Pomegranate Jelly

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When the last of the apples have fallen for the season, our pomegranates finally begin to ripen. These bright red globes hang from the tree like ornaments, sometimes bursting open to reveal hundreds of juicy crimson seeds. But what to do with them? You can eat them straight (be careful, the seed juice stains), juice them, or in this case, make pomegranate jelly with them.

Pomegranate Jelly Recipe

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  • Yield: Makes 6 to 7 eight-ounce jars

The process of canning jelly is specific to what fruit you are canning, the type of pectin you are using - whether natural, liquid, powder - and the ratio of juice to sugar to pectin. If you plan to store your jelly on a shelf, and not in the refrigerator, you need special canning equipment to ensure against spoilage.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 package powdered pectin
  • 5 cups white cane sugar

You'll also need:

  • 6-7 Eight ounce canning jars

Method

1 Make the Juice: There are two basic ways to make pomegranate juice from fresh pomegranates.

The first way is to cut open a pomegranate and submerge it in a large bowl filled with water. Remove the seeds underwater; they will sink to the bottom while the white membrane holding them together will float. Discard the peel and membranes.

Strain the seeds and put them in a blender. Pulse the blender only a few times so that the seeds are broken up. Place a mesh strainer over a bowl and pour the seed mixture through the strainer. Use a rubber spatula to help press the pulp against the strainer as to extract as much juice as possible.

The second way to juice a pomegranate is to use a juice press. I have an old fashioned press that I use. I wash the pomegranate and cut it into quarters or halves, depending on how big the pomegranate is.

I then crush the sections with a press and strain the juice through a mesh strainer. I have found that this method takes half the time or less of the first method, but the flavor can be a little more bitter because you are squeezing the peel as well.

2 Prepare canning jars: Seep the clean, empty canning jars in boiling water for several minutes. Boil a few cups of water in a separate kettle and pour over the lids in a small bowl to sterilize.

3 Bring pomegranate juice, lemon juice, and pectin to a rolling boil: Measure pomegranate juice and lemon juice in a 6-quart pan. Add pectin, stir and place over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent scorching.

4 Add sugar: When you reach a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down, and add sugar. Boil hard for exactly 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand for a minute and skim off foam.

5 Fill jars: Fill jars to 1/2" of the top. Wipe rims clean. Screw on 2-piece lids.

6 Water bath:  It helps to take step if you plan to keep the jelly unrefrigerated. A water bath will give you a tighter seal.

Place the jelly jars, not touching, on a rack in a tall pot of boiling water. The water should cover the top of the jars by at least an inch. Boil for 5 minutes and then remove from the water.

Let the jars cool. Check seals, the lids should be sucked down (you'll hear a popping noise as the jelly cools).

Once the jars reach room temperature, put them in the refrigerator for a few hours to complete the jellying. Lasts about 3 weeks once opened.

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Links:

PomWonderful - an informative website all about pomegranates - health benefits, rich history, etc.

Canning Tools - a very useful tools for canning including a jar lifter for lifting hot slippery jars out of boiling water.

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Showing 4 of 23 Comments

  • Julie

    Can you use Pom Juice from the grocery store to make this jelly or does it have to be fresh squeezed Pomegranate Juice? Just curious. I make all kinds of jelly but we want to make a Pomegranate Jelly. Of my Jams/Jellies that I make my Strawberry Kiwi is one of my most popular.

  • Melissa

    Thank you so much for this recipe! I come back to it year after year. My grandparents have a gigantic pomegranate tree and they do all the hard work every year juicing them. When they give me some of the juice I always love making the jelly. I add about 2 tsp of butter to minimize the foam (a little trick my grandma taught me). Thanks again!

  • Crystal

    First time making pomegranate jelly. Not sure if its working yet. Hasn’t been a full 24 hours but still looks pretty liquidy. I appreciate the commentary that shares secrets especially the one above that explains how to re-do the jelly in case it doesn’t work. I used about 6 cups of sugar, 1/4 c of lemon juice, 4 c of pom juice, and one packet of powered pectin. It appears from different commentary that the type of pectin is crucial. I used MCP. By the looks of things I’m not sure if this process is working. Would anyone suggest by experience if re-doing the process and adding more pectin would actually help? Thanks!

  • Kathy Baker

    I use a juicer for the juice also! It makes it so simple. Not that Pomegranate jelly is simple. I am going to enter ours in the Fresno fair this year! wish us luck! my 10 year old loves to give it as gifts to teachers and neighbors every year. I have 4 trees. Two are very dark seeds, two are lighter. Different kind? I havn’t done anything with the lighter seed fruit yet.

    It may be just a different variety. I’ve seen pomegranates that are light pink, not ruby red, inside. ~Elise

  • samplerman

    We have a very large pomegranate bush in our backyard that produces very large fruit and dark arils. I make jelly every November for family and friends. I use an old fashioned juice press. I squeeze the fruit right next to the tree (skin and all)…then cook it down by one fifth using an outdoor camping stove and stainless steel pot. Cooking down the juice removes the bitter edge and the you dont need to filter the juice first…all the pulp floats to the top..you skim it off. I use 5 cups of reduced juice to 7 cups of CANE sugar. One packet of Suregel and a tablespoon of lemon juice. Bring juice to boil, add pectin, bring to boil, add sugar, bring to boil…cook for 8 minutes!!! Can it. Makes about 9 small jars of jelly that is silky yet firm.

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