Coconut-Mango Jello Recipe

Growing up in Michigan, I never really saw a mango. I remember seeing my roommate’s friend eating one when we were in college and I wondered what the heck it was. As with most things, it wasn’t until I reached California that I was able to explore so many wonderfully ‘new’ fruits and vegetables. The sweet and creamy mango flesh is quickly becoming my favorite fruit.

Joe’s mother made dinner for us the other night and gave us two perfectly ripe mangoes as we were leaving. When the first piece hit my tongue the next day, I knew instantly that I had mango fever!

Although mangoes are available in most markets year-round, we are at the beginning of the Spring and Summer season when they are most plentiful and at their peak flavor. For North America, it seems as most mangoes I find are from either Mexico or the Philippines. I like both varieties but realize some folks feel strongly one way or another. I am an equal opportunity mango enthusiast.

I noticed that Maninas: Food Matters is hosting a seasonal food blogging event and decided to enter my coconut-mango jello.

This jello is my own concoction based on flavors and textures I find interesting. The liquid portion of the recipe is a mix of coconut milk, mango puree, and evaporated milk. The two milks offer a subtle richness and add further creaminess to the dessert. You’ll likely raise an eyebrow at the addition of corn starch but it’s not uncommon to use it in Asian jellos/puddings . The corn starch adds a bit of texture which I like.

Coconut-Mango Jello

3/4 cup boiling water
2 packets plain gelatin powder
1/4 cup sugar (more if you like it really sweet)
1 1/2 tablespoons corn starch
1/2 cup mango puree (1 mango)
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup coconut milk

In a bowl, add the sugar, corn starch and gelatin. Add the boiling water and stir until the mixture is fully dissolved. Stir in mango puree, evaporated milk and coconut milk. When blended, pour into a dish or individual dishes, and refrigerate until firm.

It’s important to note that if you do not puree the mangoes well, you will have a few chunks and less creamy texture overall. You can also add diced mango to the jello before refrigerating if you like.

I decided to put the mix into a variety of wine and cocktail glasses which we haven’t used in awhile (yes, we need to drink more often). It amused me at first but I later found it more difficult to take photos of since each glass was at a different height making it more difficult for me to focus (i.e. I remain camera illiterate).

You can serve the jello as-is or you can add a dollop of coconut cream and a bit of chopped mint. The first photo above highlights my preferred way of serving with a few slices of mango along with a 1/4 inch layer of evaporated milk poured on top. For a lighter version, use low-fat coconut milk and fat-free evaporated milk. Absolutely delicious!

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  • Erin March 19, 2009, 2:05 pm

    We never ate mango growing up in Maine either, but now it makes me weak in the knees since it’s so delightfully delicious. I can’t believe you had the willpower to make it into homemade jello. I probably would have just stuffed it all into my face and made “nom nom nom” sounds. You’re so polite.

  • Manggy March 19, 2009, 2:20 pm

    I don’t believe it. You have unwittingly called me a mango racist! :P Well, love yer own, right? ;) If there’s anything that can help me tolerate coconut, it’s mango, arguably the most perfect fruit ever. I love the abstraction on top too :)

  • Peter G March 19, 2009, 4:26 pm

    This has the word tropical all over it! looks delicious!

  • toontz March 19, 2009, 5:57 pm

    That looks so refreshing and delicious. Wish I had some right NOW!

  • Joe March 19, 2009, 6:37 pm

    I fell asleep early last evening while Allen was working on his blog. He woke me up to tell me that the jelly was done. We shared a cup while watching The New Adventures of Old Christine before I fell asleep again. It was like a “sweet” dream.

  • My Taste Heaven March 20, 2009, 7:00 am

    Oh, it’s so yummy. I love mango and also everything with mango. Recently tried Indian mango, very sweet and juicy. But I think those from the Philipines should be nice too as I love their dried mango. We can’t find fresh mango from the Philipines here in Malaysia.

  • Stephanie March 20, 2009, 7:52 am

    Love mangoes, hate working with them. Will work with them to try this, yum.

  • Paula March 20, 2009, 10:07 am

    YOU’RE BACK!!!

    I don’t have a mango preference…I just want them ripe. And I don’t have enough experience with them to catch them at that perfect moment, but I’ve been lucky enough to have stumbled on a few.

    This sounds incredible! And I’ve made a couple of recipes with corn starch as the thickening agent. No problems there.

  • Peter March 20, 2009, 1:53 pm

    Allen, welcome back and welcome to Canada! Vancouver is a rich, vibrant city, tolerant and no doubt a foodies’ paradise.

  • Kevin March 20, 2009, 8:10 pm

    Those look and sound so good!

  • Culinary Cory March 21, 2009, 5:46 am

    Hey I grew up in Michigan too. My childhood was always filled with like apples and cherries. It wasn’t until late into college when I started expanding my love for flavorful fruits like mango, kiwi, starfruit.

  • RecipeGirl March 22, 2009, 11:11 am

    Nice flavor combination. I actually just tried a friend’s coconut jello the other day. It’s an interesting flavor for jello.

  • Michael Natkin March 23, 2009, 7:54 pm

    I love this combination, and your presentation is very pretty! I had a take on these two flavors recently too. What grows together, goes together, right?

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