As a zero waste blog, I’m really big on finding ways to fight waste in all its forms. So, naturally, when June rolls around that means using up the insane amount of strawberries I end up buying. This is not a hard task for me, as I love using strawberries in salads, oatmeal, and smoothies. But it’s fun to get creative and try something a little different. So I figured why not make some homemade strawberry jam with no pectin? I have nothing against pectin, I just didn’t have it on hand, and the whole goal of zero waste is to use up what you have, right? Making your own condiments is also incredibly zero waste, because you’re likely reusing a jam jar (or any glass jar) to make it. Plus, preventing food waste by using what you have. I want to create a zero waste peanut butter DIY on here to match this jam. Maybe next time! Without further ado, here’s how to make zero waste strawberry jam (feel free to swap out the strawberries for your favorite berry!).
Easy Homemade Strawberry Jam With No Pectin
First, a note on strawberries. To keep things as low waste and plastic-free as possible, I only buy strawberries when they’re in season.
I shop at my local farmers market for them, but also love going strawberry picking! My friends and I have a tradition to go every year and we absolutely love and look forward to it. The farm gives us these cardboard boxes and paper cartons to use, so there’s no plastic. Plus it feels nice to support a small local farmer. The farmers market berries are the same – no plastic!
The taste is unbelievable. My friend Jen who buys strawberries all year long said they were the most flavorful and tasty strawberries she’s had in a while. So truly, eating seasonally is worth the wait!
My advice is to try and make this strawberry jam when you have strawberries coming out your ears. Then freeze it for later months when you’re missing that spring/summer sweetness. This jam freezes very well, but honestly, I just use it up right away.
You’ll want to save an old jam jar for this, or simply use any upcycled jars you have. Make sure it’s clean and dry first. You’ll notice in the pictures the label is edited on (that’s because I forgot to remove the old jam jar label and wanted to avoid any copyright problems it may or may not cause). So apologies about that!
Quick and Zero Waste Jam Recipe
- 1 carton of strawberries (get them from a local farmers market, or a U-Pick farm!)
- 1/2 cup of sugar (zero waste hack: Buy in a bulk food store or in a big paper bag you can compost/ recycle)
- 1 lemon (you’ll need the juice, but feel free to use the lemon peels to make homemade lemon zest before composting)
Note: You can absolutely double these ingredients to make more jam. Just keep in mind you’ll also have to cook the jam for longer.
- Wash your strawberries, then cut off the tops. You can save these to make strawberry vinegar cleaner (full recipe coming soon), or compost. Cut the strawberries up, then mash them in a bowl. I recommend a potato masher, or improvising like me with a fork.
- Add in the juice from your lemon and the sugar into the bowl. Mix everything up and add it all into a pot.
- Put the heat up to high and wait for it to boil. Once it boils, lower it to a simmer for approximately 15 minutes.
- You now have your jam! Transfer it to the jar of your choice and let it cool a bit before putting the lid on and storing it in the fridge/freezer. Enjoy!
I’m going to use this jam on literally everything. Toast, peanut butter sandwiches, jam-filled butter cookies, etc. You get the drift. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
What are some zero waste condiments you want to see me make next? Let me know in the comments!
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