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Perfect plum jam recipe

Perfect plum jam recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Preserves
  • Jam
  • Plum jam

There's nothing quite like homemade jam. It's packed full of plums and is perfect on any breakfast table. Enjoy with pancakes, toast, scones, crumpets or savoury muffins.

198 people made this

IngredientsServes: 128

  • 4 1/2 cupfuls pitted, chopped plums
  • 120ml water
  • 1.5kg caster sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon butter
  • 50g powdered pectin for jam
  • 8 (250ml) preserving jars with lids and rings

MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:20min ›Ready in:50min

  1. Place plums and water into a large pot. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in sugar and add butter to reduce foaming, if needed. Bring the mixture to a full, rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly and then mix in the pectin quickly. Return the jam to a full boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and skim off and discard any foam.
  2. Sterilise the jars and lids in boiling water for at least 5 minutes. Pack the plum jam into the hot, sterilised jars, filling the jars to within 3mm of the top. Run a knife or a thin spatula around the insides of the jars after they have been filled to remove any air bubbles. Wipe the rims of the jars with a moist kitchen towel to remove any food residue. Top with lids and screw on rings.
  3. Place a rack in the bottom of a large stockpot and fill halfway with water. Bring to the boil over high heat, then carefully lower the jars into the pot using a holder. Leave a 5cm space between the jars. Pour in more boiling water if necessary until the water level is at least 2.5cm above the tops of the jars. Bring the water to a full boil, cover the pot and process for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove the jars from the stockpot and place onto a cloth-covered or wood surface, several centimetres apart, until cool. Once cool, press the top of each lid with a finger, ensuring that the seal is tight (lid does not move up or down at all). Store in a cool, dark area. Refrigerate opened jars for upto 3 weeks.

How to sterilise jars

Learn how to sterilise jars two ways with our handy step-by-step guide and video.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(89)

Reviews in English (80)

by DelightfulDines

Hello everyone, I am the submitter of this recipe. I just wanted to make a little note, depending on how fresh your plums are is what determines the amount of sugar you need. As they ripen more they tend to lose some of their sweetness, therefore needing more sugar. I live in a small part of Alaska & we tend to get fruit that is near the end of its shelf life. For fresh plums I would suggest adding only 6- 6 1/2 cups of sugar. Thanks & enjoy!-17 Sep 2011

by Traci-in-Cali

****PLEASE READ: I have made this twice now and both times it did not set. I think my mistake was not getting it get to a rolling boil and keeping it there long enough. Like candy this step is vital for it to turn out! I also upped the boxes of pectin to 2. ~ I decreased my sugar by about a cup and added a squeeze of lemon in the mix. I also like to add 2 cinnamon sticks while it simmers for a bit of spice,. The hardest work for me was de-pitting the tiny Japanese plums from our trees but my son helps. We absolutley love love love this jelly (thinner than a jam) The flavor is spicy-sweet & tart, at least with my plums and added ingredients. My son tells me not to give so much away so we can have more! lol.. This is now going to be a tradition to make every summer.-24 Jun 2011


Good starter recipe. By adding an extra 1/2 cup of plums to recipe and cutting 1/2 cup of sugar you can increase the recipe to 12 half pint jars without losing any of the sweetness. I also used 2.35 ounces of pectin instead of the recommended 1.75 ounce. This thickened up the jam more. Also, to decrease foaming add 1 tablespoon of Lemon juice concentrate along with the butter. The Lemon Juice also helps remove air. Thank you for the inspiration DelightfulDines.-04 Jun 2012

The Science of Jam: How To Make The Perfect Jam

In the kitchen, there’s a fine line between a horror movie and a romantic love story. Take, for example, the preparation of marmalade: while the recipe is simple and delicious, it’s also one that could easily become a recipe for disaster. For instance, the mixture may not solidify, and you’re left with a viscous, uninviting liquid. So here are all the secrets for successfully making homemade jam, and giving your fruity concoction a sweet and happy ending. Learn the best way to make your jam recipes.

Plum Jam

On a warm summer day, I would head out on horseback along with my brother bound for the thickets that were nestled on the sides of the ravines at the ranch. There we would find wild plums, glistening in the sun ready to be gathered and returned to my Mamaw and Aunt Mary, where they would magically transform these beauties into delectable jams and jellies.

My Grandmother Grace Pearl, left pictured next to my Grandad, far left, alongside my Great Uncle Claude and Aunt Mary. Grace and Mary’s plum jam and plum jelly were legendary!

Living in a more urban area, finding wild plums can be a challenge. But making jam with plums from the market is still quite wonderful!

They&aposre great fresh, but broiling plums with orange zest and vanilla beans really enhances the flavor. Plus, the process creates a gorgeous caramelized crust.

Spiced Plum Crumble

Chinese five-spice powder is the kick in this crumble. Divide the servings into individual ramekins for perfectly portioned plum goodness.

Plum Tiramisu

Plums baked in red wine sauce are layered with mascarpone and ladyfingers for a fruity tiramisu you&aposll crave alllll the time. 

Plum Carpaccio

Carpaccio originated in Venice and is typically a dish of thinly sliced meat. We traded in beets for a pretty, vegetarian-friendly side. 

Pork Chops with Warm Plum Chutney

Plum and pork are sweet and savory perfection. The pi de résistance in making this beautiful plate? Balsamic vinegar. 

Plum & Port Cobbler

This simple dessert has a ruby port and orange filling. Wine and ice cream plus sugary biscuits—what&aposs not to like?

Individual Plum Tarts

Grab frozen puff pastry, add plums, butter, and sugar, and you&aposve got a simple, beautiful treat any time the craving hits. 

Frisພ Salad with Goat Cheese & Plums

Photography by Sarah Anne Ward

This dressing is super simple𠅊ll you need is EVOO, honey, and lemon zest. We like drizzling it over everything, but it&aposs extra incredible with this plum-goat cheese-almond combination.

Plum & Goat Cheese Carpaccio with Mint

Fresh mint adds refreshing flavor to this sweet carpaccio while flaky sea salt and shallot keep the sweetness from being overpowering. 

Roasted Plums, Whipped Honey Ricotta & Granola

Photography by Sarah Anne Ward

Skip your usual yogurt for this sweet, creamy concoction. It&aposs just six ingredients and a wonderful way to wake up!

Ginger & Plum Quick Jam

Photography by Sarah Anne Ward

This jam only needs a handful of ingredients and will last up to two weeks in your fridge. Sweet!

Grilled Pork Chops with Fresh Plum Sauce

Top these tasty chops with a fresh mix of plums, basil, red onion, and mint.

Plum-Sauce Pork or Chicken Lettuce Wraps

No need to get fresh plums—simmer plum preserves with tamari and ginger for a simple sauce that perfectly complements the savory fillings in these wraps. 

Watermelon-Plum Sangria

This sangria is one-in-a-melon—plus, it&aposs a gorgeous use for tons of beautifully colored fruits like blackberries and red and golden plums.

Plum & Pecan Pancakes

Regular flapjacks get a makeover with caramelized plum slices and chopped pecans𠅋oth of which are incorporated into the cakes, not just placed on top. Serve &aposem up with warm maple syrup for a beautiful brunch.

Perfect Plums — Summer Fest

We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today, we’re exploring plums.

Nothing says summer like plump plums, bursting with juicy sweetness at every bite. From yellow to green to red to purple, hundreds of plum varieties exist and it’s hard to resist enjoying them straight from the market. But when they do happen to make their way into your kitchen, uneaten, a plum-stained dessert is the perfect way to impress your friends and family any night of the week.

Before you get cooking, be sure to choose plums that give slightly to palm pressure, avoiding cracks, soft spots or brown discolorations.

Hosting a barbecue? Finish on a sweet note with easy-to-make grilled plums. Try Bobby’s Grilled Plums With Spiced Walnut Yogurt or Rachael’s Balsamic Glazed Grilled Plums With Vanilla Ice Cream. Either way, grilled plums — and grilled fruits of all kinds — will quickly become a summer staple.

For a dessert that’s a bit more elaborate, add plums to crumbles, pies, tarts and even cornbread. Ina’s easy Plum Raspberry Crumble comes together in under an hour and can be served warm or at room temperature. Add a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream for a little extra sweetness. In the mood for a good old slice of pie? Try this rich and juicy Deep Dish Plum and Almond Pie. Or go straight for its cousin, the tart. Food Network Magazine's Easy Plum Tart (pictured above) is ready in a flash and every bit as delectable. And for a little Southern flare, Anne’s Plum Cornbread features succulent macerated plums that will leave your dinner guests wanting more.

Don’t forget to save some for later. By the time winter rolls around, you’ll be glad you made a batch or two of Plum-Vanilla Preserves. Spread these luscious preserves on toast, bake them into cakes or swirl them into Greek yogurt for a sweet taste of summer’s plums.

What’s your favorite plum recipe? Share it with us in the comments below.

How to Make Plum Jam

For this homemade plum jam recipe, I start with about 9 cups of chopped plums (about 3lbs prepared). I pit the plums, but I don’t skin them. The plum skins add amazing color to the finished jam, and believe it or not, that’s where a lot of the flavor is. If you don’t like the skins in your finished jam, there’s a couple of things you can do:

  • Dice the plum pieces very small. That’ll mean smaller pieces of skin in the finished fruit, and 1/2 inch to 1-inch pieces makes for barely noticeable plum skins.
  • Puree the pitted plums before starting. The skins will be just a part of the jam as a whole, and you won’t be able to notice them at all in the texture of the finished jam. This creates something different, a bit more like plum butter (but without all the slow cooking & complex flavors that result).
  • Simply make plum jelly instead. All the solids are filtered out through a jelly bag and you get a perfectly smooth jelly instead. There’s still no need to add pectin at all, and you can still make it with just 2 ingredients (strained plum juice and sugar).

For my tastes? I like the skins, and leave them just as they are.

All I do is pit and slice the plums before making plum jam.

After preparing the fruit, you’ll need to decide on how much sugar to add. I’m going to give you my go-to recipe for plum jam, but there’s actually quite a bit of wiggle room if you’d like to use either more or less sugar.

For 9 cups chopped plums (3lbs prepared, 3 1/2 lbs with pits), I add 3 cups sugar (or 1 1/2 lbs). That results in a fruit to sugar ratio of 2:1 by weight or 3:1 ratio by volume.

Most recipes recommend 2:1 by volume, resulting in quite a bit more sugar. Some even go as high as 1:1, especially for Damson plum jam recipes where the plums are quite tart.

I think most plums are plenty sweet and don’t need to be hidden behind all that sugar. For the best flavor, I’d suggest using half as much sugar (by weight) as fruit. That’ll still get you a sweet plum jam, and a good yield, without hiding the spectacular flavor of fresh plums.

And it’ll still gel beautifully even without added pectin…

Place the plums and the sugar in a heavy-bottomed jam pot and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Be sure that you use a deep pot, and that the plums only come up about halfway up the sides to start. The plum jam will foam up as it cooks, and if you fill the pot too much it’ll overflow. Stick to halfway full.

The plums will quickly release their juices when mixed with the sugar, so there’s no need to add liquid to get the cooking started. If you want, you can give it a splash of lemon juice, which will help bring out the fruit flavor by adding a bit of tart juice, but that’s completely optional (and I don’t).

While I add lemon juice to most of my jam recipes, I skip it with plum jam because I think they’re well balanced just the way they are (and they don’t need the extra acidity to really shine). Lemon juice also adds pectin, which helps jams gel, but again, plums don’t need it.

On high heat, it should take about 8-10 minutes for the plum mixture to come to a hard boil. Once it’s boiling hard, turn the heat down a bit to prevent scorching, and cook over medium to medium-high heat (stirring frequently to prevent scorching and overflows).

After about 30 minutes of total cook time, or 20 minutes at a hard boil, the jam should reach gel stage. This can vary a bit depending on your fruit, so keep an eye on it. Begin checking at 15 minutes, and know that it could take as long as 40-45 minutes to finish.

At first, it’ll look more or less like plum soup, with chunks of plums floating in a sea of juice. Once the plum jam gets near gel stage, the texture and the look of the bubbles in the pot will abruptly change. They’ll go from a frothy foam of tiny bubbles to glossy bubbles and the jam will noticeably thicken.

Experienced jam makers know what this looks like, and if you watch closely you can see it with your eye without other tests. It’s easier, however, to test for gel stage with an instant-read thermometer. Jams “gel” at 220 degrees F at sea level, and that drops a bit at higher elevations. For every 500 feet above sea level the finish temperature will drop by 1 degree F. I’m at 1000 feet, so my jams finish at 218 F.

You can also test the texture of your jam by spooning a bit onto a plate that’s been chilled in the freezer. The plate will flash cool the jam, and you’ll be able to see if it’s gelled.

Once it’s reached gel stage, ladle the finished plum jam into prepared jars. This plum jam recipe should yield about 4 half-pint (8 oz) jam jars.

Plum Jam Variations

While sugar is the only strictly “necessary” ingredient to make plum jam, you can add other flavorings if you choose. Plums pair exceptionally well with vanilla, honey, and cinnamon in my opinion.

  • Add the scraped seeds from a vanilla pod (or a few teaspoons of vanilla extract) into the jam once it’s reached gel stage. Stir it in and then pour into jars as usual. (Don’t cook the jam with vanilla in it, the flavor will all cook-off.)
  • Substitute some or all of the sugar for honey for a rich, honey-flavored plum jam.
  • Add 1-2 cinnamon sticks into the pot at the start, removing them as the jam finishes.

Though those are my favorite plum jam variations, my canning books have all manner of ideas too.

    has one recipe for plum jam that incorporates rose water, and another that uses cardamom. Follow the instructions above for vanilla if using rosewater, and add cardamom as I describe cinnamon. has a whole pile of plum jam recipes, and while you don’t actually need pectin of any sort to make the jam, it doesn’t mean they don’t have some great ideas. They suggest a basil/mint/plum jam, plum/ginger/orange, honeyed plum cardamom jam, and several others. has a unique plum and lime jam, as well as a plum and rum jam, both of which would be really different variations to try. They also have a plum wine recipe that’s lovely too!

Add whatever flavors you like, or stick with old fashioned plum jam, the choice is yours. This recipe is pretty flexible and can accommodate a lot of flavor variations.

Storing FOOD Like Your GRANDMA | EASY No Pectin PLUM JAM

Kaye is storing food like her grandma did making and preserving no pectin plum jam. End of July garden update. Kaye grows an edible garden in Los Angeles and lives sustainably on the grid. SUBSCRIBE so you won’t miss out! FREE ebook 󈫺 Steps to a Great First Garden” at
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Video taken from the channel: Late Bloomer

Steps to Make It Gather the ingredients. Wash the plums and cut them into small pieces (1/2 inch or so), removing the stone as you do it. Place them in a heavy pan and pour a little water in the bottom, no more than a half a cup. Bring the plums to a boil, Add. How to make Powidl Take a quantity of Zwetschken/damsons/plums (e.g. use 2.5kg to make 500g of Powidl), halve and de-stone the fruit.

Add a. Spoon small portions of the rum-plum jam mixture a little off-center of the dough cuts. Fold over from the sides without jam and firmly press the edges together. Boil some water with salt and place the turnovers in the water. Simmer on low heat for about 5 minutes.

Quarter the plums and place in a pot with a small amount of water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting possible and simmer (uncovered) for one hou. Prep: 20 min &rsaquo Cook: 4 hr &rsaquo Extra time: 8 hr &rsaquo Ready in: 12 hr 20 min Wash plums, cut in half and remove stones. Add to a large non-reactive pot, stir in sugar and vinegar and let marinate The next day bring to the boil, den reduce the heat and let.

Mix powidl with rum, let stand for a moment, then smear one side of each slice of bread with the powidl-rum mixture. Glue two slices together with the smeared side, so that you get 4 sandwiches. Beat together eggs, milk and and soak sandwiches from both sides so that they are soaked on the outside but don’t get mushy.

Strawberry Plum Jam with Rosemary

By Irvin Lin
This luscious fruit jam is everything you want in a jam. Bursting with summer flavor, the touch of rosemary gives it an herbaceous note that tempers sweetness that is inherent in jam. Strawberries and plums are a perfect combination together. If you can, use a few plums or strawberries that are under-ripe, as they have more pectin in them, which helps the jam solidify. If, for whatever reason, the jam doesn’t jell properly, no worries, just use the resulting loose jam as sauce over cake or ice cream!

Adapted from The Blue Chair Jam cookbook recipe

3 pounds (1365 g) red plums (like Santa Rosa)
1 1/2 pounds (685 g) strawberries
4 cups (800 g) granulated white sugar
1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 to 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary

1. Cut the plums in half and pit each plum. Chop the plums into 1/2-inch chunks, leaving the skin on. Hull the strawberries by cutting off the green tops, discarding the green tops, then quarter each strawberry. Place all the fruit in a large non-reactive pot and add the sugar. Let the fruit sit in the pot for 30 minutes for the fruit to release some juice. In the meanwhile, place three metal spoons in the freezer.

2. Add the lemon juice and stir in. Place the pot on the burner and turn it up to medium high, stirring until the liquid is boiling. Lower until the jam is simmering, and cook for about 30 to 40 minutes, stirring frequently. Once the jam starts to thicken, and resemble the viscosity of cold maple syrup, place a small spoonful of the jam on one of the cold spoons from the freezer. Place back in the freezer for 3 minutes. Take the jam out and press on the jam. If it is set and “wrinkles” then the jam is done.

3. Remove from the heat and add the fresh rosemary. Stir in, and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how much rosemary flavor you want (you can taste it and if it’s not strong enough, leave it in for a few more minutes). Remove the rosemary and process the jam in cans if you want.

To can jam
1. Sterilize 6 half pint jars by first washing the jars, lids and rings in hot soapy water (or run them through a dishwasher). Place a wire rack in a large stockpot and fill it with hot water from the tap, enough to cover the cans by 2 inches. Place the clean hot jars inside the stock pot on the wire rack. Make sure they aren’t touching, cover and turn the heat up to bring the water to a boil. Once boiling, continue to boil for 10 minutes to sterilize the jars. Place the lids in a small pot filled with hot water and bring to a gentle simmer. Let them sit in simmering water but don’t let it boil. You can cover it to prevent the water from evaporating. Turn the oven on to 200˚F and place a large pan with a wire rack on it inside.

2. Once the jars are sterilized, turn the heat off and use your canning tongs to reach in and grab them. Pour the water back into the stock pot and place the jars on the wire rack in the oven. Do the same thing with the lids. I use a magnetic wand that is designed for this sort of thing but I’m fancy that way. You can just use tongs, just make sure they are rubber or silicon tipped not metal as you don’t want to scratch the lids. Close the oven and let them sit in the oven for 10 minutes or more to dry out.

3. Once the jam is done, pull the jars from the oven, turn the oven off and turn the heat on for the large stockpot full of water again and bring it to a boil. Fill the jars with the hot jam, leaving 1/4-inch headspace in each jar. Remove any bubbles you see in the jam with a toothpick. Make sure the edge of the jar is clean and dry and there isn’t any jam on it. Place a lid on top of the jar tightly, and then use a ring to close it (don’t tighten too much, just tight enough to keep the lids on).

4. Place the jars carefully in the boiling water for 10 minutes then turn the heat off and let sit in the water for another 5 minutes. Remove from the water and let sit on a wire rack to cool. The jars should seal with a satisfying ping noise as they cool and seal. Sealed and processed jars will keep on the shelf for 1 year. If a jar doesn’t seal let it cool to room temperature and stick it in the fridge for immediate use. Once open, the jam should be consumed within a month.

Chinese Five Spice Plum Jam

Plums will never rate as high as peaches and nectarines on my summertime stone fruit deliciousness scale but every once and awhile I spy them in the store and I&rsquom like &ldquodamn, that plum looks good.&rdquo

*This post is sponsored by Crunchmaster, a 2017 partner of Running to the Kitchen. All content and opinions are my own.

I bought some, they were so sweet and amazing and then I serendipitously got an email from a local farm that plums were now available for &ldquopick your own&rdquo.

So instead of saying to myself &ldquoI should go do that&rdquo and deleting the email never to actually go and do it, I made good on my #NewBeginnings (more on that in this strawberry basil cider slushies post) promise to take advantage of more of the local stuff I always say I want to do, wrangled Brandy to come along and went and did it.

ps- it&rsquos like they knew we were coming and placed the most amazing rustic farmhouse ladder in the trees specifically for #lifestyle shots. A blogger&rsquos dream.

While I could happily eat these sweet little things one after the next just as they are, I happened to also pick up some local honey lavender goat cheese at the farm with the thought of making a sweet and savory plum jam and smearing both on some Crunchmaster multi-grain crackers.

A few (or twenty) of those with a cold summer drink is basically my idea of the perfect patio happy hour.

Chinese five spice powder is one of my favorite spices to pair with fruit.

It&rsquos also a key ingredient in these Chinese boneless spareribs which are hands down my favorite takeout dish to make at home!

It&rsquos half sweet with cinnamon and cloves but also just a touch savory with things like fennel and pepper in it and it somehow just magically transforms whatever it&rsquos added to into the perfect balanced bite.

This plum jam is still sweet enough to dollop into yogurt or spread on bread (persimmon jam is great for that too!) but savory enough to easily go well on a goat cheese smeared cracker for a savory light appetizer bite.

I loved pairing it with the sea salt Crunchmaster cracker for that added pop of salt to an otherwise sweet/tart/herby combination.

Other ways to enjoy summer plums: grilled scallops with tomatillo plum salsa and goat cheese honey stuffed plums

From the simple jam with the sweet plums as the star of the show to the lavender and honey infused goat cheese to the whole-grain, seed packed crackers (which are also gluten-free and non-GMO certified), each bite is the perfect example of how simple and seasonal ingredients can come together into something far greater than the individual components.

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