Whatever Happened To Wild Cherry Jell-O?

We all love a jiggling dessert, and Jell-O has been dazzling diners since 1897 with an impressive number of constantly released, retired, and rotating flavors to satisfy all our gelatin cravings. According to Historic Foodways, Jell-O was invented by carpenter Pearle Wait and was named such by his wife, May. Mid Century Menu tells us the four original flavors included raspberry, strawberry, lemon, and orange, with cherry coming onto the scene shortly thereafter in 1904. From that point on, a barrage of flavor releases and discontinuations created the Jell-O timeline ... and it's still going. 

Key milestones include the release of the ever-popular lime flavor in 1930, which Jell-O Gallery tells us is a hit in Utah. Mid Century Menu shares a timeline visual from Jell-O Gallery, where we can see the release of the "Savory" flavors in 1965 which included celery and mixed vegetable. These Jell-O flavors were created to be used in salads. Finally, in 1968, the exotic "wild" fruit flavors of cherry, strawberry, and raspberry were released. By then, the "Jell-O Girl" had been revealed to the world as an advertising marvel that had everyone singing along to "J-E-L-L-O."

Other Jell-O cherry flavors are still available

The cherry flavors, including regular cherry, black cherry, and, of course, wild cherry, have endured as some of the best Jell-O options, so it's sad that wild cherry, as well as its other wild counterparts, strawberry and raspberry, have vanished from the baking aisle at our favorite grocery stores. As Mid Century Menu shows us, these flavors join the ranks of other long-gone Jell-O's, including Cola. While Eat This, Not That! points out that the regular cherry flavor is still available for cherry Jell-O aficionados (black cherry is also still available), Advanced Biotech tells us that the flavor profiles of regular cherry, black cherry, and wild cherry are quite different: "Wild cherry is more tart and sweet, while black cherry produces a richer flavor experience."

Our best advice? Wild cherry lovers should expand their Jell-O repertoires into some of the brand's other fabulous fruity gelatin flavors, which you can find on the Kraft website. Options like peach, mango, island pineapple, or apricot may pleasantly surprise your palate and perhaps you'll even find a new favorite.