Sweet chilli jam

Sweet chilli jam

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(149 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 1 hr

Skill level



Makes 4 small jars

This has a kick, but won’t blow your head off, and goes well with any selection of cold cuts of meat

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition per jar



  • 8 red peppers, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 10 red chillies, roughly chopped
  • finger-sized piece fresh root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 400g can cherry tomatoes
  • 750g golden caster sugar
  • 250ml red wine vinegar

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  1. Tip the peppers, chillies (with seeds), ginger and garlic into a food processor, then whizz until very finely chopped. Scrape into a heavy-bottomed pan with the tomatoes, sugar and vinegar, then bring everything to the boil. Skim off any scum that comes to the surface, then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for about 50 mins, stirring occasionally.
  2. Once the jam is becoming sticky, continue cooking for 10-15 mins more, stirring frequently so that it doesn’t catch and burn. It should now look like thick, bubbling lava. Cool slightly, transfer to sterilised jars, then leave to cool completely. Keeps for 3 months in a cool, dark cupboard – refrigerate once opened.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, December 2008

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thedaisydarling's picture
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This recipe is brilliant, I have made this many times.
I also use this as a basis for making Red and green tomato chutney, I also use it in Chinese cooking and anything you need some sweetness and a little zing, try it you will not be sorry.

HilMil's picture

This isn't an actual jam and with the vinegar is technically more of a chutney. Therefore, don't expect it to set. Cook it gently as all you're doing is letting the vinegar evaporate. And don't forget that the sugar is there as a preservative so you can't reduce it too far. I cooked it in a wide, shallow non stick pan and it took well over an hour, but I kept an eye on it while doing other stuff.

Kathicus's picture

I made this last year, largely following the recipe, and it was great stuff. This year, I've put in piles of chillies as had loads at once from the polytunnel - about 400g by weight, 3 big green/red peppers (home grown too) which I think must weighed in at about 700g (about the same as 5 normal sized ones I'd guess), about 40g of garlic and a big lump of ginger (probably about 70g). Then rather than tinned tomatoes I used three big beefsteak style toms from the garden which I blitzed first (about 400g as recommended). I was aiming to make the recipe as described but with more of a kick, and it did the trick - great consistency, fiery hot, and easy to make by blending everything first. Mine was done in about an hour, but I'm sure this is largely dependant on how fast you're boiling it etc.

superang's picture

Absolutely wonderful stuff. I doubled everything in the recipe but kept the sugar the same. I also used dried ginger and ordinary tinned tomatoes and it still turned out lovely. I had to cook it for a good hour and a half. Everyone loves it and as soon as my broken shoulder has healed I'll make some more.

birdfeeder1's picture
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family cant get enough of this delicious jam...great with cheddar cheese and cold meats. We do like more chillies for that extra kick!

angelaosei's picture

I've made this recipe a few time & love it. My friends can't get enough of it. I had to leave it cooking for a lot longer than the recipe says - about 1 & half hours or more.

lahelapixie's picture
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Amazing and really easy to make. Not too hot for me.

chief501's picture

This was a lovely recipe. I added the juice and zest of a lime for a bit of zing and a grated a cooking apple to bulk it out a bit and add some pectin. Will definitely make this again soon as my 6 jars aren't going to last very long.

jrw19leacuk's picture

Lovely recipe. I reduced the amount of sugar as suggested by other people. I think the disparity in the length of time the jam takes to thicken is caused by the sentence "then turn the heat down to a simmer" - jam needs to be cooking with a rolling boil - simmering will take ages as it's just not hot enough.

sonia08's picture

I don't normally comment on recipes, but I had to for this one. Have just made a batch as I thought it would go wonderfully with all the Christmas leftovers. My hubby has continued to eat this out of the pot so I am going to have to make some more. It is very sweet, but we have a sweet tooth so that is really not a problem. I would highly recommend, and it is so simple to make.

Barosinbliss's picture

Tastes good but wish I'd followed others advice and used less sugar. It is VERY sweet.

i_love_my_food_61's picture

Well have just completed by first attempt at this recipe and it's looking and tasting good. Although a bit hotter than I expected (having said that my chillies were a bit on the big side). Cooking time was longer than stated on the recipe and having read previous reviews I did reduce the amount of sugar in the jam.

JuicyJu's picture

WoW - This tastes amazing straight away so after a few weeks it should be awesome!!
Don't be tempted to scrimp on the chillis folks - even I, who likes a bit of heat, thought 'TEN chillis?! Okaaay..' & whilst picking ten fiery li'l devils off my chilli plant, thought I'm the only one who's going to eat this....
As said, it has a kick but not head-blowing-off style - Really good simple recipe!
** I took the tip from a commenter to use 550g of sugar & it works fine ***

Lisa lou's picture

The first time I made this I thought it would never set so rather than be patient I sieved the jam and was left with 5 small pots of jam ( which went thick when cold) and 4 small pots of sweet chilli sauce to cook stir fries etc. I use 1 x scotch bonnet chilli and 5 birds eye ones as I like it with a real kick.

RocketRonnie9's picture

I've made this recipe several times, it never fails and is so easy to make.

dorothy24's picture

This is a brill recipe, so easy and very very tasty.

pamlord's picture

can I make this jam in a microwave by halving the ingredients

keri_thomas's picture

This is the second time I've made this recipe. On both occasions I've been without a food blender so have had to use a potato masher to try and crush the ingredients (no easy task!) but to my mind this has made the end result a bit more authentic, as there's lots of nice chunky peppers and chillies in the jam. This time around I've used fresh cherry tomatoes and it doesn't appear to be making much of a difference to the recipe, although I admit the second batch is bubbling away as we speak so the end result could prove differently. I've played it by ear when it comes to times, as the 50 minutes does seem very inadequate, and it seems to take at least an hour and a half on my gas hob. I used it last week by running it through some spaghetti instead of a pasta sauce, and it really was delicious.

64baby's picture

I made this chilli jam to take on a skiing trip to Mount Hotham, Australia. (I cooked for twenty for a week as I don't ski). It was delish and I now have orders from the group we were with. Yummy!

hattiechambers's picture

We bought some delicious chilli jam from a roadside stall in Cornwall and was desperate to recreate it when we got home from our holiday. This recipe was just perfect, in fact we think it's even better. The jam is easy to make (like others, it did need a longer cooking time) and is gorgeous with a barbecue but also goes really well with cheese and biscuits (my husband loves it slathered onto a simple cheese sandwhich). I reduced the sugar to 550g and it was still sweet and tasty with a great kick. It made five 300ml (Bonne Maman size) jars. Only made it last weekend and already received several requests for the recipe. Planning to make some more very soon.