How To Make Gorgeous Gooseberry & Red Current Jelly

Gooseberries and Red currents!

Jams and Jellies can be tricky to make but the end product is so beautiful and delicious I just can’t help myself. So yummy enjoyed on toast or a cracker even with a bit of cream cheese Yum!

Most recipes will as for pectin, which helps jams and jellies set up, but I’m a bit of a natural girl, I like to just use sugar, lemon, water and of course the beautiful berries.

This recipe has a 3 step tutorial that you can follow along to make this gorgeous jelly for you & your loved ones. How nice would that be for special occasions. Especially Christmas morning. You can even try a nice spiced cranberry jelly to have along side your turkey. Sounds good to me.

Here’s a list of supplies you want to have on hand to make jelly:


  • A large, heavy, 8- to 10-quart stainless-steel sauce pot with a flat, heavy bottom and high sides.
  • Have jelly jars, bands, and lids on hand. Lids must be new. Jars and bands can be reused; check that they’re in good condition with no cracks or chips and clean thoroughly after use. Use only the jar size specified in your recipe. For most jellies, half-pint (8 oz) or smaller jars are used.
  • A damp jelly bag or cheesecloth is needed when extracting juice for jelly. Firm, unbleached muslin or cotton flannel with the napped side turned in, or four thicknesses of closely woven cheesecloth may be used.
  • A jelly, candy, or deep-fat thermometer can be used to determine doneness in jellied products without added pectin. This is not necessary when you supplement with commercial pectin.
  • A boiling water bath canner is necessary for processing all fruit spreads to prevent mold growth. A big cooking pot with a rack that fits the bottom of the pot may be used for a canner if it’s deep enough for one or two inches of boiling water above the tops of jars. Be sure the pot has a close-fitting lid. 

This post will include 3 videos that will show you an easy step by step process demonstrating how to make this super yummy Jelly, I’ll post them near the end.


  • Get out your recipe. Do not double. It never sets properly when doubled.
  • Wash your jars, lids, and bands in hot, soapy water and rinse. Sterilize the jars by heating in a pot of water that is gradually brought to a boil for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the glasses in the pot until you are ready to use them. They need to be hot when you pour in the jelly later.
  • Always wash fruits right before cooking, no earlier. Wash under cold, running water rather than soaking them, especially when it comes to berries. Wash your fruit. Remove stems, skins and pits from fruit; cut into pieces and crush. For berries, remove stems and blossoms and crush.

Extracting the Fruit Juice from the berries:

  • In your large, heavy, saucepot, add fruit and only the amount of water called for by the recipe. Too much water will require longer time to strain and longer cooking time and not enough water may result in scorching (burning) the fruit.
  • Cover, bring fruit juice to a rapid boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat, cover loosely, and continue cooking, stirring and crushing the fruit until it is soft and the juices are flowing; berries only need a couple minutes and hard fruit like apples may need anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes.
  • Suspend a damp jelly and jam strainer or use wet cheesecloth over a colander or sieve. Pour the cooked fruit into the bag or cheesecloth and strain over a large bowl. For the best results, let it strain (drip) without forcing the liquid. This may take 2 hours or longer.  If you squeeze the bag to extract the juice faster, you’ll still get good juice, but it will be cloudy, and so will your jelly.

Cooking the Jelly:

  • In a large, deep stainless-steel saucepan, place the fruit juice and lemon juice, if needed, per recipe directions.
  • Add the sugar all at once, stirring until sugar dissolves and return to a rolling boil. If you are using blueberries or strawberries, add 1 tablespoon lemon juice for every 2 cups of jelly juice.
  • Continue boiling the jelly and stirring for a clear-finished product. As the fruit mixture begins to thicken, stir frequently to prevent sticking and scorching. In general, when no added pectin is used, the jelly stage is reached at 8°F above the boiling point of water. The boiling point for water is about 212°F at 1,000 feet or less. You can use a candy thermometer to determine the actual temperature at which water boils in your own kitchen. 
  • If not adding pectin, you need to test whether or not your jelly has jelled. Use a candy thermometer, but if you don’t have one, take a spoonful of the juice five minutes after you’ve added the sugar, let it cool for a minute, then tip the spoon back into the kettle. If the juice runs together at the edge and “sheets” off the spoon, then you’re ready to pour. Another test we like is the freezer test. Pour a small amount of boiling jelly on a plate, and put it in the freezing compartment of a refrigerator for a few minutes. If the mixture jells, it should be done. During the test, the rest of the jelly mixture should be removed from the heat.
  • Remove your hot sterilized jelly jars from the pot. Drain the glasses and place them on a level surface.
  • Fruit juice cooked with sugar produces considerable foam or scum. Skim scum off quickly before ladling the hot jelly into the hot jars. Tip: Alternately, you may add ½ teaspoon of butter or margarine when adding the sugar and before bringing to a boil. Do not add more butter or it will interfere with the jelling. 
  • As you ladle the jelly into the jars, leave a ¼-inch headspace. Be careful not to spill any over the sides. If you do, wipe it off before you put the lids on.
  • After you pour the jelly, stir it gently around the sides of the jars once with a plastic wand or spatula to eliminate air bubbles.
  • Place lids that have been washed and dried on the jars. Add screw bands and tighten until finger-tip tight.

Processing the Filled Jars for Storage

In order to keep homemade jelly beyond a few weeks, the filled jars must be processed using a hot water bath. In order to do this you have to:

  • Place jars in a boiling water bath canner, making sure the jars are completely covered with water (1 to 2 inches above the jars).
  • Cover with lid and bring water back to boil, processing half-pints and 8 oz jelly jars for 10 minutes.
  • When time is up, turn off the heat, remove the lid—venting the steam away from you—and wait 5 minutes.
  • Remove jars to a wooden trivet or kitchen towel on the counter and let sit for 12–24 hours. Remove the screw bands and check the seal by depressing gently the center of the lid. Store only jars that have sealed. If the lid wobbles, refrigerate the jelly and enjoy within a few weeks!

Most of this information was gathered here they share a wonderful process.

The following 3 videos will guide you through how to make jelly.

I sure hope you enjoyed this demonstration. Get creative and play around with different flavors a good rule of thumb is for every 2 cups of juice add 1 cup of sugar and don’t forget the lemon juice Enjoy!

just out of the canner

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Categories Appetizers, Canning, christmasTags , , , , , , , ,

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