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Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam With No Added Pectin

Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam - spread a slice of homemade bread with jars in the background.

Preserves, Summer | 27th June 2018 | By

If you happen to get hold of a couple of punnets of cheap strawberries, I urge you to have a go at making this easy homemade strawberry jam. No need to use jam sugar, preserving sugar or added pectin. It’s super scrumptious with a nice balance of sweet and tart notes and a bright jewel-like colour.

Strawberries

In those halcyon days of youth when summer was always warm and dry and winter replete with snow, I’d go strawberry picking at the local organic farm with my mother. Whenever I think of strawberries now, the memory that comes to mind is of warm strawberry scented air mixed with the salty sea and ripe juicy Cornish strawberries which somehow made their way into my mouth. When we got home, we invariably made strawberry jam. I’d love to know what memories strawberries hold for you.

Strawberries

Jam Strawberries

Supermarket strawberries are ideal for making this easy homemade strawberry jam. I reckon they must be picked when underripe as, in my opinion, they rarely taste particularly good when eaten just as they are. One day I’ll get back to growing our own flavoursome strawberries. There’s nothing quite like a freshly picked ripe strawberry warmed by the sun. Anyway, I digress. It’s easier to make jam with slightly underripe strawberries than it is with ripe ones and I’ve found supermarket offerings work particularly well.

Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam Bubbling Away

Slightly underripe these strawberries may be, but the jamming process will bring out that quintessential strawberry flavour and produce a delicious easy homemade strawberry jam.

Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam

Pectin

Strawberry jam is one of the harder jams to make as the fruit’s pectin level is low. You need pectin to enable the jam to set. I’ve made strawberry and gooseberry jam, which is a breeze as the gooseberries contain plenty of pectin and reaching jam consistency is fairly quick. Nice as that is, it’s not the same as pure strawberry jam. 

I’m not a fan of jams made with added pectin or jam sugar, they tend to have an odd gloopy or even rubbery consistency. The secret to making this easy homemade strawberry jam with no added pectin is not to add extra sugar, which some do, but to use a lemon. Lemons have lots of pectin and they cut through the sweetness of strawberry jam beautifully. 

Setting Point

Getting to the setting point can be tricky. Boil it for too long and you get strawberry toffee, not enough and you get strawberry sauce. I’ve gone for a soft set jam as that is my favourite and doesn’t need to cook for too long. Boil the jam for fifteen minutes, then start testing. This batch took 25 minutes to reach setting point and it made four small jars.

How do you know when the jam has set? 

The best way to know when your jam has set is to keep two saucers in the freezer. To test for the setting point, drop half a teaspoon of the jam onto a cold saucer and leave for a few seconds to cool. Push your finger up against the jam and if a skin has formed and it wrinkles up, it’s ready. Alternate the saucers and test every couple of minutes until it’s set.

How do you like to eat your jam?

My favourite way to eat this easy homemade strawberry jam is on homemade scones with a large dollop of Cornish clotted cream on top. Let’s not get into the jam first debate, but if you want a cracking cream tea, this really is the best way to eat them. I have several scone recipes on Tin and Thyme, here are a three of them: emmer scones, rich chocolate scones and white chocolate scones.

It’s actually been too hot recently to enjoy baking. The kitchen is quite warm enough without switching the oven on. I’m not complaining – honest. So the next best thing to scones is fresh bread or toast with butter – yum!

Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam – The Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam - spread a slice of homemade bread with jars in the background.
Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 
This recipe produces a delicious soft set jam with a nice balance of sweet and tart notes and a bright jewel like colour.
Course: Jams, Chutneys etc
Cuisine: British
Keywords: jam, strawberries
Servings: 4 small jars
Author: Choclette @ Tin and Thyme
Ingredients
  • 800 g strawberries slightly underripe ones work best - washed, hulled & quartered
  • 650 g golden granulated suger not jam sugar
  • 1 large lemon
Instructions
  1. Place the strawberries and sugar in a large pan over a low heat.
  2. Cut the lemon in half, squeeze out the juice and add to the pan along with the two lemon halves.
  3. As soon as the sugar has dissolved, crank up the heat and bring to an energetic boil, making sure it's not so furious that it boils over the pan.
  4. Boil for 15 minutes, then start testing for the setting point. There are various ways of doing this, but the easiest is to have two saucers at the ready in the freezer. Drop half a teaspoonful onto the cold plate. Leave for a few seconds, then push your finger up against the jam. If a skin has formed and it wrinkles up, it's ready. Repeat every couple of minutes until the jam is set.
  5. Fish out the lemon halves then pour into warm sterilised jars whilst the jam is still hot. Fill to the brim and immediately seal with clean lids.

Recipe Notes

To sterilise jars, wash in warm soapy water then place in the oven to dry. 120℃ / 250F for 15 minutes.

You can half or double the quantities of this jam, but your setting point will be shorter for smaller quantities and longer for larger quantities.

Sharing

I’m sharing my easy homemade strawberry jam with #CookBlogShare, which is hosted this week by Apply To Face Blog.

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Pin created by Jacqueline Meldrum.

26 Comments

  1. Kavita Favelle

    27th June 2018 at 2:00 pm

    I utterly love making jam, and homemade strawberry is one of my favourites, it’s just so good and not at all complicated! Love it!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:47 pm

      Strawberry isn’t the easiest, but it sure tastes good.

      Reply
  2. Camilla Hawkins

    27th June 2018 at 2:07 pm

    I so agree with you about jam sugar, I made my very first jam using it and it was horribly stiff so have gone the lemon route ever since. Nothing better than strawberry jam on a scone at this time of year Thanks for linking to my jam

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:48 pm

      My pleasure Camilla. You are the jam queen. I really should make some scones and have a cream tea – just need the weather to cool down a bit.

      Reply
  3. Lucy

    27th June 2018 at 2:12 pm

    This sounds like such a great easy way to make jam, using normal sugar plus a lemon so you don’t have to worry about getting special sugar or pectin in the house. Might have to give it a go as I just found my jam pan!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:49 pm

      Oh a jam pan Lucy. I’ve been hankering after one of those for a long time now. It does make the process a bit easier.

      Reply
  4. angiesrecipes

    27th June 2018 at 2:30 pm

    It turned out perfect, Choclette. We are not big jam eaters, but strawberry jam is always a favourite, esp. the homemade one.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:50 pm

      Thanks Angie. Every jam I make I think is the best jam ever, but homemade is definitely the way to go.

      Reply
  5. Cat | Curly's Cooking

    27th June 2018 at 3:45 pm

    Every year I say to myself that I am going to make jam and never have. This recipe looks so easy to follow that this year might be the year I actually give it a go!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:51 pm

      Oh yes, you absolutely must Cat. Just think about how you’d be able to use it in your wonderful cakes.

      Reply
  6. Sisley White

    27th June 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Jam is such a beautiful thing, You’ve inspired me so much with this get making it again!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      27th June 2018 at 9:52 pm

      Go, go, go Sisley. It’s the jamming season 🙂

      Reply
  7. johanna @ green gourmet giraffe

    28th June 2018 at 11:23 am

    your memories of strawberry picking sound wonderful. and so does your jam – there is something wonderful about home made jam – I am not sure if I have made a plain strawberry jam before though I have mixed them with other jams which are always great. Your warm weather with lovely summer fruit sounds quite appealing from our winter.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      28th June 2018 at 7:36 pm

      It’s definitely worth making a pure (apart from the lemon) strawberry jam, it’s quite different to a mixed one, though they are good too. As for our heatwave, we’re all desperate for rain. Our gardens are shrivelling up.

      Reply
  8. Jemma

    28th June 2018 at 2:44 pm

    This sounds like the perfect way to use up the abundance of strawberries around at the moment. Looks lovely!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      28th June 2018 at 7:34 pm

      Yes, after waiting so long for British strawberries, they are now everywhere you look – sort of!

      Reply
  9. Ceri Jones

    28th June 2018 at 8:48 pm

    We used to go strawberry picking as a family too, lots of fun. I haven’t done that for years. I’ve never made jam actually (yeah I know !!!) and its def something I will do one day!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st July 2018 at 6:00 pm

      Hahaha, not that is something Ceri. Not even chia jam?

      Reply
  10. Jean | DelightfulRepast.com

    28th June 2018 at 9:59 pm

    Choclette, this has me wanting to run out and buy some strawberries. I love the idea of making it without pectin and will be trying this soon.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st July 2018 at 5:59 pm

      If you give it a go Jean, let me know your verdict. Trouble is now, I can’t stop eating it.

      Reply
  11. jenny walters

    29th June 2018 at 1:25 pm

    This looks and sounds completely delicious. All your posts inspired me last year and I made my own strawberry jam just like this recipe. I could not believe how simple it was and more importantly how fabulous it tasted….I haven’t done so this year. You have inspired me again! Thankyou for sharing #CookBlogShare

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st July 2018 at 5:58 pm

      Aw thanks Jenny, that’s lovely of you to say. Do get out and make some strawberry jam if you can this year – it’s so very useful.

      Reply
  12. Janice

    30th June 2018 at 4:41 pm

    That’s just how my mum and my gran made their strawberry jam, no pectin required and it was gorgeous.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      1st July 2018 at 5:56 pm

      Well exactly. I’m not quite sure where this modern craze for pectin has come from.

      Reply
  13. mina

    9th July 2018 at 7:04 am

    This is exactly how I make my jam. Love to keep it a bit soft too.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th July 2018 at 1:41 pm

      The old ways are sometimes still the best ways 🙂

      Reply

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