Beautiful in color and sweet with heat; this homemade hot pepper jelly recipe is perfect for entertaining when served on the top of cream or goat cheese.
Follow these easy steps and tips to make it homemade!
This is my favorite hot pepper jelly recipe. It makes a great appetizer served over a block of cream cheese with crackers .
It also makes a delicious condiment or glaze for a pork tenderloin, pork chops, chicken wings, or salmon.
Homemade is the best. I hate it when we run out of our homemade jars and have to put out the store-bought stuff. It is never as good.
While there are a few steps and it is a little time consuming, the Hot Pepper Jelly is pretty easy to make.
Follow these steps and to learn how to make your own homemade hot pepper jelly. Be sure to make extra! Homemade Pepper Jelly is a great gift for the holidays!
*This post contains affiliate links.
What canning supplies do you need?
To make this pepper jelly, you need the following canning supplies:
- A canning pot. If you do not have a canning pot, you can order: Roots & Branches VKP1130 Harvest Stainless Steel Multi-Use Canner with Temperature Indicator, Holds 7 Quart Jars, 20 Quart Liquid Capacity
- A canning set: jar lifter, magnetic lid lifter, wide mouth funnel, and bubble measurer. If you do not have a set, you can order: Norpro Canning Set (6 Pieces), Green
- Jars, screw bands, and lids. You can find these in the canning section of your grocery store, or order here: Ball Mason 8oz Quilted Jelly Jars with Lids and Bands, Set of 12
Watch how to make
(Read below for steps and tips to make a delicious hot jelly. The full recipe with ingredient measurements is located at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.)
Step by Step Tutorial
Follow these steps to make delicious pepper jelly!
- Wash your jars and screw bands.
- Next, sterilize jars and screw bands in boiling water to kill off any germs and bacteria.
- Set your jars and screw bands to dry in a clean area.
- Finely chop your peppers. (If you are sensitive to jalapeño peppers, you may want to wear rubber gloves.)
- Add your peppers to a large sauce pan over high heat.
- Mix in apple cider vinegar and powdered pectin.
- Stir constantly and let it reach to a rolling boil. Once it reaches a rolling boil, remove from heat.
- At this point, add sugar to the pepper mixture. Stir well and put it back on high heat, continually stirring. Let it reach to a full rolling boil and boil one minute.
- Remove from heat. Skim off all foam.
- Ladle jelly into 8 ounce jars filling to ¼ inch from the top.
- Cover with filled jars with flat lids and screw on screw bands tightly.
- Place jars into a water bath canner canner. Water should cover jars completely. Water should be hot, but not boiling.
- Bring water to boil and process 5 minutes. Pull hot jars out and cool. *NOTE* If you live in a high altitude, you will need to adjust processing time. Here is a chart.
- You will start hearing a popping noise as the jars seal. When jars are completely cooled to room temperature, check seals by pressing centers of lids with finger. (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.)
Pepper Jelly Tips
Cooking Tip: Scoop one ladle of pepper jelly in each jar to evenly distribute peppers before completely filling each jar. The peppers rise to the top. If you do not evenly distribute them, you will have no peppers left for the last jars.
Cooking Tip: This recipe has a medium high heat level. If you do not want spicy jelly, substitute green jalapeños with red bell peppers or yellow bell peppers. If you want a hotter jelly, add hot peppers such as habanero peppers. I used red jalapeños for this batch.
How do you know if your jelly is set?
Try the "Plate Test." Put a plate in a freezer for 15 minutes or more. When you think your jelly is ready, remove it from the heat. Drop a spoonful of the jelly mixture on the plate.
Let it cool for a few minutes. Using a dry, clean finger, run your finger down the center of the jelly. If it remains divided, it is set! If it forms back together, it needs to cook a few minutes longer. Here are some more tips to ensure a set jelly.
How to Save a Runny Jelly
You can make a jelly the same exact way and have one batch that is perfect, while another batch is a runny mess.
Different factors can mess up a jelly from the size of a pan, altitude, more liquid in the peppers....
This Pepper jelly will not have the same firmness or texture as a store bought "Welches" jelly. It will be more soft and a little runny. However it should set and firm. If yours does not, read these tips on how to save a runny jelly.
How long is the Shelf Life?
Stored pepper jelly in a cool, dark space such as a pantry will have an 18 month to 2 year shelf life.
Once your jalapeño pepper jelly is opened, it should last 6 months to a year in the refrigerator.
If you like this recipe, check out:
- Pickled Hot Serrano Peppers
- Fire and Ice Pickles
- Homemade Jalapeno Salt
- Fresh Hot Jalapeño and Garlic Relish
- Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water
- Jalapeño Chimichurri Sauce
*Disclosure: I held the jar lifter upside down when I was videoing. I did not know at the time I was doing it incorrectly. That was a mistake on my part. Do not grip the jar lifter on the same side I was using.
Leave a comment and tell me what you think!
Please leave me a comment below if you make this sweet pepper jelly and tell me what you thought about it. I would love to hear back, and so would my readers.
Deliciously Easy Homemade Hot Pepper Jelly Recipe
- 1 canning pot
- 6 8 ounce canning jars with lids and bands
- 1 ½ cup finely chopped and seeded Red Bell Pepper
- 1 cup finely chopped and seeded Yellow Bell Pepper
- 1 ¼ cup finely chopped and seeded Green Bell pepper
- ¼ cup finely chopped and seeded Jalapeño
- 1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1.75 ounces package powdered pectin
- 5 cups sugar
- Sterilize six 8oz canning jars and lids in boiling water.
- Place finely chopped and seeded Red Bell Pepper, yellow bell pepper, green bell pepper, and Jalapeño in a large saucepan over high heat.1 ½ cup finely chopped and seeded Red Bell Pepper, 1 cup finely chopped and seeded Yellow Bell Pepper, ¼ cup finely chopped and seeded Jalapeño, 1 ¼ cup finely chopped and seeded Green Bell pepper
- Mix in apple cider vinegar and powder fruit pectin. Stir constantly. Bring to a rolling boil. Remove from heat.1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar, 1.75 ounces package powdered pectin
- Add sugar and place back on high heat. Return to a rolling boil for one minute.5 cups sugar
- Remove from heat. Skim off any foam from top.
- Ladle jelly evenly into sterile jars, filling to ¼ inch from top of jar. Cover with flat lids and screw on screw bands tight.
- Place jars into canner with hot water that is not boiling. Water should completely cover jar. Cook on high heat to reach a boil. Process for 5 minutes,
- Remove from heat.
- When jars are completely cooled, check seals by pressing centers of lids with finger. (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.)