Gift in a Jar: Apple-Cranberry Jam

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Throughout my childhood and teenage years, my parents’ standard holiday gift for friends and family was a bag of my dad’s homemade pancake mix (in particularly flush years, we’d also gift a bottle of maple syrup). The bag would also contain printed instructions on how to turn the mix into batches of fluffy cakes or waffles. I have it on good authority that people looked forward with great anticipation to those pancake mix gifts.

Over the years, we were also the recipients of many a homemade holiday gift, including jars of lemon curd from our cousins in the Bay Area, bottles of homemade coffee liqueur and divided plastic plates from my dad’s business partner, overflowing with cookies, fudge and caramels, hand-wrapped in squares of waxed paper.

In recent years, as my canning practice has grown, more and more of the holiday gifts I give are home-jarred edibles. This year, I’m planning to give my Philadelphia cousins jars of apple butter and apple-cranberry jam, along with mini-loaves of cranberry bread. If you’d like to give your friends and family their own jars of apple-cranberry jam, the recipe is after the jump (it’d be great with some scones on Christmas morning).

I’ll be posting more ideas for gifts in jars in the coming weeks, in the hopes that I’ll be able to inspire you to give your own gifts in jars this year.

Apple-Cranberry Jam

Yield: 4 1/2 - 5 pints.

Ingredients

  • 8 cups of peeled and diced apple (approximately 5-6 large apples, 1/2 inch dice. Use a softer apple like a Golden Delicious. Firm apples won't cook down as well.)
  • 4 cups of whole cranberries
  • 6 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced

Instructions

  1. Combine the apples, cranberries, sugar and water in a large pot (use a big one, this jam will bubble) over high heat. Bring to a boil, skimming off the foam that develops on the top of the fruit. Cook for 10-15 minutes, until the cranberries pop and the apples soften.
  2. Add the lemon zest and juice and simmer until the liquid in the pot begins to thicken (because both apples and cranberries are naturally high in pectin, you won't need any additional pectin to help this jam set, as long as you cook it until thick and syrup-y).
  3. Ladle into prepared jars, wipe rims, apply lids and process in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Label nicely and distribute to those you love.

Notes

***I made this jam without the addition of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves or allspice. However, I do believe that the addition of one or two of those spices would be quite nice. If you play around with the flavors, let me know!

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82 Responses to Gift in a Jar: Apple-Cranberry Jam

  1. 51
    Jeff says:

    Saw this jam in a bakery in Wells, Maine and had to try it. Left out the lemon rind. Added 1 teaspoon cinnamon but tasted a little flat. Added 1/2 teaspoon allspice. Nailed it! Enhanced all the flavors. Thanks for the recipe.

  2. 52
    Aelee says:

    If I don’t use the canning process how long will the jam last? Can it be frozen?

    I added 2 cinnamon sticks, half a teaspoon of nutmeg & half a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Yum! :)

  3. 53
    Corrine Tan says:

    Hi, thanks so much for sharing the recipe! Tried it and it turned out soooo yummy, everyone had great comments on the jam. I cut the sugar almost by half though and it was slightly too chunky, less spreadable but sweet enough. Thank you!!

  4. 54
    lesley says:

    made this tonight. incredible. subbed in lime for the lemon. wow!

  5. 55
    Danielle says:

    Made this today. I decided I wanted a smooth jam and ran mine through the food mill. I’m planning on taking a jar to my sil as a thank you for hosting Thanksgiving. I can’t wait to have this on turkey!! I’ll be saving the rest for my Christmas gifts.

  6. 56

    […] cider caramels from over at Smitten Kitchen (drooling over her new cookbook, I want it so bad!), apple cranberry jam from Food in Jars and a variety of other things that I cannot think about right now.  We will be […]

  7. 57
    Terri says:

    Hello! I just made this with 5 cups of sugar and .5 cup of pure maple syrup at the very end. Set up really beautifully and had a great flavor! Thanks again for all the great recipes, love your book!

  8. 58

    […] from Food in Jars. « Pumpkin Pecan Granola […]

  9. 59
    Rachel says:

    Made this today to send out as gifts for Christmas. It tastes fantastic. I will definitely be making more. I stock up on cranberries this time of year!

  10. 60

    […] like…like…jam! Marisa at Food in Jars is always an inspiration. I subtly tweaked her Apple-Cranberry Jam recipe, and made it twice, two different ways and with different proportions. And it’s hard to mess this […]

  11. 61

    […] Nobody likes fruit cake. I found a recipe for apple cranberry jam from the website, Gifts In a Jar. It was perfect because I already had half of the ingredients, and I love gifts in jars. I used a […]

  12. 62
    beth says:

    is it necessary to use quite that much sugar? i’m moving towards lower sugar recipes these days, and wonder if the amount could be cut back at all without affecting the canning safety. thanks!

  13. 63
    Erika Lynn says:

    Made this yesterday, it is fantastic. It was my first time canning and I made this recipe and followed your awesome instructions for water bath canning. Super awesome instructions. Thanks for all the great info and recipes.

  14. 64
    Christina says:

    I am making this right now and added a tsp of pumpkin pie spice. It smells delicious, looks amazing and the kid taste tester says “It’s a keeper!!” :)

  15. 65

    […] I DID!  Not only did I make this delicious jam, I also made Apple Pie Jam, Cranberry Pear Jam, Cran-Apple Jam and enough Cinnamon Applesauce  and Apple-Pear Butter to get us through the […]

  16. 66

    […] has an amazing apple butter recipe I use all the time and for the first time, I’m trying out Food In Jars cranberry apple jelly […]

  17. 67
    Amy says:

    My daughter and I made juice with the cranberries and then used them to make jam along with apples that we had froze in the fall (heated up in the microwave) Just had to watch when filtering the juice that we didn’t throw away the “silt” or pectin. instead of water we used a cup of our home made juice. turned out great!

  18. 68

    […] I set out looking for another good recipe for preserving apples.  I came across this recipe for Cranberry Apple Jam from Food in Jars.  Conveniently, I still had a few bags of frozen cranberries tucked away from my cranberry […]

  19. 69

    […] for a sweet-tart sauce you can add to yogurt, oatmeal or porridge, or toast. Can up a batch of apple-cranberry jam for your pantry or gift giving, or add cranberries to a quick bread recipe that’s perfect for […]

  20. 70
    JennyD says:

    I subbed orange for lemon and added cloves – delicious!

  21. 71

    […] better then store bought. You can find me jamming out lots in the Fall. The recipe can be found here. The last photo is a very delicious alternative to an apple pie for the holidays. It is an […]

  22. 72

    […] usually don’t command you to make anything, but how nice would it be to show up with some Cranberry Apple Jam in […]

  23. 73
    Maria says:

    Delicious! I have made several of your jams and this is my husband’s favorite so far! I divided it into 2 batches because I don’t have a large enough pot. I followed the recipe exactly for the first batch and for the 2nd batch I replaced the spices with fresh some grated ginger. They are both yummy, but our favorite is the first batch. I just found cranberries on sale at Costco, so I plan to make more asap. Perfect for holiday gift giving.

  24. 74
    Rebecca says:

    I purposely use firm apples so they hold some of their bite when cooked, and I add lots of diced fresh ginger and cook it closer to a soft set. I label it as Apple cranberry chutney and suggest it over Brie or Camembert. This is always a huge hit.

  25. 75
    TLK says:

    Has anybody weighed their apples? I’d love to know how many grams or ounces are in 8 cups of 1/2 inch dice.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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  2. Food in Jars » Spouted Measuring Cup Winner - December 14, 2009

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  6. Jammin on the One | pretty.lovely.beautiful - September 19, 2012

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    […] cider caramels from over at Smitten Kitchen (drooling over her new cookbook, I want it so bad!), apple cranberry jam from Food in Jars and a variety of other things that I cannot think about right now.  We will be […]

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  9. everyfoodfits.com » Last Minute Gift: CranApple Jam! - December 18, 2012

    […] like…like…jam! Marisa at Food in Jars is always an inspiration. I subtly tweaked her Apple-Cranberry Jam recipe, and made it twice, two different ways and with different proportions. And it’s hard to mess this […]

  10. Holiday Jam! « Veggie Treats - December 22, 2012

    […] Nobody likes fruit cake. I found a recipe for apple cranberry jam from the website, Gifts In a Jar. It was perfect because I already had half of the ingredients, and I love gifts in jars. I used a […]

  11. That’s My Jam! | CapCity Moms - December 4, 2013

    […] I DID!  Not only did I make this delicious jam, I also made Apple Pie Jam, Cranberry Pear Jam, Cran-Apple Jam and enough Cinnamon Applesauce  and Apple-Pear Butter to get us through the […]

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    […] for a sweet-tart sauce you can add to yogurt, oatmeal or porridge, or toast. Can up a batch of apple-cranberry jam for your pantry or gift giving, or add cranberries to a quick bread recipe that’s perfect for […]

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    […] better then store bought. You can find me jamming out lots in the Fall. The recipe can be found here. The last photo is a very delicious alternative to an apple pie for the holidays. It is an […]

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