Peach Freezer Jam {No refined sugar & No pectin)

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Where I live there isn't a whole lot of agriculture left. That isn't just due to expansive population or the withdrawal from living off the land. It also has lot to do with the desert climate. However, what is left are small family owned peach and pecan orchards and a few other similar farms. So, at the end of every summer I have my eyes and ears peeled for any news of local, organic surplus produce from these local mini farms. Lucky for me, the last couple years the peaches have been plentiful.

I drove the 20 minutes to a small family orchard the other evening and picked peaches as a full moon rose over the mesas in the distance. Sound enchanting? It was. The smell of the sweet fresh air, as well as some good company and expert advice on how to pick the best peaches from the 18 year old daughter in charge of peach sales made it even more so. She asked what I planned to do with all these peaches? I was surprised that her family only dried or froze what they needed from their harvest. So, I told her all about peach pie filling sweetened with honey, fruit leather, and peach jam - and while I may not look it, I have an old soul that loves doing things the way my grandma and her grandma did (with maybe a few health-improved variations).

Peaches all by themselves could count as dessert to me, and these peaches I picked can only be eaten while standing over the sink as the juice drips down to your elbows. Mmmm! So good. Unfortunately, perfectly ripe peaches don't last forever and while I agree with my new friend that freezing peach slices for smoothies are a must, and drying them for snacking is the best, there's so many other yummy and healthy ways to enjoy them all year long (well...all year, unless you live at my house and it's gone in a few months. I'm working on rationing the goodness, but even so, it's still totally worth it.)

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Let me just define real quick what makes this jam recipe better (as in better for you - healthier) than your typical peach preserves or homemade jams:

Refined Sugar vs. Honey

First, most jam recipes call for loads of refined sugar. Excessive sugar consumption is a major culprit for blood sugar handling issues, weight gain, and plays a role in the progression of a host of ailments and regulatory responses in the body. True, honey is a form of sugar too. However, it differs in some significant ways that your body can distinguish. Chemically, refined sugars are made of fructose and glucose. But in sugar they are bound to make sucrose, which must then be broken down (i.e. sugar high, insulin spike, addictive response in the brain, etc). Honey on the other hand, is also composed of mostly fructose and some glucose, but unlike sugar they are not bound. This means that honey is digested and absorbed differently and there is even some evidence which shows it could lower blood sugar levels. Because honey is mostly fructose it's actually sweeter than sugar, so you don't need to use as much to get the same amount of flavor - thus less calories.

Pectin vs. Grass-fed Gelatin

Pectin is made of soluble fruit fibers and in it's true form is very healthy to eat - it's true form being in fruits and other plants. The trouble comes due to the fact that almost all commercial pectin is made from genetically modified (GMO) fruits that have been heavily treated with chemicals. The pectin actually has nothing to do with the preservation of the jam/jelly and is simply a thickening agent. There is pectin already found in most fruits so you really don't need it except as a thickening agent. That's where grass-fed Beef Gelatin Natural Powder comes in. Gelatin is basically just dehydrated beef broth powder made from bones, cartilage, collagen, and all the vitamins and minerals found in them (don't worry it is tasteless). Gelatin from organic, grass-fed beef doesn't have any of the hormones, antibiotics, and harsh treatment that their non-grass-fed counter parts have. All that gelatin and collagen goodness can promote skin, hair, and nail health, liver and mental health thanks to amino-acids, and digestion as well.

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Peach Freezer Jam {No refined sugar & No pectin}

Peach Freezer Jam {No Refined Sugar & No Pectin}
Recipe Type: Jam
Author: Melissa Cornwall
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: about 6 pints
Simple ingredients with no refined sugars or pectin. This recipe is clean eating, organic, paleo, and autoimmune friendly. Oh, and it's so yummy!
  • 8 cups fresh organic peaches, pureed (frozen and thawed works too)
  • 3/4 cup raw, unfiltered honey (or 1 1/2 cups raw, organic sugar)
  • 7 tsp. organic gelatin powder
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup filtered water
  1. Peel, pit, and slice ripe peaches into a large measuring bowl
  2. Use a potato masher or pulse in a blender until pureed (I prefer to leave some peach chunks in mine)
  3. If using sugar, stir the sugar into the peaches now
  4. In a small sauce pan on the stove heat the lemon juice, water, and honey if using.
  5. Whisk the gelatin as you add it into the pan
  6. Bring gelatin honey lemon water to a low simmering boil for 1 minute
  7. Remove from heat and slowly pour into peaches stirring as you pour
  8. Stir for another minute to be sure it's all incorporated
  9. Pour into glass jars or freezer containers
  10. Place in the fridge to set for 24 hours
  11. Store in fridge for 1 month or in the freezer for 1 year
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Melissa Moore has spent years researching and implementing nutritionally-based approaches to health and wellness. Her lifelong love of food and health evolved from a hobby to a passion when her daughter was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease.

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