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rhubarb strawberry jam with toast and strawberries
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5 from 3 votes

Rhubarb Strawberry Jam (no pectin)

Tart, sweet, and delicious old-fashioned Rhubarb Strawberry Jam, with no pectin.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Appetizers, Snacks
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 (8-oz jars)
Calories: 44kcal
Author: Hilda Sterner


  • 5 cups chopped rhubarb
  • 3 cups chopped strawberries
  • 7 cups sugar
  • 1 medium lemon (juiced and zested)
  • ½ tsp. cardamom
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. dried and ground orange peel (optional)


  • Wash and slice enough rhubarb to equal five cups. Prepare strawberries by removing the leaves and slicing in quarters. 
  • Place rhubarb in an eight-quart Dutch oven and sprinkle with some of the sugar. 
  • Add prepared strawberries and cover with sugar.
  • Add lemon zest and the juice from the lemon. Quarter the juiced lemon and add to the pot, along with the cinnamon, cardamom, and dried and ground orange peel (if using). Citrus fruits are naturally high in pectin and will make up for the lack of pectin in the strawberries and rhubarb.
  • Cover with the remaining sugar.
  • Place the lemon seeds inside a tea ball or soup bag and add to the pot. Why? Because lemon seeds are also loaded with pectin.
  • Place the pot over low heat, uncovered, allowing the sugar to melt slowly.
  • Once the sugar begins to liquefy, gently stir so that the fruit does not get scorched.
  • When the mixture begins to boil, adjust the heat to low-medium and allow the preserves to simmer. Skim the foam that forms on the surface.
  • Meanwhile, place the jars and lids in a large pot filled with enough water to fully submerge the jars. Boil for approximately ten minutes to sterilize.
  • After the preserves has simmered for 30 to 35 minutes, it should start to jell. 
  • A quick way to test the jam's consistency is to take a few tablespoons of the jam and place it in the refrigerator for five minutes to ten minutes. If the jam does not jell, it needs to simmer further.
  • When you're satisfied with the texture, remove the lemon rinds and carefully pour the jam into the sterilized jars, leaving a ¼" space from the top of the jar. A canning funnel really helps with this step.
  • Wipe off the rims and sides of the jars with a damp washcloth, then screw the lids, but not too tightly, so that the air can escape. Process in the boiling water for an additional ten minutes.
  • Once the jars seal, tighten further and store in the panty up to a year.


  • I've noticed a lot of rhubarb-strawberry jam recipes use an equal amount of strawberries to rhubarb. If you use an equal amount, the strawberry flavor tends to overpower the rhubarb. You can either use equal amounts of the two or stick to the measurements above.
  • Resist the temptation to cook this jam longer, thinking it's not thickening. Instead, test a small amount at the 35-minute mark to see if it needs further cooking.
  • If you decide to reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe, you may want to add liquid pectin so that it will jell properly.
  • If you prefer a smoother texture, allow the jam to cool, then blend using an immersion blender. Once you have the desired texture, heat jam once more before canning and processing.
  • Rhubarb jam is pretty tart. If you prefer sweeter jam, add an additional cup of sugar and use 4 cups of strawberries and 4 cups of rhubarb.
  • If you want the flavor of the rhubarb and strawberries to really stand out, add a pinch of salt, and leave out the cinnamon and cardamom.


Serving: 1T. | Calories: 44kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 0g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 1mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 11g