Amazing Black Pepper Strawberry Jam Recipe

Black Pepper Strawberry Jam

Strawberries, balsamic vinegar and black pepper make the best strawberry jam recipe. Trust me when I say that this amazing black pepper strawberry jam is a real winner!


This strawberry jam recipe was never what I contemplated making. However the simplicity of this jam and the flavors that this created were so new and fresh and truly addictive that I thought I should give it a try.

I love this jam as part of an appetizer on lemon thyme crackers with goat cheese. And I love it straight up on toast. It also brings a whole new dimension to pb and j! I’ve used it as a filling in cakes. As an ice cream and pound cake topping, and for biscuits. That combo just makes my mouth water. 

My dream life requires me to have an open pantry lined with jars of  glassy preserves, (like this amazing black pepper strawberry jam) and shelves of  dill garlic pickles and canned red heirloom tomatoes. And last but not least; fresh honey. There is something about this vision of neatly stacked, colorful jars that makes me feel so orderly, so secure, so well taken care of.

That same dream also has loaves of fresh, warm bread coming out of the oven and cookies on the counter. Did I mention the goats in the yard and the free range chickens? Lots of dogs and cats and kids would be good too. A horse, please, too. A few bah-bahs- a few moo-moos- by God, just get me the ranch.

Baking I’ m good at. No problems with yeast or sugar in this house. Except of course eating  it way too often. But a pressure cooker in this house? Science fiction to me. And a thermometer? I struggle with them every year when I make fudge. Usually it turns out great, but sometimes I get a batch of hard flint.

And canning? I think the warnings of botulism always kept me from trying.

Seriously. I don’t like lighting matches either. My mom put the fear of God in me when it came to matches. Probably because she smoked when I was a child. Thanks to mom, I still can’t light a match! I use one of those lighter things where you press a button. I can’t even flick the Bic.

Black Pepper Strawberry Jam

I’ve always wanted to preserve things, but it is hard to teach an old dog new tricks. Now there are plenty of recipes out there that don’t require canning or boiling or thermometers. And given that strawberry season is ending I searched for my old strawberry jam recipe from Gourmet, so I could make this easy, no fail, amazing black pepper strawberry jam.

It is so full of strawberry flavor and has that hidden, can’t put your finger on it, taste. And if I can make it, so can you! But you, whoever you are, probably make canned jams.

In any case, you will still love this recipe for strawberry jam because it is a glorious, ambrosial jam. No canning, no thermometers, no set test needed. Just a clock, a pot, and some ripe strawberries!

Homemade strawberry jam is decadent. Yes, you can tell a difference from grocery shelf brands.

Black Pepper Strawberry jam with a spoonful of jam and fresh strawberries

If you are like me you will leave more whole berries in your self made jam. Those fruit filled bites are what makes this jam so special.

By all means just make this easy strawberry jam. You won’t be sorry.

And if the thought of black pepper scares you, just leave it out. However everyone loves this, just the way it is. And especially on these scones.

Now get over your fear of jam making, because within 1/2 hour this glorious jam can be yours!

Fresh Strawberries with jam on toast

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Fresh strawberries with spoonful of jam

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Black Pepper Strawberry Jam

Amazing Black Pepper Strawberry Jam

  • Author: Abbe Odenwalder
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Total Time: 20 Minutes
  • Yield: 1-8 oz jar 1x
  • Category: Preserves
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American


Strawberries, balsamic vinegar and black pepper make the best strawberry jam recipe. Trust me when I say that this amazing black pepper strawberry jam is a real winner!



2 c hulled, washed strawberries (some cut in quarters, halves and wholes) (depending on how jelly or preserve like you prefer your jam)
1 1/2 c sugar
3 T balsamic vinegar
3 T water
1 t freshly ground black pepper


Combine all ingredients in a deep pot. Bring slowly to a boil. (Really. Don’t let this boil over or you won’t think this is so easy.)

While this is coming to a boil, mash some of the fruit so it combines with the sugar. Stir it all together well.

After it comes to a rolling boil, let it boil for 15 to 20 minutes or until the fruit has become darker and somewhat thick.(Here in the mile high I let it boil about 17 minutes and that is not scientific, but the set point of jam is 211 in Denver, 220 at sea level, so you can check it if you want. There is also a cool saucer test if you like, but I’ve never tried it.)

Stir the mixture here and there. You will see scum. It is that foamy stuff. Under it is the glistening red juice. Skim the scum so your jam will be pretty.

After 15 minutes, remove from heat. Let cool. Jam will thicken more on cooling and then more so when placed in the fridge.

After it has cooled, spoon into a nice clean jar. This keeps at least a month in the coolness of your fridge-but it won’t last that long! Jam can also be frozen.

Keywords: strawberry jam recipe, recipe for strawberry jam, homemade strawberry jam,

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  • Abbe Odenwalder
    July 22, 2013 at 7:47 am

    Thanks Kalyan! It is mouthwatering and sweet and delicious!

  • Kalyan Panja
    July 21, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    Just mouthwatering…looks delicious!

  • Amy
    July 21, 2013 at 9:07 am

    Your black pepper strawberry jam sounds amazing. What a great way to preserve the flavors of the summer. 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 22, 2013 at 8:51 pm

      And a quick way, too Amy. I know you will like this. It is right up your alley!

  • Anita-Clare Field
    July 20, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    Oh YUMMY 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 20, 2013 at 8:39 pm

      Thanks Anita! It is yummy. And I'm so happy you visited! 🙂

  • cquek
    July 20, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    Wowieeeee, these look AMAZING!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 20, 2013 at 8:37 pm

      Try it Cquek! It is amazing. Thanks for visiing!

  • Laura Dembowski
    July 19, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    I can work a mean candy thermometer, but I don't want to mess around with processing jams and the like. It scares me too much. I'm all for making this delightful jam and eating it as soon as possible 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 20, 2013 at 8:38 pm

      Laura, this jam is not scary. You will like it, I promise!

  • Liz Berg
    July 19, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Oh, yeah, I bet this tastes terrific! Nothing beats homemade. I need to get over my fear of canning and give this a shot 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 19, 2013 at 3:33 pm

      That's how I am too, Liz. But this works and is easy.

  • Abbe Odenwalder
    July 19, 2013 at 3:54 am

    Thanks Tricia. The writing comes easy to me as does the cooking. It's the photos I have a hard time with! I am so ready for the weekend. My friend's 16 year old daughter is coming over on Saturday and we are making a Mexican feast. She wanted to cook with me. How sweet is that?

  • Tricia Buice
    July 18, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    Lovely jam – and lovely story. I love the way your write. Have a great weekend.

  • Denise [email protected] Brazil To You
    July 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Abbe: The balsamic vinegar and black pepper are excellent twists in a classic. The jam looks so yum and interesting!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      July 19, 2013 at 3:55 am

      Denise, they are good twists, too! Hope you had a great trip!

  • Angie Schneider
    July 18, 2013 at 8:32 am

    Your strawberry jam looks marvelous, Abbe.

  • Abbe Odenwalder
    July 18, 2013 at 3:40 am

    Very funny, John! This is one jam I've had success with, so try it! Free range rabbits? I'm not sure the rabbit catcher will see the humor, but I sure do! You have me rollin' at this!

  • Kitchen Riffs
    July 18, 2013 at 2:16 am

    Goats? Free range chickens? Well, you've already got the free range rabbits, so you're on your way! This jam looks terrific. I really don't preserve, and need to start. Once I do, though, I'm sure I'll have shelves and shelves of stuff – that's one of the reasons I haven't done it. But with recipes like this, do I have an excuse? But I'll let you keep the rabbits. 😉

  • Paula @ Vintage Kitchen Notes
    July 17, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    The time has come for me to try the balsamic with the strawberries. And with black pepper no less! Fabulous jam Abbe! You keep practicing with the jam and maybe the ranch will appear…jaja