Packed with the juiciest strawberries this simple strawberry jam recipe has only 3 ingredients and is super easy to make with no added pectin and no fuss.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- This strawberry jam has only 3 simple ingredients and you don’t have to add any pectin
- This is small batch jam making so you can make it with just a punnet of strawberries
- It’s quick, you can boil up this strawberry jam in just 20 minutes as it sets beautifully
- The taste, oh the taste of those juicy strawberries is preserved perfectly in the jam due to one simple trick that the French use in jam making!
Who doesn’t love strawberry jam. It’s the most popular jam in the world. There are so many recipes out there for strawberry jam but this is the one I’ve always used and it really is the best.
Jam-making is a tradition in our family. My Mum was a great jam maker and we always had loads of tasty jam all year round due to her enthusiasm in the kitchen and the bounty from our garden.
Small batch strawberry jam
My Mum always made huge batches of jam. I will never forget her blackcurrant jam which seemed to last forever, there were always so many jars of the damn stuff.
I personally like to make small batches of jam for a couple of reasons; So I don’t get bored with it, If I have a lot of strawberries I can make strawberry jam and also strawberry and lavender gin or maybe strawberry curd all at the same time instead of just a huge batch of strawberry jam.
Small batch jam-making means you can whip up just a couple of jars of fabulously tasty jam from a couple of punnets of berries you’ve picked up cheap in the supermarket. I am a huge fan of checking out the reduced fruit in the market and getting creative with my foodie finds. It’s good sense and economical!
Making just a couple of jars of strawberry jam (or any other jam for that matter) is just so satisfying and so easy to do.
I’ve won prizes at local shows for this strawberry jam recipe and my daughter got the best homemade jam prize at our village fair with this strawberry jam recipe when she was only twelve years old.
The complete list of ingredients and full instructions for making this recipe can be found on the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
As I’ve said there are only 3 ingredients in this super tasty strawberry jam recipe.
Strawberries – make sure your strawberries are ripe and unblemished. Soggy, old, bruised strawberries will not have that same amazingly fresh zingy flavour as good firm fresh strawberries.
Sugar – My Mum always used the old ratio of 50/50 in her strawberry jam recipe. That’s 50% strawberries and 50% sugar. I have cut down the sugar a little bit here.
What type of sugar?
I have used plain granulated sugar for my strawberry jam recipe. You do not need to use jam sugar or preserving sugar as you don’t need any added pectin in this strawberry jam. Simple, cheap white granulated sugar is all that’s required.
Lemon juice. I have used the juice from half a lemon to make my strawberry jam. You can use bottled lemon juice if that is all you have available, but fresh lemon juice is really best for jam-making.
How to get more juice from a lemon
Roll your lemon on the table before you cut it in half and squeeze out the juice. Rolling the lemon firmly like this breaks down the fibres inside the lemon and makes it release more juice. And if you happen to have an Aga as I do just pop it in the warming oven for a minute or two.
Notes on pectin
This strawberry jam requires NO PECTIN. Pectin is the agent that is used in some jam recipes to help with the set of the preserve. I never use pectin in my jam recipes. The strawberries contain enough pectin alongside the lemon juice in this recipe to make the perfect strawberry jam.
Here’s how to make this deliciously easy strawberry jam.
Hull the strawberries (removing leaves and tiny core) and chop in half or quarters if the strawberries are really big.
The French secret to perfect strawberry jam
Now here is the clever French tip to making the best ever strawberry jam. Put the prepared strawberries into a bowl, add the sugar and give it a stir. Next cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave it for 2 hours (in France they like to leave their strawberries in sugar overnight and that’s how I do it).
The sugar will help to release juice from the strawberries and the sugar itself will be dissolved in the juice from the strawberries.
Why do this extra step?
If you let the strawberries macerate like this it means that when you come to boil up your strawberry jam the sugar has already been dissolved so you can go straight to a high heat and fast boil and this means less time for those strawberries to be boiling up.
The longer you boil fruit in jam making the more flavour you will lose. A fast boil with ready dissolved sugar gives you a far fresher-tasting strawberry jam.
Put the macerated strawberries into a high-sided pan (the jam really bubbles up) and add the lemon juice. Quickly bring with to the boil skimming off any frothy scum that settles on top.
At first the jam with rise up and bubble like mad, you’ll know when it’s reaching the setting point when the bubbles calm down and the entire ban is bubbling but more gently, a bit like the surface of the moon.
Why add butter to jam?
Some people add a teaspoon of butter to their jam as it is boiling. This helps to stop the frothy scum from forming on top. I just tend to scoop the stuff off but you can add butter instead if you with.
New to preserving? Then don’t panic, I can take you from zero to hero in no time at all.
Just check out these handy articles to get you heading in the right direction fast;
Testing for the set of jam
Your strawberry jam will set at 105C/220F – I use a digital thermometer in all my jam making. You can also use a traditional jam thermometer.
Put a saucer in the freezer and then drop a teaspoon of jam on it. If, after 5 minutes the jam wrinkles when you run a finger through it, it’s set.
Carefully ladle your jam into sterilised jars and pop on the lids.
How to sterilise jars for jam making
Run the jars through the hot cycle of a dishwasher. Wash the jars in hot soapy water, rinse and dry in a warm oven for half an hour.
Why sterilise jars?
It’s important to sterilse jars when making any sort of preserves to ensure that there is no dirt or bacteria in the jars before you put the jam in there.
How much jam does this make?
I got 400ml of strawberry jam from this recipe. That was 2 smallish sized jars of jam. To find out how much jam a jar will hold simply fill the empty jar with water then tip that into a measuring jug and you’ll see how much the jar holds.
Please Note – We do not usually do water bath or other canning methods here in the UK. Our preserves keep perfectly well without this.
How long will your jam keep?
This strawberry jam will keep for up to a year in a cool cupboard. once opened store your jam in the fridge and use within a month.
If you want to add another layer of flavour to your strawberry jam you can add all sorts of things.
Black pepper is a classic addition to strawberry jam and the black pepper helps to bring out the flavour of the strawberries as well as adding just a tiny dash of heat. My Dad always used to add black pepper to his strawberries instead of sugar.
Balsamic vinegar, just a dash, I do this in my Italian inspired strawberry jam recipe.
Herbs like basil, lemon balm, sage, rosemary, lavender and mint all make great additions to strawberry jam.
Other fruits – strawberries go well with lots of other fruits and even veg. Try my strawberry and rhubarb jam .
Booze – add a dash of any hooch you like to jazz up your jam. From gin to whisky and even wine, it’s up to you.
Of course, the most famous use for strawberry jam is on scones with clotted cream. A Victoria sponge is also another classic use for strawberry jam.
Add a little water to your strawberry jam to loosen it a bit and use it as a topping for simple vanilla ice cream or as a topping for an ice cream sundae.
If you have a little strawberry jam left in a jar, add some vodka and give it a really good shake to get all the jam off the sides of the jar – voila, you now have a shot of strawberry vodka – cheers!
Looking for more strawberry preserves to try? Then check these out before you go;
Finally, if you do try this recipe don’t forget to leave a comment/star rating below as I just love to hear from readers. Want more Larder Love? Then follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter and sign up for my newsletter too of course.
The easiest and best strawberry jam
- 300 g strawberries
- 275 g granulated sugar
- 1/2 lemon juice
- Hull the strawberries (remove leaves and little core) and cut in half or quarter if large and put them in a bowl with the sugar and stir. Leave for 2 hours or better still overnight
- Put macerated strawberries in a high sided pan with the lemon juice and boil for about 20 minutes till set has been reached (see notes below and in my post)
- Ladle into sterilised jars (see notes on how to sterilise jars)