Vintage Jello Cookbook Illustrations From the Early 20th-Century

Vintage jello cookbook illustration of ice cream powder
Antique Jell-O Ice Cream Powder

Hey everyone! I’m back from a long hiatus and have some really cool vintage illustrations to show you.
I love food illustrations from Jello ads and have been wanting to share this particular batch of vintage Jello cookbook illustrations for a while. This mini antique cookbook features the ‘Jell-O Girl’, the brand’s first mascot, and was printed around 1915. In this ‘storybook-style’ cookbook, Jell-O Girl is throwing a party so we have everything from Jello salad to sweet Jello desserts to enjoy.

vintage jello cookbook back cover
vintage jello cookbook front cover

This type of story time marketing has been popular with brands and consumers for decades. It also reminded me of one of my favorite ‘Snuggle the bear’ books on-tape which was really an advertisement for Snuggle fabric softener.

Here are several favorites from this vintage jello cookbook:

History of Jello

Generations of consumers have grown up with jello. But how did it get its start? Check out these facts about the history of jello:

  • Jello was actually discovered and invented in 1845, but it didn’t catch on with the public quite yet.
  • Over 40 years later, a carpenter from LeRoy, New York, stumbled upon a gelatin dessert while trying to create a cough remedy in his home. Though he lacked the money and experience to market his product, he ended up selling the trademark ‘Jell-O’ for $450.
  • Because of slow sales, the business was sold again, but this time for just $35.
  • The Jell-O namesake finally found success with the Genesee Pure Food Company. An advertising campaign in 1902 helped more than $250,000 worth of jello products fly off the shelves.
  • Two years later, the Jell-O girl was introduced to consumers as the brand’s first mascot.

Vintage advertisements are fantastic source for food illustrations. You can find vintage illustrations of chocolate desserts, baked goods, savory foods, and more on
Like the illustrations curated here, give a like on Facebook to show your support!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top