Gooseberry jam with juniper and citrus

We stopped at a fruit stand on the side of the road in Norfolk, and along with the strawberries, tayberries and raspberries, I bought a punnet of large and lovely-looking gooseberries.

Only later did it occur to me that as I was in the middle of my Whole30 diet, and therefore sworn off sugar for a few weeks, it was unlikely I’d be able to eat them any time soon!

I wondered about freezing, but ultimately decided to take the old-fashioned preserving route, and make a preserve. Well, a jam, anyway. That way I could cook them up, then store for a few weeks until my Whole30 was over before tucking in to a gooseberry jam sandwich. Mmmmm.

gooseberry jam with juniper & citrus

I always love the combination of gooseberries and gin, but I didn’t want to add any alcohol to the jam, so instead I added citrus peels and juniper berries to give a hint of gin’s botanical flavours. It certainly smelled delicious, and I’ve had good feedback on the taste (can’t wait to taste it myself!). The jam also took on a gorgeous deep pink colour – the gooseberries were a sort of blush colour to start with, but the pinkness intensified on cooking. Lovely.

I always think that jam is much easier to make than you might think. The only tricky bit is testing for the ‘set’ but if you use a frozen saucer it is easy to do. Start testing after about 15 minutes as cooking time may vary depend on how much pectin is in your particular batch of fruit.

gooseberry jam with juniper & citrus

I made four small jars of jam from a single large punnet of gooseberries. Can’t wait to dollop it onto some toast and get stuck in!

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Gooseberry jam with juniper & citrus
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2616 calories
669 g
0 g
4 g
6 g
0 g
1248 g
14 g
599 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 2616
Calories from Fat 30
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
Saturated Fat 0g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 14mg
Total Carbohydrates 669g
Dietary Fiber 30g
Sugars 599g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 600g gooseberries
  2. 5-6 juniper berries
  3. 2 strips lemon peel
  4. 2 strips orange peel
  5. Juice of half a lemon
  6. 600g caster sugar
  1. Place a few saucers in the freezer. Wash out 2 large or 4 small jam jars with hot soapy water. Rinse, and leave to dry in a low oven (around 100C).
  2. Top and tail the gooseberries and wash thoroughly. Place in a large pan with the juniper berries, citrus peels and lemon juice.
  3. Heat over a medium flame for a few minutes until the fruit softens and the juices begin to run. Add the sugar and stir in.
  4. Continue to heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce the heat and allow to boil for around 15 minutes.
  5. Remove a saucer from the freezer. Spoon about a teaspoonful of hot jam onto the saucer and wait for a few seconds. Run your finger through the jam - if it wrinkles, it's done! If the jam is not quite ready, cook for a few minutes more and repeat the 'saucer test' until you're happy that the jam is set.
  6. Take the pan off the heat and stir to amalgamate any foam from the surface. Allow to cool slightly for a few minutes.
  7. Remove the jars from the oven and carefully fill with the jam. Screw on the lids and leave the jars to cool - the jam will be extremely hot so it may take a few hours before the jars are fully cooled.
  8. Wipe any drips from the outside of the jars and label them.
  9. Enjoy your jam!
gooseberry jam with juniper & citrus

If you fancy making more unusually flavoured jams, try these:
Lychee and Rosewater jam, from Kavey at KaveyEats.
Apricot and Vanilla jam, from Choclette at Tin & Thyme.
Rhubarb Anise syrup and frugal jam, from Lindsey at Lancashire Food.
Speculaas spice damson jam, from Steven at 


  1. Sarah Klinkowitz

    If you come to NY in November you have to bring me one – I love LOVE homemade jams! I’ll swap you a jar of cognac soaked dried fruit.

  2. We got some gooseberries when we went fruit picking and I was thinking about making jam with it. I am now convinced!

  3. What a delicious recipe!! Haven;t had gooseberry jam or even gooseberries for many years… thank you for sharing this.

  4. Mmm I’m loving the sound of this! Nothing beats home made jam. 🙂

  5. I do love making jam and love your idea for a non alcoholic suggestion of gin!

  6. Gooseberries and gin? However did you come across that as a favoured combination Helen? Your jam sounds wonderful though. How long before you can taste it?

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