Make the best Lemon Jam at home with this super easy recipe. You need 3 simple ingredients only: lemons, water and sugar. No pectin here. Fill your crepes or top your cakes and tarts with it.
You really don' need pectin when making jams. Here are our other jam recipes without pectin: Black mulberry jam, easy strawberry jam, orange jam and unripe figs jam.
This jam has a zesty, refreshing and a little tangy flavor, so it’s good for warm spring days! You can either have it at breakfast, spread it on biscuits or use it as a topping on lemon bread. I have another plan with it though. I’m going to make lemon jam thumbprint cookies and fill them with it very soon!
Don’t you think even the name of this recipe sounds so tempting? I know it’s not the jam season yet, we mostly make it at the end of Summer or in September here in Turkey. So why did I make this lemon jam last night? Why am I that crazy to make it at night? Did I tell you that I forget about time concept when it comes to cooking?
My parents sent us a big box of lemons from their garden a few months ago and we’ve finally come to the end of these lemons! It was really hard to accept this sad reality when I saw last night that we had about a kilo left!
These lemons are coming from Mersin, which is a city famous for its citrus fruit. The lemons from there have such a heavenly fragrance that when you cut them in halves, you feel like you’re in a citrus yard!
So making jam with those lemons was my solution to keep the flavor of those wonderful lemons longer in our kitchen. It was the first time I was making it, so I was a bit excited and curious about the result. Despite all my fears, it came out perfect! No recipe could go wrong with these incredibly fragrant lemons! So use the best lemons you can find to make this jam. Maybe I could use some of them to make Turkish Delight with lemon flavor next time.
What Goes In Lemon Jam Recipe
We don't need many ingredients for this recipe. You can make it right now if you have lemons, water and sugar. Nothing else is needed. This is the basic version of making lemon jam. If you want to enrich the flavor, add different ingredients like nuts or ginger.
Lemons are used in three different forms in this jam:
- Lemon zest
- Chopped lemons
- Lemon juice
Lemon Marmalade or Jam?
Do you know the difference between marmalade and jam? To my childhood knowledge, they have two main differences. Marmalade is thicker than jam and looks more like fruit puree. This is how we know in Turkish cuisine. When I searched these terms on the Internet, I discovered a few more details.
For one thing, jams contain fruit pulp and are like a combination of smashed fruit and sugar.
Marmalades, on the other hand, are made with citrus fruit and contain the peel of the fruit. Please read more about this on Primer Magazine:
What's The Difference Between Jelly, Jam, Marmalade, Preserves and Fruit Spread?
So I think we can call this lemon marmalade recipe too because it has lemon zest and chopped lemons with the skin on.
Making Lemon Jam
The recipe has three straightforward steps.
First, prepare the lemons. Grate the zest of three lemons in a small bowl. Squeeze one of them. Put the lemon juice and grated lemons aside. Slice the fourth lemon into thin strips or chop it in bite size pieces or even in rings.
Second step is about removing the bitterness of lemon peel. Put the lemon zest and chopped lemons in a pot. Pour water over them and bring it to boil. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. Strain the lemon zest and lemon pieces, put them back in the pot with clean water and repeat this step for the second time. Bring it to boil, simmer for 10 minutes and strain.
Third step is about making the jam. Put the cooked lemon pieces and zest in the pot along with sugar and water. Bring it to boil over medium high heat and simmer for 30 minutes over medium low heat. Let it cool in the pot and then keep it in a jar. You will see it is still runny when you remove it from heat. Don't worry! It will get the right consistency as it cools down.
I'm leaving the image in the original post which was published in 2013 when we don't have much experience about food photography.
Other Lemon Recipes
- Lemon Cookies (naturally yellow)
- Lemon Ice Cream Recipe
- Lemon Poppy Seed Cake With Oil
Other Jam Recipes
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Homemade Lemon Jam
Zesty, refreshing and fragrant lemon jam with three simple ingredients.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Yield: 1 small jar (200g) 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- Cuisine: Turkish
- 4 lemons (3 of them for their zest, 1 of them to be chopped)
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups extra water to boil lemons zest
- Grate zest of 3 lemons into a small bowl. Make sure to grate only the yellow skin, not the white part underneath.
- Take one of those lemons and squeeze it to have 2 tablespoons of lemon juice.
- Chop one whole lemon (with the skin on) or slice it thinly into strips or rings.
- Put the zest and chopped lemon pieces in a pot.
- Pour 1 cup water over them. Bring it to boil over medium high heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
- Strain and repeat this step one more time. The bitterness of lemon zest will be removed this way.
- Add sugar, lemon juice and 2 cups water over strained lemon zest in pot.
- Bring it to boil over medium low heat and let it simmer for about 30 minutes. It will be runny at this step but gets thicker as it cools down.
- Keep it in a jar.
These ingredients make about 200 g jam, so double or triple the ingredients if you want a larger amount.
- Serving Size: 1 jar (200g)
- Calories: 620
- Sugar: 154 g
- Sodium: 22.7 mg
- Fat: 0.4 g
- Carbohydrates: 162.4 g
- Protein: 0.7 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: easy lemon jam, lemon zest
I made 3 batches yesterday and it is delicious!
Zerrin & Yusuf says
Yay!!!! Glad you liked it 🙂
Grandchildren- Erin, Bridget says
When it says strain and repeat this step one more time, what step do we repeat? The one before or the one we had just done? Although, excited to see the results and cannot wait. Hopefully it sets properly!
Zerrin & Yusuf says
The 5th step should be repeated.
So after straining, you pour water, bring it to a boil, let it simmer for 10 minutes and strain. We do this twice to remove the bitterness of lemon zest.
Hope this helps.
I followed this receipe to the word and its not overly helpful. Its still very watery and it did not set when cold. I had to reheat it and let it simmer down for an additional 20 mins.it took 3 attempts to share this post
This is delicious. However, the cooking time is simply not long enough for the jam to set... I ended up reheating and reducing the jam for a further 40mins (approx) after finding it hadn't set overnight.
Bob Lim says
Yes agree we have to keep on heating on low or medium heat and stirring it so evaporation may occur and the syrup thicken to become jam. I have Roselle jam before, almost same basic.
Howe do I fix already bottled lemon syrup. Mine never set properly.
Is your lemon jam too runny? I mean jams we make at home are not super thick like the store-bought ones. And it is what we are after indeed. They sure have a consistency but not supposed to ne very thick.
On the other hand, if you want your jam with more consistency, pour it in a pan and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes over medium low heat. Check if it is getting thicker. If not yet, you can add in 1 tablespoon lemon juice and let it simmer for another 5 minutes. And then transfer it in a clean jar. Hope this helps.
Barry Clarke says
We love your jam recipe.We've made it a few times now.I have only one question.The final 30 minutes simmer,do you do that with the lid on or the lid off?
Hi Barry! Glad you enjoyed the recipe! Simmer it without the lid.
I was very excited to try this simple recipe, unfortunately mine did not thicken at all after cooling. It’s still very runny. Maybe I’ll try simmering it longer. Mine did not reduce in quantity either.