How To Make Jam: Top Tips, Tricks & Recipes
In this article, find out how to make jam step by step, then discover 10 tasty Tate & Lyle jam recipes for you to try your hand at.
Whether spreading it on your morning toast, filling your doughnuts with it or layering it into a Victoria sponge, jam is a fruity little condiment that’s sure to add some zing to your cake baking endeavours or your bread-based breakfasts.
How to make jam in 10 simple steps
Pick or purchase your fruit
Whether you pick it yourself or buy it at a shop, you’ll first need to go and get your fresh fruit. Stick to seasonal for the tastiest fruit. Have a think about which flavour(s) you want for your jam.
Ready your jam jars
Wash your jam jars in hot, soapy water, then rinse them. Be sure to sanitize them by boiling them in hot water for about 10 minutes. Leave them in hot water until you’re ready to use them.
Wash and mash your fruit
Wash your fruit with cold water and make sure you remove the hulls of any strawberries or the stems/leaves/pips of any other berries and fruit. Next, mash your fruit in a heavy-bottomed pot to help release the natural pectin.
Mix in the sugar
The type and amount of sugar you’ll need will vary depending on the specific jam recipe you follow. The same goes for pectin, so it’s important to closely follow the instructions, methods and measurements that your chosen recipe calls for.
Stir in the pectin
Stir the pectin in with your fruit and sugar mixture on the stove for about 10 minutes over medium heat, making sure you stir often to avoid burning your mixture.
Warm the jam jar lids
Make sure your jam jar lids soak in a pan of boiling water for at least a few minutes. This will help to both clean the lids and soften up the surface of the lids for optimal canning and storage.
Bring your mixture to the boil
If called for by your recipe, add in any remaining sugar to your fruit, pectin and sugar mixture to bring it back to the boil for another minute or so before removing it from the heat.
Remove the foam
If you want to, skim off any foam that may have formed while cooking the jam.
Test its thickness
To test your jam mixture, place a spoonful of it onto a pre-chilled saucer. If your conserve looks gel-like and wrinkles a bit, it has likely reached its setting point and is ready to be bottled. If not, keep cooking and re-test it every few minutes or so.
Let it stand
Finally, let your jam stand for about 5 minutes and make sure it’s been suitably stirred before canning it.
How to make jam taste as delicious as possible
Here are some sure-fire ways to make your homemade jam taste even better.
• Use ripe, undamaged, seasonal fresh fruit
• Use the right sugar (Try Tate & Lyle Preserving Sugar or Tate & Lyle Jam Sugar)
• Add a ¼ cup of lemon juice per batch to help your jam set better
• Cook your fruit until it’s soft before adding your sugar
Now check out some of our delicious homemade jam recipes.
Classic fruit-flavoured jams
Here’s a list of classic, fruity jam recipes to kick things off:
Ingeniously inventive jam recipes
If you’re bored of one-flavour fruit jams, try out one of these inventive concoctions:
Jams just for adults!
Looking for some interesting alcoholic jams? We’ve got recipes for those too:
Don’t forget the sweetest ingredient…
Now that you’re completely clued up on how to make jam, remember to stock up on all the Tate & Lyle sugars, sweeteners and syrups you’ll need to follow your favourite jam recipes.