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.
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 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! “I must find a way to keep these beauties longer!”, I thought.
What makes these lemons so special? They 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.
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:
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 30 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 30 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.
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
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups extra water to boil lemons zest
- Grate 3 lemons into a small bowl.
- Squeeze one of them to have 2 tablespoon lemon juice. Put the other two aside. We are not using them.
- Chop one lemon 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.
Keywords: easy lemon jam, lemon zest
This post was originally published in 2013 and has been updated with new pictures and additional information.