Make it from Scratch Challenge..No Pectin Plum Jam

This is an easy no pectin plum jam recipe that only takes 2 ingredients to make. You can make a big batch and can it. Or just keep it in the refrigerator to eat it right away. It’s so yummy!

4 step photos in this homemade plum jam

More Jam Recipes to Try: Raspberry Freezer Jam | Strawberry JamPear Jam | Blueberry No Pectin Jam

Easy Plum Jam Recipe ~ No Pectin Needed

My aunt stopped by for a visit and she was bearing a gift. She had brought us a nice bucket of plums from her plum tree.

These plums were very plump, juicy and flavorful. But I knew we wouldn’t be able to eat them all before they would go bad so I decided to make some jam.

Plum Jam with no added pectin

 After I held a few out for eating I took the other three pounds to make the jam. And it turned out so good. Here’s how to make a batch for yourself.

2 Ingredient No Pectin Plum Jam Recipe with Step by Step Photos

Step 1 Wash the Plums

Wash the plums really well. Place your plums in a bowl of water and scrub each one.  I don’t know why but plums always have this gritty, powdery substance on them, so I always scrubbed that off. 

Plums washed and cut

Step 2 Pit and Chop the Plums

After the plums are washed, sliced them in half to remove the pit. Once they are all pitted you want to chop them up a bit. 

You don’t want small pieces, big chucks are better. 

Sugar Added to the plums

Step 3 Add Sugar to the Plums

Once you have all your plums chopped, add the sugar to them. Just sprinkle it all over the top of the plums.

Sugar stirred into plums

Step 4 Place Plum Mixture Overnight in the Refrigerator

Now place your plum mixture in the refrigerator overnight to make some nice juice to cook them in the next day. 

This process called maceration and helps to bring the juice out of the fruit. And it makes for a better jam too. So worth the wait.

After Sitting Overnight

Step 5 Cook the Plums into Jam

The next day you’ll have lots of juice in with the plums, now it’s time to cook them. 

At first, the mixture is just juice and chopped plums.

But as the cooking goes on the liquid boils off and the skins color the jam to a lovely dark purple. 

You want to boil and constantly stir the mixture until you reach the gel point, which is 220 degrees.

How to Test You Have Reached the Gel Point

To test the gel point, place a small plate in the freezer and then when you are ready to test the jam, place a small amount of jam on to the plate. 

Put the plate with the jam on it back into the freezer for a minute or two.

If the jam seems to be set, no longer runny, then it’s time to stop the cooking process.


Step 6 Water Bath Can or Place in the Refrigerator

Once the jam is at the gel point you can processed it in a water bath canner. 

For my batch, I ended up with three jars of plum jam. One jar was opened right away by my husband, to use as a topping for his ice cream.

The rest were put away for eating later. 

Plum Jam in Jar

Here’s the printable recipe for No Pectin Plum Jam…

Plum Jam in Jar

No Pectin Plum Jam

4.37 from 11 votes


  • 3 pounds of Plums washed, pitted and chopped
  • 1 cup of sugar


  • Mix the plums with the sugar and let sit overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Place the plums and any liquid into a large pot and cook over high heat to the gelling point (220 degrees) stirring constantly.
  • Cool and store in the refrigerator or you can process it in a water bath canner.
Tried this recipe?Click here to tell us how it was!

This was my first try at making plum jam and it turned out so well I am sure I will be adding it to my canning list for next year.

Plum jam step by step photos

What kind of jam is your favorite? Leave me a comment below and let me know. 

This post is part of the Make it from Scratch Challenge hosted by Crystal of Money Saving Mom This post was originally publish in September of 2013 but was updated with new photos and content on June 17, 2020.

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40 thoughts on “Make it from Scratch Challenge..No Pectin Plum Jam”

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe and process! I would love to get into making my own jams. I just ate the last plum from the store, but now I am looking forward to the next farmer’s market!!

    1. Your welcome Kay, I make quite a few jams but this was my first try at Plum jam. Everyone at our house loved the jam in fact one jar is already gone. 🙂 I knew I should have made more. Thanks for stopping by.

      1. This plum jam is amazing!!
        So easy to make, I put it in the food processor when it was done cooking & then put half I the fridge and half in the freezer.

      2. I love yellow plum jam cooked with a vanilla bean. After it cooks, open the bean and scrape the inside of the bean into the jam.

    1. Danica, I think it would work for berries, apricots and peaches/nectarines. I have made rhubarb jam without any pectin too. I don’t think it would work for strawberries as they don’t have enough natural pectin but if you added a grated apple to the strawberries that might work. I hope that helps. 🙂

  2. I have 2 medium bags of frozen plums to do jam with and was wondering how much sugar I should add to do my jam?

    1. Lynne, it would depend on how much your plums weigh. If they are around 3 pounds for both bags then 1 cup of sugar should work well. If you have closer to 4-5 pounds I would try 1.5 cups of sugar. I hope that helps.

  3. First try a making any sort of jam. My neighbor has 2 plum trees and gave me about 8 lbs.. I tried your recipe and it worked fine. I got compliments from 2 neighbors – they loved it. I tweaked it a little by adding some powdered ginger and a teaspoon of lemon juice. I did not do the “canning process” but used some ZipLoc containers – let everyone know they should refrigerate it. Totally pleased with the recipe.

    1. David, I like your changes to the recipe, it sounds really good. It’s so nice to have great neighbors who share with you. We have wonderful neighbors like that too. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.

  4. Barbara Lorenzen

    Easy recipe! Firmed up nicely.
    I brought to boil, then 10 min simmer, 3 times; let sit overnight & repeated boil/simmer 3 more times. Plum preference is Santa Rosa/ Satsuma cross. Beautiful color!

    1. Laura, if you’re only making one or two jars you can store them in the refrigerator or freeze them for longer storage. I hope that helps.

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