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How to Make Blackberry Preserves Without Pectin

Updated: Oct 25, 2023

Blackberry preserves are whole fruit preserved in a sweet syrup and can be used for a great number of sweet treats. Blackberry preserves are great on pancakes, waffles, ice cream, and any number of other food items you would eat with syrup. My teenage daughter really likes to dip cheese sticks in it or use it on salads or wraps.

Today Emmaline and I are going to teach you how to can blackberry preserves without pectin. This method of canning blackberry preserves is especially useful when you don’t have pectin on hand but still want to put up your fruit.

Let's make some yummy home canned blackberry preserves without pectin.


Makes: 4 half-pint jars

  • 2 pounds blackberries

  • 4 Cups Sugar

  • 1/2 Tsp Butter (Optional)

Rest the Blackberries:

Add sugar to the blackberries and rest them.

combine with sugar

Combine the 2 pounds of blackberries and sugar in a large saucepan. Gently stir until the blackberries are coated in sugar.

The blackberries resting in sugar before making the syrup.

rest 30 minutes

Cover and let stand or “rest” for at least 30 minutes. We let our rest for about 4 hours because we were working on other projects. We did check on our blackberries at the 30-minute mark and we can attest to the fact that they looked the same at 4 hours as they did at 30 minutes, so just get back to your berries when you can.


Prepare your water bath canner by filling it about halfway full with water and place it on the stove on medium heat.

Place your jars in the oven to heat up at 250 degrees Fahrenheit.


Add a teaspoon of butter to reduce foam when canning preserves.

add butter

After you have rested your berries, add the optional 1/2 teaspoon of butter to reduce foaming and place them on the stove to cook.

Bringing the preserves almost to the gelling point.

cook to gelling point

Cook rapidly over high heat to almost the gelling point (220 Degrees Fahrenheit), stirring constantly. (Reduce the gelling point by 2 degrees for every 1,000 feet above sea level.) Remove from heat. Skim off foam if necessary.

Fill the Jars with Blackberry Preserves:

Marie and Emmaline filling the jars with blackberry preserves made without pectin.

fill jars

Ladle the hot blackberry preserves into hot jars, leaving ½ -inch headspace. Clean the jar rim. Center the lid on the jar and adjust the band to finger-tip tight.

Process the Jars of Blackberry Preserves:

Place the filled jars into the water bath canner. Make sure the water covers the jars by at least 1 to 2 inches. Adjust heat to medium-high, cover the water canner, and bring water to a rolling boil. Process half-pint jars for 15 minutes. Adjusting processing time for your altitude. If you need to know how to use a water bath canner we have a canning basics video you can watch.

Beautiful half-pint jars of home canned blackberry preserves without pectin.

Canned Blackberry Preserves

Once the jars of blackberry preserves are done processing, turn off the heat and remove the cover. Remove the jars from the water bath and place them spaced out on a towel on the counter. Cool 12 to 24 hours. Check seals. Label and store jars.

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