Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly

This Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly recipe takes just minutes, and its mellow, not-too-sweet flavor enhances everything from cheese and crackers to turkey sandwiches. Make some for yourself, then post the recipe on the fridge, you’re going to want to make it for every party you throw, and for every party you’re invited to, from here on in.

Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly with water crackers and a knife

Have you ever had wine jelly? I didn’t even know this stuff existed until I stopped to sample some at our farmers market. What a fabulous idea, and it couldn’t be easier (really! Check out my short video, below)  I’m excited to share this with you because we love cheese plate nights in our house, and this gives us a whole new flavor and texture to play with.

Does wine jelly taste like wine? Yes! The flavor is all there, it’s smooth, mellow, and absolutely delicious.

Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly with cheese and crackers

This is such fun, you can use virtually any bottle of wine you like. I think full bodied reds make the best jelly, but if you’re a white wine lover, go for it! I used Merlot today, but I’m going to try a nice Malbec, next time. And after that, maybe a pretty pink rosé.

Bolder red wines that work well for jelly ~

  • Merlot
  • Malbec
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Zinfandel
  • Bordeaux

The gorgeous silky texture of wine jelly is just lovely. You’ll have fun mixing and matching with your favorite cheese and crackers.

Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly in Weck jars

I infused my first batch of wine jelly with cardamom pods, and I have to admit it was a last minute decision after I poured a bottle of Merlot into my big cast iron pot ~ it just looked a little naked. The cardamom adds a little extra layer of mystery to the flavor and really complements the wine. You can use as few as 10 or as many as you like for a stronger flavor. You can strain them out, or even leave them in, just be sure to crack them first to release the little seeds.

TIP: Mulled wine jelly makes a fabulous gift during the holidays. Go all out and add a cinnamon stick, some cloves, and a star anise along with the cardamom pods for a really festive flavor.

Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly in a glass jar

Most recipes for wine jelly use way too much sugar, in my opinion. I’ve reduced it down quite a bit here, and I’m really pleased with the results. If you sweeten this too much you lose that fabulous earthy wine-y flavor and it can start to taste like grape jelly. Not what you’re looking for.

TIP: It’s quite important that you use the right pectin, formulated for low sugar recipes. It’s called Sure-Jell For Less or No Sugar Needed Recipes, and it comes in the pink box. This pectin insures a reliably firm set to your jelly.

Box of Sure Jell.

Easy Low Sugar Wine Jelly with cheese and crackers

I think any host would just love to receive a jar or two of this wine jelly. And if you’re called upon to bring the appetizer, bundle it up with some crackers and cheese ~ you’ll get invited back, I promise.

Check out the little video I made to show you just how easy this is!

3.2 from 86 votes

Red Wine Jelly

This easy low sugar wine jelly is delicious with cheese or on sandwiches, and makes an ideal host gift. Stock your fridge for the holidays! Recipe adapted from America's Test Kitchen
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Calories 23kcal
Author Sue Moran


  • 1 750 ml bottle red wine, I used Merlot
  • 10 cardamom pods optional
  • 1 1.75 ounce box of Sure-Jell for Less or No Sugar Needed Recipes (be sure to use this one, in the pink box)
  • 3/4 cup sugar divided


  • Pour your bottle of wine into a heavy bottomed pot.
  • Lightly crush the cardamom pods with the side of a rolling pin and add them to the pot. Don't lose any of the little black seeds! Bring the pot to a simmer, then turn off the heat and let steep for 20 minutes.
  • Strain the cardamom from the wine and return the wine to the pan.
  • Mix 1/4 cup of the sugar, the pectin, and 3/4 cup water in a small bowl and stir to combine. Add to the wine and bring to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly.
  • Once the wine is at a boil, add the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, and continue to stir or whisk until the mixture is boiling again. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring all the time.
  • Remove from the heat and skim any foam off the top of the wine. Use a funnel to fill your jelly jars with the hot liquid. I suggest using several smaller jars rather than one or two large ones.
  • Let cool completely at room temperature, then cover and refrigerate for 12 - 24 hours until firm. The jelly will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 months, I don't recommend freezing.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 23kcal
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

Make it your own ~

  • Try making a black pepper wine jelly with a bite ~  steep 1 tablespoon of black peppercorns in the wine instead of the cardamom.
  • I plan to make a hot pepper wine jelly soon, with jalapeños…one of you might want to beat me to it and let me know how it goes…


Don’t forget to pin this Red Wine Jelly!

Wine Jelly pin.



Cooking with wine is such fun!

Parmesan Crusted White Wine Salmon

Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon

Red Wine Spaghetti

Marsala Chicken Thighs

Split Pea Soup With Red Wine and Ham

Pork Loin with Wine and Herb Gravy

Coq au Chardonnay



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    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    July 13, 2021 at 1:55 pm

    Can you can this? Would it be for a water bath or pressure cooker and how long to cook and how long would it last?

  • Reply
    December 15, 2020 at 6:04 pm

    5 stars
    Set up perfectly. I have been collecting adorable 8 ounce jars from Yoplait Oui yogurt for this…Yoplait sells plastic snap-on lids for them on their website.

  • Reply
    December 13, 2020 at 6:02 am

    I know this is an older post but I just discovered it while looking for a wine jelly recipe that didn’t call for five cups of sugar per bottle of wine (!). I love cardamom but wonder if it will complement the more delicate flavor of white wine. If not, do you have a recommendation for an alternative spice? Can’t wait to try this!

    • Reply
      December 13, 2020 at 6:54 am

      You can definitely leave it out, or substitute a cinnamon stick for a suble flavor. Check out my mulled cranberry jelly for a slightly different flavor profile that would work with wine.

  • Reply
    W Grant
    October 10, 2020 at 6:06 am

    5 stars
    Super easy recipe!!
    I used an inexpensive Cabernet.
    Next time I will use a rich, bold wine for more flavor.
    *Recipe made 9 – 4oz. jars.

    • Reply
      October 10, 2020 at 6:31 am

      I love to experiment with different wines, there are so many possibilities.

    • Reply
      Lisa Sellers
      October 17, 2020 at 11:43 am

      Thank you! I looked everywhere for the yield on this!

  • Reply
    Joanne Maxwell
    June 29, 2020 at 5:50 pm

    2 stars
    Did not set…I have jars of thick wine. ?

    • Reply
      June 29, 2020 at 6:10 pm

      Were you sure to use the ‘low or no sugar’ pectin Joanne? It’s necessary for the jelly to set.

    • Reply
      Karen Stickel
      July 31, 2020 at 2:49 pm

      Sorry…spoke too soon. The jelly DID set! Looks great! Haven’t tasted yet! It had to chill first!

  • Reply
    home sense
    June 28, 2020 at 11:26 am

    3 stars
    I made this today but was disappointed that I discovered as I was making it that this did not last long- I thought this was like every other jelly I made that it would have a longer shelf life. Looks like I will score points with friends because I won’t be able to eat all this in a month.

  • Reply
    November 12, 2019 at 9:44 am

    Can this be done with a water bath canning method? I’d love to send some to relatives back East.

    • Reply
      November 12, 2019 at 10:24 am

      You would need to make this more acidic to can it safely. I have seen recipes that add 1/2 cup lemon juice, but be aware that that will change the flavor.

      • Reply
        J Savoie
        November 21, 2019 at 8:21 am

        For canning any product safely you should check out Ball Blue Books or extension services at any state university webistes –look for Master Food Preservers. The acidity level does matter! Cook books and these resources use only science based recipes to elleviate the risk of contamination. Be safe when canning.

  • Reply
    November 11, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Hi, do the jars need to be sterilized even though they go in the refrigerator? So excited to make this!

    • Reply
      November 11, 2019 at 2:40 pm

      It’s always a good idea to clean them thoroughly, but I don’t sterilize.

    • Reply
      Sam Lanphar
      July 6, 2021 at 7:12 pm

      Hi, I’m a sommelier and wines that are higher in alcohol are considered “hot” wines, which tend to be more acidic and also higher (obviously) in alcohol which is a natural preservative. Champagne is a good exception to the rule as it’s generally low in alcohol, but very hi in acid. It also makes a wonderful jelly especially if you can find the grapes to pop in as a last minute unexpected surprise!!

  • Reply
    Denise Stevens
    August 11, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    What about using honey instead of sugar?

    • Reply
      August 11, 2019 at 5:45 pm

      That should work fine, although I haven’t tried it that way. The honey will give the jelly a slightly different flavor, but that’s not a bad thing.

    • Reply
      September 2, 2019 at 8:28 am

      How strong is the wine flavor? I’ll be using it as part of another recipe, and I want to be able to taste it. Also, how well does the cardamom come through? Should I leave it out if I want to focus on the wine flavor?

      • Reply
        September 2, 2019 at 12:42 pm

        The wine flavor is nice and pronounced, but sweeter, of course. If you’re focussing on the wine flavor, I’d leave any spices out.

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