This homemade raspberry freezer jam recipe uses just a couple of ingredients to create a delicious, fuss-free homemade jam. Because it doesn’t require cooking the fruit or water baths for sterilization, it’s a very easy process that any novice can master! No special canning equipment needed!
I have only canned a couple of times, under the direct supervision of a friend who knew what she was doing. Making a batch of jam wasn’t something I ever considered myself capable of, until I learned about freezer jam. Freezer jam requires no cooking of the fruit or hot water baths to ensure proper sealing and sterilizing. It’s a simple process that just about anyone can do, and produces the yummiest, freshest jam that looks as vibrant as it tastes.
Try this raspberry freezer jam recipe on my buttermilk cheddar waffles, or add a dollop to everyday pancakes along with a spoonful of yogurt for a high protein breakfast. Or of course make it with good old peanut butter sandwiches. Let me show you how to make this simple homemade raspberry jam recipe.
Why this recipe works
- Fresh and simple ingredients and made with less sugar than your average store bought jam.
- Quick and easy recipe that’s a lot less complicated than traditional jam. Creates delicious jam that’s good in the freezer for up to a year.
- Makes good use of seasonal berries (you can even swap out the raspberries for strawberries) and homemade freezer jam makes a wonderful homemade gift, especially around the holidays.
- More affordable than store-bought jam! Each jar runs less than $2
2 cups of fresh whole raspberries, but frozen can also be used (just make sure they are thawed)
3 cups granulated sugar
1.5 ounces (3 tbsp) dry pectin (I used Ball Freezer Pectin but Pomona Pectin works as well)
¾ cup of water for mixing with the pectin
Add the fresh raspberries into a large bowl and crush them thoroughly. A potato masher makes quick work of this, but a fork or wooden spoon would also work.
Add in the sugar to the mashed raspberries and stir well, for at least 3 minutes. See recipe tip below for stirring in and letting sugar set to reduce graininess.
While the fresh berries and sugar sit, prepare the fruit pectin.
Heat water in a small saucepan and stir in pectin. Bring to a boil on medium-high heat and boil for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and pour pectin mix into the smashed raspberry mixture.
Let stand for at least 5 minutes, so jam mix can cool slightly.
Pour into very clean jars and leave a ½ inch to 1 inch head space. I like to use mason or Weck glass jars. Secure the lids and allow to stand for at least 12 hours before placing in the freezer.
I find half pint jars the perfect size for freezer jam, because you can go through the entire jar before it goes bad. Pint size jars may hold too much jam and may not be eaten before it goes bad.
The great thing about this jam is that it lasts for up to a year in the freezer! Once you are ready to eat your homemade jam, let it thaw and then store it safely in the fridge for about a month. I have had jars last longer than a month, but they typically get eaten before then!
Sugar helps the jam set, and so you can find pectin powders that will work with recipes using a lesser amount of sugar. Brands like Bell and Sure-Jell make “low sugar pectin.” Keep in mind that the ratios of fruit to pectin may be different than this recipe, which was only tested using 3 cups of sugar to 2 cups of fruit. Here is a great article about low-sugar pectins from a trusted source, Cook’s Illustrated.
Choosing a pectin powder
Pectin is a starch found in the cell walls of fruit. Some fruits like apples, citrus and stone fruits have higher pectin levels. Pectin is often added to fruit jams and jellies, especially ones with lower pectin content, to help them thicken up and set. There are powdered and liquid forms of pectin, and some, like Pomona Pectin, requires the addition of calcium water.
I have used the Ball Real Fruit Freezer Pectin as well as the Pomona Pectin and have had consistently good results with Ball. Certo Pectin and Sure-Jell are also popular brands, and all 4 of these are commonly found in any grocery store. They are typically carried in the baking aisle or with canning supplies. Any of these mentioned will work fine for this recipe so don’t stress too much and just pick up the one your store carries.
This is a great comprehensive article about pectin.
Solving a common problem
One common problem that some experience when making freezer jam is that the sugar doesn’t thoroughly dissolve and therefore it can have a slightly grainy texture. You can stir and stir, but because the raspberries aren’t cooked with the sugar, it never thoroughly dissolves. I have had this happen but to be honest, no one in my family noticed, especially when it’s topped on ice cream or in sandwiches!
But if you are planning to gift these batches of jam, then for best results, allow the sugar and smashed raspberries to sit for a few hours. This will allow the sugars to eventually break down and dissolve. Over night is great, but even letting it sit for a couple of hours will help.
I do hope you give this raspberry freezer jam recipe a try, because it is so easy and tasty! It really doesn’t take much time and produces fantastic and impressive results!
Other jam and breakfast recipes
Raspberry Freezer Jam Recipe
- 2 cups raspberries fresh preferred or frozen, thawed
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tbsp pectin
- ¾ cup water
- Add the fresh raspberries into a large bowl and crush them thoroughly. A potato masher works well.
- Add in the sugar to the mashed raspberries and stir well, for at least 3 minutes.
- While the fresh berries and sugar sit, prepare the fruit pectin. Heat water in a small saucepan and stir in pectin. Bring to a boil on medium-high heat and boil for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and pour pectin mix into the smashed raspberry mixture.
- Let stand for at least 5 minutes, so jam mix can cool slightly.
- Pour into very clean jars and leave a ½ inch to 1 inch head space. Secure the lids and allow to stand for at least 12 hours before placing in the freezer.