Difference Between Jelly and Jam and Preserves

Jelly vs Jam vs Preserves

If you have wondered about the differences between jellies, jams, and preserves looking at countless varieties of these products in a super grocery store, you are not alone. Millions like you have been confused because of the similar looks of these fruity products and almost the same packing. This article takes a closer look at these tasty delights that make a breakfast (and even a lunch or dinner) yummy and irresistible for many people. There are differences between a jam, a jelly, and a preserve that go deeper than taste and will be highlighted in this article.

Whether a jam, a jelly, or a preserve, all are made with fruit mixture that has been made with the addition of pectin and sugar. The real difference lies in the shape of the final product that emerges with the method of preservation used. In ancient times when there was no refrigerator, fruits needed to be preserved for future use. This led to the development of different methods of preservation that also led to the development of yummy products made of fruits.


Jam is a mixture that is prepared after crushing fruit with pulp and then boiling it quickly to give the final product a thick consistency. The product that emerges is still a blob but has a consistency that allows it to be easily spread against a bread piece. It also becomes ideally suited to be used as filling in various recipes. If you feel the product a little lumpy, it is because the fruit has not been strained and thus jam contains some whole fruit too. Sugar is added to enhance the taste of the jam. Because there is no straining, a jam obviously has all the vitamins and minerals found in the fruit of which it has been made.


Fruit is crushed and strained to obtain its clear juice before it is boiled to have a thick consistency. The product that emerges is known as jelly. If you are surprised by the consistency of jelly, it is because of a reaction between pectin and sugar that are added while making jelly. Pectin is a carbohydrate that contains a lot of fiber. It reacts with sugar to make jelly like a blob. Jelly is mostly made with grapes, but these days there are jelly products containing different fruit mixtures.


Preserves are a crossover between jam and jelly and one can find chunks of fruits surrounding jelly in a preserve. There are also preserves with jam and fruits and in general FDA makes no difference between jams and preserves. Preserves made from blackberry and raspberries are very popular.

Thus, a preserve is a whole fruit being used instead of crushing or straining its juice.

What is the difference between Jelly Jam and Preserves?

All three are made from fruits, but while a jam is made after crushing the fruit and boiling it, the crushed fruit is also strained to obtain its juice when making jelly. In the case of a preserve, whole fruit is used, and it is not crushed into pulp. The blob like consistency of jelly is the result of a reaction between pectin and sugar.