Highbush Cranberry Jelly

Total Time
24hrs 15mins
Prep 24 hrs
Cook 15 mins

High bush cranberries are not true cranberries, they are a shrubby plant with clusters of red berries that are quite acidic. This jelly is superb on toast, English muffins, with cream cheese or is also good with meat,poultry or fish. Please note that these berries smell like horrid stinky socks when the juice is being extracted from them, I like a well ventilated kitchen for this step. I also freeze the extracted juice before I make the jelly. It's convenient and it also seems to mellow the flavour.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 2 cups highbush cranberries (OK to triple)
  • 3 cups water (OK to triple same as berries)
  • 23 cup sugar (for every cup of extracted juice.)
  • liquid pectin (optional)


  1. Simmer the berries in the water (watch that the ratio is 2 c berries to 3 c water) for 10 minutes. Boil Rapidly for 3-5 minutes.
  2. Strain the liquid through a jelly bag or cheese cloth lined sieve overnight. Do not squeeze the mixture or your jelly will be cloudy.
  3. For each cup of juice, add 2/3 c white sugar. Stir it up well.
  4. I used 5 cups of juice and 4 1/2 c sugar for my batch.
  5. Bring to 220-222 degrees on candy thermometer.
  6. Remove from heat, skim off any foam.
  7. Pour into sterile jars and put in 5 minute water bath.
  8. OR: Bring juice and sugar to a boil, boil hard for 1 minute. Turn off heat, add pectin, stir well. Skim, fill jars and place in water bath 5 minutes.
  9. Enjoy your jelly!
Most Helpful

My jelly was perfect! I did this recipe x4 as I had 8 cups of berries. Instead of pectin I added 2 cups of tiny crabapple a cut in half. I mashed it all with a potatoe masher. I ran it through a strainer before the cheesecloth to speed up that part. Turned out great!

Laura R. September 20, 2015

Very good. Try adding a 1/2tsp-1tsp of freshly shreaded ginger for a bit of snap!

Heather N. January 19, 2008