The easiest strawberry jam recipe is finally here! A recipe with just four ingredients which does not include pectin. The jam is super delicious, perfectly spreadable, and simple to make. Use it for breakfast sandwiches or any filling for desserts.
Using fresh seasonal fruits in baking is what we bakers always love to do. Strawberry is one of those exotic fruits that is available only for a few months in India. Thus, I make sure that I use it in whichever dessert I can.
Today, I’m bringing a simple Strawberry Jam recipe that can be made without thickeners or preservatives. This jam can be easily made at home and used as per your liking.
Have you ever tried making any jam or compote at home? If you haven’t, then you must try this recipe, and believe me, you will always make jams at home. The freshness and authenticity of homemade jam can never be matched by a store-bought one. After all, they are loaded with synthetic flavors, colors, and preservatives.
Strawberry Jam Recipe Video Tutorial
Why You’ll Love This Recipe?
- Minimal Ingredients: You won’t believe it when I say that you only need four basic ingredients to make the jam. Generally, jam recipes call for pectin to be used as a thickening agent, but this ingredient is not easily available. And even if it is available, it’s pretty expensive. Keeping this in mind, I opted to create the recipe without any use of pectin.
- Packed with flavor: All the tanginess and freshness that you will get in the jam will be from the fresh seasonal strawberries. No artificial essence/flavoring is used. No added color is needed. This is the purest form of jam you can make.
- Easy to make: all you need to do is cook the strawberries in castor sugar until they get thick and the water evaporates. How difficult does that sound? Yes, making a jam can be as simple as that. So, now you can make your own jam at home without any hassles.
Important Ingredients Used In The Recipe
- Fresh Strawberries: The first and foremost ingredient to take is fresh strawberries. Try to get a pack that is sourced on the same day. Wash and clean them well before using.
- Castor Sugar: Jam has a high quantity of sugar in it. This not only makes it sweet but also counters the sourness of the fresh berries/fruits. It’s important you use castor sugar as they are fine granules that dissolve fast.
- Cream of tartar: It is used simply to prevent any crystallization of sugar so that the jam is lump-free and does not have sugar crystals in it.
- Lemon zest: Lemon zest gives a fresh aroma to the jam. It also compliments the strawberry flavor well.
How To Make Strawberry Jam?
Preparation: Collect and weigh all four ingredients required to make the jam. Strawberries must be washed and cleaned thoroughly before using. Remove the green stems as well.
Add all ingredients to saucepan: Cut each strawberry into four pieces and add them to a heavy bottom saucepan along with castor sugar. Add lemon zest and cream of tartar as well.
Cook the mixture: Put the saucepan on medium heat and cook the mixture until the entire sugar dissolves.
Blend: Once the sugar melts and dissolves thoroughly, blend the mixture in the saucepan itself using a hand blender.
Cook Further: After blending the mixture into a puree, continue to cook it for 5-7 minutes or until it turns thick.
Check doneness: To check if the jam is done, take some jam on the back of a spoon. If the jam sticks to it, it indicates it is thick enough to be done. If it slides off fast, then you need to cook it further.
Transfer and store: Once the jam is ready, cool it and transfer it to a glass jar to store.
Chef’s Tips For The Recipe
You can make apple or peach jam in a similar way. However, you might have to use additional fruit pectin for them as they have less natural fruit pectin as compared to strawberries.
Use Castor Sugar Only
Use only castor sugar for the recipe. Do not replace it with icing sugar as it has impurities and corn flour added to it, which would change the jam’s consistency.
How To Store Strawberry Jam?
You can store the jam in an airtight box or a glass jar in the refrigerator for several weeks. It can be consumed for at least a month.
Freezing the jam can increase the shelf life to almost two months. Remember to thaw it well before serving.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Pectin NH is used in jams to make them thick and keeps them in an almost jelly-like consistency. However, strawberries naturally have a high quantity of pectin in it. Hence, we can make strawberry jam without pectin.
You can try replacing strawberries with other fruits; however, you will have to use pectin NH in that recipe. You can use around 1/4 tsp of pectin NH, given the exact quantity.
Well, although the way both are made is similar, however, they have different properties. Compote is more chunky and has fruit pieces. It is meant to be consumed for a short period of time. Whereas jams have a longer shelf life in the refrigerator and have a more spreadable consistency as no fruit chunks are there.
Sugar is used in high ratios because of two factors. One, it has to cut down the sourness of the fruit and provide sweetness. Second, sugar acts as a natural preservative for the jam. Lowering the quantity would result in less sweetness and lower shelf life of the jam.
There are a few recipes that would ask for lemon juice in the jam. The role is simply to prevent the crystallization of sugar. For the same purpose, I have used cream of tartar.
- 150 g Fresh strawberries
- 125 g Castor sugar
- 1/4 tsp Cream of tartar
- Lemon zest one lemon
- Cut each strawberry into four parts.
- In a heavy bottom pan, put the chopped strawberries along with castor sugar.
- Add cream of tartar and lemon zest.
- Place the saucepan on medium heat and let the sugar melt.
- Once the sugar is dissolved, use a hand blender to blend the mixture into a puree.
- Keep cooking for 5-7 minutes while stirring regularly.
- Once the jam gets thick, test the doneness using the back of the spoon. If the jam covers/sticks to the back and does not drop, then the jam is done.
- Transfer the jam into a storage jar. Let it cool down before closing the jar.
- Prep Time: 5 to 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 to 7 minutes