Homemade Ingredients

Homemade Apple Pectin

4.43 from 14 votes
Make those jams and jellies you've always dreamed of with my Homemade Apple Pectin recipe!
Homemade Apple Pectin, ready to use.

Hi Bold Bakers!

I’m excited to bring you this post because I learned not long ago that it was even possible to make your own all-natural Homemade Apple Pectin. Also, If you’re wondering why Waffles is in this photo with a jar of it, well when your dog photobombs your shot then you are not ‘not’ going to make that the main photo!

What Is Pectin?

Pectin is a starch called a heteropolysaccharide that occurs naturally in the cell walls of fruits and vegetables. It, in fact, is what makes jams and jellies develop a semi-solid texture when it’s cool. It can be used in other dishes that require food to gel or thicken like soups, puddings, and sauces.

Where Does It Come From?

It comes from fruit! Not just the ‘meat’ of the fruit, but high amounts of pectin can be found in the rinds, seeds, and membranes. Fruits like apples, pears, guavas, quince, plums, gooseberries, oranges, and other citrus fruits naturally contain large amounts of it — this is why they are very firm.

Soft fruits like cherries, grapes, and strawberries, contain small amounts.

What Apples Should I Use to Make Homemade Pectin?

Bitter, unripe, sour apples work best. Think of biting into that apples and how much you would pucker your lips because it’s so sour — that’s the apple you should use. For example, Bramley or even crab apples are fantastic!

Also, you don’t need to use whole apples! You can actually easily and successfully make it with scraps leftover from canning, making apple sauce, or apple butter. Save up all the peels and cores (freeze if needed to get enough) and use that instead of whole apples.

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How Do I Store Pectin?

Store your Homemade Pectin in the fridge in a sterilized jar. Mark the date on it just so you remember when it went in there.

How long does it last?

I’m going to be conservative and say 6 weeks but honestly, as long as your jar is cleaned and sterilized he could last in there for longer.

How to use Homemade Apple Pectin

Use about 1/4 cup apple pectin per cup of fruit for jams. For jellies, use 1/4 cup apple pectin per cup of fruit juice. Measure the combined pectin and juice and add an equal amount of sugar.

Additional Information

I used a few different resources when researching this topic. I got the recipe and guidelines from figjamlimecordial.com. I also used Spruceeats.com as a great resource about pectin and how to use it.

Homemade Apple Pectin Recipe

4.43 from 14 votes
Make those jams and jellies you've always dreamed of with my Homemade Apple Pectin recipe!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Make those jams and jellies you've always dreamed of with my Homemade Apple Pectin recipe!
Author: Gemma Stafford

Ingredients

  • Apples* (Quartered or peels and cores)
  • Water

Instructions

  • Cut the apples (skin on) into quarters and place them in a large pot. Pour in enough water to just float them. (You can also use apple peel and cores. See notes above about apples)
  • Cover and bring the pot to a rolling boil, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer gently for medium heat for roughly 1 4/5 minutes - 2 hours. Stir every 20 minutes or so just to make sure the apples arent sticking to the bottom of the pot.

How Will I Know My Homemade Pectin Is Ready to Come Off The Heat?

  • After 2 hours it will have reduced down dramatically and the apples will be incredibly mushy, BUT also what will tell you it is ready is that it will have turned an amber color (like in the pictures). It is really important you achieve this color. It will happen over the simmering period.
  • Once done, line a colander with a clean piece of cheesecloth or tea towel and pour boiling water through it to sterilize the fabric. Place the colander over a large pot and carefully tip the apple mass and liquid through it. Do not press the pulp, or you’ll get cloudy pectin. Leave the whole thing to drip for several hours at room temperature.
  • When the liquid has completely drained through, give it a little extra squeeze to make sure you have all the pectin and remove the colander.
  • Return the pectin to the heat and bring to a simmer. You now need to reduce the pectin until it reaches the strength you require — as we don’t want it to set rocky hard, we normally just boil it a bit to make sure it’s all hot before we start canning.

How To Test if Your Pectin Is Ready

  • Pour a little pectin into a small bowl and put it in the fridge to cool (test won’t work if the pectin is hot). Pour some methylated spirits into another bowl, then tip the cold pectin into it. If you’ve made decent pectin, it will coagulate in the meths, and you should be able to lift it out as a jellied blob with a fork.  Please – make sure no-one accidentally eats or drinks the contents of the bowl – it’s poisonous!
  • In order to store the pectin, you can either freeze it, or pour it into sterile glass jars, seal, and then process the jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.

How To Use Homemade Pectin

  • Use about 1/4 cup apple pectin per cup of fruit for jams. For jellies, use 1/4 cup apple pectin per cup of fruit juice. Measure the combined pectin andand juice and add an equal amount of sugar.

Recipe Notes

*Apples; See notes in the wrist post about what apples to use and what works best. 

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Aisha B

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Eryn
Eryn
1 year ago

What are methylated spirits and were would one get that?

Aisha B
4 months ago

Hi Gemma,
I’m not as sure of how i am supposed to find unripe apples in the lockdown,
so will the recipe work even with ripe apples?
Aisha

stephanie Dietz
stephanie Dietz
3 months ago

Hey Gemma
i followed your instructions step by step and my pectin seems quite liquidy?? I am gonna try to boil down:) Did I do something wrong?
thanks for any tips and advice:)

Cathy Robinson
Cathy Robinson
1 month ago

I use rubbing alcohol for the spirits, and wash it immediately down the sink , only need a tablespoon of alcohol and a teaspoon of liquid, once it gels it is ready. I use unripe crabapples , however it seems it does take some experimenting to get different jams and jellies to set, I guess that is why commercial pectin became so popular, and this method forgotten , I am having a lot of fun and both success and failures with it.also I freeze my pectin in 250 ml cups as I use so much for jams and jellies and… Read more »

Tracy
Tracy
5 months ago

Hi gemma can I do this with oranges for my marmalade, thanks

Morgan
Morgan
8 days ago

Hi Gemma,

I’m looking to can cherry pie filling but can’t find Clearjel anywhere. Do you think crabapple pectin would work? Thanks! 🙂

elizabeth wyporowich
elizabeth wyporowich
9 days ago

Greetings i was making apple juice and by boiling the aplles and then straining the liquid, the juice is quite thick with alot of sedement . would that be the start of the pectin? The flavor is really nice
liz

Jo
Jo
1 month ago

Hi Gemma
Yesterday I made a large batch of blackcurrant jam using jam sugar. It didn’t set. Today I reheated it and added more jam sugar (with pectin already in it) but it still didn’t set. I don’t know whether to reheat yet again and add lemon juice or pectin or both. And what proportions should I use. Really desperate. I have 60x200g jars of the stuff. Please help.

Andrea
Andrea
1 month ago

Can you freeze this recipe?

Irene Denise Kleeman
Irene Denise Kleeman
1 month ago

Thank you very much for the information. Is there any way of getting away from so much sugar?

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Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for my FREE weekly emails and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!

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