Apricot Jam Recipe With Thyme
A delicious Apricot Jam Recipe that gets a little earthy kick from the addition of fresh thyme (optional). This recipe uses homemade apple pectin stock instead of commercial pectin.
For my taste, Apricots are one of the few fruits that taste better canned than fresh. Don’t get me wrong, I like fresh apricots; but their fresh flavor is very subtle. However, when you take the subtle apricot and cook it down a bit for a jam, that heretofore subtle flavor gets concentrated and becomes APRICOT!
And I am a BIG fan of APRICOT!
In fact, I will go as far as to say that Apricot Jam is my very, most favorite of all times jams!
Do you need to add pectin to this Apricot Jam Recipe?
Apricots are one of those low-pectin fruits that need a little help to gel. But that’s OK, we have an ‘app’le pectin stock for that! 😉 (I slay myself sometimes!) Apple Pectin Stock is nothing more than apples, their cores, seeds, and skin cooked down in the bare minimum of water. Tart apples are on the high end of pectin and acid, and so do the job of helping apricots (and other low pectin fruits) get the desired gel.
Speaking of Low Pectin Fruits, I made a printable chart that you can download and refer to when making jam. You can access that chart on the Apple Pectin Stock post as well.
In truth, if you didn’t feel like making apple pectin stock, you could just cook the fruit down longer to thicken it, but I feel you lose some of the freshness when you do that. And making pectin stock is so easy; here’s my post and Apple Pectin Stock Recipe. Chop and cook your apples the same day your chop and put your apricots in the fridge to macerate. You can use what you need for the Apricot Jam Recipe and then freeze or water bath can the extra pectin along with your jam.
Brand new to canning?
While this Apricot Jam Recipe is not difficult, if you want an even easier recipe, check out my Plum Jam Recipe. Please see The All New Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving for guidance, it is my canning Bible.
Can you reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe?
No, not really. For a complete discussion of the role of sugar in jam making, pop on over to this Jam Making Basics post. In a nutshell, pectin, acid, and sugar all work together to form the gel you want. If you leave the sugar out, you will get an apricot sauce instead of an apricot jam. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, sugar acts as a preservative, inhibiting the growth of bacteria.
Do you need to peel the Apricots?
Nope! Apricots are so thin-skinned (in a good way) that the skins basically just melt into the jam as they cook. Plus, you want to keep whatever pectin the skins have.
How long will this Apricot Jam last?
Properly water bath canned jams, jellies, and the like should be stored in a cool, dark, and dry place. They will easily last for a year, but their freshness will begin to degrade after several months. Enjoy your Apricot Jam while it is still fresh!
Apricot Jam Recipe With Thyme
- 3 lbs apricots, washed, pitted and cut in half
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 cup apple pectin stock
- Prepare canner, jars, and lids. Wash your jars and lids. Sterilize your jars in a large pot filled with water. Bring the water to almost a simmer over medium heat. Keep the jars in the simmering water until you are ready to fill them. Use a jar lifter to remove them from the water when you are ready to fill them, dumping the hot water back into the pot when you remove each jar from the water. Right before you are ready to can, put your lids in a small pot or bowl with hot, but not boiling water. Put some additional white vinegar in a small bowl, alongside a clean washcloth or paper towel. Keep the water in your canning pot at a simmer while you fill your jars. See The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving for additional guidance
- Place a saucer with 3 spoons on it in your freezer
- Wash the apricots well.
- Cut the apricots in half and removed the pit.
- Roughly chop or mash apricots with a potato masher
- Combine apricots, lemon juice, sugar, and thyme in a glass bowl, cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or up to 24 hours. This macerating softens fresh fruit and draws out its natural juices, in which the fruit then soaks, like marinating.
- Add pectin stock to the pan and stir
- Bring the mixture to a boil and gently boil, stirring from time to time, for 20 minutes or until a small dab of jam placed on one of your frozen plates wrinkles when pushed with your finger or until a sugar thermometer reads 220°.
- While your jam is cooking, prepare your work surface On a clean cloth, lay out your jar lifter, bubble remover/lid lifter, funnel, bowl for lids in hot water, a bowl of vinegar, and clean cloth.
- Remove the jam from the heat and place it on the trivet where you will be canning. (If you will not be canning the jam, fill your jars, allow them to cool, and then refrigerate.)
- Using a jar lifer, remove one jar at a time from the hot water.
- Spoon your jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace (1/2" if using Weck jars). Headspace is measured by laying your headspace gauge on the rim of the jar. In this case, have the notch next to '1/4 inch' laying on the rim of your jar. Your jam should just touch the bottom of the gauge.
- Remove air bubbles and wipe the rim with vinegar.
- Center lid on the jar.
- Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight. Fingertip tight is defined as tightening just with your fingertips, not needing the palm of your hand to tighten. (Or lay rubber gasket on the glass lid, place lid on the jar and secure with metal clamps if using Weck jars)
- Place jars in large pot, making sure they are completely covered with water by 2 inches.
- Cover pot and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling set your timer and boil for 10 minutes.
- At the end of 10 minutes, turn the heat off, remove the pot lid, and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Carefully remove jars with the jar lifter and place them on a rack where they can sit undisturbed for 24 hours.
- Refrigerate any jars if they don't seal.
- This recipe assumes some knowledge of proper and safe canning techniques. Please see The All New Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving for guidance.