Peach Jelly

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Peach jelly is a great way to enjoy the flavor of fresh peaches all year long. Peach season is short, but peach jelly lasts for months.

This year, as I was making my annual batch(es) of homemade peach jam, I surveyed the haute mess that was in my kitchen in the middle of harvest time, and my eyes locked on my new (to me) steam juicer.

I thought to myself: “self, we bought too many ripe peaches. Can we smash the Easy Button and make peach jelly?”

The answer is yes. A hundred times yes. The resulting jelly is delicate and delicious, and so addictive on a slice of sourdough or hot biscuits! This easy recipe might just be my favorite way to preserve peaches.

This peach jelly recipe is dedicated to delicate deliciousness.

Peach jelly in a vintage jar.

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Tips + Tricks

No. 1 –> If you’re buying organic peaches, consider using leftover peels and scraps from your peach pie-making, easy peach jam recipe, and canned peaches! They’re packed with flavor, color, and juice!

No. 2 —> Give the leftover pulp from the juicing process to your backyard chickens, they LOVE yummy peach pulp. If you don’t have chickens, the leftovers can easily be composted.

No. 3 –> This peach jelly can be made by following a traditional recipe- boiling the fruit and straining with a jelly bag, or steam juiced as I’ve done. I’ll explain how to do both methods below. If you’re making fruit jelly for the first time, I recommend the jelly bag method, but if you’re making large batch or multiple batches of jelly, the steam juicer is the easiest way to go.

No. 4 –> I ALWAYS prepare an extra quarter pint jar when I’m making jelly. Just in case I have a smidge less than I expected I have a jar that’s ready to go when I can’t fill a half pint jar.

Peach jelly in a round jar.

Canning Safety

Sterilizing Jars:

Everyone and their dog has their own way of cleaning jars, but make sure that you do it. National Center For Food Preservation has CLEAR GUIDELINES about sterilizing jars. The TL;DR is that if you’re processing for at least 10 minutes, sterilization is not required – this is why I do not sterilize my jelly jars (and process for at least 10 minutes!)

Processing Time:

When water bath canning, you must know your elevation due to the different temperatures at which water boils based on elevation and the length of time food must be held at a certain temperature before it is considered pasteurized. A higher altitude equals lower boiling temperature and longer processing time.

ElevationProcessing Time
0-1,000 feet10 minutes
1,001 – 3,000 feet15 minutes
3,001 – 6,000 feet20 minutes
** Processing time for half pint-sized jars only

Key Ingredients

Peaches: The peaches are responsible for the flavor in this jelly, make sure to pick super fragrant, ripe peaches that drip sticky juice down your chin when you take a bite. You want to use peaches that smell and taste so good that you’ll have to hold yourself back from eating them before they hit the pot! As always, freestone peaches are the easiest to work with.

Pectin: Pectin is a naturally occurring starch that helps to gel jams and jellies. I prefer to use powdered pectin in my kitchen, so this recipe is written for pectin crystals. It would have to be adapted to use liquid pectin.

Lemon Juice: There is a reason to add tart lemon juice to your jelly! Not only does bottled lemon juice help to bring the sweet flavor of the peaches to the forefront, it also helps to reduce the pH of the jelly which encourages a better jelly set.

Ingredients required for this peach jelly recipe.

How To Juice Peaches Using A Jelly Bag

  1. Wash and dry 6 lbs of fresh ripe peaches.
  2. Pit and coarsely chop the peaches, then combine peaches in a large pot along with about 1 1/2 cups of water.
  3. Cover and bring the peaches to a full boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to medium heat and simmer for around 10 minutes. Then remove from heat and allow to rest, covered, for 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare a jelly bag, fine mesh strainer, or colander/ chinois by lining it with two dampened layers of cheesecloth. Set your strainer over a large bowl to collect the juice.
  5. Pour the cooked fruit into the strainer and allow the fruit to drain undisturbed for at least 2 hours.
    • Avoid squeezing the fruit! This will cause a cloudy juice as it will force pulp through the strainer.
  6. Transfer juice to a clean, air-tight container before storing or making peach jelly.
Labeled jar of peach jelly.

How To Juice Peaches Using a Steam Juicer

  1. Prepare the steam juicer for use by cleaning everything well in hot soapy water and rinsing well. Ensure the juice tube and clamp are securely fastened to the juice kettle.
  2. Fill the water pan of your steam juicer with the manufacturer’s recommended amount of water – for mine, that’s three-quarters full.
  3. Wash and dry 6 pounds of fresh peaches. Remove the pit and coarsely chop the peaches.
  4. Place prepared peach pieces in the vented food basket, place the food basket on top of the juice kettle, cover it with the lid, and place it on top of the water pan.
  5. Bring the steam juicer to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to medium heat. When steam begins to vent out the lid of the juicer, begin timing for 90 minutes.
  6. During the juicing process, the juice will build up in the kettle, and once you notice the pale pink juice in the juice tube, place the tube in a large, clean half-gallon mason jar and drain the juice. You’ll have to do this a few times, or place the jar in a spot that’s lower than the juicer and remove the hose clamp.
    • The juice coming out of the juicer is extremely hot and can cause burns, I would be very cautious about placing the juice jar on a stool in front of the oven when there are other people in the house. I like to open a drawer next to my oven and place the jar right in the front. Then it’s secure and I worry less about one of the kids or dog bumping it off a stool.
  7. Check the water pan regularly during this time, it is imperative to ensure you have sufficient water in the water pan.
  8. Once the timer is complete, allow the juicer to cool before carefully tilting the juice kettle towards the spigot to drain the remaining juice into the collection jar.
  9. Cover the peach juice and cool until room temperature before placing it in the fridge or freezer for storage.
Steam juicing set up.

How To Make Peach Jelly

Prepare The Jelly:

  1. Prepare a hot water bath canner by filling it about half full and set over medium heat to bring it to a simmer. Wash half-pint jars, lids, and screw bands in hot soapy water and rinse under hot water. Set on a clean kitchen towel until ready to use.
  2. Meanwhile, measure the prepared peach juice. You’ll need 3 1/2 cups for this recipe. If you’re a little bit shy you can add up to a half cup of water.
  3. Add 3 1/2 cups of peach juice, 1/2 cup lemon juice, 1 package of pectin crystals, and 1/2 teaspoon of butter in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a full rolling boil over medium-high heat. (A full rolling boil is one that you cannot stir down).
  4. Carefully add 5 cups of sugar to the saucepan, stirring well to combine. Return the jelly mixture to a full rolling boil for 1 minute.

Process The Jelly:

  1. Ladle hot jelly into prepared canning jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe jar rims, center a new snap lid on each jar, and tighten bands finger tight.
  2. Transfer filled jars to the prepared boiling water canner using a jar lifter, ensure the jars are covered by 1-2 inches of water, and return to a full boil.
  3. Once the water bath returns to a boil, begin to process for 10 minutes (at 0- 1,000 feet above sea level, see section above for canning at other altitudes).
  4. When processing is complete, turn off the heat, remove the lid from the water bath canner, and rest for 5 minutes before removing the hot jars and transferring them to a heat-proof surface to cool untouched for 24 hours.
  5. After 24 hours, remove the screw bands, wipe down the jars, and place them in long-term storage location.

Batch + Storage

Batch:

This recipe makes approximately 5 half pints. It’s a great idea to always prep 1 jar that’s a size smaller than the jars you’re using to deal with leftovers!

For example, in these photos, I used vintage Gem jars with a 12 oz capacity, but I didn’t quite have enough to fill the 4th jar, so I used a half-pint jar I had sterilized with my main jars and set aside in case!

Storage:

Properly water-bathed jelly can be kept in a cool, dark place, for up to 12 months. While the lids may seal for longer, flavor, texture, and color can change in an undesirable way. Even properly processed and stored foods can lose their quality over time, so it’s important to cycle the stock of your canned goods. Degradation occurs more quickly in temperatures above 70f or 21c.

Peach jelly in a jar with the handwritten recipe.

Water Bath Canner: I have and LOVE an ALL-AMERICAN CANNER. Yes, it’s a pressure canner, but it works for water bath canning too! The 925 model is a beast, she can handle whatever I toss her way! If you’re new to canning and not sure you’ll love it, there are some really reasonably priced WATER BATH CANNERS out there too.

Mason Jars: MASON JARS are an investment, but they’ll last you for years and years with proper care and maintenance. I have some Canadian GEM jars with glass sealer lids that are older than I am, you can see them pictured on this post!

📖 Printable Recipe

Peach jelly in vintage mason jars.

Peach Jelly

Allyson Letal
One of the best things about summer is the abundance of fresh peaches, with their sweet, juicy flesh and velvety skin. Peach season is all too short, and before long they are gone until next year. But there is a way to enjoy the taste of fresh peaches all year round: by making peach jelly. Peach jelly captures the essence of summer peaches in a jar, and it will last for months on your pantry shelf
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Preserved
Cuisine American
Servings 80
Calories 65 kcal

Ingredients
  

For peach juice:

  • 6 lbs fresh peaches
  • 1 ½ cup water if using jelly bag method

For peach jelly:

  • cups peach juice
  • ½ cup bottled lemon juice
  • 1 57 g package pectin crystals
  • ½ teaspoon butter
  • 5 cups granulated sugar

Instructions
 

how to juice peaches using a jelly bag

  • Wash and dry 6 lbs of fresh ripe peaches.
  • Pit and coarsely chop the peaches, then combine peaches in a large pot along with about 1 1/2 cups of water.
  • Cover and bring the peaches to a full boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to medium heat and simmer for around 10 minutes. Then remove from heat and allow to rest, covered, for 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, prepare a jelly bag, fine mesh strainer, or colander/ chinois by lining with two dampened layers of cheesecloth. Set your strainer over a large bowl to collect the juice.
  • Pour the cooked fruit into the strainer and allow the fruit to drain undisturbed for at least 2 hours. Avoid squeezing the fruit! This will cause a cloudy juice as it will force pulp through the strainer.
  • Transfer juice to a clean, air-tight container before storing or making peach jelly.

how to juice peaches using a steam juicer

  • Prepare the steam juicer for use by cleaning everything well in hot soapy water and rinsing well. Ensure the juice tube and clamp are securely fastened to the juice kettle.
  • Fill the water pan of your steam juicer with the manufacturer's recommended amount of water – for mine, that's three-quarters full.
  • Wash and dry 6 pounds of fresh peaches. Remove the pit and coarsely chop the peaches.
  • Place prepared peach pieces in the vented food basket, place the food basket on top of the juice kettle, cover with the lid, and place it on top of the water pan.
  • Bring the steam juicer to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to medium heat. When steam begins to vent out the lid of the juicer, begin timing for 90 minutes.
  • During the juicing process, the juice will build up in the kettle, and once you notice the pale pink juice in the juice tube, place the tube in a large, clean half-gallon mason jar and drain the juice. You'll have to do this a few times, or place the jar in a spot that's lower than the juicer and remove the hose clamp.
  • The juice coming out of the juicer is extremely hot and can cause burns, I would be very cautious about placing the juice jar on a stool in front of the oven when there are other people in the house. I like to open a drawer next to my oven and place the jar right in the front. Then it's secure and I worry less about one of the kids or dog bumping it off a stool.
  • Check the water pan regularly during this time, it is imperative to ensure you have sufficient water in the water pan.
  • Once the timer is complete, allow the juicer to cool before carefully tilting the juice kettle towards the spigot to drain the remaining juice into the collection jar.
  • Cover the peach juice and cool until room temperature before placing it in the fridge or freezer for storage.

how to make peach jelly

    Prepare The Jelly:

    • Prepare a hot water bath canner by filling it about half full and set over medium heat to bring it to a simmer. Wash half-pint jars, lids, and screw bands in hot soapy water and rinse under hot water. Set on a clean kitchen towel until ready to use.
    • Meanwhile, measure the prepared peach juice. You'll need 3 1/2 cups for this recipe. If you're a little bit shy you can add up to a half cup of water.
    • Add 3 1/2 cups of peach juice, 1/2 cup lemon juice, 1 package of pectin crystals, and 1/2 teaspoon of butter in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a full rolling boil over medium-high heat. (A full rolling boil is one that you cannot stir down).
    • Carefully add 5 cups of sugar to the saucepan, stirring well to combine. Return the jelly mixture to a full rolling boil for 1 minute.

    Process The Jelly:

    • Ladle hot jelly into prepared canning jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe jar rims, center a new snap lid on each jar, and tighten bands finger tight.
    • Transfer filled jars to the prepared boiling water canner using a jar lifter, ensure the jars are covered by 1-2 inches of water, and return to a full boil.
    • Once the water bath returns to a boil, begin to process for 10 minutes (at 0- 1,000 feet above sea level, see section above for canning at other altitudes).
    • When processing is complete, turn off the heat, remove the lid from the water bath canner, and rest for 5 minutes before removing the hot jars and transferring them to a heat-proof surface to cool untouched for 24 hours.
    • After 24 hours, remove the screw bands, wipe down the jars, and place them in long-term storage location.

    Nutrition

    Serving: 1tablespoonCalories: 65kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 0.3gFat: 0.2gSaturated Fat: 0.02gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.03gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.03gTrans Fat: 0.001gCholesterol: 0.1mgSodium: 6mgPotassium: 43mgFiber: 1gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 112IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 2mgIron: 0.1mg
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