Habanero Pepper Jelly

By • July 26, 2011 12 Comments

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Author Notes: This is hands down our favorite home-canned product. When my husband and I were in college we ate so much of this jelly smeared on hard crackers with goat cheese that we dubbed it "The Snack". In truth it was more like The Snack, The Lunch, The Dinner, you get the idea. Serve this sweet and spicy jelly with soft cheese such as chevre or brie. It is also an excellent addition to a grilled cheese sandwich or a glaze for grilled salmon. Yum!My Pantry Shelf

Makes 6 half pints

  • 2 orange bell peppers
  • 8 habanero peppers
  • 4 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 1 packet no or low sugar pectin
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  1. Seed and stem bell peppers and habaneros. (Take care with the habanero, they are extremely hot. Gloves are recommended.)
  2. Roughly chop the peppers, then toss into a food processor and process until minced, but not pureed.
  3. Place peppers, vinegar, pectin, salt and butter to a full rolling boil. Stir constantly.
  4. Add sugar and return to a boil for one minute.
  5. Remove from heat and skim off foam. Fill sterile mason jars leaving a 1/2 inch head-space.
  6. To make shelf stable- process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

More Great Recipes: Vegetables|Condiments

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Comments (12) Questions (0)


25 days ago nirvana

Michael, I am sure it can be. I use "Little/No" Sugar because I don't want the extra sweetness. With regular pectin you must use the recommended sugar amount otherwise it won't gel.


25 days ago Michael

But what would that recommended amount be? That's what I don't understand
I'm new to this


25 days ago Michael

Can this be made with regular pecten? The only kind at my local market carries is the real Fruit classic pectin in a jar made by ball. How do I adjust the recipe if this is the only pectin and I have


9 months ago nirvana

I have been canning for about 40 yrs yet had never made any pepper jelly. In all honesty, the times I have eaten this at parties it has been ho hum at best and contained food coloring.
One of my regular clients who has bought countless jars of jams and jellies, asked if I had ever made red pepper jelly. My response was basically what I stated above. But, I was willing to step up to the task and find a recipe that would be tasty. This was a several hour undertaking and I won't bore anyone with the nonsense I waded through. Then I thought of Food52 and did a search. The above recipe sounded very interesting and no food coloring.
First of all, this is uncomplicated and the recipe can be made and dishes washed in an hour. My kind of recipe!! Yes, it does make 6 1/2 pints. Nice texture, good color. Since I used the "little/no" sugar pectin as recommended, while making this jelly, I used the same method as I do making jellies. The key to jelling is bringing the mixture to the proper temps. Therefore, for me there was no weeping or gooey jelly. And I didn't have to wait for two days to firm up.

Yesterday I went to Nantucket to make the delivery of pepper jelly. A little nervous because I wasn't clear about how hot my client really likes his peppers. But we have a good working relationship and I told him if it needed it hotter, that was easy to rectify. In my opinion, this jelly is fabulous and has just enough heat and this is what I passed along.
I received a call last night from this client telling me that this is.......fabulous and the perfect amount of heat.
This is a long revue and I am sorry about that. But, I am thrilled to have such a delicious new jelly to make. Thank you Food52!!!!


10 months ago Kris

Great recipe. I had bought a jar from someone and have been looking to make it at home. Will this ooze out/burn when you make turnovers? How do I avoid that ?


10 months ago linda hartman

Huge success!! Recipe made 6 half-pints and was very easy. I even spaced the first boil by adding the sugar too early but it still came out perfect. There was a bit left in the pan so I dragged a slice of warm roast beef through it and swooned.
Feel like I belong on Walton's mountain...THANKS


over 3 years ago davegorf

MPS, I made this over the holidays. Volume was good, 2 large and 2 small jars. Everyone who has tried it loved it. We paired on one occasion with cheese and bleu cheese was best. Nice contrast. It also went over big on crackers, bread, apples, and late one night oatmeal raisin cookies. I must admit when I think jelly I think Peanut Butter. So...it makes a great PB&J on rye toast!!! Try it! Then I brought a jar to work and put it out with a baguette and a chunk of gorgonzola. My colleagues were lined up. I have yet to find my jar. I suspect someone may be sitting in a corner licking it out. Wild success, thanks so much. DG


over 3 years ago My Pantry Shelf

Dave, So glad to hear it was a success. PB&J on Rye? That is one combination I will have to try. Hope you find your jar.



over 3 years ago EmFraiche

Do you have a recommendation for a brand of powdered pectin? I'm unable to find any at my local grocery stores (not even Whole Foods!), and I'm looking at ordering some online. Thanks!


over 3 years ago My Pantry Shelf

I use Sure-jell. It is sold at all of our local (Northern California) standard grocery stores with the canning jars.


almost 4 years ago neenjean

I attempted this recipe last night and my jelly did not jell! I was wondering if you used liquid or powder pectin in your recipe and if maybe that is the reason for my runny jelly? This was the first time I have ever tried to make jelly. I used 1 package of Ball Liquid Pectin in my batch, since your recipe did not specify powder or liquid.


almost 4 years ago My Pantry Shelf

Yes, that was an oversight. I use powdered pectin and have always had a firm jell. On the upside for your runny jelly ( I ran into the same problem recently when experimenting with POmona's pectin) it is great drizzled over goat cheese or as a dip for chicken wings or grilled cheese. I hope you can still put it to good use. This remains one of my favorite canning recipes.