This is the BEST strawberry jam. It’s tangy, all natural, vegan, and so easy. In just 15 minutes you have homemade jam: no canning tools required!
Here’s a trick you need in your life. Did you know you can make strawberry jam in just 15 minutes? And it’s not just any old jam. It’s the most delicious strawberry jam you’ve ever tasted. You’ll want to spread this sweet-tart glistening red jelly on just about everything: toast, bagels, oatmeal, waffles, pancakes. Or just eat it off a spoon: we won’t judge! Alex and I make this healthy strawberry jam all the time and love serving it to friends and family. The magic to the trick? It uses chia seeds that naturally make the gel like texture, and maple syrup to sweeten it just enough. Ready to get started?
What’s so great about this jam?
When I think of making strawberry jam, I think about a big bunch of canning equipment. I grew up watching my parents make their “famous” apple butter and use all the professional canning methods. Canning has had a resurgence today: so maybe you’re into it too! But this recipe is the exact opposite. It’s a quick strawberry jam you can make in a flash, and it keeps in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks.
The magic of this recipe is that you don’t use gelatin like a standard jam. Chia seeds act as an all natural way to make fruit into jam! If you’ve never made a jam with chia seeds, it’s literally life changing. And it’s a fun activity to make with your family or with kids. Also because it uses chia seeds, it’s a vegan strawberry jam too! It’s totally plant based and naturally sweetened using maple syrup.
Ready to get started?
How to make strawberry jam in 15 minutes…with no canning equipment!
Step 1: Cook frozen berries with lime juice for 10 minutes.
Place 1 pound of frozen strawberries, lime juice, and water into a saucepan (see the recipe below for quantities). Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the berries are fully broken down. Break down the berries by smashing them with a fork into chunky but uniform texture.
Step 2: Stir in the chia seeds and maple. Rest for 5 minutes to thicken.
Turn off the heat. Stir in the chia seeds, maple, lime zest and vanilla. Let the mixture sit for 5 to 7 minutes and watch the magic happen. Voila! The strawberries naturally thicken into a strawberry jam.
Step 3: Pour into a jar and refrigerate.
Pour the strawberry jam into the jar and refrigerate it: it will thicken even more once it’s refrigerated. You can eat it right away, but it’s best after cooling for about 1 hour. Store for about 2 to 3 weeks.
10 ways to serve strawberry jam
There are so many ways to use strawberry jam! This one tastes so good, you won’t have difficulty finding ways to use it. But if you’re looking for ideas, here are our favorite ways to eat it!
- PB&J: Duh. Toast up sourdough bread, Dutch Oven bread, or multigrain bread.
- Oatmeal: Spread it on our toasted oatmeal or instant oatmeal.
- Biscuits: Spread on our buttermilk biscuits.
- Bagels: Bagels with cream cheese + strawberry jam? Yes please.
- Waffles: Top fluffy gluten free waffles or cornbread waffles.
- Pancakes: Imagine this on top of banana oatmeal pancakes.
- Wraps: Spread on some peanut butter and strawberry jam, then roll it up and slice into pinwheels (like these).
- Crackers: Spread almond butter and strawberry jam on our homemade crackers.
- Muffins: Slather onto these healthy banana bread muffins.
- Cornbread: Spread onto our best cornbread or easy vegan cornbread.
This strawberry jam recipe is…
Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.Print
This is the BEST strawberry jam. It’s tangy and sweet, all natural, and so easy. In just 15 minutes you have homemade jam: no canning tools required!
- 1 pound frozen strawberries (3 cups whole berries)*
- 3 tablespoons lime juice, plus 1/2 tablespoon zest (2 small limes or 1 large)
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup chia seeds
- In a saucepan, add the strawberries, lime juice, and 3 tablespoons water. Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the berries are fully broken down. About halfway through the simmering time, begin to break down the berries by smashing them with a fork into chunky but uniform texture.
- Once the berries are broken down, stir in the maple syrup, vanilla, chia seeds, and lime zest and stir until combined, about 30 seconds. Turn off the heat.
- Let the skillet sit about 5 to 7 minutes until the chia seeds thicken the jam. Transfer to a 16-ounce canning jar and refrigerate; the texture will set even further when chilled. Stores refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
*You can also use fresh berries to make this strawberry jam: this cuts the cook time in about half. We like to use frozen berries and keep fresh berries for eating. But you could use fresh berries if you’d like!
- Category: Jam
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Vegan
Keywords: Strawberry Jam, Chia Jam
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.