Homemade grape jelly captures the sweet, rich taste of fresh grapes in a way that store-bought products can’t compete with. Making your own jelly at home is surprisingly easy, and can be a fun activity for the whole family. If properly canned, homemade jelly can last for up to a year, making it a great way to use end-of-season grapes. While any color grape can be used to make jelly, we recommend black grapes for their rich, deep color and natural sweetness.
To make grape jelly, you’ll need the following:
- 2 large pots
- 6 pint canning jars with rim-sealed lids
- Sieve or cheese cloth
- 3 ½ lbs. ripe black grapes, stemmed
- 1 (1 ¾ oz) box of pectin
- 7 cups sugar
- Optional: Dutch oven or deep pot for water bath canning, 3-4 inches taller than height of canning jars
- Prepare the canning jars by boiling in water for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and let jars sit in hot water until ready to fill.
- Remove grapes from stems, wash thoroughly.
- Place grapes and 1 ½ cups water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cover for 10 minutes.
- Strain water, leaving just the prepared grapes.
- Extract the juice from the grapes using a sieve or cheese cloth, collecting the juice in a large pot. Discard the skins and pulp.
- Stir pectin into grape juice and mix well.
- Bring grape juice to a rolling boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Stir in sugar and bring back to a rolling boil for 1 minute or until sugar is completely dissolved.
- Remove from heat. Skim off any foam on top and discard.
- Carefully ladle the hot jelly into the hot jars, leaving ½ inch of space at the top. Wipe rims of canning jars, then cap with lids and bands to seal.
- Let stand 24 hours at room temperature, then refrigerate.
Tip: Water bath canning is required for long-term storage. To get a longer shelf life out of your jelly, visit Simply Canning for a complete list of supplies and instructions.