These fun and fruity sunset-colored Pineapple Upside Down Cake Shots are the perfect shot of summer sweetness for any time of year. Start the night off right with a warm kick of vodka floating on a tropical breeze of cherry and pineapple.
Pineapple Upside Down Cake Shots = Perfect for Summer!
But that doesn’t mean that’s the only time of year you can enjoy them! Sometimes the dead of winter is the time we really need to be reminded of longer, brighter days. You can use these shots to celebrate summer or to recapture its warmth during even the coldest months.
Anyone who likes pineapple upside down cake is sure to love this shot. With a blend of sweet cherry and tropical pineapple, these Jello shots make the perfect addition to any vacation, backyard BBQ or pool party. And don’t worry about the kids – you can always make a second batch and leave out the vodka so they can enjoy a non-alcoholic version.
What You’ll Need
These fun pineapple upside down cake shots are packed with fruity flavor! You can find exact amounts for everything you’ll need down in the recipe card.
- Pineapple Juice
- Gelatin: Unflavored works best since it won’t get in the way or add an artificial taste.
- Maraschino Cherries: You’ll need the whole cherries and the juice.
- Vodka: Chill this before using it so the shots set properly.
Can I Make These Without Alcohol?
Absolutely! You don’t even need to change anything else about the recipe to make these non-alcoholic. Just skip that step and they should still turn out tasting great. Your kids and younger guests will thank you!
How to Make Pineapple Upside Down Cake Shots
Pineapple upside down cake shots spend most of their prep time in the fridge. While these shots chill, you can too!
- Warm the Juice: Pour the pineapple juice into a large pot over medium heat. Be careful not to let the juice boil. Once the juice starts releasing steam, remove the pot from the heat.
- Add the Gelatin: Whisk the gelatin into the pineapple juice. Divide the juice mixture between 2 bowls. You’ll want about 2 ½ cups in one bowl and 1 ½ cups in the other.
- Add the Cherry Juice: In the less full bowl, stir in the juice from the jar of maraschino cherries. If you want alcoholic shots, stir the vodka into the other, fuller bowl.
- Pour Jello: Divide the cherry jello mixture evenly among the cups.
- Chill: Chill in the refrigerator for 1 ½ hours, or until the cherry layer is set.
- Pour Again: Add the vodka and pineapple jello to the cups evenly and chill again for 1 ½ hours.
- Garnish: Once the pineapple jello has almost set, take the cups from the fridge and scoop out a small circle from the middle of the top jello layer. Place a maraschino cherry there.
- Serve: Chill the shots again until it’s time to serve them. Enjoy!
How Do You Eat a Jello Shot?
There’s a little too much jello in each pineapple upside down cake shot to try eating it all at once. Instead, run a spoon, a butter knife or your finger around the edge to loosen the shot and then break the jello into more manageable chunks. You should be able to drink them straight from the cup. Little kids should always eat their non-alcoholic jello with a spoon.
Tips for Success
These jello shots are the perfect easy recipe for a lazy summer day. Here are some quick tips to get the most out of them.
- Balance the Cups: Place your plastic cups into a muffin tin or on a baking sheet to keep them steady and make it easier to move them into and out of the refrigerator. This will help keep any jello from ending up on the floor.
- Measure it Out: Try using a measuring cup or a turkey baster to get the jello levels even across all the cups. This isn’t necessary, but it can help to keep the alcohol levels consistent.
- Switch Up the Vodka: This recipe calls for regular vodka, but if you want to lean into the cake part of pineapple upside down cake, try using cake vodka instead. You can also use vanilla vodka or whipped cream vodka for a similar effect.
These summery jello shots go great with all sorts of light party snacks. Pair them with Crockpot Bacon Wrapped Smokies for another classic summer flavor: hot dogs! If you want something spicy to go along with the sweetness, you can’t go wrong with Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers. Any classic summer party food is sure to be a hit.
How Long Do Jello Shots Last?
Keep your leftover jello shots covered tightly with plastic caps or plastic wrap in the fridge. Unless you plan to freeze them, make sure to finish your jello shots within the first week or two. The gelatin will start to break down after that, which will give them a funny texture and affect the taste, too.
Can I Freeze These?
These shots are totally freezer-safe! You can even eat them straight out of the freezer for a sweet and boozy frozen treat. They don’t freeze completely, but they may get slightly grainy or icy. Keep them wrapped tightly with plastic sealed over the top for up to 1 month.
Pineapple Upside Down Cake Shots
- 4 cups pineapple juice
- 4 packets Knox unflavored gelatin
- 1 jar maraschino cherries with stems plus the juice
- Optional: ¾ cup vodka chilled
- 9 oz plastic cups
- In a large pot, heat pineapple juice over medium heat. Do not let the juice boil.
- Once the juice is heated and begins to put off steam, remove from heat.
- Whisk in gelatin.
- Divide the juice mixture between 2 bowls, you’ll want about 2 ½ cups in one bowl and 1 ½ cups in the other.
- In the smaller bowl, stir in juice from the maraschino cherry jar.
- In the larger bowl, stir in vodka. Optional.
- Place your cups into a muffin tin to keep them steady and easier to move into and out of the refrigerator.
- Divide the pineapple/cherry jello mixture evenly among the cups.
- Chill in the refrigerator for 1 ½ hours until cherry layer is set.
- Add pineapple/vodka jello to the cups evenly, chill again for 1 ½ hours.
- Once almost set, take the cups from the fridge and scoop out a small circle from the middle of the cups.
- Place a maraschino cherry there. Chill again until ready to serve. Enjoy!
- To Store: Keep leftover jello shots covered tightly with plastic caps or plastic wrap in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- To Freeze: Keep wrapped tightly with plastic sealed over the top for up to 1 month.