Canning-Jams and Jellies
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Easy Canning

I have included several ways to can and preserve Jams and Jellies. Let me explain the difference between Jam, Jelly, and Preserves.

Jam consists of mashed fruit.

Jelly consists of strained fruit after mashing.

Preserves consist of chunks of fruit.

However you prefer, I have the directions here for all three. My favorite is Jam.  So, we will do that one first.

Funny thing about Jam. I went on a trip a few years back with my Best friend Minnie. We stopped at the famous Tony’s Restaurant on the way home from up north to Soaring Eagle Casino. We had a full day of Bingo and fun. We loved Tony’s because they had the best Jam and served so much food, we never could eat it all.

We had leftovers from the restaurant. In the box of leftovers were 2 extra little cups of Jam that we asked for.
Ha Ha, This is not Minnie, but I bet she was that mad. Love you Minnie…..

Well, to say the least, when I dropped her off at her house, we both forgot about the jam in the backseat. So, I drove home and collected my stuff and I realized she left her jam in my car. She was blowing up my phone telling me I better not eat that jam. It was sooooo good. Well, needless to say, this could not be avoided. I kept telling her I would drop it off to her, but I couldn’t resist that gooey strawberry jam. I ate it. I should have felt awful, but, I didn’t. I think I blamed it on my son Kenny.

We took that trip again two years ago. The Jam stayed in the front seat. I think she even tied the bag to her purse. I can’t remember, but she held on to it. I am a homemade Jam Junkie. 

Seriously, It was that good. You can make the same Jam. Homemade Jam is better than anything you will ever taste from a grocer. Trust me, It will disappear fast and they will be begging for more.

Homemade Jam

Supplies needed…Please refer to my previous  post on Canning Supplies

Jelly jars…How many you will need. When making Jam it’s best to make small batches. No more than 6 at a time. That is due to many factors. The boiling process and the Pectin, also it is easier.

You can set up many batches to be done. Just the boiling process should be easier to handle with a large cooking pot.

2 Quarts crushed Strawberries will yield 6 pints of Jam. This will be equivalent to 5 Cups crushed.  That would be a good start.

Recipe For Strawberry

Please note that you can use this same recipe for all fruit that does not need to be peeled. All other berries with seeds can be strained using a mill. I never had one so I prefer the seeds. Blackberry and Elderberry have a lot of seeds so you may want to take some out. I never did but it’s how you prefer it.

The next time I make Elderberry Jam I will try to remove some seeds. They have more than any other berry. You can do this with a mill described in my previous post on Canning Supplies. I put the link above on Supplies Needed.

2 Quarts of mashed

Mash these with a potato masher or a slotted spoon. You don’t want to completely mash them down, it’s more like crushed. Leave some small pieces in there.

7 Cups Sugar

1 Box Pectin

1 3/4 oz box. Sure Jell is my favorite but any kind will do.

Pour mashed berries in the large pot with Pectin. You can add Pectin to 1/2 cup of the sugar to prevent it from clumping.  Add the sugar and Pectin mix to the strawberries. Bring to a boil. You need a rolling boil that does not stop when stirred. You will get some foaming but keep stirring, you can skim off foam at the

Pour remaining 6 1/2 cups sugar in quickly, while stirring briskly. Bring to a boil and stir for only one minute.  Turn off heat immediately after one minute of boiling. You don’t want to burn the fruit, so be careful here. The boiling is to thicken the Pectin.

Have your jars and lids and tops hot and waiting in water to be filled.Make sure jars have been cleaned in very hot water and are sitting in hot water while preparing berries. 180 degrees is recommended.  Remove one jar at a time from water using  tongs and fill one jar at a time, leaving jars in hot water until ready to

Using the Funnel described in my Canning Supplies Post to fill the jars. You can use a ladle or a large spoon. You can scoop jam in a large container with a lip and pour it into jars. Whatever way is easiest for you.  Wipe off any Jam that fell onto jar tops with a clean towel. Fill to 1/4 inch from tops of jars.  Have clean towels ready to hold jars while filling and

Place tops that have been sitting in hot water on the jars. Place screw rings on and tighten. It’s ok to tighten here because process time is far shorter.

You have a choice at this point

If you are giving these jars of Jam as gifts you can forgo the Hot Water Bath. Just be sure to inform everyone that your jam has to be used within 3 months. Trust me, when they taste it, it will go very fast.

After you fill the jars, invert for 15 minutes. They will seal. But only if the jars were very hot and the lids were kept in hot water.  Always test jars after a few hours. If they depress and make a popping sound, they are not sealed. You can keep these in the fridge for immediate use or process in a

If you are making this Jam to use for your own personal use, be sure to use the Water Bath Canner to keep your berries fresh until you use it. Shelf life for Water Bath Canned Berries is around 8-9 months.  I have had my jelly last for a year, but that is the recommended shelf life time, but my jam tastes just as yummy as when I made it a year later. So don’t throw it out if it was more than 9 mos. It is still good.

Hot Water Bath

Place jars in canner, make sure you use a rack. You don’t want jars bumping into each other. Fill water to 2 inches above jars and bring to a boil. After the boiling starts,  Set the timer for 10 minutes. After about 8-9 minutes of boiling, start removing jars with tongs. Place on the counter on clean dry towels a few inches apart. They will be sealing in a few minutes to a few hours.

You can also invert them for a few minutes to get the top really hot. That has worked for me. I do it all the time now. I simply invert the jar for a few minutes and turn it back upside up and they all seal. Be very careful not to touch other jars together when you do this, it can make them crack. Remember they are very hot.


Use a permanent marker and mark the date and what kind of jelly, jam or preserve.

Homemade Jelly

The cutting cleaning and mashing process is the same, except you mash them really good here. You want to mash them to a liquid as much as possible.

Now it’s time to strain the mashed berries or

My Mom and my Grandma used a cup hook attached to the ceiling above the kitchen sink. With a long sturdy string, they hung the bag of fruit over a large bowl to drain . As soon as all the juice came out, they squeezed it to extract the rest. All that should be left at this point is seeds or skins depending on what fruit you are using.

You can also attach 3 layers of cheesecloth over a large bowl and secure them with a large rubber band to the outside of the bowl. Spoon mixture over damp cheesecloth

You must  use several layers of cheesecloth, or purchase a strainer made just for this reason. I use my Mom and Grandma’s way because it was the way I was taught.  If you are a gadget collector or like to do things differently, I will show you a picture of a fruit strainer and how to buy one.


Homemade Grape Jelly…

We are using Grapes for this recipe. You can buy in bulk or pick from your own grapevine.

3 1/2 pounds of Concord Grapes.

This recipe will yield 8 jelly jars. You can use any grapes. If you don’t have grapes, you can use pure Welch’s Concord Grape Juice.

1 Box 1 3/4 oz Pectin

1 1/2 Cups Water

7 Cups Sugar

Place Grapes in a large pot  and mash to a pulp. Add water and bring to a boil. lower heat to a simmer and cook covered for 10 minutes.

With a ladle spoon hot grape mixture over a large bowl with several bountifulharvesting.comlayers of cheesecloth. It’s important to use several layers because cheesecloth is very airy and not enough layers will allow seeds and pulp to fall though, so use several. Using a spoon, push aside seeds and skins to allow juice to drain through till all the mixture is strained.  You can squeeze the rest of the juice out by taking ends and twisting in a wringing motion. Discard remaining pulp.

Have the sugar measured and ready for the next step. You will need to add it quickly so have it ready.

Add 5 cups of juice to a large pot. Add Pectin. bring the juice to a boil stirring constantly. When juice comes to a boil, add sugar quickly. Keep stirring for an additional minute or two. This will foam so don’t worry. You can skim the foam off.

Depending on the thickness of the jelly. Be careful not to burn. Only continue boiling for no longer than 2 minutes. One minute should be good, but if not thick enough, boil another minute. NO LONGER.

Method to test thickness. Before starting jelly place a small plate in the freezer. After the final boiling process of one minute, spoon a little on the frozen plate. Move around with a finger to determine thickness. If fine, stop cooking, if still too runny, boil one more minute.

Pour into hot jars within 1/8 inch and seal with lids and screw rings. screw on tight.  Place in the canner that has hot  water 2 inches above the lid. If not enough to cover tops, add more.  When water starts to boil, Time for 5 minutes. Remove with tongs and place on clean towels a few inches apart. You can invert these too for a few minutes  to speed up sealing.


Use a permanent marker and mark the date and what kind of jelly, jam or preserve.

Homemade Peach

This recipe came from the Ball Canning site I have never made preserves, so I found a recipe from a trusted site. This recipe Yields 4 half pint jars. (jelly jars)

2 lbs Peaches

Should end up with 5 cups peaches after pitting, skinning and chopping.

3 Kiwi

peeled and diced.

4 Cups Sugar

1/4 Cup Lemon Juice

Bottled is preferred.

Wash peaches and place in boiling water for 30-60 seconds to remove peel. Pull from water using a ladle and place in a bowl of ice water. Remove skins. Cut in half and remove pit. Chop into small pieces.

Add peaches and chopped kiwi in a large pot and add sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a boil.  Stirring constantly until almost to the gelling point of 220 degrees. Turn off heat. If you don’t have a jelly thermometer, a candy thermometer is the same. If you don’t have one, here’s a link to purchase one. You really need one for this type of jelly.

I picked this one because the picture is pretty good. You can click on this link and find all kinds and a lot cheaper ones too. I have one similar to this one. I don’t know how much I paid or where I got it, but to be truthful, you need a good one that will stand where you need it to stay. It only takes 3 or 4 seconds to raise above the jell stage. Then you are left with gloppy

Don’t waste your precious time to save a few cents. Get a good one. You can also get them in kits with all kinds of stuff that you need for canning. When you buy kits you pay a discounted price. So, consider that if you don’t have your stuff ready, or all of it.

Just click the link below and you will find all kinds of deals on canning supplies. My favorite source for just about everything.

I know my UPS guy by name, lol.  I think it’s Doug Heffernan. LOL Oh, he works for the OTHER one.


Spoon immediately into hot jars within 1/4 inch from the top of the jar and seal using the method described for jams and jelly. Place jars in canner with 2 inches of water above jars and bring to a boil.  When water starts to boil time is 15 minutes. Remove from canner and let sit on towels on the counter till all are sealed. You can invert these for a couple minutes to ensure sealing process.


Use a permanent marker and mark the date and what kind of jelly, jam or preserve.

I hope you enjoyed these

You can make them in batches if you have a lot.  I suggest you only cook one batch at a time, do not double or triple it. It can be prepared ahead of time, just cooking the fruit is what you have to make small batches of.

You can cut, strain, mash or prepare a whole bunch of fruit. I canned 6 cases in one day. I just had to cook it in small batches. It took no time at all really. So if you want a case or two of these recipes, remember, it won’t take long if you already have the fruit ready to be cooked.  I had two 5 gallon buckets of fruit ready to cook. One bucket had blackberries and one bucket had Elderberries. It was an easy day, Really. Just have your fruit ready to go. No need to complete the first steps over and over. Do it all at once and cook in small batches.

Have one-gallon bags all ready with the sugar so all you have to do is grab a bag of sugar and pour it in, repeating batch after batch.

Have your boxes of Pectin already opened and next to your bags of sugar. If you are planning on making more than 3 or 4 batches you may want to buy the large box of Pectin and measure for each batch. You can buy larger sizes Here. The ad here is 4 boxes of Pectin at 6 oz each. That will make plenty of jam and jelly.


For large boxes use the pectin calculator from Ball.  I personally used 3 1/2 Tbsp per batch. I purchased the large container of Pectin for my canning because I can a lot.

The only real expense is the beginning. Get your supplies together, however you can. I got some from a resale. I purchased some from my favorite place, Amazon. I also got lots of stuff when my Grandma passed. Your jars are a one-time investment. You will reuse them over and over for many years. So the only investment once you have everything is the food you put in it. If you grow your own food, it’s so economical. If you purchase in bulk at peak seasons, it’s also very economical.

Please read my other posts on growing food. It will surprise you how much money you save. Consider this, a good jar of jelly costs at least $3.50. If you buy the economical ones you will still be paying more than $2.00. Your jelly when it is done will be in the $4.50 range. That’s right, your jelly is much better than any jar you can buy in the store. And so much more nutritious because you don’t want your jelly to last 10 years and don’t need all the preservatives in store bought jelly.

Once you try canning, believe me, you will be looking for more stuff to can. You will discover the wonderful world of homemade food. It is far better tasting and so healthy. So please, just try to pick something to preserve. Your family will notice the difference.

Some people make a living on selling home canned jelly and jam, bountifulharvesting.comamong other things, it is a commodity that is wanted.  You may love it so much, who knows, this could be a new business for you if you are a stay at home mom, or someone looking for some extra money. It’s fun and rewarding because I know they will be back for more. Charge a deposit on your jars. You will be sure to get them back. A home-canned jar of jelly or jam can go for as much as $5.00 a jar. No one has ever haggled on a price of homemade jam.

Please come back and visit. It is always great to see you. Please leave any questions or comments on the bottom of this post or on the reply spot on the top. I will answer any questions concerning any practices of canning, or if you like this post, please let us know.


Thank You.

Have a Bountiful Day


Founder of


Mom and Grandma

Ball Canning Guide

Sure Jell Recipes






Author: kitty

My Son Kenny and I enjoy everything that is all natural. We enjoy nature , rescuing animals in need, advocating for the Homeless. We are getting back to basics and hope you will come with us and learn great ways to eat healthy, live peacefully, and enjoy life. Love all animals, it is the greatest love of all Help the Homeless, they all have a story to tell

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