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Sweet Chilli Jam

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My Easy Sweet Chilli Jam is sweet, spicy and tangy with a warming heat that won’t blow your socks off. Perfect to perk up cheeses, cold meats, sausages or burgers.

Sweet Chilli Jam is like a chilli jelly as it doesn’t contain pieces of fruit. Its gorgeous vibrantly fresh colour comes from the red bell peppers, cayenne chillies and the speedy cooking.


Quick and easy, you can have a pan of Chilli Jam ready to pot in just under 20 minutes.

I use jam sugar which contains just the right amount of pectin to give a good set in three or four minutes.

A spoon of chilli jam placed on cheese and bread with a jar behind it.

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Prize winning not least for its gorgeous vibrant fresh colour which comes from the red bell peppers and chillies and the speedy cooking.

Along with Homemade Chilli Sauce , Chilli Jam was a best seller at our Christmas fayres in France. Both regularly make it into our family Christmas hampers and both are always on the table for barbecues.

A spoon in a jar of jelly with a piece of bread and cheese and jelly in front of it.

The Cayenne chilli peppers give a fiery heat to the jam without being overpowering although you can use a different variety of chilli pepper if you prefer – a good tip is to taste the chilli before using to check how hot it is.

Why you’ll love this recipe

Here’s why this is the Best Homemade Sweet Chilli Jam recipe.

  • Versatile: Perfect with cheese, cold meats and BBQ but don’t stop there. Add a little rice vinegar and you have a chilli dipping sauce or a sticky sweet chilli glaze. Try it on ham, chicken or pork.
  • Easy to make: From prep to pot, you can have a jar of chilli jam ready in just half an hour.
  • Perfect Christmas Gift: With chilli jam being so easy, why not rustle up an extra batch ? Then you’ll have a delicious edible homemade Christmas gift for family and friends.
Jars of freshly made chilli jam on a table.

What equipment do I need ?

What ingredients do I need ?

You only need 6 ingredients to make my chilli jam. See the recipe card for exact quantities.

Fresh ingredients for chilli jam. Ginger, red peppers, limes and chillies on a table.
  • About 10 Cayenne chillies
  • 2 to 3 red bell peppers
  • Fresh ginger – adds a warming heat.
  • Apple cider vinegar – I use a good quality organic vinegar.
  • Jam sugar – to ensure a good set. If you can’t get hold of jam sugar you can use regular sugar and buy the pectin separately. Use the amount recommended on the pectin packet. You can find pectin sachets in most supermarkets these days or you can buy online.
  • Lime juice – gives a zesty tang to the jam.
  • Salt – I use fine sea salt/kosher salt.

How to sterilise jam jars

Sterilise jars shortly before they are to be used. This minimises the time in which the jars might pick up new bacteria and ruin your chutney. Make sure your jars are dry when you come to fill them.

Clean jam jars placed in the microwave to sterilise.
  • I like to sterilise jars in the microwave. Clean your jars as normal and rinse. Whilst the jars are wet, pop them in the microwave for two minutes on full power. Remember the jars will be very hot, so remove with care.
  • Pour boiling water into a bowl or jug and add the lids and leave for 5 minutes. Drain and leave to dry completely before using.
  • Alternatively, wash jars and the lids in the dishwasher on a hot cycle.
  • Always sterilise more jars than you think you will need.

How to make Sweet Chilli Jam

  • Slice chillies and peppers, remove seeds and fibrous tissue.
  • TOP TIP: Wear gloves to cut and deseed the chillies – the oils released in the fibrous tissue can really burn.
  • Place in a preserving pan or large saucepan and add ginger and cider vinegar.
  • Simmer for 15 minutes and puree with a stick blender.
Collage of images showing cutting chillies and peppers, cooking them and pureeing them.
  • Keep on a low heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Boil rapidly of 3 to 4 minutes and remove from heat.
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then pour into clean sterilised jars.
Collage of images showing adding sugar to pan, stirring the jam, rolling boil and pouring jam into jars.

Recipe FAQs

Is chilli chutney the same as chilli jam?

Chilli Chutney usually has pieces of chilli in along with other vegetables and a higher quantity of vinegar. The cooking process is long and slow, on the other hand chilli jam is sweeter using less vinegar and can be cooked in under 20 minutes.

Can I use different chilli peppers ?

Yes you can, it’s pretty much down to personal taste and how hot you prefer your jam. If you want a milder chilli jam use Sweet Cherry peppers instead of Cayenne.
At the fiery end of the chilli scale, Scotch Bonnets or Habanero chilli peppers make a great jam.
Although Scotch Bonnets are very hot, they also have a unique fruity taste which we love. If using Scotch Bonnets, limit yourself to 100g of and make sure you label as Extra Hot.
If using Thai Bird’s Eye chillies, use half the amount of chillies.Plenty of chillies? Make this delicious Sweet Chilli Jam. Perfect with cheese & homemade bread & makes a great edible gift!

How long does homemade chilli jam last?

Sweet Chilli Jam will keep for up to a year stored in a cool dry place.
Once opened, use within eight weeks.

What do you eat with Sweet Chilli Jam ?

  • Perfect for spicing up cheese and crackers.
  • Divine with a baked Camembert and slices of French crusty pain.
  • Warm through with a little rice vinegar and you have an easy sweet chilli dipping sauce.
  • Fancy spicing up your fried onions for hotdogs and burgers ? Add a tablespoon to a pan full of fried onions just before serving and warm through. Et voila, an easy onion marmalade and a great hotdog relish.
  • Add a tablespoon or two to your favourite stew, casserole or tagine.
  • Add a little water and use as a glaze to liven up your Christmas ham or give a spicy kick to chicken breasts or drumsticks.
Jars of Sweet Chilli Jam.

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Top image is homemade bread with Camembert cheese and ham and a jar of spicy jam and a spoon. Bottom image is Jars of freshly made chilli jam on a table.
A spoon of chilli jam placed on cheese and bread with a jar behind it.

Sweet Chilli Jam

My Easy Sweet Chilli Jam is sweet, spicy and tangy with a warming heat that won't blow your socks off. Perfect to perk up cheeses, cold meats, sausages or burgers.
4.99 from 73 votes
Print Pin Rate this Recipe Save Recipe
Course: Jams, Pickles, Chutneys, Sauces, Dips & Spreads
Cuisine: British, International, Thai
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 56 tablespoons
Calories: 40kcal
Author: Sarah James
tablespoons

Equipment

  • Stainless steel preserving pan or large wide based saucepan
  • Funnel
  • Ladle
  • Handheld / stick blender
  • 4 x 200 ml sterilised jam jars

Ingredients

  • 150 g Cayenne chilli peppers approx 10 chillies
  • 250 g red bell peppers approx 2 or 3 red peppers
  • 50 g fresh ginger – peeled and chopped
  • 500 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 1 kg jam sugar
  • 90 ml lime juice
  • 1 level teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Slice and chop chillies and peppers, remove seeds and fibrous tissue.
  • Place in a preserving pan or large saucepan and add ginger.
  • Add cider vinegar and place on a medium heat.
  • Bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes on low.
  • Whizz with a stick blender until you have a puree.
  • Add the jam sugar, lime juice and salt.
  • Keep on a low heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Boil rapidly for 3 to 4 minutes and remove from heat.
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then ladle into clean sterilised jars.

Notes

  • Serving size is 1 tablespoon (15g) The recipe makes approximately 3 or 4 x 200 ml jars.
  • A stainless steel pan is best as it will react less to the acidity of the vinegar.
  • If you can’t get hold of jam sugar you can use regular sugar and buy the pectin separately. Use the amount recommended on the pectin packet. You can find pectin sachets in most supermarkets these days or you can buy online.
  • Wear gloves to cut and deseed the chillies – the oils released in the fibrous tissue can really burn.
  • Sweet Chilli Jam will keep for up to a year stored in a cool dry place.
  • Once opened, use within eight weeks.
  • Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
Serving: 1Tablespoon | Calories: 40kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 30mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 166IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 1mg

I’m entering Sweet Chilli Jam into a couple of challenges this month:

And linking to: Fiesta Friday

Recipe Rating




Lena

Tuesday 31st of May 2022

Thanks for this great recipe! I made it with my home grown chillies (bird's eye and scotch bonnets) and used xylitol with Pomona's pectin in lieu of jam sugar. I used good quality white wine vinegar in lieu of the apple cider vinegar. Worked a treat. The taste and colour of this jam is amazing. I also boil preserved about 12 jars. We now have enough chilli jam until next harvest and to give to friends. Thanks again!

Andrina

Tuesday 30th of June 2020

This turned out beautifully and is excellent with creamy cheeses. The flavor is really lovely. I used about half the amount of sugar but with the appropriate amount of pectin for the weight of peppers and it set well. Would definitely make again. It’s also a beautiful color!

Carl

Sunday 4th of December 2016

Made this today , very good and easy . Thanks

sarahj

Monday 5th of December 2016

That's great Carl, glad you found the recipe easy to work with and I hope you enjoy my Sweet Chilli Jam as much as we do. A pleasure to share the recipe. :-)

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