Strawberry jelly is so good. And it’s even better when you make it yourself. However, making a lot of jars from several pounds of strawberries can seem like a daunting task, especially when you don’t want that much, just a jar or two for your family.
Well, this jelly recipe answers that call! It makes one jar, but you can easily increase the ingredients for a larger batch. You can enjoy a little spread with strawberry jelly, orange marmalade, and some crusty bread. What a treat.
The other great thing about this recipe is it doesn’t require pectin to thicken. The sugar and natural juice of the strawberries do all the work. If you find you want it a little thicker, lower the heat a tad and cook just a little longer. It will thicken right up in no time at all.
With some simple ingredients, you can learn to make homemade strawberry jelly. It takes just a few minutes of prep and cooks quickly. Follow these steps below.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook or Bake Time: 10 minutes
Makes 24 tablespoons
Strawberry Jelly Ingredients
- 1 pound of fresh strawberries, sliced with the tops removed
- 1 ½ cups white sugar
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon of fresh lemon zest (optional)
How to Make Strawberry Jelly
- Wash the strawberries well. If you want pieces of strawberry in your jelly, put them directly in the pot. If you want a smoother jelly, use a food processor to puree them.
Place strawberries in a medium-sized pot. Add the sugar and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
Over medium heat, stir the strawberry mixture continuously and bring to a boil.
While the strawberry mixture is boiling, stir in the lemon juice and zest.
Continue cooking (the strawberry mixture should still be bubbling) for about 15 minutes, stirring often, until your jelly reaches 220 degrees F. Keep an eye on it, so it doesn’t burn or scorch.
Pour homemade jelly in a jar and let it cool on the counter.
Once it has cooled you can cover it and refrigerate. It lasts about 2 weeks in the fridge.
You can store strawberry jelly in a sealed mason jar or other tight-fitting glass jar. I saved some glass jelly jars and cleaned them in the dishwasher. Now I use them for my homemade jellies, jam, preserves, and marmalades.
I often buy frozen organic strawberries because they are typically less expensive than non-frozen strawberries. It’s also a cost effective way to buy strawberries in the colder months when they aren’t in season. But I don’t recommend using frozen strawberries to make jam and jelly. You can, but it will be a bit more runny. You can add more sugar to thicken.
Making strawberry jelly is a great way to use extra strawberries if you buy them on sale and have too many to eat fresh. In addition to freezing them or making desserts, it’s also a practical and tasty way to use extra strawberries if you go strawberry picking.
Or maybe you just want to make strawberry jelly. It’s a fun and easy activity. When you make homemade strawberry jam and preserves, you know the exact ingredients you’ll be eating.
Store-bought jelly often has preservatives to extend the shelf-life. Many also contain high fructose corn syrup and/or corn syrup, colorings, and more.
Making Strawberry Jam
I cook and bake most of our foods from scratch because my son has a palm oil allergy and palm oil intolerance. While strawberry jelly and jam typically doesn’t contain palm oil like many other processed foods do, I’m now in the habit of making so many foods from scratch, learning how to make strawberry jelly seemed like a natural thing to do.
Plus, when you make it your own, it will have more real ingredients and less preservatives.
If you make this homemade strawberry jelly recipe, please let me know how it went in the Comments. Why do you make your own instead of buying it? Thank you for your interest in making foods at home.
- 1 lb fresh strawberries sliced with the tops removed
- 1 ½ cups white sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ½ tsp fresh lemon zest optional
- Wash strawberries well. If you want pieces of strawberry in your jelly, put them directly in the pot. If you want a smoother jelly, use a food processor to puree them.
- Place strawberries in a medium-sized pot. Add the sugar and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
- Over medium heat, stir the strawberry mixture continuously. Bring to a boil.
- While strawberries are boiling, stir in lemon juice and zest.
- Continue cooking (the strawberry mixture should still be bubbling) for about 15 minutes. Stir until jelly reaches 220 degrees F. Keep an eye on it, so it doesn’t burn or scorch.
- Pour strawberry jelly in a jar and let it cool on the counter.
- After it's cooled, cover and refrigerate. It lasts about 2 weeks in the fridge.