The best kit for making jam and chutney

Taking the time to lock fresh flavours into homemade jam and chutney is a great cooking project whatever the time of year. We've selected our favourite preserving tools to help you achieve perfection in a jar...

Whether you have a glorious harvest crop or a batch of summer berries, reducing all that vibrant flavour into a concentrated jam, chutney, pickle or preserve is one of the most satisfying kitchen endeavours you can set upon. Getting the right results is a science, however, and precision, skill and safety are all necessary requirements for success. Don't embark on a preserving session without the right cookery arsenal...

Digital weighing scales


Avoid a disaster by measuring your ingredients to the dot - sugar levels are particularly important when jamming. Ensure accuracy with every recipe by investing in a pair of electronic scales. 

Read the review of digital kitchen scales

Jam pan

Jam pan

Home Made stainless steel 9l maslin pan with handle

Give yourself plenty of room for manoeuvre with a bespoke jam pan. This one holds up to two gallons of liquid and has handy measurements up the side. A maslin pan has a spout and carry handle and can also be used for making stock – or serving mulled wine at a party.

By Kitchen Craft, available from stores nationwide from around £28

Wooden spoons

Wooden spoons

Divertimenti beechwood spoons

Some jams and chutneys require rapid boiling, so wooden spoons are wise as they don't transfer heat. They also prevent scratches and scrapes to the bottom of your pan.

From £1.38, buy from Divertimenti



Kilner jar thermometer

Speaking of upping the mercury, this vintage-inspired probe will help on the health and safety front. Clip it to the side of your pan and monitor the temperature of your preserve to ensure it's ready for jarring.

£12.45, buy from Nutley's Kitchen Gardens 


Jam strainer

Tala jam strainer set

Bypass the dental floss by filtering out seeds. Push your preserve though this mesh sieve to achieve a smooth consistency.

£7.50, buy from Kitchens


Jam funnel

Easy-fill jam funnel

Dribbles down the side of your jars are never a good look - avoid a sloppy mess by using a specialist funnel with a wide neck to transport from the pan.

£6.99, buy from Lakeland

Clip top jars

La Parfait jars

Le Parfait clip-top jars

We're all for recycling your old glass receptacles, but old-fashioned jars look smart and uniform in a hamper, and they can be used again and again if washed and sterilised correctly.

From £5.25, buy from Le Parfait

Lifting tongs


Westmark preserving glass jar lifter

So you don't have to rely on a tattered tea towel, grab yourself some pincers to safely lift steaming hot jars without scalding your mitts.

£7.99, buy from Design2Please

Tags and labels
Jam tags

Mac and Ninny preserve gift kit

If you're making preserves as gifts, make presentation easy by investing in an all-in-one kit that includes twine, patterned jar tops and swing tags. Alternatively, we also have our own BBC Good Food printable preserving labels that are available to download for free.

£6.50, buy from Down to Earth Gifts

More on preserving.. 

Our best-ever jam recipes
Top tips for making jam
Pickle, jam and chutney recipes
Picture guide to making strawberry jam
Video: How to test jam is ready to set
Video: How to make chutney

This review was last updated in October 2016. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at 

Are you a keen jammer? We'd love to hear your cookery tips and product picks.

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