How to fix jam that is too runny

A few weeks ago I decided to whip up a No-Sugar Strawberry Jam, wanting savour the berry flavours in the coming autumn months.  On the weekend I couldn’t wait any longer and popped open a jar to have for breakfast only to be bitterly disappointed as it hadn’t set properly and I was left with a runny jam.

When this happens you have two options – leave it and use it as a dessert topping or mix through cake recipes or fix it.  I have kept two jars for baking purposes and the rest I went about fixing.  You only need a couple of ingredients – pectin, lemon juice and sugar and some new lids  as they only have a single use (you can reuse jars and bands).

Step 1.  Figure our how much jam/jelly needs to be remade.

Check all the jars from the failed batch as it is likely that if one didn’t set they’re all in need of attention.  The best way to do this is turn them upside down and see how quickly the jam moves, a quick slosh means they need to be reworked.

Add up the jar sizes to figure out how much needs to be remade.  Its is best not to rework more than 4-6 cups at a time.

As most preserving jars use imperial measurements use the equation below to see what you’ve got to work with:  1x half pint  = 1x cup

1 quart = 32 oz = 2 pints = 4x half pint

Open the jars to be fixed and dump them all into a large bowl.

Since you will probably want to reuse the jars, get the now emptied jars into the dishwasher to sterilize  (If you hand wash your jars like I do, use the hottest water you can and add an extra 5min on the waterbath time)

Step 2. Measure out your ingredients.

I use powered pectin (there are other types on the market however I tend to go for the No-Sugar variety).  For each quart of jam to be fixed, mix 1/4 c sugar, 1/4 water ( or white grape juice), 2 tbs lemon juice and 4tsp pectin.

So for an average batch of 4x Quart jars you will need:

  • 1c Sugar
  • 1c Water (or White Grape juice)
  • 1/4c Lemon Juice
  • 1/3c Pectin

Step 3 – Bring to a boil

Bring the pectin mixture to a boil while stirring. Add the jam and bring to a rolling boil again, over high heat, stirring constantly.  Once it is a rolling boil, boil hard for 1 minute.

Remove from heat, skim the foam and fill jars

Step 4 – Process in the water bath

Process the jars as per your original recipes instructions.  For my No-Sugar jam that meant 10mins and then an extra 5mins as I hand washed my jars.

Its been 24 hours since I reworked my jam using the method above and I am proud to say as of this morning I am the owner of several jars of perfectly set No-Sugar Strawberry Jam.


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2 Responses to How to fix jam that is too runny

  1. linda says:

    i have remade my apple jelly for the 2nd time it is still watery. none of these fixes work.

  2. carol Dyer says:

    Your re cooked No sugar jam does have sugar added in the second cook so you shouldn’t call it No Sugar.If you want to keep it with out using seals and ring lids you can pour wax on top with an ordinary lid or you can keep it in the fridge. As a preserver of food for over 55 years, the best way to preserve veges is to put them in the freezer, having blanched them first, except for corn on the cob covered with its leaves, which can be trimmed and put straight in the freezer. The danger of preserving in a jar is the risk of botulism. Not recommended.

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