Recipe Club

Jam Making Tips


Jam, jelly, conserve - how to tell the difference.

  • Jam is made from chopped or mashed fruit and is usually thick.
  • Jelly is made from the juice of fruit (strained off) and is smooth with no fruit pieces. It should be clear and firm.
  • Conserves are a mixture of fruits or citrus fruit and can include nuts or dried fruit.
  • Marmalade is strips or pieces of citrus peel in a soft gel.
  • Preserves are large or whole pieces of fruit cooked in a sugar syrup.

Helpful Tip: Use Chelsea Jam Setting Sugar to make jam in a third of the time.

  • Fresh fruit is best but Chelsea Jam Setting Sugar also works with defrosted frozen fruit.
  • Always use a heavy based 6 litre pot with room for bubbling and a wooden spoon.
  • Ensure Jam Setting Sugar has completely dissolved in the pot with fruit, before boiling.
  • Stick to the recommended 4 minute full boil and never boil for longer unless the test for ‘set’ fails. See Easy Orange Jam Recipe


  1. Ensure jars and caps are properly sterilised (See Jam Making Tool Kit )
  2. Always pour hot jams into hot jars.
  3. Always fill to rim of jar, to allow for shrinking.
  4. Store jams in a cool, dry place where they will keep for up to 12 months.
  5. After opening, store jams in a fridge where they will keep for approx. 3 months.

Jellies and Fruit Pastes with Chelsea Jam Setting Sugar

  1. 1 litre of pure fruit juice can be used instead of 1kg of fruit to make jellies.
  2. Use only cloudy juice (i.e. apple, pear), as clear juice will not set.
  3. Use the same recipe as printed on the Chelsea Jam Setting Sugar packaging.
  4. To make pastes, substitute fruit with fruit puree (use a food processor or blender).
  5. Suitable fruits include; apples, pears, guavas, pineapples, kiwi fruit, mangoes and quince.

Mixed Fruit Jams

  1. Create your own interesting new combinations including:
    • apple and raspberry
    • rhubarb and ginger
    • tropical mango and pineapple
  2. Ensure you use the equivalent of 1kg clean fruit per batch of jam.
  3. To combine harder fruit with a softer fruit (such as apple and raspberry) mix the harder fruit in your food processor until a smooth paste forms, then add soft fruit and blend together.