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Close up of medlar jelly on a toasted crumpet
4 from 1 vote

Medlar Jelly

Medlar jelly is easy to make from this lesser known fruit. Perfect on toast, served with cheese or cold meats, or to sweeten stews and gravies.  Hunt out some medlars in late autumn and get jellying!  Just three ingredients and no pectin needed. 
Servings: 6 jars (about 4 cups)
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Straining Time12 hrs
Total Time12 hrs 45 mins


  • 1.4 kg medlars
  • 1 apple - or a handful of crab apples
  • ½ lemon
  • 1.2 litres water - see recipe
  • granulated sugar - see recipe for quantities


  • Allow the fruit to blet, by placing them in a cool, dry place in a single layer. They're ready to be made into jelly when about ¾ of your medlars are dark brown and soft.
  • Cut the fruit and apple into quarters. Add to a large saucepan with the water.
  • Bring to the boil and simmer gently until all the fruit (including the unbletted fruit and the apple) is soft. This will take about 15–20 minutes.
  • Spoon the fruit into a jelly bag and suspend it over a bowl to catch the juice. Leave to drain for about 12 hours, until no more is dripping out. Don't poke or squeeze the bag.
  • Weigh the juice, and weigh out 75% of the fruit weight in sugar. Add juice, sugar and lemon juice to a large saucepan. The saucepan should be no more than half full.
  • Place clean jam jars in the oven, and heat to 140°C / Gas Mark 1. Place the lids in a bowl and cover with boiling water.
  • Heat the saucepan gently to dissolve the sugar.
  • Once the sugar has dissolved, increase the heat to bring the jelly to a rolling boil. Start testing for set, using either wrinkle, flake or temperature method.
  • Once setting point has been reached, take the jelly off the heat.
  • Fill the jam jars with jelly, and screw on the lids. Allow to cool. Store on a cool, dark shelf.


NOTE – Use one apple, half a lemon and 1 lb sugar for every 3 lbs of medlars.
  • Don’t overcook the fruit, or the flavour of the final jelly will be lost. Just simmer the fruit gently. 
  • Never poke or squeeze the bag, as this will result in cloudy jelly.
  • If your medlars need cooking but you don’t have time to make the jelly right away, then cook and strain and either keep the juice in the fridge for a few days, or freeze and make the jelly later. 
  • For best results, tap the jam jar as you fill it, so that any air bubbles come out. Put the lids back on the jars while still hot, to help seal them tight. 
  • For safety, I always stand the jars in a tray when filling them in case one cracks.  This has only happened to me once, but having a tray to catch and hot jelly is far safer. 
  • Use plain white sugar granulated or caster. You don’t need preserving sugar as the lemon juice contains enough pectin. 
Nutritional Information 
  • This recipe is 1 Weight Watchers Point per portion 
• Please note that the nutrition information provided below is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
• Unless stated otherwise cup conversions have been made with an online tool. For accuracy please check with your favoured conversion tool. We recommend buying inexpensive digital kitchen scales.
Calories: 18kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 45mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 18IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg