Whenever I have an abundance of ripe strawberries and have little time to preserve them, I always turn to this Strawberry Freezer Jam recipe.
It is a great way to turn those fresh picked or store bought strawberries into something that can last for months. But best of all there is no cooking or canning required.
That’s right. Unlike when you make Strawberry Honey Jam, this recipe requires no boiling, reducing, or cooking of any kind.
Freezer jam is the perfect way to avoid the preservatives found in store bought jam. And this recipe uses a relatively low amount of sugar as compared to traditional jam.
But best of all, it takes only minutes to prepare! It is the perfect recipe for those who just started a garden or for those who aren’t comfortable with the water bath or pressure canning process.
And because it is so difficult to find canning jar lids right now, this jam recipe might be a necessity for many people this season.
Strawberry Freezer Jam
*Complete recipe instructions are located in a printable recipe card at the bottom of this article.
The recipe below makes approximately 5 cups of jam. However, you can easily adjust the ingredients to double or even triple the recipe if you desire.
This recipe calls for 8 mounded cups of strawberries. This equals to approximately 2 pounds of fresh, whole strawberries.
Although fresh picked strawberries are always best, you can also use store-bought strawberries instead.
- Lemon juice
Because we are not canning this strawberry freezer jam, it is okay to use fresh squeezed or bottled lemon juice in this recipe.
However the taste, flavor and intensity of fresh squeezed lemon juice can widely vary. Therefore, as with any preserving recipe, I would suggest using store-bought lemon juice due to the consistency of the product.
This is the thickening agent that will turn your strawberries into a gel-like jam substance. You can typically find it next to the mason jars at grocery stores.
However, this year, I would definitely pick it up or order it as soon as possible.
No traditional jam recipe would complete without a little, or in some cases a lot of granulated white sugar.
Although this recipe calls for a minimal amount of sugar when compared to other traditional jam recipes, you may not have to use as much as listed.
For instance, if you pick strawberries yourself out of your own patch or at a strawberry farm, you can most likely decrease the amount of sugar required.
This is because fresh picked strawberries are significantly sweeter than store-bought or commercially farmed berries.
The best thing to do is to taste a strawberry before deciding how much sugar that you need to add to the recipe.
The first step in making strawberry freezer jam is to clean and remove the stem of the strawberries. You can use a strawberry huller which will leave you with very little waste.
Or you can use a small pairing knife to cut off the stem and remove the top core of the strawberries.
Once the strawberries are hulled, cut each one into 4-6 sections. Working in small batches, use a potato masher or pastry cutter to crush the strawberries into tiny sections.
You should start to see liquid developing as they are becoming crushed. By the time that you crush all the berries, you will have about half of the volume of what you started with.
Therefore, there should be about 4 cups of crushed fruit left in the bowl. Next, add the lemon juice and stir until well incorporated and set aside.
Then in medium size bowl add the RealFruit pectin and the sugar and mix well. Add this mixture to the crushed strawberries and stir constantly for 3 minutes.
It is important to stir while the pectin is activating with the sugar and strawberries. Otherwise, there may be large clumps of gel throughout your strawberry freezer jam.
Store in Freezer Safe Containers
All that is left to do is to pour the strawberry jam into freezer safe containers.
If you use mason jars for freezing, there are a couple of important tips that will help prevent a disaster.
First, be sure to choose mason jars that are designed to be stored in the freezer. Surprisingly, not all jars can handle the temperature and expansion of the jam once it is placed in the freezer.
All freezer-safe jars have tempered glass and most are straight lined jars. This simply means that the top to the bottom of the jar is straight. The jar has no bending or curves towards the neck/mouth area.
When you purchase mason jars, the label on the side of the cardboard box will indicate whether or not that they are safe for freezing.
However, you may find it easier and less threatening to freeze your strawberry jam in plastic containers. The choice is up to you!
Second, don’t over fill your container. Leave 1 – 1 1/2 inch headspace at the top of each jar or container to allow the jam to expand during the freezing process.
This will help prevent the container from cracking, or even worse, exploding in the freezer.
Once the jars or freezer containers are filled, allow the jam to sit on the counter, uncovered for at least 30 minutes. Then it is safe to tighten the lid and place them in the refrigerator or freezer.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can certainly eat this jam fresh by storing it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks immediately after it is made. No need to wait until it comes out of the freezer.
If sealed properly in an air-tight, freezer safe container, the jam will stay good for up to a year.
The best method to thaw strawberry freezer jam is to remove it from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator overnight. However, you can also let it thaw at room temperature for a couple of hours. I do not recommend submerging the frozen jars into warm water, as this increases the risk of the glass breaking because of the extreme temperature differences.
To use frozen strawberries in this recipe replace the fresh strawberries with 6 cups of frozen berries. Allow them to thaw for 3-4 hours at room temperature. Then pulse them in a food processor or blender 8-10 times until they are in small chunks. Add the sugar and pectin and stir as the recipe indicates.
Although the taste will be slightly different, you can use Splenda in place of the granulated white sugar. Although most recipes call for a 1:1 substitute, I found that using 1 or 1 1/4 cup Splenda tasted better than the full 1 1/2 cups.
Mary and Jim
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Strawberry Freezer Jam
Quick and easy Strawberry Jam that requires no cooking or canning.
- 8 cups of mounded strawberries about 2 pounds
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 1/2 tablespoons Ball RealFruit Instant Pectin
- 1 1/2 cup of sugar
Wash and remove the stem of the strawberries. Cut each one into 4-6 sections. Working in batches crush strawberries to get about 4 cups of crushed fruit.
Add lemon juice and stir.
In a separate bowl add pectin to sugar and mix well
Add sugar mixture to strawberries – stirring for 3 minutes.
Add to freezer safe jars, leaving 1 -1 1/2 inch headspace. Let the containers sit out uncovered for at least 30 minutes.
Cover the lid tightly and refrigerate and use within two weeks or freeze for up to a year.
Recipe courtesy of Old World Garden Farms