Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

Rhubarb and Ginger Jam Recipe

Running from January all the way through to the end of April the Yorkshire forced rhubarb season is one of the best things about food in the first few months of the year. More delicate and slightly sweeter than the main crop, forced rhubarb is the perfect candidate for my rhubarb and ginger jam recipe.

As with any shop that deals directly with food, my local grocer has to deal with a certain amount of food waste. Where they are different to supermarkets, however, is that they’ll try their hardest to not let anything go to waste.

Stock at most grocers doesn’t come with a sell-by-date, which means the food system abides by common sense; if it’s mouldy or rotten, it’s no good. Whereas, at the supermarket if time has moved beyond an arbitrary date, perfectly good produce is made redundant.

Take the Yorkshire forced rhubarb used in this recipe for rhubarb and ginger jam as a case in point; it was a little soft, arguably past its best, but perfectly good for preserving. My grocer, realising the rhubarb was a little too “bendy” had cut it up into a 500g tub and slapped a £1 sign on it. An absolute steal – please enjoy it as much as I did.

To see what I did with this batch of jam, check out my recipe for Rhubarb and Ginger Jam Cake; it’s a good one.

Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

Makes 3 Jars


  • 500g rhubarb, 2cm chunks

  • 500g jam sugar

  • zest & juice of 1 lemon

  • thumb sized piece of root ginger

  • 50g stem ginger, finely cubed


  1. Tip the rhubarb pieces into a large bowl, along with the sugar, lemon juice, zest and cubed stem ginger.

  2. Peel the root ginger and grate it over the rhubarb before mixing thoroughly and leaving to sit for 2 hours, turning with a spoon every 30 minutes.

  3. Once most of the sugar has dissolved, tip the contents of the mixing bowl into a large sauce pan and bring to a brisk boil.

  4. Turn the heat down and simmer for 40-50 minutes, until the rhubarb has broken down. Pop a couple of small plates in the freezer.

  5. After 40 minutes take a small amount of the jam and place it on one of the chilled plates. Once a minute has passed push the cool jam with your finger. If the surface of the jam wrinkles it’s ready. If not, give it a few minutes more and try again.

  6. When ready, transfer the jam into three sterilised jars, seal and leave to cool. Once open, store the jam in the fridge, where it’ll last for many months.

How to Make Rhubarb and Ginger Jam Recipe for Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

Cost: If you’re lucky enough to chance upon some Yorkshire forced rhubarb that has been reduced in price, clutch it with both hands and never let go. If it hasn’t been reduced, buy it anyway.

Even without assuming you have stumbled across some cut-price rhubarb, these three jars of unbelievably delicious jam will set you back around £2.80. That’s roughly the amount one jar of a similar preserve would cost elsewhere, if not cheaper.

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55 comments on “Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

  1. Anita Flowers - House of Angels
    April 14, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    I have to make this .. whatever the cost!

  2. Can't live without....
    April 14, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    The other day, I picked up a jar of this and put it back because it was so expensive and was not sure if I would use it all. This is perfect to try!! Thanks!

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 8:59 am

      I hope you do! It’s great on toast, with yoghurt and even baked into a cake (as you’ll see next week).

  3. Joanna
    April 14, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    I love the way the colour has stayed so pink! Looks gorgeous 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 8:58 am

      I think if I hadn’t used forced it would have gone a little more green – I was very happy when it stayed pink…

  4. cheri
    April 14, 2014 at 6:16 pm

    Beautiful color, never have had rhubarb before, not even with strawberries. Great shopping tips.

  5. cookinginsens
    April 14, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Sounds good and I like the jar picture.

  6. Jake
    April 15, 2014 at 12:03 am

    Would this be quite liquid-y? Would some pectin help to make it more solid and spreadable?

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 9:11 am

      Not at all – jam sugar contains added pectin. It was beautifully set.

  7. Michelle
    April 15, 2014 at 1:35 am

    What beautiful color (oops, colour)! Rhubarb is hard to come by here. I don’t know why. And, when I do find it, it’s usually a more green variety. But if I ever find a bunch of the pretty stuff, I’ll definitely try this.

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 8:57 am

      Good correction :D. This stuff is pinker because it’s forced. Normal crop rhubarb tends to be greener, which isn’t really a problem, but it is more tart.

  8. Chelsea
    April 15, 2014 at 5:20 am

    Oh lovely! I just bought some rhubarb from my own grocery and hadn’t decided yet what to do with it. Ginger sounds like a perfect flavor combination for it – spicy and tart together. Maybe slathered on biscuits or scones?

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 9:10 am

      Great! This is a great use. Yes, it’s delicious slathered on anything and everything. Nice with yoghurt too.

  9. Claire Sambolino
    April 15, 2014 at 8:05 am

    Great minds! I’m sitting eating some my mum just made and its delicious!

  10. silverbells2012
    April 15, 2014 at 8:25 am

    Have got mounds of my very own Yorkshire rhubarb (not even forced) – look forward to trying this recipe when I get back off my hols!

    • frugalfeeding
      April 15, 2014 at 8:56 am

      Fantastic – please do and let me know how it turns out.

  11. cathynd95
    April 15, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    what is the difference between root ginger and stem ginger? my grocers only have “ginger” (which appears to be the root of the plant)

    • frugalfeeding
      April 22, 2014 at 1:35 pm

      Kind of what it says on the tin. Stem ginger is usually packaged in syrup and won’t be in the fruit and veg section of a supermarket/grocer.

  12. lovinghomemade
    April 16, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    I still haven’t managed to make rhubarb jam without turning it into a rhubarb caramel (and not in a good way!). My stock of last year’s jams is nearly all gone, time to get some rhubarb!

    • frugalfeeding
      April 22, 2014 at 1:40 pm

      That’s a shame – what do you think goes wrong? I need to start making jam so we have it on stock.

      • lovinghomemade
        April 23, 2014 at 8:49 pm

        I think I have left it to cook for far too long and then only remembered afterwards that it didn’t need anywhere as long as my recipe was telling me. If only I had a decent memory!!!

        • frugalfeeding
          April 28, 2014 at 2:01 pm

          Ah that’s a shame – well, hopefully this time it’ll work!

  13. silverbells2012
    April 22, 2014 at 8:45 pm

    Just made it after a trip to the allotment earlier today. Delicious 🙂

  14. puppiesinparadise
    April 23, 2014 at 7:50 am

    I was wonder what you meant by sealing the jar? The recipes that I have tried before require a hot water bath to seal it. Does this one as well?

    • frugalfeeding
      April 28, 2014 at 2:02 pm

      No, you can sterilise it any way you like, in the oven, water bath or just by pouring boiling water over the jars. Sealing just meant closing the lids 😀

      • puppiesinparadise
        April 28, 2014 at 3:14 pm

        Thanks. I wondered if it meant that I need to boil the jar for 5 to 10 minutes. I made a marmelade last year and the recipe said I had to boil the filled jar to seal it. I wanted to make sure I did it right. I have frozen rhubarb from last year and I wanted to try your recipe with it. I followed another blog and they said you could use last years rhubarb in jellies, jams and marmelades. That way you didn’t waste it. I was worried about freezer burn. The lady said she often does this. Thanks again your recipes sound delicious.

        • frugalfeeding
          May 14, 2014 at 2:02 pm

          No, just a few minutes in boiling conditions should do the trick! After about 75C. Anyway, I hope all turns out ok – I wouldn’t worry too much about freezer burn with this sort of thing.

          • puppiesinparadise
            May 14, 2014 at 3:22 pm

            I am so wanting to do this recipe. Thank you so much for posting it.

          • frugalfeeding
            May 27, 2014 at 1:47 pm

            My pleasure – I hope you enjoy it.

  15. DellaCucinaPovera
    April 24, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    What a steal! Awesome.

    • frugalfeeding
      April 28, 2014 at 1:58 pm

      Thank you – it was delicious – just finishing it off now.

  16. marjiemo@btinternet.com
    May 5, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    I have scum – should I remove it?

    • frugalfeeding
      May 6, 2014 at 9:02 am

      Sorry I didn’t get back to you straight away. Usually it’s best to remove the scum (I didn’t get any when I made it), but it’s perfectly edible.

      • marjiemo@btinternet.com
        May 6, 2014 at 10:38 am

        Thanks. I added about 1 oz of grated fresh ginger but it’s too mild for me. Should I just add more or maybe not add till near the end of the boil? I’m not keen on stem ginger.

        • frugalfeeding
          May 14, 2014 at 1:55 pm

          I’m afraid I can’t advise, the flavour of stem and root ginger are so different!

  17. polly
    May 25, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    can the jars be sterilised in the microwave oven?

    • frugalfeeding
      May 28, 2014 at 1:43 pm

      As long as they’re heated to 100C it’s fine. Don’t put metal lids in though!

  18. Simply Splendid Food
    June 29, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    My quest is to find ways to add ginger to my meals. A great rhubarb/ginger jam. I love the colour. Sensational! You have so many interesting recipes. I’m speechless!

    • frugalfeeding
      July 5, 2015 at 11:08 pm

      Thank you – this is probably my favourite jam recipe actually 🙂

  19. Janet Callow
    September 23, 2015 at 7:18 pm

    My Mum who was born in Yorkshire and is 93 thought this was lovely, thank you.

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