Canning strawberry jam is simply nostalgic for me. Growing up I didn’t know that you could buy jam from the store. A few weeks ago, my first grader came home from school excited to tell me that his classmate’s mom made jam too. I asked him how he knew and he informed me that she was eating a pb&j (with strawberry jam) just like him. When I told him that strawberry jam is also sold at the store, his jaw dropped. His six year old world was rocked.
So is my favorite strawberry jam recipe.
To prepare your strawberries: wash and hull. hull: Angle a small sharp knife at the top of the berry. Cut in a circular motion to remove the green leafy top of the strawberry
Place prepared strawberries into a large pot with around 1/2 cup of water. Set on the stove and heat until the strawberries are softened. Remove from the heat and cool for 1 minute.
Place the softened strawberries into a blender. Pulse until the strawberries. You can blend if you want but then your jam won’t have those yummy little chunks of fresh strawberries in it. This method allows you to still have pieces of strawberries in the jam but they are not huge. Its more of a preference step. If you prefer more of a jelly texture- blend- if you prefer jam with the full strawberries in them you can avoid this step altogether.
To prepare your jars: Wash jars and screw bands in hot soapy water; rinse with warm water. Drain well before filling. Sometimes I just put my cleaned jars and lids in the dishwasher on a warm rinse cycle with heat dry. I do this right before I begin the jam so that way the jars are ready once the jam is ready.
When making strawberry jam I use the Sure Jell No Sugar Pectin in the pink box. I prefer this Sure Jell as opposed to others because it requires less sugar. The recipe that follows can also be found inside the box of Sure Jell No Sugar Pectin.
- Measure exactly 6 cups of your prepared strawberries from the blender into 6- or 8-quart saucepot. Begin heating on medium high heat.
- Remove 1/4 cup of the sugar from the 4 cups you measured out. Mix the 1/4 cup with the pectin. Stir into the fruit.
- Add butter (this helps reduce foaming that occurs towards the end of this process).
- Increase the heat. Stirring constantly. Bring to full rolling boil. rolling boil: a boil that doesn’t stop bubbling when stirred on high heat
- Stir in remaining 3-3/4 cups sugar. Return to full rolling boil. Once your strawberry mixture begins a rolling boil again, let it boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat.
- Skim off any foam with metal spoon. (my kids LOVE eating this immediately on crackers and toast)
- Ladle the jam into prepared jars, filling to within 1/4 inch of tops.
- Wipe the top of each jar (rims and threads). Be sure there is no jam residue or water here or it will affect the jars sealing properly.
- Cover with 2-piece lids. Screw bands tightly.
- Place jars on elevated rack in canner. Lower rack into canner. Fill your canner with water (if you do not have a canner a large saucepan will work well too). Water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches.
- Bring water to gentle boil. Process 10 minutes.
- Remove jars and place upright on towel to cool completely. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger. If the middle of the lid is flat- success! If there is a bubble in the top of the lid your lids did not seal properly.
One more tip:
When using used lids be sure there are no marks or rust spots on the lids. The lid on left is good but the lid on the right needs to be thrown out.