Classic Concord Grape Jam Recipe

Grape jelly is something that you can find in any supermarket and little tubs of the stuff are a familiar sight at breakfast restaurants and diners, but grape jam isn't quite as common. If you'd like to try making it yourself, though, recipe developer Tanika Douglas notes that "The process is simple, and is a fantastic way to use leftover Concord Grapes." She also points out that this jam can make for a great gift.

"The jam," Douglas tells us, "has a rich, deep grape flavor that is the perfect balance of sweet and tart" and she also feels that "the simple addition of salt balances the sweetness of the jam very nicely." She tells us she enjoys it on toast at breakfast time, but says it also works nicely with cheese for an afternoon treat. You might like to use it in baking, as well, since it would make a perfect filling for cakes, cookies, and homemade jam doughnuts. In fact, you could even buck tradition and make a peanut butter and grape jam sandwich.

Collect the ingredients for the classic Concord grape jam

This jam starts off with Concord grapes, but in addition to those, you just need a few more simple ingredients: water, lemon juice, salt, and superfine sugar. No superfine sugar on hand? That's okay, you can just give granulated sugar a quick spin in the food processor.

Prepare the grapes for the jam

Pick the stems off the grapes — these you can toss (or compost). Now separate the grapes from their skins (Douglas suggests gently squeezing them), but do not throw away the skins as those will be helping to lend color and texture to the jam.

Put the peeled grapes in a pot and cook them over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes, at the end of which time the flesh should have broken down. Strain the pulp to remove the seeds, then return it to the pot seed-free.

Simmer the jam until it thickens

Purée the grape skins in the blender with ¼ cup water, then add this liquid to the grape pulp along with the sugar, lemon juice, and salt. Once the mixture starts to boil, lower the heat to a simmer. Cook the grape jam for from 34 to 45 minutes until it thickens up, stirring it every now and then.

Douglas suggests a way to check to see if the jam is done. She says to put a small plate in the freezer for 5 minutes, then to spoon a small amount of jam onto the chilled plate and run your finger through it. "If the two sides of jam remain parted and don't flow back into each other," she says, "then the jam is ready."

Store the homemade jam

When the jam is thick enough, skim off the foam from the top, then store it in clean jars. You should have about 6 cups of jam in all, so this would be about 6 half-pints or 3 pints. If you keep the jam in the refrigerator it should last for about a month, but you can always keep it in the freezer in airtight plastic containers for longer storage.

Yet another option you have, should you own the proper setup for home canning, is to process the jam in a water bath. Foods that have been canned safely can be stored at room temperature for up to a year, but you will need to be sure to follow all of the manufacturer's directions and be scrupulous about sterilizing all of your equipment in order to make sure that your home-canned jam remains bacteria-free.

Classic Concord Grape Jam Recipe
5 from 93 ratings
Learn how to make your own Concord grape jam in your home kitchen.
Prep Time
Cook Time
grape jam on bread
Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
  • 4 ¼ pounds Concord grapes
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 pounds superfine sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  1. De-stem and peel the grapes, reserving the skins.
  2. Simmer the grapes over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until the flesh has broken down.
  3. Strain the pulp through a sieve, then return the strained pulp back to the pot minus the seeds.
  4. Blend the grape skins with ¼ cup water until smooth.
  5. Pour the blended skins into the pulp, then add the sugar, lemon juice, and salt.
  6. Bring the grape mixture to a boil, then turn it down to a simmer.
  7. Cook the jam for 34 to 45 minutes or until thickened, stirring intermittently.
  8. Spoon off any foam from the surface of the jam, then spoon it into clean jars or other airtight containers.
  9. Jam can be refrigerated for up to a month or else either frozen or canned to last longer. If using the latter method, be sure to use the proper canning equipment and follow all of the manufacturer's instructions.
Calories per Serving 401
Total Fat 0.6 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 103.4 g
Dietary Fiber 1.5 g
Total Sugars 101.5 g
Sodium 52.7 mg
Protein 1.0 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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