This quick and easy cranberry jam recipe is made in small batches and jars so you don't need to process them with a hot water bath. It will keep in the refrigerator for a week or so, but you can also freeze it for future use.
It's another cranberry recipe. I hope many of you out there love cranberries as much as we do. Maybe it's because they only come around once a year. And the color is so festive.
This time I'm making a quick homemade cranberry jam similar to my husband's Thanksgiving cranberry sauce recipe. You don't even need pectin for this recipe as the cranberries are high in pectin and gel pretty quickly.
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Making Cranberry Jam
Start by rinsing and picking through a standard bag (12 oz) of fresh cranberries. There always seem to be a few rotten or bad looking berries in the bunch.
Place the berries in a saucepan with water, lemon juice, and zest.
Allow the cranberries to cook down a little. They will start to pop. Now you can turn down the heat and add in sugar and spices. I added some ground ginger and it tasted great with the cranberries and lemon.
Once the sugar has melted use an immersion blender to puree the mix. You could also transfer the mix to a food processor or blender but then you have more of a mess on your hands.
I also like the immersion blender because it allows you to leave the mixture a little chunky if you want.
Test the jam by placing a saucer in the freezer for 20 seconds. Then spoon a little of the jam on the plate and see how runny it is. If it's not thick enough you can cook it a little longer and test it again.
Ladle the mix into sterilized jars. This half-pint mason jar (8 oz) is perfect for the freezer. You just need to leave space at the top for expansion.
The rest of the jam was ladled into these cute mini weck jars for the refrigerator. We'll need to eat them within a week or two, so I'm sharing some with friends. It's only about 1/2 cup of jam so it shouldn't be a problem.
I can see serving this jam on a cheese board with crackers and brie. Maybe a topping for waffles or pancakes during a holiday breakfast. If nothing else, it will definitely be great on a piece of toast.
Of course, you could go through the whole canning process with a hot water bath if you like. I did think about it because I loved the flavor of this jam but in the end, it's such a small batch I didn't bother. Maybe next year.
Cranberry Jam Recipe
- 12 ounce bag of fresh cranberries
- 1/2 cup of water
- juice and zest of one lemon
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- Rinse and pick out any rotten or unsightly cranberries.
- Place cranberries, water, lemon juice, and zest in a medium saucepan.
- Cook on medium heat until berries start to pop.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the sugar and ginger to the cranberries.
- Stir until all of the sugar has dissolved.
- Use an immersion blender to puree the cranberry mixture to your desired texture.
- Test the jam on a plate that has been in the freezer for 20 seconds to see how thick it is. If it's too runny you can cook it longer.
- Remove the pan from the stove and ladle it into sterilized jars.
- Allow the jars to cool completely before covering them with lids.
- Place in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
- Or freeze in freezer-ready jars leaving 1/2 inch of space for up to 6 months.
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although attempts have been made to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.
This looks so cheery and delicious. My kids will love it.
Jessica, glad to hear it. We loved it.