Angela's 'flexible' jam recipe

Angela's 'flexible' jam recipe

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(58 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 50 mins

Skill level



1.2 litres/4 jam jars

Make the most of fruit gluts and try making your own jam - delicious spread on homemade bread

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info


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  • 900g fruit (blackberries, plums, raspberries or strawberries), prepared weight
  • 900g golden granulated sugar
  • knob of butter

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  1. Put the fruit into a preserving pan or large heavy-based saucepan. For blackberries, add 50ml of water and 1½ tbsp of lemon juice; for plums (halved and stoned), use 150ml of water; for strawberries, add 3 tbsp of lemon juice (no water); and for raspberries, add nothing. Bring to the boil.
  2. Lower the heat. For blackberries, simmer for 15 minutes; for plums, simmer for 30-40 minutes; for raspberries, simmer for 2 minutes; for strawberries, simmer for 5 minutes. The fruit should be soft.
  3. Tip in the sugar, stir over a very low heat until the sugar has completely dissolved. Raise the heat, bring to a full rolling boil, then rapidly boil blackberries for 10-12 minutes, plums for 10 minutes, raspberries for 5 minutes or strawberries for 20-25 minutes - don’t stir though – until the setting point of 105C is reached.
  4. Remove from the heat, skim off any excess scum, then stir a knob of butter across the surface (this helps to dissolve any remaining scum). Leave for about 15 mins so the fruit can settle. Pour into sterilised jars, label and seal.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, August 2009

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Comments, questions and tips

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tanyarhodes's picture

Tried the strawberry jam for a first attempt but over did it! The tip with a cold plate in the freezer, just put a thin layer on the plate and leave it a good few seconds first! (this is where I think i went wrong) Fairly sure ill get it next time.

mammafin's picture

It is worth investing in a jam thermometer . However if you use the cold plate tip, make sure to take the pan off the heat whilst testing as the temperature can rise past the setting point very quickly - hence burnt jam and pan . good Luck next time

weldonblue's picture

I made this recipe with plums, although tasted delicious it was very runny. Maybe need to add gelatine?

ilady192's picture

Having a nightmare with this, first time around the jam burnt. Second time the jam is not set and too sweet, but I did just use granulated sugar not golden as stated. The jam tastes too sweet. Not sure whether to throw out and give up or reheat the jam to further boiling point? Any tips please??!

amains's picture

My first time making jam and what a surprising success! I made BlackBerry jam, used a stock pot, normal caster sugar (600g to 900g fruit) and made sure I followed the instructions to a tee. I filled 3 Bon Maman jars to the top. It is delicious and set perfectly. I'm going to invest in a jam thermometer and try more flavours.

hbrog's picture

DISAPPOINTING! I made the plum one and it's so runny. Did anyone get theirs to set without jam sugar? Wish I'd used this as I have some. Also, it burnt really badly and has wrecked my jam pan. Am sure I stirred in and dissolved the sugar before bringing to a boil but no idea how this happened. What a waste of time. It's all vaguely flavoured with burnt sugar. :(

clive_diamond's picture

you can check if the jam is ready by putting a small drop on to a cold plate and it should be firm and rubbery, if not carry on the cooking until you get a nice jelly texture on the plate.

Jod880's picture

Did you weigh the fruit after you'd stoned and halved it? It makes a massive difference. You also need to stew the plums for a long time before adding the sugar. Just suggestions. Don't give up, there is nothing better than home made plum jam!

JoeyMorlando's picture

Great recipe. Clear and easy to follow. I made plum jam and it is delicious. I used 1kg of plums and 1kg of jam sugar and it made 4 jars (Bonne Maman size) Remember to weigh plums after you have chopped and stoned them (I nearly didn't!)

crystalchris's picture
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Perfect I'm a first timer at jam after picking too many blackberry this year however this is definitely going to become a yearly thing in our house. I've done 3 batches ready for Christmas presents. Thank you my hubby says best blackberry jam he has ever tasted.

shinjinku's picture

Great recipe. Think I will be spending more and more time in the kitchen jamming, as the English summer has officially disappeared. I also found this site to purchase some lovely jars from as well. High quality, cheap and fast delivery. Happy days.

vocey's picture
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Wow, how easy and fun to do with the kids. Picked, cooked and eaten....Big smiles and excitement that they made something from scratch. This is such a 'Yummy' jam as described from my 5yr old kids. Off out to pick some more blackberries to freeze for another day cheers x ps lime also works (didn't have any lemons!)

irish mammy's picture

this receipe was an easy and tasty way of using up my bountiful blackberry harvest this autumn. pots of yummy jam for home & gifts and all for the price of a bag of sugar & a lemon! i did reduce the sugar content by 100-150g,

Clive Horton's picture

A brilliant method and recipe. I'm hopeless but I triumphed here. I am now trying it with less sugar (I'm a diabetic) ill let you know how it goes.

debandlola's picture
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If using blackberries, I would definitely use jam sugar (i.e. with added pectin), otherwise it's very likely to turn out runny.

Ash1881's picture

Howdy, I have just made a Blackberry jam although... It's not quite jam! It's fairly runny, Can I fix this?

mariat01's picture

Hi, yes you can. Buy some pectin (the stuff that makes jam set), either powder or liquid. Re-boil you jam and add the pectin as per its instructions. Test for set by either a jam thermometer, or by the cold plate in the freezer method (put a drop of the jam onto a plate which has been cooled in the freezer for a while, wait for a few seconds for it to cool, then push it with your finger. If it wrinkles, it's ready). Pot up into freshly sterillised jars. Blackberries and strawberries are naturally low in pectin, which is why they need it added to help the jam set. Commercial pectin is made from apples I believe.

annbishop's picture

I have made the Plum and also Blackberry using this recipe both were wonderful and I have orders for more from my neighbours and family xx perfect recipe, followed to the letter but on this times batch of Plum I am adding Vanilla essence.......I will keep you posted !!

tedkeen's picture
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Lovely! I made the strawberry jam but I used jam sugar and I only needed to boil it for 12 minutes before it reached setting point. This meant that it made 1.5 litres of jam. I intend to make lots more using other fruits as well.

ypsilon's picture


does anybody have a recipe for raspberry jam with less sugar?
I would like 2 or 3 parts of fruit to 1 part of sugar... ?????????????