Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly




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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
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72 ratings

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

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Leave a Reply

190 Comments

  • Reply
    Staci
    November 18, 2014 at 1:06 pm

    This recipe is beautiful to eat and look at. I used 2 red bell peppers and one yellow bell pepper and that perfectly amounted to the 12 ounces. My jalapeños were pretty big but I stuck to the recipe exactly. I kept the seeds in because I love the heat. I also used 1/2 cider 1/2 white vinegar. My batch wielded 8 1/2 cups jelly. Thank you for a gorgeous recipe.

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 18, 2014 at 2:10 pm

      So gladit worked out well for you Staci — how are you going to use yours?

      • Reply
        Staci
        November 18, 2014 at 2:13 pm

        I mistyped. It was 6 1/2 cups. I’m giving it as gifts maybe. I promised one to my mother in law. I want to serve it over baked Brie. Right now I’m eating the leftover 1/2 cup with tostitos haha. Delicious!

        • Reply
          Staci
          November 19, 2014 at 11:59 am

          Ok so apparently this is a total hit. Now everybody wants to know how much for an 8 oz jar. Any ideas?

          • Sue
            November 19, 2014 at 1:03 pm

            Oh gosh, I’m not sure…how about having a jelly making party and everybody takes home a jar?

    • Reply
      Staci
      December 5, 2014 at 10:40 am

      Well they are all rangers and men. They just want to buy it. Lazy! Lol. I to them $5 a jar and I want the jar back. Making another batch today! My husband loves grilled cheese sandwiches and dips them in the jelly. We went thru 6 jars in a week haha. Thanks for a great recipe!

  • Reply
    Pamela
    September 24, 2014 at 10:54 am

    I made this and did all of these steps but i minced up my own red and orange peppers. I have a small chopper i used for the hot peppers. But the color of mine is nothing like this? Wonder if i did something wrong….

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 24, 2014 at 10:57 am

      The color will be completely variable according to your peppers. I was surprised by this color, but attributed it to the red peppers I used. What color was your jelly?

      • Reply
        Pamela
        September 24, 2014 at 11:13 am

        It was between a yellow to a green but dark?

  • Reply
    Sharon
    September 22, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    Hi Sue. I have a question. This is my first time making a jelly and have no idea about pectin. If I use regular pectin how does that affect the recipe? From what I understand you add it at a different point in the process and do I need more sugar? Thanks, Sharon

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 23, 2014 at 9:39 am

      I’m not sure, Sharon. This was my first jelly, and I decided to try to streamline the process and it worked. I’m guessing, just guessing, that you could use regular pectin as well. I’ll have to give it a try.

  • Reply
    Ann
    September 21, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    with the pectin do you add it dry ~ add the recommended liquid to the dry and then to the pepper mix
    planning on making this week…

  • Reply
    Samantha
    September 17, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    This sounds great. How much jelly will this produce?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 17, 2014 at 5:37 pm

      It makes about 4 cups, Samantha.

  • Reply
    Abbe@This is How I Cook
    September 11, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    My MIL used to make this for Xmas presents. Surely, I should do the same! Thanks Sue!

  • Reply
    Alpha
    September 3, 2014 at 8:37 am

    How long can this be stored before it goes bad?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 4, 2014 at 3:16 pm

      At least a month, Alpha. You can definitely can it if you want to preserve a larger batch for a longer time.

      • Reply
        Kimbra
        August 10, 2016 at 11:55 am

        This looks great! Can I store it in the freezer to make it last longer?

        • Reply
          Sue
          August 10, 2016 at 11:56 am

          Yes! I have a couple of jars in my freezer right now.

  • Reply
    Teri
    September 2, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    About how many peppers is 12 ounces?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 3, 2014 at 7:58 am

      I gave the weight because I used so many colors, I’d say you could use 2 peppers.

  • Reply
    Eileen
    August 29, 2014 at 11:35 am

    I have never had hot pepper jelly before, but I’m thinking that needs to change — especially since I have a log of goat cheese in the fridge right this second and a full jalapeno plant in the back garden. Yay!

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 29, 2014 at 8:40 pm

      Oh yes, circumstances are conspiring to get you to try this!

  • Reply
    ahu
    August 29, 2014 at 5:23 am

    Oh this is amazing!!! I always look for pepper jelly to pour over heated camembert/brie cheese but it’s so hard to find! Never thought of making it myself. Brilliant!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    August 28, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    This looks amazing!!

  • Reply
    Beth @ Tasty Yummies
    August 28, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    OMG I love this, what a wonderful recipe and so easy! Pinning for later, for sure!

  • Reply
    Susan
    August 28, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Wow and no canning! I love it! So colorful and I’m sure delicious.

  • Reply
    Joyce
    August 28, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    Am going on my Friday visit to our out door market tomorrow and have had my eyes on the hot peppers there that is now in abundance and at great prices. Have been wondering what to make with them and we do love HEAT, so this will be make along with our Jalapeno poppers we have planned to make. So I can load up and know that none will go to waste. Yum…..can’t wait.

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      I’m planning to make some poppers this weekend, too, yum!

  • Reply
    cheri
    August 28, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Hi Sue, what a wonderful recipe, love the way this looks, now I can make my own. I’m always buying this at Trader Joes for appetizers.

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 2:28 pm

      I haven’t seen it at TJs, but I do find that store bought versions are usually pretty wimpy in the heat department.

  • Reply
    Angie@Angie's Recipes
    August 28, 2014 at 11:37 am

    wow..I wish I could taste this! Those peppers are so gorgeous, esp. the amazing purple one.

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      The purple ones are my favorite but guess what? of all the peppers, the purple ones lose their color when heated. Bummer!

  • Reply
    savvy
    August 28, 2014 at 10:14 am

    Love the ‘blast thru’ on cooking, and high-so-high color of the peppers in this jelly!! Thanks!!

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 10:40 am

      Thanks Savvy, I really try to do away with useless steps in my recipes. This jelly came out perfectly, I hope you try it!

  • Reply
    Candace
    August 28, 2014 at 9:48 am

    This looks great, Sue! I’ll make some up right away. A note on the jalpenos…I found out from our Mexican gardener just the other day that if the jalapeno has brown striations on it and not so smooth, the heat will be much higher. If it is completely smooth and a lighter green, it will be milder. I handed him a gallon bag of jalapenos that I had just picked and he noticed right away which ones would be hotter.
    Cheers!

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 10:41 am

      I got mine from the farmer’s market and I found them to be a lot hotter than the supermarket variety, too. I think they may be breeding them for size, not heat. Not sure.

  • Reply
    Tricia @ Saving room for dessert
    August 28, 2014 at 9:44 am

    You are so right Sue – everybody loves this wonderful appetizer. It is one of my personal favorites and I’ve always wanted to make hot pepper jelly – so this one goes on the list … again! Beautiful peppers, beautiful jelly, beautiful photos! Have a great holiday weekend :)

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 10:42 am

      Thanks Tricia!

  • Reply
    Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    August 28, 2014 at 9:03 am

    Your jelly looks so flavorful with those gorgeous peppers, perfect to serve with a cheese plate!

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 28, 2014 at 9:11 am

      Thanks Laura — I was envisioning a confetti jelly with a clear base and all the color visible, but the gold color is pretty nice, too!

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