Difference between Jam and Jelly

In many countries, the consumption of jams, jellies, preserves and other similar preserves is regulated. All these serve as a complement and accompaniments to desserts and others at breakfast or snack time. The names that these preparations receive, of course, vary depending on each country. However, due to the great similarity between these preparations, many people mainly use the terms jam and jelly as synonyms when they are not. Although the difference between one and the other is minimal, it is advisable to know the difference between the two in order to make an appropriate use of each word.

Comparison table

Definition It is a sweet preparation made from natural fruits and sugar. It is used in cakes and other desserts, as well as spread on breads and other baked goods. Its flavor is sweet, so it is an excellent complement for this type of food. In the same way, it is a preparation of natural fruits. Jelly is very popular in some countries, while others not so much. Many people believe that it is just another way of calling jam, however there is an important difference between jam and jelly.
Popularity in the world Within Latin America, jam is especially popular in countries like Mexico, Spain and throughout South America. Jelly is also known but “jam” is often used indiscriminately to refer to this type of preserves. On the other hand, in Central America and the Caribbean, jelly is more popular. The term marmalade in these areas is used to refer almost exclusively to orange preserves.
How do you prepare? It is just this process that makes jam different from jelly. First you need to reduce the chosen fruit to a puree, although it does not need to be homogeneous. Then this puree is mixed with the sugar while heating over low heat. A little water can be added. Preparation can vary, although the steps almost always involve the same actions. It may be necessary to add pectin, depending on the fruit being used. To make jelly, before boiling the fruit, it is reduced, but not to a puree like jam. The fruit in this preparation must be reduced to a juice or juice using an extractor or other process. Then this juice must be filtered to remove any trace of pulp. Once the “pure” juice of the fruit is obtained, the sugar is added and it is boiled. Likewise, pectin may need to be added, depending on the fruit being used.
How does it look like? The result is a thick mixture that can contain pieces of fruit, with a pasty and heterogeneous consistency. On the contrary, the jelly preparation process results in a gelatinous preparation, with a certain degree of transparency, without lumps, firm and completely homogeneous.
  • Water
  • Fruit (strawberry, blackberry, orange, apple, etc)
  • May need added pectin
  • Water
  • Fruit juice (it can be from any fruit, although the preparation will vary depending on it)
  • May need added pectin

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