California’s peak strawberry season has not occurred yet, but our farmer’s market has already started bring in our local harvests. I had hoped to do the same last year when I planted two small strawberry bushes hoping I would have a small bounty this spring. Both plants died from our harsh weather conditions this summer. I tended to them when time permitted but I have learned from my trial and error. My region’s extreme summer heat has me questioning where I will be planting berries in the near future.
Anyways, I will not be enjoying any garden fresh berries, but I will be partaking in the local farms’ produce. I decided to load up on a few strawberry pints because not only are they one of my favorite fruits, but they’re packed full of Vitamin C. And since I have been practicing a lot of self-care lately, I figured I should ensure my body is getting enough of this essential vitamin via jam.
I do not typically purchase jams, jellies, or preserves. A majority of these products contain too much sugar and other additives. Instead, I prefer to purchase locally source, naturally sweetened, and overall healthier versions of most items I use. My decision for this is based purely on health and ethical reasons. And thankfully I have come up with awesome recipes but more importantly, I have informed myself on worker’s conditions and harmful effects of pesticides. And even though it is a small gesture (outside of other personal practices), I like to use my voice when I also purchase goods.
Anyways, why did I decide to make strawberry jam? Well, it reminds me of tea and toast on early spring mornings, picnics in the mountains, and my great aunt Eleanor!
This jam is a jam-preserve hybrid and can be whipped up in under 15 minutes. The recipe requires 3 essential ingredients and 1 optional sweetener. I pair this jam with toast, scones, yogurt bowls, tarts, etc.
The jam can be stored for up to a week in the fridge or longer if you actually preserve your jam. Also, this recipe can be easily altered to make other types of fruit jams. I made a blueberry and blackberry jam last week using the same guidelines! Super easy and way good for you.
3-Ingredient Strawberry Jam
- 4 cups strawberries (I chopped mine into quarters)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds (for jelling- flax also works)
- 1-2 tablespoons vanilla extract OR 1/4 cup maple syrup (optional sweetener)
Combine all ingredients in a medium-sized saucepan. Let simmer on a low-medium heat for 7-10 minutes. Stir occasionally and break down with a smasher.
Once cooked, remove from heat and let cool. Once cooled, transfer jam to a container with seal (I use mason jars). Store in your fridge for up to one week.
- For a smoother jam, put berries and chia seeds in a blender prior to cooking. You may need to add a touch of water.