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Strawberry Jalapeño and Strawberry Basil Jam

Strawberry Jalapeño and Strawberry Basil Jam from @loveandoliveoil

In the past four weeks I’ve picked over 15 pounds of strawberries, nearly three gallons of ruby red goodness. From two different farms on two different mornings. I’ve made preserves and ice cream, salads and guacamole, and sprinkled them in my cereal every morning. I’ve stashed a few bags of puree in the freezer, and filled my pantry with over a dozen jars of jam. And I’m considering going out for one more load before the season is over.

If too many strawberries is a problem for you, well, then, more strawberries for me.

Strawberry Jalapeño and Strawberry Basil Jam from @loveandoliveoil

May is, perhaps, my favorite month of them all, if only because that is when the strawberries ripen in Tennessee. You can’t beat local strawberries, the kind that are red right through to the core. The kind you can smell before you see, the fragrance of strawberries hitting your nose before you even see the fields. The kind that are so sweet and juicy it’s almost blasphemy to add any sugar to them at all.

And yet… strawberry jam is hardly blasphemy. It’s the best way to preserve the best of May so the rest of the year doesn’t seem so lame by comparison. And even though eating 15 pounds of strawberries might seem tempting, believe me, your stomach will not be happy with you if you try. And we all know they’ll only keep so long in the refrigerator.

I knew last year’s Strawberry Hibiscus Jam was going to be tough to beat (my little 2nd cousin Skye would vouch for that, I’m sure. She may not remember me but she sure as heck remembers my jam). With that in mind I decided to do two different flavors this year that I hope will please Skye just as much: basil and jalapeño.

Fresh Picked Tennessee Strawberries

Basil is such a logical companion for strawberries, that one was a no brainer. The slightly grassy notes of the basil perfectly compliment the candy-sweet berries. I could see this one being used in both sweet and savory ways.

The jalapeño, on the other hand, is for adventurous canners and eaters alike. I honestly had no idea how much spice would come through in the final jam (and had a brief moment of “oh shit did I ruin the whole batch?” as I threw 3 whole jalapeños into the food processor.) But the balance between sweetness and spice is perfect. With savory undertones, this jam would be divine with cheese, mindblowing on a burger, or the secret to perhaps the world’s greatest peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

(What are you waiting for? Click through for the recipe and to download a set of free printable labels for your own jars!)

Strawberry Jalapeño and Strawberry Basil Jam from @loveandoliveoil

A few words (ok, more than a few) about pectin:

I’ve struggled with getting my jam to properly set. I’ve tried Sure-Jell powder and Certo liquid, and neither has really produced an ideal set. And on the opposite end of the spectrum, the low-sugar stuff sets up almost too firm for my taste, with an off flavor that I don’t love. The two batches pictured here were made with regular Sure-Jell, and are a bit looser than I’d like them to be. Still delicious, don’t get me wrong, but they’d be a bit drippy if you wanted to use them for, say, a sandwich.

In the time since, however, I made a third batch of jam (plain-ass strawberry, as per Taylor’s request) using Pomona’s Universal Pectin, and I have to say I may never go back to Sure-Jell again. Since it doesn’t rely on sugar to set, the results are much more reliable no matter how much I tweak the recipe. The jam set up beautifully with absolutely none of the separation issues (‘floating fruit’) that I’ve had with other batches. So while I actually made these two jams with Sure-Jell, I much preferred the batch I made using Pomona’s and thus have written the recipe below accordingly.

If you prefer to use a different brand of pectin, I recommend starting with the basic strawberry jam recipe on your pectin packet insert, and adding the jalapeño or basil to that. Since each type of pectin has its own specific instructions (sugar quantities, ingredient order, boil times, etc) you’d be best off following the instructions and especially sugar quantities for whichever brand of pectin you are using.

Strawberry Jalapeño and Strawberry Basil Jam

Yield: 4-5 half-pint jars

Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 pounds (about 10 cups) fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (from 1/2 lemon)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Pomona's Universal Pectin
  • 2 teaspoons calcium water (included with the pectin)

For Jalapeño Jam:

  • 3 large jalapeños, cored, seeded, and coarsely chopped

For Basil Jam:

  • 1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves

Directions:

  1. Prepare canner and wash/sterilize 5 half-pint mason (or equivalent) jars. Keep jars in hot (not boiling) water until ready to use. Warm lids in hot (not boiling) water to sterilize and soften seal.
  2. In a food processor, pulse about 1/3 of strawberries with either jalapeño or basil until finely chopped. Add remaining berries and pulse briefly until coarsely chopped; do not liquefy the berries as you still want chunks of berries in your final jam. You should have approximately 4 cups of crushed berries.
  3. Pour berries into a large, heavy saucepan along with lemon juice and calcium water and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  4. Whisk together pectin and sugar until evenly incorporated. Add to strawberries, stirring vigorously until completely dissolved. Continue to stir unti mixture comes to a full rolling boil. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes, skimming off any foam that may have formed.
  5. Ladle jam into jars, leaving 1/4-inch of headspace. Wipe jar rims and threads. Screw on lids and rings. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Remove from water and let cool completely, 12 to 24 hours. Check seals. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used within 3 weeks.

Free Printable Strawberry Jam LabelsBonus! A labeled jar is a happy jar, and with that in mind I’ve created these quirky labels for both strawberry jam recipes, so whichever one you decide to make you’re covered.

To use, simply download the printable file, then print onto full-sheet sticker paper (I used Kraft brown sticker paper, which can be purchased online at OnlineLabels.com or locally at most office supply stores). Cut out the shapes and apply directly to the the finished jars. Curious about the hexagon and square jars I’ve used? I ordered them online at SKS Bottle (the 6oz size).

Download Now »

Disclaimer: Copyright Love & Olive Oil. For personal use only. If you post about or share these labels, please credit appropriately and do not link directly to the downloadable file but rather to this post. Please do not distribute these downloadable files. Thank you much!

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48 CommentsLeave a Comment →

  1. 1
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 5:15 am

    These all sound delicious!

    Reply

  2. 2
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 5:53 am

    ok 

    1.) I am obsessed with jams. I have been trying to figure out  how to make this red onion and beet jam that i’ve been buying from the Grand Rapids Market. This combo looks amazing. 

    2.) why does everything taste better in cuter jars?

    Reply

  3. 3
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 7:26 am

    Too many strawberries is NOT a problem for me :) And I think the strawberry jalapeno combination is the best idea ever!

    Reply

  4. 4
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 7:50 am

    We are months from strawberries but you bet this jalapeño jam is on my list. Goat cheese strawberry jalapeño puff pastry? Oh yeah!

    Thanks! 

    Reply

    • Christina
      Posted On September 8, 2014 at 10:35 pm

      Great idea

  5. 5
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 7:56 am

    I am counting down until strawberries are ready to pick here in WI. I get totally out of control, so this jam is exactly what I need. (And I know exactly what you mean by a 15-pound strawberry tummy ache!)

    Reply

  6. 6
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 8:05 am

    Oh man, what amazing combinations!! I cannot WAIIIIT until I have strawberries on hand to make em’!

    Reply

  7. 7
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 8:32 am

    I’m setting this aside for when strawberries come in! The farmers have said 2 more weeks… but patience is not my virtue.

    Reply

  8. 8
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 8:35 am

    These pictures might be my favorite blog pictures of all time. Absolutely GORGEOUS!!!

    This recipe may just get me over my fear of canning…I must try!

    Reply

  9. 9
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 8:36 am

    I am totally obsessed with that first photo! This jam is gorgeous! Love the addition of basil and jalapeno too, so creative. 

    Also, thanks for the pectin info! I bought a whole set of canning equipment last year, and have neglected it for far too long. This may just be the push that I need to break it out again! 

    Reply

  10. 10
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 9:28 am

    Gorgeous photos Lindsay! Strawberry-Jalapeno jam sounds amazing!

    Reply

  11. 11
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 9:44 am

    Oh heck yes! Both of those jams look like something that would disappear quickly at our house! And I’m a Pomona’s devotee too. My sister got me using it years ago when her kids were on major elimination diets (including no sugar). It’s the bomb because you can have as little or as much sweetener as you want!

    Reply

  12. 12
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 11:48 am

    I would inhale this! I love hot pepper jelly, and savory jams, well actually spicy jams! This would be a goner for me. Your pictures are so sharp, gorgeous, vibrant and just stunning, Lindsay! Pinned :)

    Reply

  13. 13
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    I was -just- talking about finding a local place to go pick strawberries from!

    This jam is my jam! (wah..wah….). Sounds delicious and looks beautiful!

    Reply

    • Posted On May 27, 2014 at 12:22 pm

      We’ve gone to Bradley Kountry Acres as well as Kelley’s Berry Farm, both about 40 minutes out. You better go this week though or you may be out of luck!

  14. 14
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    So utterly gorgeous Lindsay!
    Hope your day is off to a fantastic start!

    Reply

  15. 15
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Can’t wait for strawberry stands to start popping up! This jam looks delicious! And I love the jar labels- so cute! 

    Reply

  16. 16
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Hi Lindsay!

    I think this recipe and your whole site are just beautiful. I have a blogger question for you: do you create your own custom template for your recipe printables or do you use a pre-made template or plugin? Which one if you do?

    Thank you!!!

    Reply

    • Posted On May 27, 2014 at 2:05 pm

      Thank you! It’s a custom setup I’ve tweaked over the years. :)

  17. 17
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    Woah. Those are some unique jams. I’ll have to try the jalapeno one, since I love all things spicy. Great photographs! :)

    Reply

  18. 18
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Yum! I’m not a canner but I’m totally tempted by strawberry basil jam

    Reply

  19. 19
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    My mouth is watering looking at all these pics! I love good strawberry jam!

    Reply

  20. 20
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    This sounds amazing! I love pepper jelly & strawberries sound like the perfect addition!

    Reply

  21. 21
    Posted On May 27, 2014 at 10:32 pm

    Such GORGEOUS photos!! Love all the colors and how they pop! And these flavors?? Yes, please!

    Reply

  22. 22
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 2:53 am

    These flavor combinations are making me go insanely in love with strawberries!!!!!!!! Need to load up on these fruits and start making these delicious variations of jam!

    Reply

  23. 23
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 4:25 am

    My mouth is totally watering! I am counting down to the yearly strawberry picking trip the the PYO :)
    I cannot imagine what my husband will do when I make a Victoria Sponge with strawberry &jalapeno jam in the middle….

    Reply

  24. 24
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 8:45 am

    I enter the state fair every year and the past 2 years, I’ve entered in the jam category. The deadline to enter this year is quickly approaching and I’ve been stuck on what new flavor to try.. Strawberry Jalapeno might justbe the one! Thanks for the idea!

    Reply

  25. 25
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 10:02 am

    These photos are just so pretty, Lindsay!  

    I’ve never been a big jam maker, but want to change that, so I appreciate you doing the legwork on figuring out the best way to make the jam set!

    Reply

  26. 26
    Kellie from Texas
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 11:12 am

    Hey Lindsay, I struggle with Pectin as well.  Have you used Pomona’s for jelly?  I find it works great for jam, but with jelly, the sugar always crystallizes, even when I follow their directions.  Just curious – it’s probably me!  Gonna try the strawberry – jalapeno jam this weekend!    

    Reply

    • Posted On May 28, 2014 at 11:33 am

      I haven’t made jelly in a few years, and when I did I used my aunt’s recipe which calls for Certo liquid pectin. It seemed to set up ok (probably because it has like 14 cups of sugar or something like that). May have to give a pepper jelly another try this year and play around with different pectins.

  27. 27
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 11:54 am

    omg that strawberry jalapeno jam looks INCREDIBLE!!!!  seriously dying to slather that over buttered toast right now :)

    Reply

  28. 28
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Too many strawberries?! Impossible!  These sound amazing…I still drool over your strawberry vanilla jam from last year I believe it was.  And the labels are the perfect finishing touch!

    Reply

  29. 29
    Posted On May 28, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    Oh man, I would devour this! My fiance loves spicy jelly so when I make this, I am going to have to hide it from him!

    Reply

  30. 30
    Posted On May 29, 2014 at 9:50 am

    You seriously have the best jams. I love all your jam posts!!!

    Reply

  31. 31
    Posted On May 29, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    I always have that problem with jam, too drippy. I’m totally trying your Pomona Pectin. Thanks for the tip!

    Reply

  32. 32
    Posted On May 30, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    This sounds amazing! I have not made jams since I was a kid. But the combination of strawberry with basil and Jalapeno is just too irresistible. I will definitely give this a try. I’m also going strawberry picking in the next couple weeks so the timing is perfect!. Have you ever thought about selling your jams?

    Reply

  33. 33
    Posted On May 31, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    Wow! This combination of ingredients sounds amazing! I would love to taste it…perhaps I’ll try. I’ve never made jam before but this recipe is encouraging me to try!  Thanks for sharing :)

    Reply

  34. 34
    AW
    Posted On May 31, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    These look great. I’m trying to figure out how to add this to the recipe box (I just created an account) so I can find it when I have time to make these, but I can’t figure it out! Can anyone give me a hint?

    Reply

    • Posted On June 5, 2014 at 8:39 am

      There’s a “Save” button in the recipe area just underneath the thumbnail. By the print button. You can also install a Ziplist bookmarklet/recipe clipper to save recipes easily as well.

  35. 35
    Posted On June 1, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Love this! I can think of so many great ways to use this jam. 

    Reply

  36. 36
    Posted On June 2, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    Both of these strawberry jams sound amazing!

    Reply

  37. 37
    Mimi
    Posted On June 2, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    I’ve never made jam, but was inspired by your pictures so I channeled my inner Olivia Pope and did it!  The combinations sounded too good to pass up.  Decided on the basil recipe.  No problems following the recipe and the jam came out perfect!  Very proud of myself!  Thanks for the recipe.

    Reply

    • Posted On June 5, 2014 at 8:38 am

      I LOVE THIS! Thanks for sharing, and go you for being brave and trying canning! I know once I realized how easy it was, there was no stopping me. :)

  38. 38
    Posted On June 3, 2014 at 4:32 am

    This looks delicious!!! I’ll definitely make this recipe some time next week. :D

    Reply

  39. 39
    Keri-Ann
    Posted On June 14, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    You just made my day!!!!!! I went pickin’ today and got 15 pounds of strawberries. I wanted something strawberry basil (love basil and have a ton growing) so I googled and came across this post. Not only is it strawberry basil jam, but you use two other of my absolute FAVORITE ingredients – jalepenos and Pamona’s Pectin! I know what I’m doin’ tomorrow!!!!

    Reply

  40. 40
    Ashley D
    Posted On June 15, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    I made the strawberry basil version last night with strawberries I picked at a local U-pick farm (strawberries ripen a bit later in Utah) and basil from my Farmer’s Market. Oh my goodness the jam turned out amazing; delicious and perfect consistency! Found some Pamona’s Pectin at the Natural Grocers in town and I do not think I will ever use another brand of pectin again.  I had to sample my work for breakfast on ciabatta bread this morning and although I was planning on gifting a couple of the jars, I might just keep them all for myself. This is probably my favorite batch of jam to date. Thanks so much for the recipe! :)

    Reply

  41. 41
    Keri-Ann
    Posted On June 15, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    I’m back – I made this today. And I actually put both the basil AND the jalepeno in the same batch (I knew it wasn’t written that way but I love them together) and o.m.g!!!!!!!! seriously my new go-to jam recipe! THANK YOU!

    Reply

  42. 42
    Erin
    Posted On July 28, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    Hi Lindsay! I LOVE the printables. Can you tell me what font you used? They are gorgeous and I would love to create my own version for different types of jam? I just can’t get over how adorable the font is! Thanks for sharing these!

    Reply

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