Seedless Wild Blackberry and Lime Jam

This Seedless Wild Blackberry and Lime Jam is a firm early autumn favourite recipe. It’s tangy and not too sweet and best of all contains no added pectin. There are just four ingredients: wild blackberries, granulated sugar, limes and a couple of bramley apples to help it set. The flavour is superb and just an hour or so of work from start to finish will result in the most deliciously versatile jam you can eat all year round.

A jar of Wild Blackberry Lime Jam with a spoon in it and the ingredients surrounding

Blackberries must be one of my favourite fruits as it was only when I was skimming through my archives that I realised how abundant my blackberry recipes are compared to other fruits. That is mainly because of our household obsession with foraging. I am not the worst culprit believe it or not, Luke, who has to be pried out of bed most mornings with a chisel, casts aside the duvet with giddy abandon when those first blackberries start bursting through the hedgerows. All our foraging is done at dawn whilst walking Billy Buddy, much to his chagrin. As Luke delves deep into the blackberry bushes, poor Billy hops from paw to paw, barely bearing the wait until Luke is back on more solid ground again.

A teacup full of blackberries and a lime

We only have a small freezer but dollars for doughnuts you will always find this time of year the blackberries have stolen all the space. This Seedless Wild Blackberry and Lime Jam though has to be the recipe which you brandish victoriously when you’ve over indulged with the foraging. It was the first jam I truly loved as the juicy tartness of the blackberries and the zesty zing of the lime cut through all the sugar to create a really complex taste which is perfect for toast, for sandwich cakes, jam tarts and as a replacement filler in these oat bars.

A pot of Wild Blackberry Lime Jam

A bowl with Wild Blackberry Lime Jam

A workstation with utensils for Wild Blackberry Lime Jam

I have always made this jam seedless and it’s a little bit of a faff but there are pros and cons to it. The pro is that you don’t need to prepare the bramley apples, bar a bit of rough chopping, which get thrown in a preserving pan with the blackberries straight off the bat. Once the fruit has softened then they get passed through a sieve which is the faffy con bit. However, if you do a lot of preserving then I seriously recommend a food mill which make very light work of removing the skin and seeds from the fruit without losing any fruit pulp.

A jar of Wild Blackberry Lime Jam with a spoon in it and the ingredients surrounding

If you don’t have a food mill and are de-seeding by hand and sieve then you might have a bit more substantial seedy pulp left behind in the sieve. Don’t you dare throw this away you lucky ducks as it’s marvellous for making blackberry vinegar or blackberry gin.

Seedless Wild Blackberry and Lime Jam

This easy Seedless Wild Blackberry and Lime Jam is a deliciously versatile four ingredient jam with no added pectin and a tangy zesty flavour.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: British
Servings: 80 servings
Calories: 60kcal


  • 1.5 kg blackberries
  • 500 g bramley apples
  • 3 limes zest of 2 and juice of 3
  • 1 kg granulated sugar


  • Firstly place 5 saucers into the freezer and then sterilize the jars and lids by placing them in an oven heated to 100°C for 20 minutes.
  • Roughly chop the apples without peeling or coring, then place in a large preserving pan with the blackberries. Heat gently until all the fruit has softened.
  • Remove from the heat, then pass everything through a sieve or food mill.
  • Replace the seedless fruit pulp back into the saucepan and keep the seedy fruit pulp for another purpose (like blackberry gin or vinegar).
  • Add the lime juice and sugar to the saucepan and heat gently so all the sugar has dissolved. Once dissolved, bring to a rolling boil. Boil for 5 minutes then turn off the heat and place on one of the cold saucers from the freezer. Leave for 1 minute then push the jam with your finger. If the jam wrinkles on the surface it’s ready. If not, then turn the jam back on a boil for a further 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and try the saucer test again.
  • Once the jam is ready remove the scum from the surface of the jam and then stir in the lime zest.
  • Decant the jam into the sterilised jars, screw the lids on tightly and store until ready to use.


  • The jam can be kept for up to 12 months if kept in a cool dark place
Yield 10 180g jars


Calories: 60kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 40mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 45IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.1mg

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Blackberry Hoisin Sauce

Blackberry Hoisin Sauce

Chinese Damson Sauce

This Chinese Damson Sauce is a natural substitute for your regular Hoisin sauce. Except this version is more fruity, layered with spices and completely gluten-free.

If you are looking for me lately then it’s more than likely you will find me stuck up a damson tree, waist deep in blackberry bushes or halfway down the ravine on Parkland Walk checking on the inconveniently placed crab apple tree. At the moment I’m sitting patiently waiting for the rosehips to come into their own as my empty jam jars are crying out for a bit of rosehip jelly. I might have mentioned once or twice that I’m really getting into this foraging business and it has been so surprising to me how much wonderful fruit is available to us on our urban doorstep in North London. 

Damson Tree

When a friend told me about the local damson tree a few roads down, I was there in a flash. By the time I arrived I was already a bit too late for some of the fruit which had fallen heedlessly from the branches to be squashed underfoot by busy pedestrians. Gah, that was at least two gallons of jam right there on the pavement.

Whilst we were shimmying up the tree trunk we were informed by a passer-by that everyday there is usually someone picking the damsons, so we are certainly not the only ones benefiting from the tree’s generosity. We’ve visited it a few times now and it could probably provide fruit for the whole of North London, there are just so many damsons.

What are damsons?

Damsons are small purple stone fruits, very similar to plums. Their season is short and you can usually find them appearing in the late summer. They are rarely sold in supermarkets so your best bet is farmers’ markets or foraging for them yourself. Once you start noticing them you’ll soon find damson trees can grow pretty much anywhere in the UK.

How do you pick damsons?

Picking damsons from tree branches is no easy task. If you don’t fancy shimmying up the branches then lay a big groundsheet underneath the tree and give the branches a good shake. You can then collect the ripe fruit straight from the sheet. Your stash will build up very quickly.


Damson Recipes

The best way to look for damson recipes is to search under plums. Anything you can do with a plum you can do with a damson, although it would be wise to add a touch more sugar as damsons are rather tart; they are not the sort of fruit you would eat plucked straight from the tree.

The other issue with damsons is their stones. They are practically impossible, as far as I can tell, to de-stone before cooking and the best way is to cook down the damsons, sieve the juice out of the way, then sift through the pulp by hand to remove each stone. It’s a bit of a labour but worthwhile if you like your damsons.

Want another damson recipe? What about this Damson Orange Cinnamon Jam?

Chinese Damson Sauce | Stroud Green Larder

How to make Chinese Damson Sauce

  1. Cook the damsons in a splash of water until they have broken down. Remove from the heat, sift through and remove the stones.
  2. Add the damsons, along with the rest of the ingredients, into a large preserving pan. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. Pour everything into a blender and whizz up until very smooth.
  4. Pour back into the preserving pan, bring back to a boil then remove from heat.
  5. Decant into sterilised jars.

How to use Chinese Damson Sauce

This Chinese Damson Sauce is an absolute winner and is of course a natural fit for serving with your crispy duck and pancakes, but it’s more versatile than that:

Swap your regular supermarket Hoisin sauce, Oyster sauce or Black Bean sauce for this Chinese Damson Sauce.

Serve with these Crispy Duck Summer Rolls

Use as a dipping sauce for wantons, sesame toasts or grilled chicken.

Tip on Sweetness

I was quite reserved on the sugar in this recipe, adding only as much as I needed to remove the upfront damson tang. For someone who practically lives on cakes I don’t like anything to be overly sweet, but if you like your condiments a little sweeter then taste after blending and add more sugar before the final boil if needed. Make sure the sugar has dissolved before decanting.

Chinese Damson Sauce | Stroud Green Larder

If you like this Chinese Damson Sauce then try this equally amazing Blackberry Hoisin Sauce.

If you make this Chinese Damson Sauce then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Chinese Damson Sauce

A deliciously sweet sour condiment infused with spices and excellent with stir fries.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Chinese


  • 1 kg damsons
  • 150 g pitted prunes
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 inch fresh ginger peeled and diced
  • 225 g soft light brown sugar
  • 120 ml rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 star anise
  • ¼ teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon schezuan pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Place the damsons in a large preserving pan and cook them for about 10 minutes with 100ml water, until they are soft and the stones popping out.
  • The easiest way to remove the stones is to strain the damsons, spread the pulp out on a large plate then pick through all the pulp carefully with food grade gloves to remove each stone. Place the de-stoned pulp and the damson juice back into the preserving pan.
  • Add all the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Pour everything into a blender and blitz until smooth.
  • Pour the sauce back into the preserving pan, taste for seasoning and bring back to a gentle boil.
  • Remove from the heat and decant into sterilised jars.


Inspired by Liana Krissoff's Chinese Plum Sauce from Canning For A New Generation