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Strawberry Rhubarb Jam without Pectin


A very aromatic and easy to make strawberry rhubarb jam made without added pectin. 



This strawberry rhubarb jam recipe is very simple. A classic, sweet and aromatic rhubarb and strawberry jam that will make everyone happy. No chia seeds, sugar substitutes or anything fancy, just plain old jam with only fruit and sugar.

While I do like the new ways of making jam with chia seeds and maple syrup and so on (it does feel good when you know you’re eating healthier), I do like the real jam as well. And my children definitely like the classic jams better than the new varieties (it is understandable, they don’t care about being brave and eating less sugar, on the contrary I would say).


strawberry rhubarb jam in a jar


So this Homemade Strawberry Rhubarb Jam is for you out there who like the jam to taste like your grandma’s used to do. This one does actually taste very much like my grandma’s, although my grandma never used rhubarb for anything, except a Rhubarb Meringue Cake.

But she did make a killer strawberry jam, very sweet, so you would only put a teaspoon of it on your bread slice or crepe and that would still be sweet enough, but so aromatic that you sometimes just had to eat a teaspoonful of it without bread at all, just for the taste of it.

My jam is not quite as sweet as my grandma’s, the addition of rhubarb and lemons gives it a wonderful tart note.


glossy rhubarb strawberry jam in a jar



You will not need any added pectin to make the strawberry rhubarb jam. What you will use to help the jam thicken is an apple and a lemon. They both have lots of pectin and that will be enough to help the jam jelly.



  • Making jam is actually very easy.
  • Chop the fruit, place it into a large pot together with the sugar and boil until the jam thickens.
  • There will be quite a lot of foam forming during this time, make sure you remove that properly at the end, it is not nice to have it in your jam, and the jam will not keep that long if you haven’t removed the foam before pouring the jam into the jars.


strawberry rhubarb jam on crisp bread



The only problem that might arise when making jam is deciding when the jam has thickened enough. If you don’t boil it long enough it will be too runny, but if you boil it too much it will harden in the jars. I managed to cook a cherry jam once so long that I could not get it out of the jars anymore… I had to throw everything away, jam and jars…

However, after making lots of jam during the last ten years or so, I kind of learned to tell when a jam or jelly has cooked long enough.

The cooking time of the jam depends a lot on how much jam you are making, on how big your pot is and how much pectin the fruit contains.


strawberry rhubarb jam in a jar


In the case of this strawberry rhubarb jam you should already start checking after 30 minutes. I normally have an eye for it, I scoop some juice on a spoon and check how the drops are falling down from it.

  • If that happens quickly, the jam needs more time.
  • If the drops take a moment to form, kind of come together, fall down slowly and seem to be thick enough, I stop the cooking process.

This method is maybe not very appropriate for an inexperienced eye (it doesn’t always work for me either) so for better results you should try the following:


how to check if jam is cooked enough


  • Place a small plate in the freezer at the beginning of the cooking time.
  • Check the consistency of the jam by dropping a few drops of juice on the plate.
  • Put the plate back in the freezer and check again after 1 minute.
  • Run a finger through the middle of the jam puddle on the plate, if the trail remains than the jam is ready and you should stop the cooking process.


homemade strawberry rhubarb jam


While the jam is cooking prepare the jars. In the post for Simple Apricot Jam you will find more information on sterilizing your jars properly.


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strawberry rhubarb jam


strawberry rhubarb jam in a jar

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam without Pectin

Yield: 5-6 small jars
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

A very aromatic and easy to make strawberry rhubarb jam made without added pectin. 


  • 500 g/ 1.1 lbs strawberries, weighed after cleaning
  • 1 kg/ 2.2 lbs rhubarb, weighed after cleaning and peeling
  • 2 organic lemons
  • 1 apple
  • 1,5 kg/ about 3.3 lbs/ 7 ½ cups granulated sugar


  1. Wash and hull the strawberries and clean and peel the rhubarb. Halve the strawberries and cut the rhubarb into small pieces.
  2. Grate the zest of one lemon and juice both of them. Grate the apple as well.
  3. Place a small plate in the freezer at the beginning of the cooking time.
  4. Place all the ingredients in a large pan, bring to a boil while stirring often and let cook for about 50-60 minutes until the jam starts to thicken.
  5. There will be quite a lot of foam forming during this time, remove it with a slotted spoon.
  6. Start checking the jam after 30 minutes. Read the blog post for more information on how long to boil the jam.
  7. Check the consistency of the jam by dropping a few drops of juice on the plate from the freezer. Put the plate back in the freezer and check again after 1 minute. The jam drops should wrinkle when pushed with the finger. If they don't wrinkle, keep cooking and checking until you get them to wrinkle.
  8. While the jam is cooking sterilize the jars.
  9. Pour the jam into the hot prepared jars and seal tightly.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 jar
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1053Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 11mgCarbohydrates: 271gFiber: 6gSugar: 259gProtein: 2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.


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Tuesday 22nd of May 2018

My favorite jam! Yours is gorgeous. My recipe is very similar but I don't add the apple. I know that it's high in pectin, but it really make that much of a difference? Now I'm really curious. Thanks for the idea and recipe!


Thursday 11th of June 2015

It is really worth a try, Chris. I think you will like it so much, you'll make it again next year. :)

Chris Scheuer

Wednesday 10th of June 2015

One of my favorite combination though I've never had it in jam. It sounds delightful!


Tuesday 9th of June 2015

Thank you, Rachel. Although I try to eat healthier and do enjoy the chia seed jam version as well, I do admit that when it comes to jam nothing beats the real stuff... :) Normally I try to use a ratio of 3:1 (3 parts fruit and 1 part sugar), that is sweet enough for me and you can taste the fruit even more. In this case I did 1:1 because I was a bit worried that the rhubarb would be too sour. And I reallly like the way it turned out.

Rachel @ Simple Seasonal

Tuesday 9th of June 2015

What a gorgeous batch of jam! When it comes to jams and jellies I just can't get onto the chia seed and maple syrup bandwagon myself. I eat it infrequently enough that when I spoon into a sticky jar I want the real stuff with it's bright flavor and perfect consistency!