What Is Rainbow Jelly In Bubble Tea?

You can choose different toppings, but what is rainbow jelly in bubble tea? We’ve gathered everything you need to know about this fun bubble tea topping!

What is rainbow jelly in bubble tea?
Bubble teas have various kinds of toppings

Bubble tea is traditionally made from fruity or milky tea and black tapioca pearls. However, as bubble tea has grown in popularity, so too has the options. There are dozens of kinds of teas to choose from with different types of milk and various toppings like diced dried fruit, popping fruit balls, and now, rainbow jelly.

In the simplest terms, rainbow jelly is made up of different color jelly pearls.

What Is Rainbow Jelly In Bubble Tea?

Rainbow jelly is pretty much what it sounds like: jelly coming in lots of different colors.

Rainbow jelly is made from coconut meat. It comes in various colors, but each one tastes slickly coconutty. The different colors usually have a fruit flavor, so you can expect something like a blue rainbow jelly to have a coconut blueberry taste.

Some cafes have fruit-flavored jellies, like mango jellies, they add to their bubble tea, but this isn’t the same as rainbow jelly. The whole point of a rainbow jelly is to get all the colors at once. So, if you want a bubble tea with a specific fruit flavor jelly, then you’ll have to ask for that specifically – if it’s on the menu, that is.

How Is It Different From Tapioca Pearls?

a scoop of boiled tapoica pearls
Rainbow jelly is softer than tapioca pearls

Rainbow jelly is entirely different from tapioca pearls.

Rainbow jelly has a softer consistency compared to tapioca pearls. Rainbow jelly is usually somewhat chewier too.

The tapioca is made from tapioca starch, which is derived from the cassava root. The other ingredients in tapioca pearls are usually water, sugar, fruit juice, and alginic acid.

If you love bubble tea, you might enjoy our guide on if crystal boba is better than regular boba.

How Is Rainbow Different From Other Kinds Of Jelly In Bubble Tea?

boba tea vs bubble tea
There are other kinds of jellies in bubble tea

There are other chewy jellies in bubble tea. The colors and flavors are endless.

One of the most popular jellies is lychee. Lychee jelly is made from a plant called konjac and sweetened with lychee-flavored syrup.

Coffee jelly is popular in bubble tea too. It is made from agar-agar and coffee flavoring.

The difference between these jellies and rainbow jellies is that they are all one uniform color and taste; coffee jelly is usually all brown, while lychee jelly is transparent.

Individual fruit jellies are common, too, like red-colored cherry jellies. Ingredients for the fruit jellies seem to vary. Some are made from tapioca, while others are made from coconut meat.

Grass jelly is made from Chinese mesona, while aloe vera jelly is usually made from real aloe vera and sweetener. Again, these will all be uniform in color and taste, unlike rainbow jelly. If you liked this post, you might also be interested in our guide on coffee jelly dessert.

What About Rainbow Popping Boba?

Popping boba is very popular in bubble tea. There are jellies you bite into which release a burst of flavor.

There are usually fruity and sold together as one flavor. For example, you can add cherry popping boba to a drink or strawberry popping boba.

Popping pearls are usually made from seaweed extract and have fruit juice inside. 

Some establishments have started selling rainbow popping boba. So instead of this being solid and chewy like regular rainbow boba, it bursts in your mouth and releases a flavor.

Despite the different colors, unlike regular rainbow jelly, rainbow popping boba usually gives off the same taste when bitten, like a burst of apple flavor. So, a red popping rainbow jelly and a blue popping rainbow jelly will probably taste the same.


If you like this article, read our guide on Brazilian coffee vs. Columbian coffee.

In this article, we cover what Pacamera coffee is.


  • Aisling O'Connor

    Aisling is an Irish food and drinks writer and journalist fueled by coffee and herbal tea. She followed up her journalism degree with nutrition studies.