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Simple Homemade Fruit Preserves

Simple Homemade Fruit Preserves
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The following recipe and photography were provided by our partner, Yoko Segawa of Yoko’s Kitchen.

If you’re looking to preserve every last ounce of local produce season, make homemade fruit preserves with fresh berries from Heinen’s Produce Department! Unlike many fruit preserve recipes, this one requires no pectin (the ingredient that thickens jams, jellies and marmalades) or complex techniques – just fresh berries, 40 minutes and a few simple steps.

Low in sugar, which allows the natural taste of the sun-ripened fruit to shine, this recipe can be made with virtually any berry you prefer, including strawberries, blueberries and raspberries.

Spread on toast, swirled into yogurt or used as a topping for desserts – the possibilities for these preserves are endless! Try this recipe at home and taste the difference!

A piece of toast slathered with Homemade Strawberry Fruit Preserve and butter on a plate

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It is Easier Than Most Fruit Preserve Recipes. Making fruit preserves from scratch may sound intimidating, but the simplicity of this recipe will surprise you! It requires no additional pectin (the ingredient that thickens jams, jellies and marmalades) because berries already contain enough to set the preserves naturally.
  • It is Long Lasting. Washing berries in a vinegar bath before use kills mold and keeps the berries fresher for longer, allowing you to enjoy these fruit preserves for 2-3 weeks! Make sure to rinse the berries after the vinegar bath to get rid of any leftover vinegar taste.
  • It is Low in Sugar. The beauty of homemade fruit preserves is that you control the sugar content. The less sugar you add, the more the natural berry flavor shines.
  • It is a Great Way to Enjoy the Season’s Best Berries. There is no better time to try this recipe than during the summer months when Heinen’s Produce Department is full of the best local and Midwest-grown fruits and veggies!

Simple Homemade Fruit Preserves

Simple Homemade Fruit Preserves


  • 1 lb. fresh strawberries, blueberries or raspberries
  • Heinen's distilled white vinegar, for washing
  • ⅔ cup Heinen's sugar
  • 2-3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • Lemon zest, optional


  1. In a large bowl, add 3 parts water and 1 part of distilled white vinegar. Add the berries and swish them around. Drain and wash them well in a water bath or under the running water. Place them on a wire rack to dry.
  2. Hull and chop strawberries. There is no need to chop if you’re using blueberries or raspberries.
  3. In a heavy pot, add the berries, sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest. Use a potato masher to mash the fruit.
  4. Bring the berries to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Cook until thickened and jammy, about 20-25 minutes. Reduce the heat if necessary to maintain a steady boil. Use a spoon to skim off the foam on top.
  5. Use a candy thermometer to check if the preserves are set. When the jam reaches 220°F, it’s ready. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, try spreading a scoop of the jam on a frozen plate and running your finger through it once it cools. If your finger leaves a track in the middle of the jam, it’s ready.
  6. Transfer the jam into clean glass jars and let cool. Seal with lids and refrigerate. Store in the refrigerator. Enjoy within 2-3 weeks.

Closeup of Jar of Simple Homemade Strawberry Fruit Preserve

Yoko Segawa

By Yoko Segawa

Yoko Segawa is a published cookbook author, recipe developer, and food photographer who is passionate about plant-based cooking that everyone can enjoy. She shares tips for healthy cooking and beautifully styled, vibrant recipes on her Instagram page and YouTube channel: Yoko’s Kitchen.

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