Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam in Ten Minutes | Cupcake Project

Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam in Ten Minutes

Homemade Jam Making Myths – Debunked

  1. You need fresh fruit to make jam.  Just about everyone I know who makes jam has a garden.  They make jam to squirrel away the summer’s bounty in jars for yearlong enjoyment.  I made this cranberry jam because I like jam.  I used frozen cranberries and intend to consume it all this week.
  2. Jam making is an all-day event.  I made this cranberry jam in ten minutes.  That’s just ten minutes, people!
  3. You need special equipment and sterilized jars to make jam.  Sure, if you plan to eat your jam next year, you’d better be careful about how you package it.  I don’t want to hear about anyone dying from botulism because they stuck this jam in their basement in an unsterilized glass jar for two years.  But, if you plan to eat your jam within a week, you don’t even need a jar (make only what you need for the week and store the jam in a bowl in your refrigerator).

This SIMPLE cranberry jam was as good as, if not better than, any store-bought jam I’ve had.  Knowing what I now know about how easy it is to make, I don’t know why I’d ever buy it again.  This same technique would work with all different kinds of berries.

Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam Recipe

Adapted from the Berry Bash Jam in The Sweet Little Book of Cupcakes via Kelly’s Konfections.

Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam in Ten Minutes

Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam in Ten Minutes


  • 1 pound frozen or fresh cranberries
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar (if you prefer a sweeter jam, you can add more sugar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons liquid fruit pectin (be sure to use the liquid kind and not the powdered kind)


  1. Crush the cranberries in a food processor until you have cranberry mush (if they are frozen, it will be more like cranberry powder).
  2. Bring the cranberries, sugar, and butter to a full rolling boil in a medium-sized heavy-bottom saucepan on high heat, stirring periodically.
  3. Quickly stir in the liquid fruit pectin.
  4. Boil for one more minute.
  5. Remove from heat, store in a bowl, Tupperware, glass jar, or whatever you'd like in the refrigerator.
  6. Use however you would use jam. Mine, of course, is going into this week's Danish cupcake!


Cupcake Roulette

Periodically, we play Cupcake Roulette on the Cupcake Project Facebook page.  Fellow bloggers sign up for a spot on the virtual wheel and if they are randomly chosen, I promise to make a cupcake inspired by something on their blog.  The idea for this cranberry jam (which is used in my Danish cupcake) came from Cupcake Roulette winner Kelly’s Konfections‘s blog – speaking of winning, Kelly has some award winning chocolate cupcakes on her blog that you might want to check out.

Be sure to like Cupcake Project on Facebook to find out about future opportunities to participate in Cupcake Roulette!

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22 Responses to Homemade Tart Cranberry Jam in Ten Minutes

  1. Kitchen Riffs November 1, 2011 at 9:24 am #

    Great job debunking some common myths. And a pretty good recipe, too. Not to mention pretty pictures. Good post all around, I’d say. Thanks.

  2. Nisha S. November 1, 2011 at 10:53 am #

    No, I did not know jams can be made in 10 minutes! I have a (silly?) question: any substitute for pectin….?

  3. Jessica O November 1, 2011 at 11:04 am #

    What if the only pectin you have is powdered? How much would you use?

  4. Priya November 1, 2011 at 11:58 am #

    Omg, am loving it.

  5. Katie Johnston November 1, 2011 at 3:08 pm #

    If you do choose to can it, a la Christmas presents, how much does this make? It sound delicious! Thank you for sharing. :)

  6. Tanya November 1, 2011 at 3:20 pm #

    Yummy! I love, love cranberries and this is going on my must make soon list! Thanks for sharing.

  7. Anonymous November 1, 2011 at 4:56 pm #

    4. You don’t need nearly as much sugar as recipes call for. I make most of my cooked jams with very little sugar – fruit is already full of it! Why hide the natural flavor? Yes, often it turns out runny – so I call it “compote” and everyone thinks I’m amazing! :)

  8. Anonymous November 1, 2011 at 10:21 pm #

    #7 You do know that cranberries are very tart, right?

  9. Anonymous November 2, 2011 at 7:25 am #

    This may be a silly question, but seeing as I have never made jam I am going to ask it; for those who news to use a sugar substitute, such as splenda or truvia, can the sugar be substituted for one of these other options? Diabetes runs in my family and I would love to make this.

    Thanks, I love this blog by the way I check it daily!

  10. Stef November 2, 2011 at 10:23 am #

    Nisha – Not that I know of.

    Jessica – I’m not sure. The recipe that I based this one off of said only to use the liquid stuff.

    Katie – It made about 2 cups of jam.

    Anon – Typically, I would agree with you. But, cranberries are so tart that most people wouldn’t like them without the sugar.

    Anon2 – The liquid pectin that I used actually said on the package that it wouldn’t work with sugar substitutes. Sorry.

  11. vincent November 2, 2011 at 11:53 am #


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  12. Cupcake Chromatography November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm #

    Very use full information! Funny you used cranberries, that jam will make an awesome cupcake filling!

  13. sue November 2, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

    you know I have always been so afraid of jams and jellys and you just busted every myth I believed. I may be brave enough to try it now. Thanks.

  14. VintageGinger November 6, 2011 at 10:29 pm #

    My mom has been making freezer jam for more than 20 years. She makes huge batches and then hides them away in our freezer. I’m pretty sure the mason jars or the pectin container has a recipe for freezer jam in it.
    It’s really handy for people who worry about the jam going bad. We’re working on a jar from a year ago and no one has EVER gotten sick from our freezer jam. It’s a great place to start for canning newbies!

  15. Russell at Chasing Delicious October 10, 2012 at 6:17 am #

    I love how easy this is! I could easily spoon feed myself this cranberry jam. Yum!

  16. samtundsahne December 8, 2012 at 6:14 am #

    hi there,

    i just made this yummy jam…

    thank you very much for the recipe!
    it´s very yummy…

    i will bake a gingerbreadroll with cinnamon cream and cranberry jam today… tomorrow you can see the result on my blog… you are very welcome to stop by…


    yours from germany


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