Sugar and modified cornstarch constitute the main ingredients of the unprepared, dry Jell-O pudding powders that are sold in boxes. Natural and artificial flavorings, along with assorted colorings and preservative agents can vary depending on the flavoring.
Red 40, Yellow 5 and Blue 1 are examples of artificial coloring additives to Jell-O pudding mixes, as of 2015. BHA, a chemical preservative, is included in the recipe, as are tetrasodium pyrophosphate, which is a thickening agent, and mono- and diglycerides, which are used to prevent foaming. The ingredients list of of Jell-O products is displayed at Jello.com.
Jell-O pudding available in already-prepared cups, located in the refrigerator section of most grocery stores, contain water, skim milk or milk protein, modified cornstarch and sugar as their main ingredients, as reported by FoodFacts.com. The cups contain artificial coloring and flavoring agents similar to the powdered pudding mixes. In addition, these prepared servings of pudding report the addition of sodium stearoyl lactylate, used to give the product a smoother texture.
The additive ingredients in both the prepared and powdered form of Jell-O pudding have been met with concern by food bloggers who demonstrate the difference between Jell-O pudding and other natural, organic pudding recipes. KellyTheKitchenKop.com highlights the ingredients of organic pudding as simply organic cane sugar, organic cornstarch, organic cocoa and salt. FoodFacts.com has also highlighted several of the Jell-O ingredients as "controversial."