Healthy Jelly: There Are Better Choices

May 26, 2021   20 Comments

Healthy jelly or jam isn’t that hard to find. Many brands have made lower sugar alternatives for those of us looking to decrease our sugar consumption.

Healthy Jelly: There Are Better Choices

I looked at this years ago see How to Pick a Healthy Jam or Jelly and it amazes me how the choices have increased. YES!

I am a fan of healthy jelly and jam because I love peanut butter. Is there anything more comforting than a PB&J? I like my peanut butter to be all natural and I like my jelly to taste like fruit.

The wonderful thing about the focus on added sugar is that food manufacturers are making products with less of it. Jam and jelly is an easy product to fix because (guess what?) you don’t need any sugar to make it.

I have two recipes - sugar free strawberry jam and sugar free blueberry jam recipe that don’t use any sugar to make jam. They are both easy and delicious.

Here are five brands that I found in Target so I hope they are nationwide. The serving size for jam is 1 tablespoon. I find that if I spread it thinly -I can get by with much less.

The best jam (for my purposes) is the one that tastes strongly of fruit and not sugar.

I am listing them from most sugar to least sugar per serving.

Smucker’s Simply Fruit is Smucker’s answer to Polaner All Fruit (see below). The strawberry one I bought is seedless so it is (to me) more like jelly than jam. It has 10 grams of sugar (2 WW SmartPts) and is 40 calories.

I think this is too sweet but the texture is great (if you love jelly).

Bonne Maman Intense is a great name for a product. I love the idea of “intense” when it comes to food. It boasts “More fruit, 39% less sugar than regular preserves). It has 35 calories and 8 grams (2 WW SmartPts) of sugar per serving.

It is a bit tart and it has a ton of apricots. This is the most expensive of the bunch but if you use sparingly - it is worth it. Thumbs up!

Polaner All Fruit is the OG (original gangster) of this category. I bought seedless raspberry which again is just like jelly. It has 35 calories and 8 grams (2 WW SmartPts) of sugar per serving.

I think Polaner All Fruit is really a healthy choice when compared to regular jelly. It tastes like fruit and has a nice balance of sweet and tart. Thumbs up!

Smucker’s Low Sugar is using fruit pectin (just like my recipes) to keep the sugar down. This has 25 calories and 5 grams of sugar per serving (1 WW SmartPt).

I love it because it has no artificial sweeteners and has a perfect jam texture. You taste the fruit in this product. They added locust bean gum - probably as a thickener - which doesn’t bother me.

It is less intense in flavor than the Polaner and Bonne Maman Intense - but it is still really good.

Thumbs way up!

Smucker’s Sugar Free uses Splenda to make it only 10 calories per serving, 0 grams of sugar, and 0 WW SmartPts. My question here is what about the sugar that is naturally in strawberries? Do they remove it?

The first ingredient is water - so maybe they dilute the strawberry sugar enough so it is is minuscule.

I was ready to hate this product but it isn’t bad. It doesn’t taste too sweet which can happen when companies start to add artificial sweeteners.

I think this is an excellent option for those cutting way back on sugar or those who are pre-diabetic (or diabetic). I would mix this in plain yogurt for a treat.

Thumbs up!

Have you found healthy jelly in the stores? What do you buy?

Other posts you might like:


How To Pick A Healthy Jam or Jelly

It isn’t that hard to find a healthy jam or jelly if you know what to look for....

Low Sugar Blueberry Jam Recipe

It took me about 10 minutes to make low sugar blueberry jam and my kids even less time to eat it.....

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I like Trader Joe's brand or making my own. 2 cups mixed berries heated and mashed with potato masher. When thicken take off heat and add 1 Tbsp of chia seeds. Mix and refrigate. Just 2 ingredients.

I like mixing the sugar free jam with another jam 1:1 or 1:2 regular

:sugar-free. That cuts the calories while giving a tiny bit of nice natural sugar aftertaste (I don’t taste an aftertaste in Splenda but I find it lacks the nice aftertaste of sugar).

Thanks for the review - very helpful in choosing. I like jam in my plain yogurt and on toast, bagels, etc. I've been using anyone's SF varieties, but they are costly. I don't use very much - I usually keep it to one teaspoon, so they last. I am so fortunate to have a 24 hour fruit & veg stand at the corner of were I live. At times, the fruit are nice and ripe and priced to sell. I am happy about the idea of refrigerator jam since I am too lazy to go through the boiling bit with the jars. Thank you!

Trader Joe's low sugar is my FAVORITE! Not too sweet and you can really taste the fruit. I don't like substitute sweeteners.

My newest find is from Aldi, Specially Selected Premium Fruit Spread made with 75% fruit. One Tbsp provides 35 calories; total carb is 8 g, as is the sugar. Available in strawberry, raspberry, and blueberry. I use it to make this yummy Strawberry Clafouti from Forks over Knives:


1# each sliced strawberries and bananas

1-10 oz jar no-sugar-added strawberry jam

2 c. rolled oats (I use quick oats)
1 tsp baking powder
1 c. plant-based milk
1/2 c. unsweetened apple sauce

1. Preheat oven to 350. Stir together berries, bananas and jam. Transfer to 8" square silicone baking pan. (I mixed them right in the pan.)

2. In another bowl combine oats and baking powder. Add milk and applesauce, blend. Spread mixture evenly over fruit. Bake about 45 minutes till golden brown. Enjoy:)

My favorite jarred fruit spread is St Dalfour's. So many nice flavors like chestnut, fig, pear and traditional strawberry, raspberry and blackberry ooo so yummy. I like these spreads with pbj's or heated up over waffles. Each tablespoon is about 50 calories and sugar is from pectin, I believe.

Inspired by Snack-Girl, I make my own cranberry sauce, freeze and use all year long. One bag of cranberries, 1/3 c unsweetened applesauce, one orange (zest, juice and good part of the pulp), and 1/3 c sugar. Immersion blender to puree after berries have burst. I usually make in batches of 3 bags of berries with a 7 cup yield. It's somewhat tart, but great on toast, muffins, eggs, mixed in yogurt, etc.

My Favorite Is Smucker's Sugar Free Strawberry Or Peach!!! They Taste very Good & Are O Points On Weight Watchers!!!

Hi everyone & Thank You Snack Girl "This is a Keeper to follow. I want "low sugar, etc. but, I just love "no artificial sweetners" yuk, i'm sick of THAT taste. This was a wonderful article. I had so much fun. I am going to have "toast w/butter & strawberry JELLY or Jam on top, oh yes, from above, low sugar. This can be done on ALSO Italian bread or on a French Baggett. Famous in Europe. We had it often in Italy, also I grew up w/my nonnie making it all of us. so delicious. I had a nice time on line. Blessings to all, Be safe & Healthy to you & Loved ones. Annette

I actually had PB&J on a slice of toast for lunch today. All natural crunchy PB & regular strawberry preserves. I like the real deal. 2 teaspoons each for 2 pts each on 1 pt toast. 5 pts in total. Delish

I love jam, jelly, preserves, marmalade! I also make my own. If you wash any citrus fruit,cut up and remove seeds, then boil it down to a soft mushy thing. (no, don't peel it) Put it in the food processor, pulse until it looks the way you want it, and return it to boil until it is as thick as you like it. Put into hot jars (which you filled 1/2 way with water, microwaved, and used a hotpad to remove) and fill them to 1/2 from the top. Put the canning lids on, turn them upside-down and set them on the cool part of your stovetop. Let them sit there till they are cool. Et voila, the jars will seal with NO processing of jars. Yes, and it's good for years, just like any jam. works with berries as well.

It's the peels of the citrus that provide the pectin. Apples also are loaded with pectin.

If it's too tart, you can add whatever sweetener you like, and you control the amount.

Wow Diane - thanks! Sounds simple enough even for me!

Thanks Joan that recipe sounds good.

My favorite national brand is Smuckers Natural Strawberry. But we also order from Kitchen Kettle Village in Lancaster, PA (online, although we have visited many times also). They have some great lower sugar varieties and so many flavors! Check it out!

Does anyone have a reciepe for Apple or Grape jelly that's all my family likes

I’m not into making my own jams, jellys or spreads. We use Polaner All-fruit. I think I have purchased a store brand similar to Polaner. When making a PB&J I sometimes don’t use a jelly but use sliced fresh fruit!

Wow, Snack Super Girl, you've done it again! I've been doing this low-sugar jam with unflavored gelatin for a while and really appreciate knowing there's a pectin specifically made for low-no sugar out there. You are so helpful.

My main complaint with low sugar or no sugar jams is that most are really jelly. I want some fruit bits in my jam. Why have so many gone seedless? At least that is what I'm finding in my local stores.

I saw a TV show where they roasted red grapes in the oven with a small amount of oil (they used olive oil, I used canola) at about 400 degrees for 25 minutes or so. Put it in a small jar in the fridge. Tastes like grape jelly, especially when used with peanut butter. No sugar added at all.

I’ve used Pomona pectin for years. No sugar needed.Uses citrus and calcium to set up. Sometimes a bit loose but that’s all. Works fine with all fruits. Some time a bit hard to find but when I do I get a several. Keeps a long time.

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