Jacquelynne Steves

Homemade Fig Jam!

Fig Tree 1- Jacquelynne Steves

When we were at the beach a couple of weeks ago, it was prime fig season. We are not usually at the beach during that particular week of the summer, so I was amazed at the bounty that our front yard fig tree produced!!

I have had delectable fresh figs before, but these were…. a disappointment! No flavor at all. I tried them at different stages of ripeness, and, nope- no flavor. I “borrowed” a fig from a tree down the street for comparison purposes. It was much smaller, so obviously a different variety, and the flavor was much better. So… what to do with these figs? They were so abundant, and I saw no point in feeding ALL of them to the wildlife!! You can see in the photos below, we had all sorts of birds, butterflies, bees, and beetles feeding from this tree- they all seemed to be giddy! It was like a bird and bug bacchanalia (wow, I am really into the alliteration today…)

Butterfly on Fig Tree 2- Jacquelynne Steves

Butterfly on Fig Tree- Jacquelynne Steves

Female Cardinal in Fig Tree- Jacquelynne Steves

Daughter and I decided the best thing to do was to make fig jam. Being at the beach house, we didn’t have a lot of cooking equipment, and we didn’t feel like going to the store to get pectin, so we found a recipe which called just for figs, sugar, and lemon juice. Perfect. Find the recipe here.

We picked the tree clean (well, as much as we could. Even with a step ladder, we couldn’t reach all the way to the top.) We cleaned and chopped the figs and put them into a pot. (Interesting note- Daughter read that the milky white sap that comes from figs is a form of latex, so if you have a latex allergy you need to wear gloves while handling them. Who knew??) We simply boiled them down with some water, sugar, and lemon juice (again, since we don’t have a lot of kitchen equipment, we just guessed at the amounts.)

Fig Jam on Stove-Jacquelynne Steves


We filled every jar and little plastic container we could find with our freshly made fig jam.

And it came out…. delicious! Honestly, it is soooo good! So glad we didn’t donate all those figs to the wildlife. The next day I went outside- and the tree was FULL of ripe figs again. So we did the only thing we could do- we picked the tree clean again and made another pot of jam!


Fig Tree 2- Jacquelynne Steves

Now, we have been giving away jam to everyone we know. The freezer is full of those little jars and plastic containers of jam. We are having it on toast, stirring it into Greek yogurt, and trying to figure out what else to do with it. I am thinking about serving it with cheese and crackers. And I am not tired of it yet…

Fig Jam Breakfast- Jacquelynne Steves



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    Marion Shofner
    Posted September 23, 2015 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    try this for Strawberry Fig Jam. 4 cups Figs mashed (I use more), 1 large or 2 small Jello Strawberry flavor gelatin, 2 cups sugar or sugar substitute. Cook figs on law. Once they come to a boil, cook 15 minutes. Then add gelatin and sugar. Fill bottles. Try peach gelatin too It is good and taste like strawberry jam

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      Posted September 23, 2015 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for the idea, Marion! We certainly have a lot of figs to deal with!!

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    Posted August 3, 2016 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    I was always told that if you see that white milk ooze from the stem when you pick a fig, it isn’t quite ripe. So just keep those figs in a single layer on the counter (room temperature) in a plate or basket for a couple of more days until they’re ripe, sweet and ready to eat.

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    Posted August 3, 2016 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    The figs with the lack of flavor are another good indicator that they weren’t quite ripe. Looking at your photographs, the truly ripe figs are those with a slight wrinkled exterior and have butterflies on them. Those butterflies know when a fig is ready!! :)
    Here is a link explaining about figs and the difference between ripe and unripe ones.

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