Best Raspberries For Jam

Raspberry jam close up.

Not all berries are alike. There is a lot of difference (and a lot of similarities) between strawberries and raspberries, for example. And that statement holds true even when you look within a particular berry. Take Raspberry as an example. This little juicy treat from the rose family offers a lot of variety. And like grapes, it also comes in multiple colors, though the original red dominates.

There are at least 200 known species of raspberries.

Best Raspberries For Jam

Different cooks and experts have different opinions. Some of them overlapping, others not. It’s usually a good idea to look into the characteristics that make a particular raspberry “best for jam.” It’s best to make jam with ‘just ripe’ fruit because the pectin levels are higher. But since raspberries don’t have much pectin, to begin with, that’s usually not an issue. And it’s good news for jam makers since they don’t have to chase down particular raspberry species for jam.

Because of the age and wetness of your raspberries (even after spinning), your jam might take longer to set than usual. A few raspberries that might be best for jam are:

Cumberland Raspberry

Cumberland Black Raspberry plants yield medium-sized blue-black berries with a delicious raspberry flavor. It’s delicious raw, but it’s also one of the best raspberries for making jams and jellies. The flavor of these medium blue-black berries is intense and delicious. Strong, robust canes bear fruit in July and can withstand cold temperatures. It’s a reliable cultivar with excellent cold hardiness. You’ll feel good about munching on these nutritious berries since they’re packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and even fiber.

Bristol Black Raspberry

If you are looking for something proprietary, this might be it. It was created by people from Cornell and is now a licensed variety under their banner. It offers the finest black raspberry flavor! This versatile fruit is big, solid, and beautiful. It’s delicious whether you eat it right away or freeze it to increase its “shelf life.” It also happens to be ideal for making preserves and jams. It bears fruit in the middle of summer, and the raspberries ripen by July.

Crimson Night Raspberries

These hard berries are recognized for their distinct, rich, dark color as well as their equally delectable flavor. The fruit has a glossy deep-red color and is conical in form. Canes that are thick and strong grow quickly, but they need to be protected from the weather in the winter. They may be eaten raw, but they really shine when you use them to make Raspberry jam. They produce a rich-flavored jam capable of standing on its own or being served with something else.

Killarney Raspberry

Cold-resistant and dependable, The Red Raspberry, Rubus idaeus ‘Killarney,’ is an erect, self-fruitful, thorny shrub with clusters of white, rose-like blooms that give way to medium-sized, sweet, delicious red raspberries in early-mid July. It’s a tough-as-nails fruit plant with gleaming red berries. The flowers are pink, and the fruit is medium in size. The berries are solid and delicious when eaten fresh, frozen, canned, or baked into pies. This raspberry bush, which was first released in Manitoba, is ideal for northern settings. It’s great and not just for jam but also for making sweet Raspberry sauces.

Boyne Raspberries

Boyne Raspberry is a tiny shrub planted primarily for its culinary properties. It yields red heart-shaped berries that are ready to pick in the early to mid-summer. The berries have a luscious texture and a sweet flavor. The berries are excellent for eating fresh, freezing, preserving, and making pies. This raspberry bush, which was developed in Canada, is ideal for northern gardens.

Jewel Raspberries

Jewel is a summer-bearing cultivar that thrives in the high temperatures of zones 5-8. Give the plants plenty of room to develop – they’re 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide. The fruit is glossy, black in color, and quite big, with a deep raspberry taste. It’s a fantastic addition to jams and jellies. On a Sunday morning, serve them with pancakes.

Read more here: Types of Raspberries | Do Raspberries And Pineapple Go Together? | How To Store Raspberries (All Methods) | How To Properly Clean And Wash Raspberries | Do Raspberries Need To Be Refrigerated

“Basic” Raspberry Jam Recipe

It’s important to choose the right raspberries because if you have the perfect core ingredient to start your jam, you can make a great one with just some sugar and lemon.

When making jam, the general guideline is to use equal amounts of fruit and sugar. It can be volume to volume or weight to weight. We’ve seen both ratios work fine. You should also add the juice of a lemon to give the jam the pectin it needs to set.

If you want your jam to be less “seedy,” there are two things you can do.

Half of the raspberries should be placed in a preserving pan with lemon juice. With a potato masher, crush the berries to a pulp over medium heat, then simmer for 5 minutes. Place the cooked berries in a strainer over a bowl, then forcefully push the pulp through the sieve with a wooden spoon until all of the juice has been drained away, leaving just the seeds. Use the other half to make the jam per the usual recipe.

Or, you can do it to all the raspberries. Once done, simply take 2-3 spoonfuls of the seeds and stir them back into the raspberry mixture.

Return the juice and pulp to the preserving pan, along with the sugar, and stir to combine (if you went with half the raspberries for the “de-seeding” process). Add the remaining entire raspberries and heat gently. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a fast boil for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and spoon a little amount of jam onto a cold dish. Push your finger into it now; it should wrinkle and resemble jam. If not, boil for 2 minutes and then test again.

Final Words

And just like that, you have a delicious raspberry jam. It’s deceptively simple, and since you can only control the sweetness (and a few other elements of the finished product), the rest of the goodness of the jam would come from the fruit itself. So make sure you choose the best raspberries for jam.

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