Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly is a must in every cook’s arsenal.  This easy small batch refrigerator recipe makes use of both sweet and hot peppers for a colorful, confetti-like look and and an intense spicy kick.  It’s going to be your new favorite appetizer!

Hot pepper jelly in canning jars

I’m excited about this recipe because it was so easy and it turned out so well.  And come on, you can’t start out the upcoming appetizer season without a good hot pepper jelly in your arsenal.  Paired with soft goat or cream cheese and crackers it’s an epic experience.  It draws people in like a flies, and causes normally discreet friends and family to shovel, gorge, and wolf.   All conversation stops until the plate is licked clean.   It’s not pretty, but it is delicious.

peppers at the farmer's market

If you already know and love hot pepper jellies and jams I think you’ll be excited about this one too.  I’ve kept the steps to an absolute minimum..  Maybe it’s just me, but the directions that come in those pectin boxes drive me crazy.  They are so convoluted and there are so many charts!  I bypassed all the charts, and I’m giving you a quick way to get hot pepper jelly into your belly asap. :)  And then you can customize it to whatever hot and sweet peppers you have on hand.  If you’re the canning type, can up a bunch of it, it will make fantastic holiday gifts.  I made enough to last in the fridge for a few weeks of gorging.

colorful peppers

I’ve blathered on about my love of peppers before, so I’ll keep it short.  I just think they are not only beautiful, but so versatile.  Mid to late summer is the best time to find them at farmer’s markets, but of course you can get them year round in the supermarket.  I go crazy picking out a rainbow of colors.  For this jelly I used a handful of jalapenos for the heat, and an assortment of bell peppers for sweetness and color.  All it takes is a few pulses of the food processor to get them finely minced.

jalapenos

But what I love most about this recipe is that there’s no long cooking of the peppers.  I just bring the pot to a boil, stir in the pectin, and let it cook for 1 minute.  That’s it.  All the recipes I researched cooked the peppers for a full 10 minutes before adding the pectin.  I took a chance and sidestepped all that.  It was perfect.  And this way the peppers stay fresh and bright.

cloesup photo of colorful hot pepper jelly

Working with hot peppers is not an exact science.  Some jalapenos are hot, some are not so much.  There’s no real way to tell until you taste.  But since the whole point of hot pepper jelly is the heat, I suggest erring on the more is better side.  If you are really heat loving, you can substitute HABANERO peppers for the jalapenos.

A jar of Hot Pepper Jelly with spoon

Tips for making super easy hot pepper jam:

  • IMPORTANT — Make sure you buy the right pectin for this, I used this one which is specifically for lower sugar jams and jellies.

sure jell pectin

  • Some people are very sensitive to hot peppers, be sure to wash your hands well after handling them.

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly

Yield: makes about 4 cups

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly

Hot pepper jelly

Ingredients

  • about 8 jalapeno peppers
  • 12 oz assorted colorful bell peppers (weighed after trimming)
  • 2 cups white (or cider) vinegar
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 box (1.75 oz) no sugar needed pectin

Instructions

  1. Wash the jalapenos and trim the stem end off. Remove the seeds if you want a milder jelly. I recommend using the whole peppers, seeds and all. Give them a rough chop and then pulse them in the food processor until they are finely minced. Be careful, the fumes will be strong, and make sure to wash your hands well after working with hot peppers. Put the peppers into a heavy bottomed pot.
  2. Wash and trim the bell peppers, and remove the inner ribs and seeds. Give them a rough chop and pulse them in a food processor until finely minced. You may want to do this in batches, because I find you get a more even chop if you don't crowd the bowl. Add the bell peppers to the pot with the jalapenos.
  3. Add the vinegar and sugar to the pot and stir to combine. Bring the pot up to a boil, and then add the pectin. Boil, stirring, for one minute.
  4. Ladle the hot liquid into clean jars and set aside to cool before capping and refrigerating.
  5. If your pepper bits float to the top, you can give the jelly an occasional stir as it cools to distribute them more evenly.
  6. When the jelly is cool, cap and refrigerate the jars. They will thicken as they cool, and even more as they chill.
  7. Serve with plenty of creamy goat or cream cheese, and crackers or grilled slices of baguette.

Make it your own ~

  • Use any color sweet peppers you like, all red, all green, or all yellow make a pretty jam, too.
  • If you really like it hot, use Serrano or Habanero peppers in place of the jalapenos.

 

Don’t forget to pin this wonderfully Easy Hot Pepper Jelly!

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly is a must in every cook's arsenal.  This easy recipe makes use of both sweet and hot peppers for a colorful, confetti-like look and and an intense spicy kick. #jelly #jam #hotpeppers #cheeseplate #recipe #jalapenorecipe #jalapeno #appetizer #cheeseandcrackers #FOODGIFT #THANKSGIVINGAPPETIZER #HOLIDAYAPPETIZER

 

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly is a must in every cook's arsenal.  This easy recipe makes use of both sweet and hot peppers for a colorful, confetti-like look and and an intense spicy kick. #jelly #jam #hotpeppers #cheeseplate #recipe #jalapenorecipe #jalapeno #appetizer #cheeseandcrackers #FOODGIFT #THANKSGIVINGAPPETIZER #HOLIDAYAPPETIZER

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Leave a Reply

170 Comments

  • Reply
    judy schreiber
    September 13, 2018 at 11:58 am

    can this jelly be frozen in mason jelly jars?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 13, 2018 at 12:28 pm

      Yes, just be sure to leave a little space at the top, about 1/2 inch, to allow for the jelly to expand when it freezes.

  • Reply
    Barbara Fortner
    September 12, 2018 at 12:24 pm

    I just made your recipe for pepper jelly I didn’t see how long to leave before eating please let me know Barbara

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 12, 2018 at 12:30 pm

      You’ll need to refrigerate until cold for it to fully thicken, Barbara, then you can enjoy!

  • Reply
    Nicki
    September 6, 2018 at 10:14 am

    what if it doesnt set up? what did I do wrong and can I save the batch?

  • Reply
    Kathy Eichholz
    September 5, 2018 at 10:35 am

    Why would you no sugar pectin?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 5, 2018 at 10:38 am

      It gives a much more reliable set, Kathy, and it works with lower sugar recipes.

  • Reply
    Amy
    August 14, 2018 at 1:54 am

    Can you freeze it?

  • Reply
    Tiffany
    August 9, 2018 at 7:01 am

    Can you put in hot water bath and store for longer?

  • Reply
    Virginia
    July 27, 2018 at 11:25 am

    How long will this hot pepper jelly keep? Where ?

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 27, 2018 at 11:39 am

      This is a refrigerator recipe Virginia, so it should keep a few weeks in the fridge. You can freeze it for longer storage.

  • Reply
    donna
    July 23, 2018 at 4:16 am

    is that much sugar needef

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 23, 2018 at 7:36 am

      You can try reducing the sugar, as long as you aren’t canning the jelly and as long as you use the correct pectin (in the pink box) I don’t see why you couldn’t.

      • Reply
        Mike
        July 30, 2018 at 6:00 pm

        Has anyone tried this with a sugar substitute? I love pepper jelly, but can’t eat it as a diabetic.

  • Reply
    Elizabeth
    July 22, 2018 at 12:12 pm

    My husband and I have a huge garden and tons of peppers this year so the hot pepper jelly sounds great. Do you have to use pectin as I sometimes make my blueberry jam without? Also, how how long does it last in the fridge? Can’t wait to try this recipe! Thanks

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 22, 2018 at 12:27 pm

      You could totally try a hot pepper jam without pectin, as long as you cook it down so it’s thick. They last about 3 weeks in the fridge, or until they get moldy ;) But you can freeze them for up to a year.

      • Reply
        Mary
        August 22, 2018 at 11:09 am

        This was amazingly easy to make. When you freeze do you just put the whole jar in the freezer?

        • Reply
          Sue
          August 22, 2018 at 11:42 am

          You can do that, as long as you have a little room free for expansion. You can also transfer to a plastic container, or even a zip lock freezer bag, just spoon it in, remove any excess air, and seal. That way you can save your jars and refill them when you defrost your jelly.

  • Reply
    Caroline
    July 10, 2018 at 12:38 pm

    Nice idea hot pepper in jelly . I’m used to Ghaniain hot pepper sauce , so I think I will like your recipe .

  • Reply
    Janet Duvall
    July 7, 2018 at 8:19 pm

    Have you tried freezing it? Kinda like freezer jam?

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 8, 2018 at 8:01 am

      You can definitely freeze it Janet.

  • Reply
    Janet Duvall
    July 7, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    Made the jelly and love it! It is just as you said, very easy and very tasty! Thank you! Also, love the presentation, color is beautiful! Will make again!

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 7, 2018 at 9:00 pm

      Thanks so much Janet!

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 8, 2018 at 8:02 am

      Yay!! I’m making a big batch this weekend.

  • Reply
    Teresa
    May 27, 2018 at 4:36 am

    Are your recipes ok to can instead of refrigerate ?

    • Reply
      karen sue kober (feltner)
      June 11, 2018 at 8:24 pm

      Can’t wait—we have been eating hot pepper jam for years—we have tried Pineapple, orange, lots of raspberry, blkberry, blueberry, cherry…yummmm another suggestion off the beaten path–Jalapeno peanut brittle—you will LOVE it—ge
      rat Christmas gift—

      • Reply
        Sue
        June 11, 2018 at 9:31 pm

        Oh man, why do you put such ideas in my head just as I’m heading off to bed??

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 7, 2018 at 8:25 am

      Yes, you should be able to can this recipe Teresa, here are some good instructions from Ball ~https://www.freshpreserving.com/pepper-jelly-recipe-%7C-pepper-jelly—ball-fresh-preserving-br1275.html

      • Reply
        Shelley
        July 21, 2018 at 10:17 am

        I can your recipe and it works just fine. I give it away as gifts.

        • Reply
          Sue
          July 21, 2018 at 10:17 am

          Thank you Shelley!

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