Canning Low-Sugar Strawberry Jam

I’ve always wanted to make strawberry jam. I’ve canned marinara sauce before and heard that jam was much easier and less time consuming – boy, is that right! One day last spring, when our local grocery store had a super sale on strawberries, I bought 5 lbs worth, washed them, cut the stems and froze them. I finally found time to “jam them” the week that school started this year – what great timing! But it really did not take long and the outcome was 10 delicious pints of low-sugar strawberry jam!

Wait. Rewind. Low-sugar? Yes, that’s right. I was browsing Google and Pinterest for recipes and many that I found had an insanely high ratio of sugar to strawberries. As in, SEVEN cups of sugar for 10 cups of strawberries. No thank you! If I want that much sugar, I’ll gladly take a piece of chocolate cake or a bowl of ice cream. For jam on toast first thing in the morning, I’d rather enjoy the sweetness of the fruit itself.  

I did a little reading and it’s actually very easy to make low-sugar jam. You just use a lot less sugar and you also use low-sugar pectin. Simple swap. I loosely based my recipe on this one from allrecipes.com.

Ingredients:

  • 5 lbs of washed and cut fresh strawberries
  • 1 1/2 cups of white sugar (I multiplied the above recipe times four and still used less sugar than it called for)
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 6 TBS low-sugar pectin
  • Butter (optional)

To make:

1. Prepare all of your canning supplies and your water bath canner (fill your pot with water and place jars inside and start to heat; put rims and lids in a separate pan of water and heat.)

2. Mash strawberries. 1 lb of strawberries will roughly equal one cup of mashed berries. However, since canning strawberries isn’t as scary as canning tomatoes (hello, botulism!), then I think it’s safe to be a little more loosey-goosey with the quantities.

3. Add the strawberries and juice to a large pot.

4. Add pectin, stir and bring to a boil.

5. Add sugar, stir and return to a full, rolling boil for 1-2 minutes.

6. At this point, I added 2 TBS of butter (I use dairy-free) to the boiling jam and stir. I had heard from a mama friend that butter will reduce the amount of foam that accumulates on the top of jam. Which brings me to…

7. Take the pot off of the stove and skim any foam off the top of the strawberry mixture.

8. Ladle hot jam into hot jars leaving about ¼ inch of headspace. Stir to remove bubbles, wipe the rims and place the lids on the jars. Tighten the rings to “fingertip tight.” (Just so that they “catch”).

9. Place in a water-bath canner with 1-2 inches of water covering the jars. Bring to a boil. Process for 10 minutes (that’s 10 minutes after the water is boiling – not 10 minutes from when you put it in the water).

10. Remove water from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.

11. Remove jars from the water-bath and let them sit out for 24 hours. You should start to hear that lovely “pop” sound from the lids as the jam sets and cools.

This recipe (loosely followed) was 5 lbs. of berries and it made about 10 pints of jam. So delicious! 

Low-Sugar Strawberry Jam
Yields 10

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Prep Time
1 hr

Cook Time
15 min

Prep Time
1 hr

Cook Time
15 min

Ingredients
-5 lbs of washed and cut fresh strawberries
-1 1/2 cups of white sugar (I multiplied the above recipe times four and still used less sugar than it called for)
-1/2 cup apple juice
-6 TBS low-sugar pectin
-Butter (optional)

Instructions
1. Prepare all of your canning supplies and your water bath canner (fill your pot with water and place jars inside and start to heat; put rims and lids in a separate pan of water and heat)
2. Mash strawberries. One lb. of strawberries will roughly equal one cup of mashed berries. However, since canning strawberries isn’t as scary as canning tomatoes (hello, botulism!), then I think it’s safe to be a little more loosey-goosey with the quantities.
3. Add the strawberries and juice to a large pot.
4. Add pectin, stir and bring to a boil.
5. Add sugar, stir and return to a full, rolling boil for 1-2 minutes.
6. At this point, I added 2 TBS of butter (dairy free) to the boiling jam and stir. I had heard from a mama friend that butter will reduce the amount of foam that accumulates on the top of jam. Which brings me to…
7. Take the pot off of the stove and skim any foam off the top of the strawberry mixture.
8. Ladle hot jam into hot jars leaving about ¼ inch of headspace. Stir to remove bubbles, wipe the rims and place the lids on the jars. Tighten the rings to “fingertip tight” (Just so that they “catch”).
9. Place in a water-bath canner with 1-2 inches of water covering the jars. Bring to a boil.
10. Process for 10 minutes (that’s 10 minutes after the water is boiling – not 10 minutes from when you put it in the water).
11. Remove water from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
12. Remove jars from the water-bath and let them sit out for 24 hours. You should start to hear that lovely “pop” sound from the lids as the jam sets and cools.

Notes
This recipe (loosely followed) was five lbs. of berries and it made about 10 pints of jam. So delicious!

Mama Say What?! http://www.mamasaywhat.com/

2 Responses to Canning Low-Sugar Strawberry Jam

  1. I love your canning lids! Did you use a clear sticker to personalize?

    • Thanks! I got them from a talented mama friend that is a graphic designer and made them for me. I’m hoping she’ll chime in and share the link to her etsy shop when she has them available!

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