How To Make Elderberry Jam

How To Make Elderberry Jam

How to make Elderberry Jam using just 3 simple ingredients, elderberries, sugar and jam. This sweet and floral jam is a seasonal treat for your toast, scones and cakes. 

Clusters of elderflowers let me know summer is nearly here, and ripening elderberries signal the start of autumn. Elder is the tree that keeps on giving and I have plenty of recipes to make the most of it in summer and autumn! 

How to make elderberry jam
How To Make Elderberry Jam

Ever wondered how to make elderberry jam? It’s easy, just whack all ingredients in a pan and boil for 30 minutes! Some sorting is required, it took me over an hour to wash and sort through the berries. Giving each one a little squeeze to check it was perfect enough for my jam.

I know you’re now wondering is it worth an hour of your time to sort through elderberries, I say yes! Elderberry jam is very unique and it’s not something you can buy from the supermarket. These super berries are packed with antioxidants and vitamins. Grown by nature they have never seen a pesticide. These aren’t flown in from overseas, you can find them locally. Best of all…they are free!!! 

I love making Jam because you control what goes in it, no preservatives or unnecessary additives, and the best fruit personally selected by you. Yes jam has a fair bit of sugar in it, but a little spoonful of jam every now and then won’t do any lasting damage! 

Elderberries
How to make elderberry jam

Contents

Where do I find Elderberries 

Elderberries grow on Sambucus Nigra (Elder). They are found in woodland, parks, hedgerows, and gardens. Elderberries grow in clusters and are ripe when they are black and shiny. If the majority of the cluster is red and green they need a little longer to ripen. Don’t take all of the berries, they are food for local wildlife! 

Elderberry Jam Ingredients 

500g freshly foraged elderberries

500g granulated sugar

40ml freshly squeezed lemon juice 

You are looking for bunches of black shiny berries. Give the elderberries a little squeeze. If they have a little resistance they are perfect. If they pop they are too ripe. Red and green berries are underripe. 

Equipment needed to make Elderberry Jam

A large pan

Plastic or wooden spoon

A jam thermometer or small plate (seems like a strange alternative, I will explain)

Sterilised glass jars able to hold 500-600g of freshly made jam.

Sterilised Ladle 

How to make Elderberry Jam

Pop a small plate in the freezer, no need to do this if you have a sugar thermometer. 

Use a fork to remove the berries from the stalk. Put the berries in a large bowl full of water. Use your fingers to stir the berries and remove any bits of stalk/debris. Pour through a fine sieve and the repeat the washing process one more time. After the second wash allow the berries to drain off the excess water. 

Pour the berries into the large pan and stir in the sugar and lemon juice. Stir continuously over a medium-low heat for 5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Then stop stirring and let the jam bubble away for 20 minutes, stir occasionally to ensure it’s not sticking to the bottom of the pan. 

If using a sugar thermometer dip it in the jam to take the temperature, the magic temperature is 105c. If it’s not 105c allow the jam to continue to boil and test again in a few minutes. 

If you don’t have a thermometer you need to take the small plate out of the freezer and pour a little dollop of jam on it. Pop it back in the freezer for a minute. Take it back out of the freezer and run your finger through it, if it’s formed a skin it’s ready. If it’s like syrup  it needs longer. Pop the plate back in the freezer and allow the jam to continue to boil and test again in a few minutes. 

When the jam reaches 105c, or forms a skin on the frozen plate, use a ladle to fill the jars. Seal and store in a cool dark place for up to a year. Keep in the fridge when opened. 

Take pictures, post on your socials and tag me! @TheDelectableGarden on IG and @TDG.co.uk on FB. 

How to sterilise your equiptment

Don’t have enough elderberries? Chuck in other berries (up to total weight of 500g) and call it hedgerow jam! 

How To Make Elderberry Jam

How To Make Elderberry Jam

How to make elderberry jam with just 3 simple ingredients. This sweet and floral jam is a seasonal treat for your toast.
Prep Time1 hour
Cook Time30 minutes
Cooling Time2 hours
Total Time3 hours 30 minutes
Course: Afternoon Tea, Breakfast
Cuisine: British
Keyword: Afternoon Tea, Forage, jam, Seasonal
Servings: 3 150 ml jars
Calories: 510kcal

Equipment

  • large pan
  • plastic or wooden spoon
  • sugar thermometer or a small plate
  • Ladle sterilised
  • Glass jars sterilised. Enough to hold about 500-600g of jam

Ingredients

  • 500 g elderberries
  • 500 g granulated sugar
  • 40 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  • Pop a small plate in the freezer, no need to do this if you have a sugar thermometer.
  • Use a fork to remove the berries from the stalk. Put the berries in a large bowl full of water. Use your fingers to stir the berries and remove any bits of stalk/debris. Pour through a fine sieve and the repeat the washing process one more time. After the second wash allow the berries to drain off the excess water. 
  • Pour the berries into the large pan and stir in the sugar and lemon juice. Stir continuously over a medium-low heat for 5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Then stop stirring and let the jam bubble away for 20 minutes, stir occasionally to make sure it’s not sticking to the bottom of the pan. 
  • If using a sugar thermometer dip it in the jam to take the temperature, the magic temperature is 105c. If it’s not 105c allow the jam to continue to boil and test again in a few minutes. 
    If you don’t have a thermometer you need to take the small plate out of the freezer and pour a little dollop of jam on it. Pop it back in the freezer for a minute. Take it back out of the freezer and run your finger through it, if it’s formed a skin it’s ready. If it’s like syrup  it needs longer. Pop the plate back in the freezer and allow the jam to continue to boil and test again in a few minutes. 
  • When the jam reaches 105c, or forms a skin on the frozen plate, use a ladle to fill the jars. Seal and store in a cool dark place for up to a year. Keep in the fridge when opened. 
  • Take pictures, post on your socials and tag me! @TheDelectableGarden on IG and @TDG_page on FB. 

Notes

See link in post on how to sterilise your equipment. 
Don’t have enough elderberries? Chuck in other berries (up to a total weight of 500g) and call it hedgerow jam! 
Nutritional information is for guide purposes only. It’s based on ingredients I used and may vary. 

My blog is full of seasonal recipes! Check out some of my favourites below…

Apple and Blackberry Crumble Cake

How to make apple and blackberry crumble cake

Homemade Creme De Mure

Homemade Creme De Mure

Connect with me on social media. If you make any of my recipes don’t forget to share and tag me IG @TheDelectableGarden and FB @TDG.co.uk

Enjoy ☺️ 

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