A quick recipe to make delicious sugar free jam that’s diabetic friendly as well. This homemade Jam is suitable for vegans, gluten free, refined sugar free and kinder on blood glucose levels, which is always helpful for people living with diabetes. Use any of your favourite fruits for this tasty jam, as a wonderful filling for cakes, sandwiches or simply smothered all over a buttery piece of toast.
Now I am sure some of you (like me) think what an unnecessary faff! But I am a total homemade jam convert. It really is so easy to make and it means that we can enjoy a sugar free jam that’s diabetic friendly.
This sugar free jam recipe uses only 3 ingredients and can be made in under 30 minutes. All you have to do is pop your three ingredients into a pan and let the heat work its magic. It just needs a little attention however to make sure your fruit doesn’t burn.
I have found that berries are the best fruit to use in this jam recipe but you could experiment with any fruit you like including making some flavour combinations. I often add rhubarb into my jam when it’s in season and needs to be used up.
But also, to top it all this recipe is a great way to use up any leftover or slightly sorry-looking berries. helping to reduce food waste!
Is Sugar Free Jam OK for Diabetics?
Yes absolutely! a sugar free Jam can make a great swap as part of your overall diabetes management plan, but also if you just want to cut down your overall sugar intake
Making a homemade jam that’s also sugar free not only means that all the extra processing and additives are avoided but it means you can have a delicious spread that isn’t crazy high in countable carbs.
We have found that making ingredient changes like this helps us to support our daughter’s overall type 1 diabetes management. This is because it not only results in less dramatic blood glucose spikes but it helps to reduce the error rate in the insulin given.
If you would like to read more about some of the changes, you can find lots more information in the articles below:
Explore the potential benefits associated with eating more whole foods, and learn tips on how you can incorporate more whole foods into your diet.
In this article, I explore the complex relationship between type 1 diabetes and our diet. Delving into some of the challenges faced and how our relationship with food can evolve.
What Fruits can you use to make sugar free jam for diabetics?
There are many variations and combinations of fruit that you can use to make homemade jam. Some that I have tried are:
- Raspberry and Rhubarb
- Blueberry – My favourite!
However, you don’t have to stop there. You could also try citrus fruits like lemons and oranges or tropical fruits like mango and pineapples. I guess you could even class STEWED APPLES as a type of homemade jam as well!
Can you use frozen fruit to make jam?
Yes you can, but you will need to make a few adjustments to the recipe and carb counting. Using frozen fruit not only means that you can make your favourite berry jams all year round but it is a much cheaper way to make it.
If you are using frozen fruit then follow these few changes for a delicious spread:
Do not add any water to the pan – Simply put your fruit and sweetener into the pan and heat
Cook for a little longer – Because of the extra water content from the fruit being frozen, I find that I need to increase the cooking time slightly to allow the fruit to reduce enough. Add 5 minutes to step 1 and 2 in the recipe card below.
Using Sugar Alternatives for Diabetics
In this recipe, I use a white sweetener, xylitol. This is a nutritive 1:1 substitute for sugar and I find it works really well in baking and cooking.
This is my sweetener of choice due to its low glycaemic index, it doesn’t have a funny taste profile and we found that it doesn’t cause a rise in blood glucose levels.
You could also use an erythritol-based sweetener if you prefer. This is also a 1:1 sugar replacement and doesn’t cause a rise in blood glucose levels, but I personally find it can alter the taste profile of your food.
You can find a list of my recommended products that I use on my shop page!
If you prefer to use other sweeteners like sucralose or stevia, remember to convert your quantity. Most brands have this information on their websites. And if you would like to read more on sugar substitutes and diabetes then make sure to read this post.
The world of sugar substitutes and type 1 diabetes can be confusing. This guide explores substitutes in the UK and diabetes management
However please also feel free to use good old-fashioned caster sugar if that is your preference. Just remember to carb count for it!
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different sweeteners and quantities in my sweet treat recipes. It may take a few attempts to find your preference as we all have different palates.
What you will need to make sugar free jam
- Fresh or frozen fruit
- In this recipe, I used fresh fruit
- If using frozen berries then make sure to read my recipe adjustments above
- Lemon Juice or Water
- Not only does it add a great extra zingy flavour but it also helps to preserve the Jam
- A 1:1 substitute for sugar
- We have found that xylitol does not cause a rise in blood sugar levels and is therefore carb count free
How to make Sugar Free Jam
As I said this suagr free jam for diabetics really couldn’t be easier to make. Simply add your fresh fruit, sweetener and 2 tablespoons of water or lemon juice (omit the water if using frozen fruit) into a small pan. Turn the heat up and boil vigorously for 10 minutes. You will need to stir the fruit regularly so that it doesn’t burn at the bottom.
Then turn the heat down and continue to let the fruity paste bubble away for a further 15- 20 minutes. Again stir regularly to ensure that the fruit doesn’t burn.
Finally, spoon the hot jam into a sterilised jar and cover it with the lid. Leave to cool and then store in the fridge
How to Store Your Homemade Jam
This jam should be stored in a sterilised jar and will happily keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Portions can also be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to three months. Just simply thaw it at room temperature for spreading.
How to sterilise your jars
To sterilise your jars simply wash them in the dishwasher at a high temperature. Or alternatively, I always like to also heat them in the oven at 120C / 100C fan for 15 minutes.
Suggestions of ways to use sugar free jam
Jam is obviously wonderful in sandwiches and on a slice of toast. But this sugar free jam is also a great accompaniment for low carb bakes. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
We have found making some switches to reduce the net carb count can help to avoid some of those dreaded blood glucose spikes. For instance, as in this easy sugar free jam recipe, I switched out the sugar for a sugar alternative, xylitol. This sugar alternative doesn’t raise blood sugar levels.
However, when considering your carb counting requirements, you know best what ingredients to carb count for.
The overall carb count for this sugar free jam will change depending on the fruit used and if it is fresh or frozen. But I have given you an example below of how I would count for the raspberry jam using frozen raspberries:
- 350 g of frozen raspberries = 16g of carbs
- The total weight of the jam made is 280g (minus the weight of the jar)
Finally, to work out a 30g portion (a generous heaped teaspoon) of jam, use the following formula:
- Total countable carbs = 16g
- Total food weight = 280g
- 16 / 280 x 30 = 1.7
g of carbs
The total countable carbs per 30g portion of sugar free raspberry jam is 1.7g
Please note this carb count amount per portion is based on the standard ingredients listed above and may differ depending on what you use and how much you choose to eat.
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