Candy Apple Jelly is a festive and flavorful jelly made easily in the kitchen with a few simple ingredients. A perfect gift for the holidays!
One of my favorite things to gift at the holidays is jam and jelly. If anything, it signifies a creativity that far surpasses any plastic gift card or prepackaged store-shelf gift set.
There’s something about jams and jellies that is heartwarming – cute little jars of fruit preserved over the course of a period of time, tied with a ribbon.
At present, I have an addiction to making jam and jelly.
At least I’m willing to admit that I have an addiction (that’s the first step in recovery – right?)
The last few weeks I’ve tossed together Prickly Pear Jelly, Hatch Chile Jam, Rose Hip Jelly (which is SO good!), and so many more. If you haven’t thought of making Apple Candy Jelly though – you must.
I actually love making this jelly as gifts, but in this specific case of jelly, I hoard it for my kids. They devour it on their Peanut Butter sandwiches. If you are gifting to family and friends though, tie a gift tag on it and toss it in a basket with some other jams and jellies for variety.
Candy Apple Jelly
Candy Apple Jelly starts with your favorite apple juice – 4 cups is with a single box of Red Hot candies. Each cup of apple juice will yield approx. 1 half pint jar of finished jelly.
Can’t find Red Hots?
You can also use Hot Tamales as well.
In a large saucepan, combine the apple juice, candies and pectin. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Then stir in sugar and return to a full rolling boil for approximately one minute.
Remove the mixture from the heat and skim off the foam. Ladle your mixture into six hot, sterilized half-pint jars, leaving a quarter-inch for headspace. Carefully wipe the rims and center the lids on the jars. Screw on the bands until finger-tip tight.
Place the jars into the canner with simmering water. You’ll want to ensure that they are completely covered with water by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil and process in the water bath for 10-12 minutes.
Remove the jars and cool. As the jars cool, they should set – sometimes it can take up to 24 hours (if not longer) for jars to set appropriately so be patient!
Canning in a high altitude environment
The processing time listed above (10-12 minutes) is for altitudes of 1,000 feet or less. If you are over 1,000 feet elevation, add one minute of processing time for each 1,000 feet of additional altitude.
Candy Apple Jelly
- Water Bath Canner
- 6 half pint canning jars, lids and bands
- 4 C apple juice
- 1/2 C Red Hots candy
- 1 pkg powdered fruit pectin 1 3/4 oz.
- 4.5 C sugar see notes, far below
- Wash the canning jars. Place the canning jars, lids and bands in the oven at 200 degrees F to sterilize while you are making the jam (it helps to have them all in an 13x9 dish to keep them all together).
- Fill the water bath canner with water on a separate stove burner to prepare the jelly for the water bath.
- In a large saucepan, combine the apple juice, candy and pectin. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring continuously.
- Stir in sugar, and then return to a full, rolling boil for a period of one minute.
- Remove from the heat, skim off the foam. Ladle the mixture into six, hot and sterilized half-pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe the rims.
- Center the lids on the jars, screw on the bands until they are fingertip tight.
- Place the jars into the hot water bath canner, ensuring that they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process for 10-12 minutes. Remove the jars and cool.
- Jelly can take up to 24 hours to set.
- DO NOT reduce the sugar in this recipe! The amount of sugar provided above is reflective of regular pectin. That pectin needs the appropriate amount of sugar for the jelly to set.
- If you wish to reduce the sugar, please use low-sugar pectin (pink box of Sure-Jell) and follow the instructions on that box to allow for a proper set.
Higher Altitudes:The processing time listed is for altitudes of 1,000 feet or less. Add one minute to the processing time for each 1,000 feet of additional altitude.
Have you ever tried Candy Apple Jelly? If not, please try it and leave a comment to let me know how it turned out for you. Rate the recipe, too – I’d be so grateful!