I was reading up on the difference between Pectin, Agar Agar and Gelatin.
From what I read for use in cooking as thickening or gellatinizing agents there isn't any real or significant difference.

So if I were to make Pate de Fruits or jam or anything that usually would require any one of those three, would it be OK to substitute it for any of the others?

  • Gelatin can be a problem for people on restrictive diets (vegans, jewish and muslim (unless using fish or beef gelatin, but beef can still counts as meat for mixing meat and dairy), etc.)
    – Joe
    Dec 22, 2018 at 18:24

2 Answers 2


There are plenty of high-sugar-content sweets that use gelatine, so it would be a reasonable substitute, but won't match the texture that pectin would normally provide in a pate de fruit or jam.

I don't know of any recipes using agar-agar that are designed for long-term storage, it is more often used in desserts, and again has a very distinctive (slightly crunchy to me) texture


When making jam, fruit usually contains enough natural pectin to reach the desired thickness, but as a thickening agent, (or if you want to make thicker jam) the ones you mentioned will all work fine, as too would arrowroot, so long as you follow their instructions as some come in sheet form and some come in powdered form. But it's also worth noting that gelatin is an animal product and so anything you use it in, won't be suitable for vegetarians/vegans.

  • 1
    Thank you but that really doesn't answer what's the difference between them (apart from gelatin being an animal product).
    – J. Doe
    Aug 13, 2018 at 10:29

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