Seville orange marmalade in a pot

Seville orange marmalade

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(14 ratings)

Prep: 45 mins Cook: 2 hrs Plus overnight soaking

A challenge

Makes 3 x 450g/1lb jars marmalade, plus 1 x 100g/3½oz jar

Seville oranges are the key ingredient for this delicious, tangy marmalade

Nutrition and extra info

  • Easily doubled
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per 10g serving

  • kcal28
  • fat0g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs7g
  • sugars7g
  • fibre0g
  • protein0g
  • salt0g
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  • 4 Seville oranges (about 500g/1lb 2oz in total), scrubbed



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 1.7l water
  • 1kg granulated sugar


  1. Halve the oranges and squeeze the juice into a large stainless-steel pan. Scoop the pips and pulp into a sieve over the pan and squeeze out as much juice as possible, then tie the pulp and pips in the muslin. Shred the remaining peel and pith, either by hand with a sharp knife or in a food processor (a food processor will give very fine flecks rather than strips of peel). Add the shredded peel and muslin bag to the pan along with the water. Leave to soak overnight. This helps to extract the maximum amount of pectin from the fruit pulp, which will give a better set. It also helps to soften the peel, which will reduce the amount of cooking needed.

  2. Put the pan over a medium heat, then bring up to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 1½-2 hrs, until the peel has become very soft. (The cooking time will be affected by how thickly you have cut the peel.) To see if the peel is ready, pick out a thicker piece and press it between your thumb and finger. It should look slightly see-through and feel soft when you rub it.

  3. Carefully remove the muslin bag, allow to cool slightly, then, wearing the rubber gloves, squeeze out as much liquid as possible to extract the pectin from the fruit pulp. Discard the bag and weigh the simmered peel mixture. There should be between 775-800g; if less, then top up with water to 775g.

  4. Put 4 small plates in the freezer, ready to use when testing for setting point. Add the sugar to the pan, then put over a low heat. Warm gently so that the sugar dissolves completely, stirring occasionally. Do not boil, before the sugar is dissolved.

  5. Increase the heat and bring up to the boil but do not stir while the marmalade is boiling. After about 5 mins the marmalade will start to rise up the pan (it may drop back and then rise again) and larger bubbles will cover the surface. After 8-10 mins boiling, test for setting point. Times will vary according to the size of the pan – in a large pan this takes 7-8 mins, in other pans it may take 12-15 mins. As setting point can be easily missed it’s better to test too early than too late.

  6. To test the setting point: take the pan off the heat and allow the bubbles to subside. Take a plate from the freezer and spoon a little liquid onto the plate, then return to the freezer for 1 min. Push the marmalade along the plate with your finger. If setting point has been reached then the marmalade surface will wrinkle slightly and the marmalade won’t run back straight away. If it’s not at setting point, return to the heat and boil again for 2 mins before re-testing. Repeat until setting point is reached. If you have a sugar thermometer, setting point is reached at 105C, but it’s good to do the plate test as well.

  7. Leave the marmalade to stand for 10 mins or until starting to thicken. If there’s any scum on the surface, spoon it off. Transfer the marmalade to sterilised jars. Cover with a wax disc (wax side down) and seal. When cold, label the jars and store in a cool, dark cupboard. The marmalade should keep for up to a year.

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Comments, questions and tips

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9th Feb, 2020
My first marmalade, and a great result that even my wife enjoyed! Took slightly longer than I expected to reach setting point, but I may have being a bit cautious with this being my first attempt. I sliced the rind from one and a half oranges, and blitzed the remainder in the food processor, which I feel gave a nice balance of rind to marmalade - I suspect that leaving it all as rind slices would be a bit too much. Overall, a great taste, relatively simple process and a really nice recipe.
17th Jan, 2019
My first ever batch of marmalade took 3 days to make with this recipe. My second batch is now on it's 4th day. I cannot get the second batch to set and I am now boiling it again. I have even added jam sugar with added pectin as both batches were very sour. Trying to extract the correct amount of pectin from the muslin bag is very hit & miss. I also reduced the amount of liquid in the second batch to aid setting, still no joy. The amount of times I have tested for the setting point is beyond a joke. If I ever try marmalade again it won't be with this recipe.
Yorkshire Rose
17th Jan, 2019
I swear by Delia Smith's recipe, works everytime, even on my first ever batch & I've been making it for 8 years. Might be worth trying.
Skip Redman's picture
Skip Redman
12th Feb, 2018
Our San Diego neighbor was very disappointed in his Seville Orange crop this year - nearly juiceless, chock-full of seeds and smallish. I used four to make this recipe and they worked great and I have enough marm for 6 months or more! I squeezed the muslin bag a couple of times during the soaking process and failed to notice the 105C note at the bottom of the recipe, so I did the scootch test three times before getting the wrinkles. The only thing I wished was different is the amount of peel available for each jar only floats on the top 1" - my supposition is that the fruit was too small and the resulting rind insufficient. But it's a perfect sweet-tart balance!
19th Jan, 2018
Made this, as first ever attempt at marmalade. I had no idea until the final stages if it was going to be ok. It's fantastic. Will make again.
5th Feb, 2017
I found this recipe time-consuming and inaccurate, though the results are very tasty. I doubled the quantities and ended up with 8.5 jars of marmalade (Bonne Maman size). I followed the instructions to the letter. When I weighed the simmered peel mixture as instructed I was surprised to have over 2.2kg. Maybe this is why it took so long to reach setting point (almost 50 minutes). Luckily I was using a jam thermometer, or I would have run out of saucers! I still have 1kg of seville oranges left and am going to try a different marmalade recipe with them. I shall report back on how that one compares.
27th Jan, 2017
This is undoubtedly my favourite recipe for marmalade. I've used it for the last couple of years, but like to ring the changes so I just made a batch with half my oranges using the more traditional "boil whole oranges" method. It's good enough, but this recipe has a far "fresher" taste to it so I'll be using it for the other half. It always gets compliments and I get asked for jars by those who have tried it. I'd say the other method is easier and it's all done in a day and the oranges are easier to scoop out and slice the peel of when they are boiled, but the extra effort of this recipe is worth it. Top tip: You get more of the pectin out of the pulp by transferring the content of the muslin bag into a sieve and pushing through with a wooden spoon than by just squeezing the bag.
Mrs MM
15th Jan, 2017
A fabulous recipe. My first attempt at marmalade. I did a lot of research and looked at the 'easier' methods where you boil the fruit whole but I went with this one as I felt the ' easier' methodology was more work. This process is split over 2 days and it makes it so easy. It tastes divine and I am now making my second batch. I always used to buy top of the range marmalade but this knocks them off the pitch.
13th Jan, 2016
I moved to Crete last year and am fortunate enough to have a bitter orange tree in the garden. Using this recipe I made a batch of fantastic marmalade, nearly all gone now, but there are more oranges on the tree now........
20th Jan, 2014
Tried this over the weekend. I cannot help fiddling so I added. Couple of blood oranges (n addition) to the recipe. I did not use the peel but added that, and the pith to the muslin bag for pectin. This added a nice colour to the marmalade and a slightly different taste. I still had too many Seville oranges so I did another batch and added the juice of one lemon this time. This was also great - arguably better - as it has more of a sharp bite. Excellent & simple recipe. Prep time is long, though - cutting, scraping pith, boiling. I did not do the soak overnight but cut the rinds very thin instead. All good.


Max Bromley's picture
Max Bromley
14th Jan, 2018
I use a very similar recipe by John Tovey from the Radio Times and the taste is fantastic. My question is however that both last year and this year I almost had two temperatures in the maslin pan. I was hoping for a rolling boil which I achieved once - a long time ago - but I seem to get something very hot below the surface which almost seems to 'explode' when I stir. Could someone suggest what might be happening? Max
Michael Lee's picture
Michael Lee
8th Jan, 2020
The amount of water specified seems too high. I used 3 litres to 2kg of fruit to produce the right amount of peel mixture. If using an induction hob I suggest increasing the heat gradually until it boils with minimal stirring, as mine burnt at the bottom on the high setting.
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