This super easy Christmas Jam has sweet-tart, delicious flavor!

This Christmas Jam is a simple sweet-tart jam made from strawberries and cranberries. Recipe includes a FREE label printable for gift giving!

I know it’s Halloween today…but we’re already getting ready for Christmas!  Homemade gifts for the holiday season are some of my favorites to give and receive – especially when they are as delicious as our Christmas Jam.

This simple jam is a sweet-tart mix of strawberries and cranberries (plus sugar and pectin) – and the flavor combination is out of this world. (It’s so good, my husband Jack says he doesn’t want to give any of these jars of jam away this Christmas!)

In addition to this jam being super delicious, one of the best things is that it is super easy to make! Scroll below to our recipe card to watch a video showing how it’s made.

PIN THIS RECIPE NOW!

This Christmas Jam also cans very well, so even though Christmas is still a little less than two months away, it will be here before you know it!  So you can make this Christmas Jam now before the holiday rush and then you’ll be all ready for gift-giving.  It’s also the perfect jam to use in these cookies.

This Christmas Jam is a simple sweet-tart jam made from strawberries and cranberries. Recipe includes a FREE label printable for gift giving!

PIN THIS RECIPE NOW!

This recipe is from the Tougas Family Farm cookbook (you can see it here). I’ve seen other versions of Christmas Jam online with orange zest or orange peel added, but we liked the simple sweet strawberry-tart cranberry contrast of flavors the best. You can use fresh or frozen strawberries and cranberries (we used a combination of both) – so use whichever is best for you!

And to make your gift-giving even easier – we’re sharing a free printable for the Christmas Jam labels you see in our photos!   They are sized for these two inch round labels to stick to the top of half-pint decorative jars, or to create a gift label as shown in the photo at the top of this post.

This Christmas Jam is a simple sweet-tart jam made from strawberries and cranberries. Recipe includes a FREE label printable for gift giving!

PIN THIS RECIPE NOW!

Christmas Jam is a simple and delicious treat that everyone on your holiday gift list will love!  (And here’s one last helpful tip – this Christmas Jam is a delicious alternative to cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving!  If your guests don’t like the tart flavors of cranberry sauce, they will probably love this jam instead!)

Please note: You must DOWNLOAD THE LABELS FIRST before you will be able to print them.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I freeze this jam instead of canning it? The answer is…I don’t know! We’ve only made (and canned) this jam as written so I don’t know how it will work as a freezer jam. If you try it, please let us know in the comments below.
  2. Does this recipe REALLY call for 5 pounds of sugar? Yes – that is the amount called for in the original recipe.
  3. Can I make this jam with less sugar? Yes – we’ve had several readers tell us in the comments below that they have successfully made this jam with less sugar. Some readers used low sugar pectin while others simply reduced the sugar.  We haven’t done so ourselves so we can’t share our own experience, nor can we say how reducing the sugar will impact the finished texture of the jam. But feel free to scroll below through the comments for some additional information.
  4. Can I use sugar substitute in this jam recipe? We haven’t tested it ourselves, but I’m going to say no. Pectin needs the interaction with sugar to set the jam so you would likely need to make some other adjustments to the recipe if you cut out the sugar.
  5. Can I used powdered pectin instead of liquid? Again, we haven’t tested it ourselves, but we have had readers swap in powdered for liquid. Liquid pectin is added at the end of this recipe because it doesn’t need to be boiled/cooked, while powdered pectin requires some cooking time so you’ll want to add it earlier in the recipe. Here’s a great article about the topic.
  6. How long will this Christmas Jam keep? When properly canned and stored in a cool, dark place, we’ve enjoyed jars of this Christmas Jam for up to a year. If you don’t can the jam, keep refrigerated for about two weeks.
  7. Can I add other fruits to this jam? Sure. Just note that sometimes the amount of pectin may need to be adjusted depending on the natural pectins found in whatever fruit you swap in.
  8. My jam didn’t set. What do I do? Assuming that you followed the recipe exactly as written, if your jam didn’t set, you can try reheating it and adding some more pectin.
  9. I can’t print the labels. What do I do? You MUST download the labels first before attempting to print. The labels are created as a Word document so as long as you have that, or another program that can handle Word documents, you should be able to print them.

Christmas Jam Label Download 

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Christmas Jam - A Family Feast

Christmas Jam

  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 14 half-pint jars

Description

If you are planning to can this jam, have your sterilized jars, rims, bands and canning tools ready and sterilized ahead of time.


Ingredients

  • 2 packages (20 ounces each) frozen whole strawberries (fresh strawberries may also be substituted)
  • 1 pound fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 5 pounds sugar (This is not a typo – 5 pounds is the correct amount. Some readers have told us that they successfully used less sugar when making this jam.)
  • 2 pouches (3-ounces each) liquid fruit pectin

Instructions

  1. In a food processor, pulse the strawberries and cranberries – you can process them to a finely chopped texture for a completely smooth jam, or leave some fruit partially chopped for a chunkier jam.
  2. Pour the processed fruit into a large heavy-bottomed pot. Add sugar and over medium high heat, bring the fruit and sugar mixture to a full rolling boil.
  3. Boil for 1 minute.
  4. Remove the pot from the heat and add the pectin, stirring to mix completely.
  5. Allow the jam to cool for 5 minutes, then skim off the foam on the top.
  6. Ladle the hot jam mixture into sterile half-pint jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims clean, cover with hot lids and screw on the jar bands.
  7. Process the jars for 10 minutes in a water bath. (Read more how to’s here).
  8. Makes about 14 half-pint jars. Recipe may be halved.

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    Comments

  • Alaine wrote:

    I’ve made this same recipe for many, many years…it’s awesome! Everyone returns their jars for more, it’s that GOOD! I’ve yet to have time this year to make, so it’ll be after Christmas or maybe this week when I get the chance to make it. However, everyone will forgive me for being late with their favorite Christmas present!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Alaine!

  • theresa wrote:

    You can eliminate the foam by adding a tiny bit of butter to the cooking jam mixture towards the end!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for the tip Theresa! I’m going to try that the next time we make this jam!

  • pam wrote:

    Thank you for sharing. Perfect idea for new gift giving. Looking forward to trying it.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Pam! I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  • Kathy Durling wrote:

    Will this recipe work as freezer jam? Could it be frozen instead of canned?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Kathy – I’m sorry – don’t know if this jam has the same properties as freezer jams.

  • Kristen Johnson wrote:

    Hi, how long does this jam normally take to set? I made it yesterday, as directed, and it is very runny. This is the first jam or jelly that I have made that hasn’t set…. I’m not sure what to do because this was intended to be used for gifts.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Kristen – Yes – by now it should definitely be set. I’m not sure what happened – if you made it exactly as written? You could try reheating all of the jam and adding more liquid pectin to see if that helps set it up? I’m sorry you’ve had problems!

  • lauren wrote:

    Hello. I was wondering if you have to use liquid pectin or not f you can use the powder. Thanks

  • Betty Burnett wrote:

    i would like to make this for xmas gifts

  • Lisa wrote:

    My mother helped me make this today – I have not canned prior to today but she does tomatoes, dilly beans, etc. I am so impressed by the beautiful jars. And, we saved the “foam” to taste and it’s absolutely delicious. I always exchange food gifts with family on Christmas eve and plan to give a jar of this with a package of English muffins (wish I had time to make muffins or bread). What a nice gift!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Lisa! So glad the recipe worked out for you!

  • Kate wrote:

    Loved this! Made a double batch for the teachers and neighbors this week. I subbed low-sugar pectin and used about 6 cups of sugar for a double batch – turned out great! I like it more on the tart side and this was perfect for me.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Kate! Glad you found a lower sugar option!

  • Regina wrote:

    I just made this jam tonight and it was fabulous! We also saved the foamy top for ourselves and canned the rest. I think everyone is going to love this for Christmas! In fact, I may have to make another batch tomorrow so that we have some for ourselves! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!

    • Martha wrote:

      Glad you liked it!!

  • Julie Cloudt wrote:

    I just made this for a hostess gift to give at our Bunch Christmas Party. It looks wonderful. I used a gravy skimming cup (the kind with the spout at the bottom) to fill my jars. I was surprised to find that not only did it fill the jars (I used jelly jars – 1/2 cup I think) but the leftover foam was separated and the jelly is clear and beautiful. I left the foamy jelly for us! I also used my silicone finger protectors (for ironing) to wipe down the rims with a hot water rag. I actually got away without getting burned this time. Looking forward to trying my new project.

    • Martha wrote:

      Great idea Julie! Hope you enjoy the jam!

  • Andia wrote:

    I’m glad I saw this. Ill be making this for my friends. After the jam is done and processed, how long can it sit out/last? Ive only ever made freezer jam and want to can it next time, so in this recipe processing is the “canning” part?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Andia – You don’t have to can this jam…I’d suggest refrigerating it in the jars for no longer than two weeks. I’m not sure how it will work as a freezer jam. Hope that helps!

  • Melissa Mills wrote:

    Can you give a clue as to how many cups of strawberries this requires. I have home-frozen berries and it’s hard to figure 20 ounces since I don’t have a scale.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Melissa – Without having some strawberries on hand to measure in cups, I’d estimate about 6 cups of larger whole strawberries. If your homegrown strawberries are on the smaller size (so they fit into a measuring cup more tightly), I’d cut back to 4-5 cups. Hope that helps.

  • Amy [email protected] wrote:

    Such a wonderful gift idea! Pinned!

  • Jennifer wrote:

    Just wondering if adding some sort of spices would help? Like cloves or cinnamon?

    • Martha wrote:

      That’s completely up to you Jennifer – feel free to add any spices or ingredients you’d like!

  • Beth Lopez wrote:

    Hi! Quick question…do you thaw the frozen fruit before processing? Thanks for all your wonderful recipes!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Beth – No – Just throw the frozen fruit into the food processor still frozen (I think it chops up a lot better frozen…) Hope you enjoy the recipe!

    • betty wrote:

      have only made frozen jam before, thought I would make this for my grandchildren for Christmas it looks like it separated when I took them out of the hot water bath is this normal?

      • Martha wrote:

        Hi Betty – The jam will firm up as it cools in the jars. But if it looks completely separated you might need to boil it some more and/or add more pectin.

  • Nicole wrote:

    What are pounds in kilos or grams plz and ounces

  • Barbara Sue wrote:

    Dumb question: In step 5 you say to cook for 5 mins after you’ve removed it from the heat. Is that residual heat, or did you put it back on the burner? Thanks! I’m making a batch this weekend.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Barbara – not a dumb question!! It should read cool for 5 minutes – thank you for catching that typo and I will fix it right away!!

  • Lori wrote:

    Hi,
    This jam combination sounds like it would be awesome. Unfortunately when I saw the ingredients called for 5 lbs of sugar it freaked me out. I’m new to jam making having only made strawberry and blueberry jams this summer. The recipes I used were “low sugar” recipes and they came out great. Just wondering, have you ever tried using less sugar in this recipe, and if so, how did it turn out? Thanks!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Lori – I felt the same way when I saw the recipe – but I think it needs at least some of the sugar since there are unsweetened cranberries in the recipe! I haven’t tried it with less sugar – but you probably could get away with at least some reduction (as long as the pectin still has enough sugar to react with). If you try it with less – please let us know how it comes out – I’d love to know!! Thanks – Martha

      • Rebecca Durant-Vining wrote:

        Unless your using low or no sugar Certo, I wouldn’t cut back the sugar. I cut it back and the jam didn’t jell.

    • Sharon wrote:

      The recipe sounds delicious. I too was a little freaked out when I read the recipe called for 5 lbs of sugar. What would be the least I could use for it to still taste good and be “lighter”. Thanks!
      Sharon

      • Martha wrote:

        Hi Sharon – We’ve only made the jam as written so I’d only be guessing by suggesting a lesser amount of sugar! Sorry I can’t be more help!

      • Renay wrote:

        I made this jam with 4 lbs of sugar – not much of a reduction, but still… It turned out amazing.

        • Martha wrote:

          Thanks Renay!

  • Laura wrote:

    What beautiful jam! What a great gift. Love how it works from Thanksgiving to Christmas, I think I’m skipping Halloween too today! (Sorry kids!!) but it’s rainy here and dragging out a 2 and 4 year old doesn’t seem fun to me. I love how you can use fresh or frozen berries, flexible cooking works for me!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Laura! (I was worried it was too soon to post a ‘Christmas’ recipe but this really is a great Fall recipe especially with fresh cranberries at the market!) Happy Halloween!

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