Pickle & Preserve

What to Do When Facing a Whole Pantry of Preserves

February  6, 2016

Of all the ways to preserve, making jam is probably one of the finest. You cook pleasantly blushing fruits, some sugar, and a squeeze of lemon, and a few hours later you have a pot full of sweet​, bubbling jam that is prime for spreading on morning (or afternoon, or evening) toast. But just like with anything else, too much of a good thing can still be too much.

As avid jam lovers (we've stuffed it into doughnuts, added it to pie, and even recruited a professional to show us how to make some pickled jam that we cannot stop eating right out of the jar), we're pretty familiar with this problem​. And it turns out, we're not alone: Over on the Hotline, Fredrik Backman is looking for any ideas to use up heaps of jam.

Here's what you all had to say:

  • Lleello is full of neat ideas, and suggests making a jam tart, using it as an intriguing sweetener in baked goods, or using it to marinate chicken or pork.
  • For an interesting hors d’oeuvre, Nancy like to mix jam with savory spreads like mayo, yogurt, or soft cheese. She also recommends spreading it between layers of cake and using it as a filling in sweet omelettes and crepes.
  • Ktr likes to keep things simple, and stirs it into plain yogurt.
  • QueenSashy uses tart jams in savory paninis (and is especially fond of a red pepper jam, arugula, Swiss cheese, and avocado sandwich situation).
Photo by James Ransom
  • Diana B calls for a savory jam glaze for meat, and creamtea agrees, urging a combination of jam, wine, mustard, and shallots.
  • Your Guardian Chef likes to make a crostata, which she prefers to slice into biscuits and serve alongside tea. (If she were to follow another piece of lleello's advice, she could stir some of the jam into her tea as well!)
  • While HalfPint relies on her old standard (our new standard): a gin and jam cocktail.

Now that you've used up all your jam, are you ready to make more?:

What other ideas can you think of to help us out of this jam? Let us know in the comments!

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Rebecca Schechterle
    Rebecca Schechterle
  • Karin Byars
    Karin Byars
  • Saffron3
  • Zozo
  • Coco et Cocoa
    Coco et Cocoa
Sarah E Daniels

Written by: Sarah E Daniels

It's mostly a matter of yeast.


Rebecca S. February 9, 2016
Might you have a direct link to the jam and gin cocktail? I am unable to locate on halfpint's page or on the website.
Sarah E. February 9, 2016
Hi Rebecca, we do not have a gin & jam cocktail on our site (though noted that we probably should—they are awfully good), but here's one that turns out just fine: http://www.tastingtable.com/cook/recipes/gin-cocktail-with-jam-fruit-preserves
Karin B. February 7, 2016
Saute a good amount of finely chopped onion, garlic and ginger in flavor free oil, add a cup of cider vinegar and about 6 cups of jam (without seeds) simmer until it tastes like it would be good on pork or chicken, add bourbon, put in Mason jars and call it "Award Winning Georgia B-B-Q" sauce. My redneck neighbors love it.
Saffron3 February 7, 2016
Any jam drizzled over a mound of any cottage cheese is always verrrry satisfying to me. When I was a young child, my father would eat that combo as a treat; a sundae of sorts! I was allowed bites, always with the idea of a really grownup treat. Then, I had my own small bowl, and now much later in my life, I have larger bowls. For me, better than ice cream; always a fond memory.
Sarah E. February 7, 2016
That sounds like a lovely idea; thanks for sharing such a sweet (and cheesy!) memory!
Zozo February 7, 2016
Use it in smoothies instead of honey ?
Coco E. February 6, 2016
Love it in tea in place of honey! Try marmalade with chamomile tea, blueberry with earl grey, and strawberry in english breakfast.
Liz February 7, 2016
Love the idea of marmalade in chamomile tea! Make marmalade every winter and always looking for new ways to use it - fantastic!
Sarah E. February 7, 2016
I thought I was the only one! I have been known to throw a scoop of ginger marmalade in there.
Sarah E. February 7, 2016
* thought I was the only one until I read all of the users responses on the hotline that is!
Smaug February 6, 2016
There are a billion ways to use jam, but the bottom line is, whether you're eating it on toast, swirling it in ice cream, constructing bizarre Brittish desserts, whatever, you're still eating jam and most likely have your limits- it's a pretty powerful substance.
Sj D. February 6, 2016
my fave is to use it instead of sweetener in hot cocoa as it adds a lovely subtle additional flavor note..But if using milk (lactose only, nut milks are ok), I ensure that the jam isn't acidic to avoid curdling..