Plum jam

Plum jam

Make a lovely homemade plum jam when the garden and shops are bursting with fresh plums. This jam has a stunningly beautiful colour whether you use red, blue, black, or yellow plums, or maybe a mix. This plum jam recipe yields a jam with a lovely tartness, so it is not too sweet, making it ideal for cheeses, as a tasty spread on your breakfast toast, or drizzled on your breakfast yoghurt. Making jam at home allows you to easily adjust the sweetness and the result is a wonderful jam that is perfectly sweet or sour – just how you like it.


  • Split vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds.
  • Put plums in a saucepan with the vanilla pod and preserving sugar.
  • Bring the jam slowly to a boil and cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes.
  • Season to taste. If you want the jam sweeter, add a little plain sugar.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and allow the jam to cool slightly.
  • Pour the plum jam into cleaned, scalded jars, and seal. Store in the fridge.

Always having a jar of homemade jam waiting in your pantry or refrigerator is amazing, but sometimes they do not stay good for as long as you would like them to. Adding a bit of sodium benzoate to your finished jam will expand its shelf life, but it might affect the flavour a little bit. You can also rinse the jars you are using with sodium benzoate after sterilising but before pouring in the jam.


If you want to avoid risking a flavour change with sodium benzoate, simply boil the jar before pouring in the jam. Also always handle the jars with clean hands, as this will also thoroughly prolong its shelf life.

Questions about plum jam

With our recipe on how to make plum jam, making a delicious jam is both quick and easy. Below, you can learn more about how to make and enjoy this homemade jam by reading answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the bold-looking and coloured jam.

How to make plum jam?
Making plum jam is easy and quick. Simply put plums, vanilla seeds, and preserving sugar into a saucepan and bring to a boil slowly. Cook the jam for 15-20 minutes and season with plain sugar according to your taste. Let it cool before pouring it into clean, sterilised jars. Enjoy your homemade jam as a spread on toast, with a nice piece of cheese, or with yogurt for a sweet snack.
How to make plum jam without pectin?
Some types of fruits and berries naturally contain high amounts of pectin, like plums, while others do not – making preserving sugar the best type of sugar for plum jam. In other words, you do not need to add pectin, since the plums are naturally high in pectin. If you make jam with fruits low in pectin, you need to add a gelling agent like pectin, fresh lemon juice, which is high in pectin, or the like.
How long to boil plum jam?
Boiling time may sometimes depend on both your stove, pot size, and selection of fruits. Start by boiling the jam for 15-20 minutes. It might take slightly longer to reach a perfect jam consistency. A trick for testing if a jam is set properly is putting a couple of teaspoons in the freezer and dipping these cold spoons into the jam to see how it reacts. If the jam sets on the teaspoon when it is quickly dipped into the mixture, the jam should set properly.
What to make with plum jam?
Jam made from plums may be enjoyed in many ways. This jam is lovely as a spread on any kind of bread, toast, or scone. It tastes great on its own but is also a good companion to many different kinds of cheese. This means that it may play a wonderful role in your breakfast, snack, or afternoon tea even if it is not the main character. Our easy plum jam may also be used as a filling in cakes and desserts like pound cakes or stirred into plain yogurt for a sweet snack.
Can you make plum jam from frozen plums?
It is entirely possible to make jam from frozen plums. Freeze the plums when they are in season and use them for up to 6 months after. It is a good idea to destone plums before placing them into the freezer because they will become quite soft as they thaw, making it difficult to remove the stone afterwards. When you are ready to use frozen plums without stone as plum jam recipe, there is no need to wait for them to defrost before putting them into a saucepan and getting started. Simply allow for a few minutes of additional cooking time due to the low temperature.
Why is my plum jam not setting?
There are a few possible answers as to why you might be finding yourself in this sticky situation. One is that your jam has not reached a high enough temperature. If this is the case, try bringing your jam to a boil. If this does not do the trick, another possibility why your jam is too runny, might be that it does not contain enough pectin or acid. Add a bit more preserving sugar, pectin, or alternatively ½ tablespoon of lemon juice to see if the jam's consistency improves. Remember that jam always seems runnier when it is still hot and that it will set more as it cools.


Vanilla pod
Plums in small pieces
500 g
Preserving sugar
175 g

Delicious homemade plum jam

Jam making is a great way of preserving some of the lovely seasonal bounties offered by nature, and our recipe for plum jam is no exception. It is sweet, tart, and perfectly balanced. The warmth and sweetness of the vanilla complements the freshness and tartness of the fruit and rounds off the flavour experience. Homemade jam is always a winner both in flavour and texture as you can balance both to your likings.

If you just cannot get enough of plums, check out our recipe for a sweet and fresh plum tart with marzipan and a flaky puff pastry crust.

Sweet and tart jam for toasted bread and cheese

This jam is perfect for using on buttered toast for breakfast or as part of a brunch or afternoon spread. Whether you like a nice, buttery brie or are feeling more in the mood for a saltier, earthier cheese like an aged Havarti or a French gruyere, your beautiful homemade plum jam is sure to complement most cheeses beautifully, providing a tartness that balances the richness of the cheese.

For the bread, try some of our delicious bread recipes like a classic white bread, an airy and crisp sourdough bread made with our sourdough recipe, or a bread with a lot of texture like our wholemeal bread. They are all great options for your sweet and tart jam.

Mix plums with fruit and berries

The taste of plums works well with an array of different fruits, berries, and spices. In general, you can add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice for highlighting the taste of plums, but you can do so much more than that. Below, we have curated a selection of different and delicious variations. Try experimenting with these different combinations with our plum jam recipe as the base and choose your favourite!

Apple and plum jam

Our first variant recommendation is an apple and plum jam. Which apple to choose depends on whether you would like the jam to lean into its sweeter side, in which case, the Cox's Orange apple is a good way to go, or the tarter side, where you might try the Honeycrisp or even Granny Smith apples if you like your jams quite tangy. Mixing different apples is, of course, also an option. To make an apple and plum jam, replace half of the plums with peeled, chopped apples.

Ginger spiced plum jam

For a spicier version of our plum jam recipe that is absolutely perfect for a crisp autumn morning and a cup of tea, make a spiced plum jam by adding 1 teaspoon of ground ginger, ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, and ½ teaspoon of cardamom to the jam. If you love the heat ginger brings, you can also try using about 75 g of shredded fresh ginger in your jam instead.

Rhubarb and plum jam

A summery take on our recipe pairs plums with beautiful pink rhubarb. Rhubarb, available in spring and summer, brightens both the taste and colour of the jam. Because, like plums, rhubarbs are naturally both sweet and tart, they make the perfect addition to the plums. Simply replace half of the plums with chopped rhubarbs to make rhubarb and plum jam.

Cherry plum jam

The last variation teams the plums up with sweet cherries. These delightful summer fruits can be very sweet on their own, but in this cherry plum jam, the natural tartness of the plum balances them perfectly. As with the other variations, replace half of the recommended number of plums for halved, unpitted cherries.