds typically do not require any lining. Simply pour the liquid jelly solution into the mold and allow it time to set.
- Silicone molds are easier to work with for jellies as they can be twisted and pushed to get the jellies out. Metal molds tend to be harder, but you can use a jam knife, a thin spatula or even toothpicks to loosen the jellies from the molds before tapping them out.
Why is it important to mix the jelly powder with sugar before adding to the liquids?
- Mixing the jelly with sugar helps avoid the jelly powder from becoming clumpy as it is added to hot water. I have done it once, and it took me a very long time to get the jelly clumps to dissolve.
- Even then, there were still some tiny clumps left. So, this is an important step to remember when making this jelly.
Can konnyaku jelly be substituted with agar-agar powder?
- Yes, you can. Replace it in the exact same quantity and use the amount of liquid as indicated on the back of the agar agar powder packet. If there is no amount given for the liquid, use the amount in this recipe.
How long does it take for the jelly to set completely?
- This would depend on the mold into which the lychee jelly is poured. Smaller, shallower molds would tend to set faster as compared to larger, deeper ones.
- To test if the jelly is set, press it down lightly with your finger. If it is firm to the touch, the jelly is ready.
How long can you keep the jelly dessert?
- This jelly lasts for a good 2 to 3 days, however, it must be kept chilled in the fridge. Keep it in a covered container to prevent it from drying out in the fridge.
- Sometimes, you will notice excess liquid in the jelly container after a day or two. This is normal, the jelly tends to release some liquid as you keep it longer. Having said that, the jelly is still as good to eat, and can be safely consumed.
Is this jelly safe for children and the old?
- Konnyaku jelly or Japanese jelly is of a chewy texture as compared to normal agar-agar jelly. Because of this, is it harder to cut and chew. Hence, when serving children and old people (who are unable to chew the jelly well), it is advisable to cut the jelly into small pieces to avoid the risk of them swallowing it in large pieces.
- It is also advisable to cut the lychees into smaller segments.
Can you increase the amount of fruits in the jelly?
- Yes, you certainly can. I did not use up all the lychee and pineapple cubes from the can. I used some as a garnish when serving the jelly.
- You can add as many fruits as you wish, but do take note that too many fruits in the jelly can cause the jelly to break easily when transferring out of the cake pan.
- You can also add the
- You can also use different types of fruits for this jelly, like in my pineapple and nata jelly here.
Can you omit the syrup from the canned lychees?
- Yes, you can. Simply replace the lychee syrup with water and add an extra 100g sugar for the recipe measurement below. Increase or decrease accordingly if you scale the recipe.
Is this jelly suitable for vegans and vegetarians?
- Yes. Konnyaku or Japanese jelly is of a plant origin and is absolutely vegan. All the ingredients used in this recipe are vegan ingredients making this fruity jelly a great dessert choice for both vegetarians and vegans.
Can you use fresh fruits instead of canned fruits?
- Yes, you can. As for the canned lychee syrup, replace it with water and increase the sugar in the recipe to 250g.
- If the jelly package comes with instructions on the amount of water to use, it is best to follow the instructions on the package. Mine indicated 950ml hence the total liquid (lychee sugar syrup + water) I used in making the jelly is 950ml.
Like this simple jelly recipe? Here are my other posts you might want to check out:
- Pineapple Nata Jelly
- Sago Pudding with Coconut Milk and Palm Sugar Syrup
- Coffee Jelly
- How to Cut a Pineapple
- Ai Yu Jelly - How to Make
- Lychee Syrup - Easy Homemade Simple Syrup Recipe from Scratch
- Grass Jelly Drink - Easy Homemade Tea Recipe
- Grass Jelly Milk Tea - Easy Bubble Tea Recipe
- Lychee Ice Cream
- How to Make Lychee Jelly for Bubble Tea
- Konnyaku Jelly - Easy 3 Ingredient Recipe
Here’s the full printable version of my lychee jelly recipe:
For best results, use the metrics measurements. US customary measurements have not been tested and are only meant for guide.
- 10 g konnyaku jelly powder (Japanese Jelly/Agar)
- 150 g granulated sugar
- 550 g lychees in syrup (approximate can size)
- 550 g pineapple cubes in syrup (approximate can size)
- Yellow food coloring
- Prepare the bundt mold by washing and patting it dry. Set it aside.
- Combine the konnyaku powder and granulated sugar in a small bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
- Drain the pineapple cubes. Discard the syrup and set the fruits aside.
- Drain the lychee syrup from the can into a measuring cup. Add water to the syrup until it reaches 950ml. Pour the measured liquid into a medium sized pot.
- Add the sugar-jelly powder into the pot and cook it until the sugar and jelly is all dissolved. This should take approximately 10 minutes over low heat. Turn off the heat.
- To assemble the pineapple lychee jelly, begin by arranging a layer of pineapple cubes at the bottom of the tin.
- Spoon a layer of jelly into the bundt tin until the fruits are about two-thirds submerged in the jelly.
- Let the jelly set, for about 3 to 4 minutes. To speed up the setting process, place the bundt tin in a larger tray filled with cold water.
- While waiting for the jelly to set, add some yellow food coloring to the remaining jelly in the pot.
- Once the first layer of the jelly is set, arrange another layer of pineapple cubes on the jelly. This is the final layer of pineapples. At this stage, you will not be using up all the pineapple cubes. You can use the remaining as a garnish or use them for other desserts.
- Gently pour a layer of the yellow jelly until the 2nd layer of pineapple cubes are halfway submerged in the jelly solution.
- Let the jelly set again. Once set, arrange the lychee fruits on it. At this stage, you will not be using up all the lychees in the can. You can reserve the balance for garnish or use them for other desserts.
- Carefully spoon on the remaining jelly into the mold. Transfer the mold into the refrigerator and let the jelly set completely (for about 4 hours) before serving.
- Turn the jelly out onto a serving plate. Add more pineapple cubes and lychees in the center if you wish. Serve the pineapple lychee jelly chill.
And that's that. My super yummy lychee jelly recipe for you!
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