The main difference between jam and jelly is that jam is a gelled syrup that can’t hold itself in its shape, while a properly set jelly is clear and sparkling and has the ability to hold to its shape.
Both jam and jelly are two different types of fruit spreads we frequently consume as an accompaniment for food like bread, cake, and other bakery items. However, both jam and jelly differ from each other in the ingredients used, their texture and the method of preparation.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Jam
– Definition, Features, Preparation
2. What is Jelly
– Definition, Features, Preparation
3. Similarities Between Jam and Jelly
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Jam and Jelly
– Comparison of Key Differences
Jam, Jelly, Fruits
What is Jam
Generally, jam is produced with mashed or chopped fruits or vegetable pulps. This pulp is boiled with water and sugar. Here, the proportion of sugar that needs to be added and the amount of fruits used may differ according to the type of fruit used and, most importantly, depending on how ripe the fruit is. When the fruit pulp mixed in the sugar solution rises up to a temperature of 104 °C, the fruit acid and the pectin in the fruit begin to react with the sugar, allowing the jam to set on cooling.
There are different varieties of jams used in every corner of the world. However, orange, mango, mixed fruit and strawberry are some of the most popular jam flavours all around the world. While preparing jelly, the fruits and the vegetables come as juice while jam contains a fruit pulp. Further, unlike jelly, jam usually doesn’t stick to its place and shape.
What is Jelly
Jelly is a popular food product made with fruit juice. Here, sugar mixed with pectin is added to the juice extracted from fruits and vegetables as a jelling agent. Further, lemon juice is added as an acid to balance the consistency of this mixture and its texture. Generally, jellies rarely contain any fruit pieces except in speciality jellies such as pepper jelly, which may include pieces of jalapeño, etc.
Compared to the texture and the form of jams, jelly is firm and can stick to its shape. Moreover, a good jelly will always look clear and sparkling when it is well set. Grape, strawberry and cherry are some of the most popular jelly flavours.
Similarities Between Jam and Jelly
- Both jam and jelly are popular fruit spreads.
- Jams and jellies are both sweet and sticky
- Fruits, pectin, sugar, and acid are used as ingredients in making jams and jellies
- Therefore, jams and jellies share a similar nutrient composition.
- Both jams and jellies are used as food accompaniments with a variety of food such as bread, cake, and other bakery items.
Difference Between Jam and Jelly
Jam is a fruit spread made with crushed fruits or fruits cut into pieces, whereas jelly is a clear fruit spread made with firmed fruit juice or vegetable juice.
Jam is a gelled syrup that can’t hold itself in its shape, while a properly set jelly looks clear and sparkling and has the ability to hold to its shape.
Moreover, jam is prepared from fruit pulp, while jelly is made using fruit or vegetable juice.
In brief, the main difference between jam and jelly is that jam is a popular fruit spread made with fruit pulp, whereas jelly is a fruit or vegetable spread made using fruit or vegetable juice. These two spreads both taste sweet and take a sticky texture. Given that they use similar ingredients in preparation, they usually share a similar nutritional composition. However, both jams and jellies are high sugar products; therefore, it is better to consume them in small amounts.
- 1. Schmutz, Pamela. “Basics of Jelly Making.” Home & Garden Information Center | Clemson University, South Carolina, 5 Nov. 2020.
1. “Strawberry jam, toast, food and Drink, breakfast, hD Wallpaper, jam, strawberries, strawberry, food, healthy eating” (CC0) via Pxfuel
2. “Stacked jars of crab apple jelly (10289733585)” By Rebecca Siegel – Crab apple jelly (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia