Edibles

Redbud Jelly Recipe

Redbud flowers bloom for a very short time each year in early spring, so if you want to make redbud jelly, you’ve got a narrow little window there to do it!

A pinterest pin of how to make redbud jelly- the top image is of a redbud tree in bloom, while the lower one is of two jelly jars, filled with pink jelly, resting in a bed of thyme. Little sprays of redbud flowers dot the thyme. A semi-transparent pink square overlays the top blooming redbud image, with the words 'how to make redbud jelly' written on it in white text.

You will need

  • 2 cups of redbud flowers, stems removed
  • 1 large lemon
  • 2 1/2 cups of water
  • 3 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 1 package of Sure-Jell powdered pectin
  • large pot
  • glass canning jars
  • canning lids
  • canning rings

Start by picking your redbud flowers, and go through them, pinching off the stems. Put the de-stemmed flowers into a heatproof container such as a glass measuring pitcher, and set aside.

A partially-filled cup of redbud flowers.
Make sure you don’t have any bugs hitching a ride!

Measure and pour the water into a pot, and bring to a boil. Pour this water over your redbuds, cover, and leave to steep overnight in the fridge once water has cooled. The flowers will fade in color, and the resulting infusion will be a very pale pink. Strain, throwing out or composting the spent flowers, and set the infusion aside.

A pale pink infusion of redbud flowers
Before adding lemon juice…

Squeeze the juice from the large lemon, and strain out any pulp or seeds. Add this to the infusion and stir- it will change color to a brighter, more vibrant pink.

A vibrant pink infusion of redbud flowers
… after adding lemon juice!

To this mix, add your pectin, stirring it in thoroughly. Pour the resulting mix into a large pot, and stir on a burner on high heat until you reach a heavy boil. Boil for one minute, and afterwards add all the sugar in one go. All the sugar needs to be added in at once, so make sure you measure it all out beforehand and have it ready to go before you ever put the pot on the heat!

Keep on stirring until the sugar is totally mixed in and your jelly comes back to a boil. Keep boiling for one minute- this section is why it’s important to have a large pot, because your jelly will try to boil over- and as soon as the minute’s up, remove the pot completely from the heat.

Ladle the finished redbud jelly into warmed canning jars. If canning your jelly, do the usual steps of wiping off the rims, lidding the jars, and water-bath them for five minutes before removing the jars, leaving them undisturbed for 24 hours afterwards.

If you’re not comfortable trying to can, just place your lids on top of the jars, screw on the rings, and store in the fridge once jars have completely cooled. Use within 2 weeks.

A finished jar of jelly, held before a window lined with plants!

(Interested in another recipe that uses redbud flowers? Why not go give my Redbud Pink Lemonade recipe a look?)

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12 Comments

  1. Thanks so much for this. My husband is obsessed with redbuds. This jelly will be part of his Father’s Day gift.

  2. Where in the country do red buds grow? I live in upstate New York State near Saratoga Springs. I don’t think I have ever seen these pretty little flowers. Do they grow in the woods or near water ? I would love to try this jelly for something different. Thanks

    1. Hi Susan! Redbuds grows throughout most of the eastern US, commonly found blooming at the edges of the woods in early spring. More information on the redbud tree can be found here. πŸ™‚

      1. We just poured the hot water over our buds. The liquid is yellow brown and definitely not light pink. I rinsed the buds well in cold water first. Will the tea pink up overnight?

        1. After overnight steeping, the liquid may still look peachy, or very pale and unpromising- only when the lemon juice is added is there a dramatic color change, darkening the pale tea to a bright, vivid pink. πŸ™‚

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