Love pears? Me too! Want to have it in winters too? Make this easy, 3 ingredients pear jam without pectin. Add your favorite spice combo, like cinnamon, cardamom, ginger or vanilla make this spiced pear jam super special. This pear Jam or pear preserve has such a sweet and sour taste, I almost fell in love with it.
Hubby loves pear and this year we got our hands on fresh and sweet pear varieties. So obviously, I had to make pear jam that we could enjoy later in the season. This freezer pear jam is low in sugar but it is still thick and spreadable.
This is only three ingredients in pear jam and the main ingredient is pear. So look for the best tasting pear variety that has rich flavors. If you want to get jam with pear pieces, use hard, slightly unripe pear varieties. Soft and ripe pears make a smooth jam. You can find more information about a variety of pear here. I used firm and ripened concord pear.
Low Sugar Pear Jam
Pears are naturally sweet fruit and don’t need much sugar. I found just 1 cup for a kg (about 2.2 pounds) makes a moderately sweet jam. If you add 2 tablespoons extra sugar you get a sweet jam. So I suggest starting with less sugar and taste test before adding more.
Just like apples, pear's flesh tends to get oxidized and turn brown. Coating pears with lemon juice stop them from turning brown. And also provide the acid that activates pectin.
I love to experiment and try new ways of making and that's what I encourage in my readers. Here's what else can be changed in this recipe.
- If you like aromatic jam, cinnamon, cardamom or vanilla beans can add that depth of flavor.
- If you like spiced jam, ginger and cinnamon is delicious combo. You can add more spices like nutmeg, cloves and all spice if you like a dessert like spread that is full of flavors.
I made two varieties of jam, chunky one that you see below. and in pictorial. Moderately smooth by mashing that you see on the toast below and in the video. If you process (blend) it with stick blessing, it will give jam very smooth consistency that kids like best. Also, use fully ripened soft pear for smooth jam.
How to make pear jam?
Sterilization steps, optional if canning.
Wash two jars (250 ml each) thoroughly with soapy water. Then sterilize jars in boiling water for 8 minutes. Also, boil the metal lids. Alternately, you can place washed jars while they are still wet in the baking tray. And roast jars in a preheated oven (160-180 C) for 15 minutes.Dry on a clean towel. Let air dry naturally.
If you find prepping to be time-consuming. You can prep a night ahead by skinning and chopping peacr. Combine all ingredients in a pot and store them in the fridge. Then plan cooking the next day when you have some work in the kitchen to reduce active cooking time.
If you consider making a 2x or 3x batch of the recipe, the cooking time will increase. Cook on lower heat to be safe and avoid caramelizing sugar. Let's begin!
- Begin by peeling, coring and chopping pears. I prefer, peeling and chopping each pear simultanoeasuly so I can coat it with lemon as I chop each pear to avoid browing.
- Transfer chopped pears to a bowl. Add sugar, spices and remaining lemon juice. See Low Sugar Jam above for details of sugar.
- Rest Pears in the fridge for at least 2 hors or over night. this steps helps keeping the pears bits intact and save it from turning into a sauce.
- After resting, cook jam for 10-15 minutes on medium-low heat until soft and translucent.
- Mash the pears for a pulpy jam or blend it for a smooth consistency. Stir frequently to avoid caramelization of sugar.
- The jam will thicken quickly. When you see jam sheet off from the spoon and turn glossy. It is ready. ( Watch video)
- Transfer hot jam to clean dry jars seal the lids and turn the jars upside down if storing jam in fridge or freezer. Let it set on room temperature for 12 hour then transfer to fridge or freezer.
- If canning, follow canning procedure of removing air bubbles and process in boiling water bath for 8 minutes. Let it sit in the bath for another 5 minutes after turning off heat. Then remove to clean towels. Check seals after 12 hours and store any unsealed jars in the fridge.
Tips for storing Pear jam
If you are making a small batch of jam that you will store in the fridge. And you intend to consume it within 6-8 weeks or freeze it. Then you can skip the sterilization steps. Using clean dry jars should be good enough. Although, I highly recommend following the steps as a precaution. If you want to can jam for storing it at room temperature for 6 months or more then follow the canning procedure. Check more information on jams storage here and here.
Ideas to use pear jam
As the pear season is short, this jam allows enjoying pears later in the winter.
- Spread it on toast or on the biscuit.
- Make a pear sauce to drizzle on ice cream or desserts.
- If you use less sugar in jam you can also add this to pie fillings.
- You can enjoy this pear jam spoon after spoon on its own.
- Use it in pear cake.
Making pear jam with peel or without is a personal choice. If you add peel make sure to process it for a smooth texture. Fruit peels are rich in flavor, color, and pectin fibre compared to flesh so it'll help to set the jam well.
Pear butter is smoother and has a less sweet taste. It has a thinner consistency compared to jam. In comparison, pear jam is sweet and translucent with bits of texture from fruit bits.
Pears are low in pectins, unlike apple and citrus fruit. But they are loaded with fibrous flesh that also helps them set with little patience.
Yes! this is a freezer jam and you can divide jam into smaller jars. Keep 1 jar in the fridge and freeze the rest. The freezer pear jam will last for a year while you can store it in the fridge for 3 months.
If you plan to freeze the jam or if you are storing it in the fridge. You can skip the sterilization process. But make sure to fill hot jam in a clean dry jar. Turn the jar upside down after filling to avoid condensation and to create a vacuum seal.
Pear Jam Recipe
- 1 kg (2.2 pounds) pear, peeled and cored like bartlett
- 1 - 1 ¼ cup sugar, see notes
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
Spices of choice to be added along with sugar. (See notes)
- 2- inch cinnamon , or ¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
- ½ tablespoon grated ginger , or to taste
- 1 lemon zest
Sterilization steps, optional if canning.
- Wash two jars (250 ml each) thoroughly with soapy water. Then sterilize jars in boiling water for 8 minutes. Also, boil the metal lids. Alternately, you can place washed jars while they are still wet in the baking tray. And roast jars in a preheated oven (160-180 C) for 15 minutes.Dry on a clean towel. Let air dry naturally.
Steps of making jam
- Chop the pear into small bits and coat the pear simultaneously with lemon to avoid browning. Protip: The easiest way to do this is keep lemon juice in a large bowl. Mix everytime you add freshly chopped pears in the bowl for even coating.
- Add sugar and spice, mix well. Rest pears in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight. Protip: This step helps to keep the pear bits intact and save them from turning into a sauce.
- After resting, cook the jam for 15 minutes on medium-low heat until soft and translucent.
- Mash the pears slightly for a pulpy jam or blend it for a smooth consistency. Stir frequently to avoid the caramelization of sugar.
- When you see jam turns glossy and sheet off from the spoon. It is ready. ( Watch video)
- Transfer hot jam to clean dry jars seal the lids and turn the jars upside down if storing jam in fridge or freezer. Let it sit at room temperature for 12 hours then transfer to fridge or freezer. Protip: Turning jars upside down creates a vacuum seal.
- If canning, follow the steps of sterilizing jars. Then follow the canning procedure of removing air bubbles and process in boiling water bath for 8 minutes. Let it sit in the bath for another 5 minutes after turning off the heat. Then remove to clean towels. Check seals after 12 hours and store any unsealed jars in the fridge.
- Homemade jams last for 4-6 weeks or more in the fridge without preservatives. Use a clean spoon to serve each time.
- If you freeze jam, they can last up to 6 months or more.
- .If you intend to can and store jam at room temperature in the pantry. Then proper canning steps and store jam in the fridge after opening.