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Vegan Jam with Chia Seeds

$4.13 Recipe/$0.52 Serving

You are not going to believe how easy it is to make homemade jam! After trying these recipes, you will never need to buy store bought jam again!

Deciding which flavor to make is going to become your biggest problem. Chia jam is so easy to make and you only need a few simple ingredients to have flavorful, healthy jam anytime!

vegan jam with chia seeds 4 ways in one photo.

Why this vegan jam recipe works

  • Chia jam is made with fresh or frozen fruit, chia seeds, natural sweeteners and lemon juice! There are no preservatives or unnecessary added sugar!
  • This jam sets up in the fridge, so there is no need to learn how to do canning at home to have delicious, healthy jam anytime! This jam is ready in about 10 minutes from start to finish and thickens even more overnight!
  • The flavors and combinations are customizable! Choose your favorite fruit and sweeten your jam with maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia or even dates! These chia jam recipes are vegan, paleo, Whole30 friendly and even has low carb options! 
  • Add flavor to your favorite dishes! This chia jelly is great on waffles, pancakes, oatmeal or bagels! Or if you are like me, you will be eating it straight out of the jar!
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How to make healthy jam at home

  1. Add frozen fruit, chia seeds, lemon juice and maple syrup to a large pot on the stove.
  2. Cook over medium heat until the fruit starts to release its juices (about 6 minutes).
  3. Once the fruit is defrosted and the liquid begins to get thick from the chia seeds, turn off the stove.

    Begin mashing the fruit with a wooden spoon OR Carefully start to blend the fruit mixture with an immersion blender or spoon the fruit + liquid into a high speed blender. Start with half of the mixture.
  4. Check the consistency of the fruit once half is blended or mashed.

    TIP: For things like peaches, you are going to want to blend almost the entire batch where the blueberries or raspberries you may want to leave full pieces of fruit in the jam.
  5. Once you are satisfied with the consistency, carefully pour the jam into a clean container with a well-fitting lid. I love mason jars or weck jars for this but you can also use old jam/jelly jars that you have saved and cleaned from previously buying jam!
  6. Store the chia jam in the refrigerator overnight. You will notice that the jam will continue to thicken as it sits overnight!
Steps on how to make homemade chia jam

Why use chia seeds to make jam

When chia seeds are added to liquid, they start to absorb the liquid and firm up into a jelly like substance. This makes them perfect for creating jam at home with little equipment.

Traditional jam is made by adding pectin (a natural thickener found in fruits) and sugar to a large batch of fruit. This mixture is then cooked and cooled, allowing the pectin to thicken the jam and the sugar help preserve the berries through canning. This process requires a lot of technique and precision. I just don’t have time for that!

So instead, you can use use chia seeds to help thicken homemade jam. The chia seeds create a similar jelly texture and because the jam is not going to be canned, there isn’t any need for added sugar! I like to add just a little optional maple syrup to naturally enhance the sweetness of the berries.

Jar of raspberry chia jam with a spoon in the jar

Common chia jam questions

How to use chia jam

Chia jam is just like any other jam! It’s perfect on toast, bagels, waffles, pancakes, yogurt bowls, parfaits, oatmeal or even cookies!

The best fruits for chia jam

The best fruits are berries and stone fruits since they have some natural pectin in them!

These include:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Cherries
  • Peaches
  • Apricots
Jar of blueberry chia jam with a spoon in the jar

Is it shelf stable?

No, since the jam did not go through a canning process, the jam must be refrigerated at all times. This recipe also should not be used when trying to can fruit. Find a recipe specific to canning jam.

Do you need to grind the chia seeds first?

Chia seeds have a tendency to get stuck in your teeth when they are whole. This is one of the reasons why I like to blend the jam with an immersion blender after the fruit defrosts. It also helps the chia seeds get evenly distributed.

If you do not want to blend the fruit with the chia seeds, you could also grind the chia seeds first, or buy milled chia seeds. The measurements would be the same for this method.

Jar of peach chia jam with a spoon in the jar

What sweeteners to use

I love the flavor of maple syrup in chia jam, however there are a number of sweeteners that you can choose from including:

  • Honey (not vegan), use the same measurements as maple syrup.
  • Coconut sugar, use the same measurements as maple syrup
  • Stevia (for a lower carb option), use 1-2 packets
  • Dates (for a Whole30 version), use 1-2 depending on how sweet you like your jam.

Do you have to use lemon juice?

The lemon juice is added to help bring out the natural sweetness of the fruit and help give the jam a more well-rounded flavor. If you don’t have lemon juice you could also add:

  • Lime juice
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Pomegranate vinegar
  • Coconut vinegar

Other vegan jam mix-ins

You can add in flavor to chia jam using fresh herbs, spices or even extracts. Some of my favorites include:

Jar of cherry chia jam with a spoon in the jar

Can you use fresh fruit?

You can also use fresh fruit but I prefer frozen fruit because it’s often less expensive and normally it’s already washed and peeled and chopped or de-stemmed. If you are using fresh fruit:

  • Wash the fruit and peel and thick skin (like peaches).
  • Remove leaves, stems, and pits.
  • Chop the fruit so it can easily start to release it’s juices when cooking
  • You  may need to add 2-4 tablespoons of water in the beginning so the fruit doesn’t burn. 

How to store chia jam

Chia jam lasts about 14 days in the fridge in a well-sealed container. If you need to make a big batch last longer, you can also freeze for up to 3 weeks.

Before freezing, make sure that you allow it to cool completely (overnight if possible). Once chilled, you can either freeze the jam in individual servings using an ice cube tray (my favorite way) or you can freeze it in a freezer safe container (these silicone bags are great and can be stacked in the freezer).

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4 Vegan Jam Variations

Blueberry

  • Start by adding frozen blueberries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the berries over medium heat (covered). Let the blueberries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 6-7 minutes, the berries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Blend ¾ of the blueberry mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or mash with a heavy wooden spoon or with the back of a fork.
  • Mix the blended blueberry jam with the whole berries left over, stirring well.
  • Carefully add the blueberry chia seed jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!
Blueberry Chia Jam with a spoon holding a scoop of jam

Cherry

  • Start by adding frozen cherries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1.5 tablespoons of maple syrup and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the cherries over medium heat (covered). Let the cherries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 6-7 minutes, the cherries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Blend ¾ of the cherry mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or mash with a heavy wooden spoon or with the back of a fork.
  • Mash the remaining of the cherries with the back of a fork for a thicker texture. Mix everything together, making sure you enjoy the texture.
  • Carefully add the cherry chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!
Cherry Chia Jam with a spoon holding a scoop of jam

Cinnamon Peach

  • Start by adding frozen peaches to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1.5 tablespoons of maple syrup, ½ lemon, juiced, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
  • Cook the peaches over medium heat (covered). Let the peaches defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 6-7 minutes, the peaches should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Blend the peach mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or with a heavy wooden spoon.
  • After blending, add up to 1 tsp of cinnamon to the peach chia jam. You may want to start with ½ teaspoon if you are not a huge cinnamon fan and increase it from there.
  • Carefully add the cinnamon peach chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!
Cinnamon Peach Chia Jam with a spoon holding a scoop of jam

Raspberry

  • Start by adding frozen raspberries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1-2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the raspberries over medium heat (covered). Let the raspberries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 4-5 minutes, the raspberries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Stir the mixture well, and the raspberries will naturally fall apart, no need to blend this with an immersion blender unless you want to break down the chia seeds.
  • Carefully add the raspberry chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!
Raspberry Chia Jam with a spoon holding a scoop of jam

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Chia Jam 4 Ways: Blueberry, Raspberry, Peach and Cherry

Healthy Chia Jam 4 Ways

Average: $4.13 Recipe/$0.52 Serving
Homemade Chia Jam Recipe 4 Ways: Blueberry, Raspberry, Cherry and Peach! Made with frozen fruit, this chia jam recipe is so easy to make and super flavorful! Vegan, paleo, Whole30 and low carb options available!
4.34 from 3 votes
Print Pin Save Rate
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chia jam, chia jelly, vegan jelly
Prep Time: 1 min
Cook Time: 7 mins
Servings: 32 servings

Ingredients

Blueberry Chia Jam ($3.73 Recipe/$0.47 Serving)

Cherry Chia Jam ($4.38 Recipe/$0.55 Serving)

Cinnamon Peach Chia Jam ($3.99 Recipe/$0.50 Serving)

Raspberry Chia Jam ($3.69 Recipe/$0.55 Serving)

Instructions

Blueberry Chia Jam

  • Start by adding frozen blueberries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the berries over medium heat (covered). Let the blueberries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally
  • After 6-7 minutes, the berries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid
  • Blend ¾ of the blueberry mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or mash with the back of a fork.
  • Mix the blended blueberry jam with the whole berries left over, stirring well. Carefully add the blueberry chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!

Cherry Chia Jam

  • Start by adding frozen cherries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1.5 tablespoons of maple syrup and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the cherries over medium heat (covered). Let the cherries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally
  • After 6-7 minutes, the cherries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid
  • Blend ¾ of the cherry mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or mash with the back of a fork.
  • Mash the remaining of the cherries with the back of a fork for a thicker texture. Mix everything together, making sure you enjoy the texture. Carefully add the cherry chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!

Cinnamon Peach Chia Jam

  • Start by adding frozen peaches to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1.5 tablespoons of maple syrup, and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the peaches over medium heat (covered). Let the peaches defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 6-7 minutes, the peaches should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Blend the peach mixture with an immersion blender or high speed blender or mash with the back of a fork.
  • After blending, add up to 1 tsp of cinnamon to the peach chia jam. You may want to start with ½ teaspoon if you are not a huge cinnamon fan and increase it from there.
  • Carefully add the cinnamon peach chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!

Raspberry Chia Pudding

  • Start by adding frozen raspberries to a large pot with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1-2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and ½ lemon, juiced.
  • Cook the raspberries over medium heat (covered). Let the raspberries defrost and start to break down, stirring occasionally.
  • After 4-5 minutes, the raspberries should have released a lot of liquid, and they should be completely defrosted. Remove the lid.
  • Stir the mixture well, and the raspberries will naturally fall apart, no need to blend this with an immersion blender unless you want to break down the chia seeds. Carefully add the raspberry chia jam to a clean container with a well-fitting lid! Store in the fridge!

Notes

*Serving size indicates 8 servings per jam
Maple syrup substitutes include:
  • Honey (same measurements as maple syrup)
  • Coconut sugar (same measurements as maple syrup)
  • Stevia (1-2 packets)
  • Pitted medjool dates (1-2 depending on size)
Substitutes for lemon juice:
  • Lime juice
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Pomegranate vinegar
  • Coconut vinegar
Tips for using fresh fruit:
  • Wash the fruit and peel and thick skin (like peaches).
  • Remove leaves, stems, and pits.
  • Chop the fruit so it can easily start to release it’s juices when cooking
  • You  may need to add 2-4 tablespoons of water in the beginning so the fruit doesn’t burn. 
Budget tips: Make this jam with fresh fruit when it’s in season and less expensive or bulk buy fresh fruit when in season and freeze it yourself for use later in the year. 
See how I calculate food cost.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories
47
Fat
 
1
g
Carbohydrates
 
10
g
Fiber
 
3
g
Sugar
 
6
g
Protein
 
1
g
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.
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Recipe Rating




Megan

Wednesday 19th of August 2020

How many cups are in a 'bag' of peaches?

Samantha Rowland

Wednesday 26th of August 2020

Great question! About 4 cups sliced!