Strawberry Jam

Reviewed and updated by Adair Hoover, Extension Food Safety Agent, Clemson University, 03/15. Originally prepared by Pamela Schmutz, HGIC Food Safety Specialist, and Angela Fraser, Extension Food Safety Specialist, Clemson University. New 5/10.

HGIC 3224

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Strawberries are practically perfect for making jam. A classic strawberry jam is simply made with strawberries and sugar, a freezer jam can be easily prepared using powdered pectin, and there are even jams with no added sugar for those who are monitoring sugar intake. Regardless of your jam style attention to safety is a must.  Find your perfect strawberry jam with the following research based recipes.

Strawberry Jam

2 quarts crushed strawberries
6 cups sugar

Wash jars in hot, soapy water and rinse. Sterilize by boiling them for 10 minutes, and then keep the jars in hot water until they are used. Keeping jars hot will prevent them from breaking when filled with the hot product. Combine berries and sugar, bring slowly to boiling stir & occasionally until sugar dissolves. Cook rapidly until thick, about 40 minutes. As mixture thickens, stir frequently to prevent sticking. Pour hot jam immediately into hot, sterile canning jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Process 5 minutes in a boiling water bath canner at altitudes up to 1,000 feet. (Add 1 minute to the processing time for each 1,000 feet of additional altitude.) Yield: 8 half-pint jars.

Source: So Easy to Preserve

Strawberry Jam Variations

Source: Ball® Homemade Strawberry Jam

Vanilla Strawberry Jam: Add half a vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise, to the crushed strawberries. Cook as directed and remove vanilla bean before ladling jam into jars. The resulting jam will be enhanced with subtle, yet distinct vanilla overtones.

Lemony Strawberry Jam: Add the grated zest of 1 large lemon to the crushed strawberries.

Peppered Strawberry Jam: Stir ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper into the cooked jam just before ladling it into the jars. Pepper accents and compliments strawberries' sweet flavor. Be sure to use freshly ground pepper, which delivers a fresher-quality flavor.

Strawberry Freezer Jam: 4 cups crushed strawberries (about 4 one pound containers of fresh strawberries or 3 12-oz bags of  unsweetened frozen strawberries)

1½ cups sugar or Splenda®
1 package (1.59 oz) Ball® No Cook Freezer Jam
Fruit Pectin

Stir sugar and contents of package in a bowl until well blended. Stir in 4 cups crushed strawberries. Stir 3 minutes longer. Ladle jam into clean jars to fill line. Twist on lids. Let stand until thickened at room temperature, about 30 minutes. Store in the freezer for up to 1 year or in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Yield: about 5 half-pint jars.

Source: Ball® No Cook Freezer Jam Fruit Pectin.

Strawberry Balsamic Jam: Balsamic vinegar accents the strawberry flavor and gives the jam a robust taste.

5 cups crushed strawberries (about 5 lbs)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar (5%)
6 Tbsp Ball® RealFruit™ Classic Pectin
7 cups granulated sugar

Prepare boiling water canner. Heat jars in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Wash lids in warm soapy water and set bands aside. Combine strawberries and lemon juice in a 6 or 8-quart saucepan. Gradually stir in pectin. Bring mixture to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down, over high heat, stirring constantly.

Add entire measure of sugar, stirring to dissolve. Return mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary.

Ladle hot jam into hot jars leaving ¼ inch headspace. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight. Process in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.

Source: Ball®

Jams with Artificial Sweetener

Jellied products without sugar or with reduced sugar cannot be made by leaving the sugar out of regular jelly recipes. Look for a pectin product that says “light”, “less sugar”, or “no sugar needed”, or use a recipe that specifically calls for a sugar substitute. Carefully follow pectin manufacturer’s instructions for making and storing jam. Choose between making a cooked jam processed in a boiling water canner that is shelf-stable until opened, or a no-cook jam that stores in the freezer.

No Sugar Added Strawberry Freezer Jam with Liquid Saccharin

This jam uses regular pectin (which contains some sugar), but the recipe is modified to use without added sugar. Makes 2 or 3 half-pint jars

1 quart cleaned strawberries
3 to 4 teaspoons liquid artificial sweetener
1 package powdered fruit pectin (regular)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Red food coloring as desired

Crush strawberries in a 1½-quart saucepan. Stir in artificial sweetener, food coloring, powdered fruit pectin and lemon juice. Bring to a boil, and boil 1 minute. Remove from heat. Continue to stir for 2 minutes. Pour into freezer containers, leaving ½-inch headspace, cover and freeze. Thaw for use, then keep refrigerated.

Source: So Easy to Preserve

No Sugar Added Cooked Strawberry Jam

5 cups crushed strawberries (about 2 quarts strawberries)

1 cup water or unsweetened fruit juice

1 package Ball® Fruit Jell No Sugar Needed Pectin

Note: Although this jam does not need sugar to gel, up to 3 cups sugar may be added while cooking jam or a sugar substitute may be added immediately after cooking, if desired for flavor.

Wash strawberries, remove caps, and crush strawberries one layer at a time. Put strawberries in a 6 to 8-quart saucepot, and add water or juice. Gradually sprinkle pectin over fruit mixture, stirring constantly until dissolved. (Do not add pectin all at once to prevent lumping.) Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. If you add sugar, return mixture to a boil and boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and skim foam, if necessary. Add sugar substitute, if desired, at this time.

Pour hot jam immediately into hot, sterile, canning jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Place jars in simmering water in canner and add boiling water to cover jars by 1 to 2 inches. Place lid on canner and bring water to a gentle, steady boil. Process 10 minutes at altitudes up to 1,000 feet. Add 5 minutes processing time for altitudes between 1,001–3,000 feet; add 10 minutes for altitudes between 3,001–6,000 feet. After processing, remove jars and set them upright on a towel to cool for 12 to 24 hours. Store jars in a cool, dry, dark place for up to one year. Refrigerate after opening. Yield: 6 half-pint jars.

Source: Ball® Fruit Jell No Sugar Needed Pectin.

For more information on making jams and jellies see HGIC 3200, Jelly & Jam Recipes and HGIC 3180, Basics of Jelly Making. For more information on canning, see HGIC 3040, Canning Foods at Home and HGIC 3020, Home Canning Equipment.


  1. Reynolds, Susan and Paulette Williams. So Easy to Preserve, Bulletin 989. Cooperative Extension Service, the University of Georgia. Fifth Edition revised by Elizabeth Andress and Judy Harrison, 2006.
  2. Strawberry Balsamic Jam, Ball®,,, 2015.

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