Habanero Ginger Jelly

I went to a Farmers Market one year and paid about $7.00 for a jar of hot pepper jelly.
It was delicious and I love it, but $7 bucks for an 8 oz jar of jelly seemed a bit pricey.  My son's smear the
stuff on everything.  I knew it wouldn't last long.

Then I started to think that I could totally duplicate that jelly.  No problem.  Piece of cake.
So I did.  I created Habanero Ginger Jelly. This jelly has some intense heat.  We're not afraid!

Last year we devoured about 24 half pints of this stuff.  My boys and the girls spread this on most sandwiches.  Panini's are kicked up a notch when spread with Habanero Ginger Jelly. 

Before the baby of the family left for Paris she requested that I blog the jelly.

As you wish....

Creating your own pepper jelly is really quite simply.

First you will need a few canning supplies.  Clean glass jars, with bands and new lids.  Make sure they have been washed in soaping water and rinsed well.  Just set them aside for now.

You will need a boat load of habanero peppers (about 8 large peppers), fresh ginger (2 pieces about 3-inches long), 6 cups sugar,  2-3 oz pkgs of liquid pectin, and 2 cups apple cider vinegar.

I just wanted to show your my pile of beauties.  If you are afraid of habanero peppers, you may substitute with sweet red bell peppers (about 2) or jalapeno peppers (oh maybe 6).

Before you begin to cut into these babies, please put on some rubber gloves.  

Cut the top off of the habanero.

As you can see I have borrowed my mothers pink "June Cleaver" rubber gloves.  

Carefully remove the seeds and veins of the peppers.

Roughly chop.

I really love fresh ginger.  Ginger on it's own can carry some heat.  I'm not holding back on the amount.

2 large pieces about 2-3 inches in length.

Peel the ginger.

Roughly chop.

I have a little more than 1/2 of a cup of each.

Toss into the bowl of a food processor.

Add 1 cup of the apple cider vinegar.

Turn the food processor on and blend until you have very small pieces of the ginger and the habanero.

Pour into a very large pot.  You want to have room for the jelly to boil.  Let me tell you about the mess you 
will have on your cook top if the jelly boils over the sides of the pan.  

**Warning:  whatever you do...DO NOT inhale this stuff.  It will not only clear your sinus', but you will not have the ability to breath what so ever.  This is lethal.  

Add the remaining 1 cup of apple cider vinegar.  Place the pot over medium heat.

Just dump in the 6 cups of sugar.  Don't act shocked.  All jelly is about 5% fruit and 95% sugar.  

Stir to dissolve the sugar.

Bring the mixture to a rolling boil.  This is a boil that you cannot stir down.  Boil for 5 minutes at a rolling boil.
It could take about 10 minutes to bring to a rolling boil.

Snip the tops of the pectin package and have it ready for when the jelly has finished it's 5 minute boil.

I stand the packages up in a measuring cup.

While you are waiting for the jelly to come to a full boil, drop your 1/2 pint jars into a pot of water and bring to a simmer.

 Hold them there until you are ready to fill them.

Place the bands and new lids in a large bowl.

Cover with boiling water.  Let set until ready to use.

They jelly has been at a rolling boil for 5 minutes.  It is now time to add the liquid pectin.

Pour 1 of pectin into the boiling jelly all at once.  Squeeze the package to get out as much as
you can.

Stir to mix then bring to another rolling boil and boil for an additional one minute.

After the one minute, remove the pot from the heat.  You will notice that some foam has formed on the top of the jelly.  Carefully spoon off the foam. 

Jelly is hot!  Careful not to burn yourself.

Remove the jars from the hot water and place on a clean towel.

Carefully ladle the jelly into the hot jars.

This is a wide mouth funnel.  I love it.  It is a very valuable tool for canning.

You should have 6 1/2-pint jars of jelly.

Wipe around the mouth jars with a clean damp cloth.

Remove the lids from the hot water.

Place on top of the jars.

Screw on the bands...but not too tight.

Invert the jars of jelly and leave them for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes tip them back right side up and leave them for 24 hours.  Sometimes you will hear the 
lids snap as they seal.  Oh that is such a fabulous sound because you know they have sealed.  You will also notice and slight indentation on the lid.  

Leave the jars right where they are for about 24 hours.  Don't jiggle or tip the jelly.  You would hate to do
anything to break that seal.

You now have 6 jars of beautiful jelly.  Dang HOT beautiful jelly.

Habanero Ginger Jelly

8 Habanero peppers, seeds and stems removed
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh ginger
2 cups apple cider vinegar
6 cups sugar
2 - 3 oz pouches of liquid pectin
6 8-ounce glass jars
6 lids
6 screw bands

In a large pot of simmering water, sterilize six 8-ounce jars in water until you are ready to use them. 

In the bowl of a food processor combine habanero  Process until fine.

In a large, heavy non-aluminum pot, add the habanero mixture.  Stir in the remaining 1 cup of vinegar and sugar.  Bring to a full rolling boil.  That is a boil than cannot be stirred down.  This could take 10-15 minutes.  Let boil for an additional 5 minutes.  Immediately add the liquid pectin.  Bring back to a rolling boil.  Boil for another 1 minute.  

Meanwhile, pour boiling water over the lids and screw bands in a bowl and pour hot steaming water over them.  Set aside until ready to use.

Remove the jelly from the heat and skim off any foam that may have appeared on the surface.   Carefully ladle into the hot jars.  Wipe the rim of the jars off with a clean damp cloth.  Place lid and screw band on each jar.  Do not screw the bands on real tight.   Invert the jars over for about 20 minutes and then turn them upright.  When you turn the jars over you will begin to hear the sound of the seal.  Make sure all jars are sealed before storing.  You will notice an indentation on the lid.

If you feel the need to process the jars.  Place the jars in a large canner or pot cover to 1-2 inches of water.  Bring the water to a boil and process for 5-10 minutes, depending on your altitude.

Makes 6 8-ounce jars.

Print this recipe

Turn the heat up in your life this year with Habanero Ginger Jelly.  


  1. Hi, Janet! I happened upon your blog a couple of weeks or so ago and have been following ever since! Looking forward to trying some of your recipes. This one in particular piqued my curiosity because my parents canned all kinds of stuff (green beans, marinara sauce, strawberry preserves) when I was growing up, and I've always wanted to learn how. This seems the perfect recipe because (a) I LOVE spicy food, and particularly love hot jellies, and (b) this doesn't make a whole lot or look too labor intensive. I remember mom spending two days in the kitchen when she did strawberry preserves--no time for that nowadays! This may very well be my first go at canning. I'm thinking it would be amazing on grilled pork tenderloin! Thanks for the great, step-by-step recipes!! One quick question...when you screw on the lids but "not too tightly"...how tight is that? I'm worried about liquid running out when the jar is turned over...thanks!

  2. Hi Megan, I knew I should have clarified the issue of how tight. You want them tight enough to hold the lid in place. You don't have to really strain to tighten the bands. One tight turn should do the trick. Most people store their canned jars with the bands off and leave the jars with lids on only. If the bands are screwed on too tight it might break the seal if you had to strain to unscrew the band. I generally keep my bands on.

    This is a very simply recipe and can be completed within an hour. Your idea of glazing pork tenderloin sounds amazing. Good luck with your canning adventures.

    My mother didn't bottle food too much, but my best friends mom did and your are right about the process taking days!

  3. Hi, the jelly looks so good. i can smear it on every dish. I love ginger a lot and making this jelly gingerly was a great idea. I'll try and make it when i get the time :) lovely post.

  4. Thanks, Ali. I love ginger too...a lot.

  5. This scares me - a lot!! I made habanero hot sauce & had to evacuate our house due to the peppers boiling & it feeling like there was tear gas throughout the whole house, so although this sounds amazing I have vowed to never boil habaneros again

  6. I know what you mean. I made habanero hot sauce last year and it was lethal. I actually thought the smell of vinegar was stronger than the habanero. I usually open a door or winder or even turn on the fan I have above my cooktop, but I didn't feel like I needed to. If that helps???

  7. I've never heard of this method of sealing jars. How exactly does flipping the jars seal them? Could I do a water bath to seal them instead?
    Also: does using packaged pectin mean you don't need to test the gel state of your jelly before sealing it? I've only ever made fruit jellies out of crabapples and other things with enough pectin that I didn't need to add any.

    This looks delicious, either way. I can't wait to try it... (found you on Tastespotting, by the way)

  8. Hi Emma, so glad you found me. To answer to questions: 1) flipping the jars is an interesting method. My mother-in-law has used this for her jellies. When the jar is flipped back over it's amazing how it immediately seals. I'm assuming (and I should probably double check) that since there is a large amount of acid from the vinegar that there isn't a problem. I've never had one.

    2) yes you may use the water bath canning method. I generally do that with all of my canning because I live at such a high altitude.
    3)You do not need to do a jelly test. It works. If you are a little apprehensive you can boil the jelly for 10 minutes. I found that boiling 10 minutes created a stiffer jelly. I wanted mine to be on the softer side. You will notice that the jelly still seems thin, but as the jelly cools it will thicken right up. It really does work. If you have any concerns, just follow the directions on the package of pectin that your are using. Check the directions for Jalapeno jelly and just substitute with Habanero's and ginger. It should work just great. Good luck.

  9. Excellent recipe! What a great combination of flavors - ginger and the wonderful habanero pepper. This one looks quite tasty.

  10. I followed this recipe, and it's unbelievably WAY too sweet with 6 cups of sugar. It's also way too vinegary. I can't imagine anyone enjoying this stuff. I can only think that you must have posted the recipe wrong. Sorry for a negative review, but I had to throw away to whole batch.

  11. I appreciate your comment. Food is so subjective. You can make any adjustments you like. I'm sorry you had to throw the batch away. Let me know if you find a better recipe that you like or if you make adjustments to improve the recipe. Any criticism is helpful.

  12. IT'S GOOD! i just put my jelly in the jars (5 c. of sugar instead of 6 cups)...this is my first time to make pepper jelly and i learned that once the jelly is ready, it's time to pour! i let it sit in the pot for 3-4 minutes and ended up with a troublesome skin that i needed to skim off.
    i tasted the small amount at the bottom of the emptied pot...it is SNAPPY, but very good.

    1. I love that you reduced the sugar. I think I'll try that this year. The skin on the top is quite annoying. I just start ladling into jars immediately. I hope this helps. Thanks for commenting.

  13. Wow good! My hubby bought a habanero plant so I searched and found this trying to figure out what to do with them. I'm a wimp so, to cut the heat, I poured half a jar over a block of cream cheese and served it at a party with butter crackers...amazing!!! It went so fast my head spun! Thank u!

    1. I'm so glad you found this recipe. I just put 1/2 a jar into a batch of bbq sauce I was making. It gave it a bit of heat and was delicious. I love it over cream cheese with crackers. Thank you so much for sharing your kind comment.

  14. Followed recipe, very tasty with the dominant flavor being ginger. I found that 2 packets of pectin was too much. The consistency was thick and rubbery. Will try only 1 packet next time for a softer spread. Thanks so much for sharing recipe. My partner loves spicy jelly and I'm always on the hunt for new recipes. I

    1. I agree with you. I will change the recipe to 1 package. My last batch was too pasty. Thanks for jogging my memory.

  15. Won't you just sell me a jar or two?

  16. Can you please clarify the pectin measurement? The recipe at the bottom of the page says 1 package, the instructions say 2 and if I print the recipe it says 1 - 1 1/2 packages...Confusing!

    1. I'm sorry for the confusion. I clarified on the instructions. 1 box of the pectin contained 2 - 3 oz pkgs of pectin. That was confusing. Thank you for calling that to my attention. Use two 3 ounce pouches of liquid pectin.

  17. Beautiful-!
    I can't wait to try this!

  18. Beautifully canned Jelly!
    Makes a great gift for the Holidays!
    add some bread and flowers in a basket, Voila!
    Thank you and your daughter for this blog!
    Stay Blessed

    1. Thank you for your kind comments. My son's gave jars of this jelly out to college roommates for Christmas gifts. Your idea for a gift basket is such a great idea.

  19. LOVE THIS Jelly!! I made it last year and it has become a family favorite (along with your Spicy Tomato Jam. We add a spoonful to a vinaigrette and it is delicious. Also spread it on anything else I can think of. Thanks so much for sharing - love your blog

    1. Great idea! I have been using 1/2 of a jar to make bbq sauce. The jelly gives it a real kick. I love the tomato jam on everything. Thanks for your comment. Made my day.

  20. Made 3 batches last year varying degrees of heat, and it goes great with scrapple and any meat. It huge hit with family and friends. One thing I did recently was I smeared heavily on pork chops and then covered with Italian bread crumbs and cooked them in the oven. I also added one third cup jelly and two thirds corn syrup to make a glaze and put on a ham, was a awesome creation.

    1. You are brilliant. I added 1/2 pint of the jelly to bbq sauce. It was amazing on ribs. Thank you so much for sharing your ideas. I will definitely give them a try.

  21. This is a delicious jelly. I made this last year and gave it as gifts for various occasions. I've been asked for the recipe several times. Love the heat and flavor from the peppers and ginger. Two things I will try differently next time I make it will be to decrease the sugar to 5 cups instead of 6, and to use one envelope of pectin instead of two. For me and my husband it seemed to be a tad too sweet and a little on the stiff side, but not intolerable in the least. Just some minor tweaking on my part. Thanks for a great recipe!

    1. I agree with you on the pectin. I have started adding less and I do like the consistency better. It spreads much nicer. I'm glad you love the jelly. I find it has many uses and just a spoonful to certain sauces can make them amazing. Thank you for your comment.

  22. Hello Jane! Your recipe is delicious. I've made it a lot!!
    With cream cheese and crackers, roast chicken, pork loin etc.
    I wanted to ask you about liquid pectin, how many tablespoons of granulated pectin do I have to use instead of liquid one. Where I live there is no liquid one.
    I make it with chile manzano instead of habanero. It's hot but not that much.

    1. You use two tablespoons of powdered regular pectin for every packet of liquid pectin.