Spiced Beet and Red Onion Jam

Spiced Beet and Red Onion Jam

If you’re used to the kind of jam that goes on a PBJ, get ready for a flavour revolution! Slightly sweet, moderately earthy and with a perfect mix of zesty citrus and ginger plus a bit of spicy heat, you’ll love it on cheese and appetizers of all types. It also goes great with savoury meats, or even substitute it for your cranberry sauce. After one bite, we know this is going to be your jam!


approximately 2 cups (500 ml)


15 minutes + 30 minutes to overnight macerating time


30 minutes


  • 4½ cups / 1 lb (454 g) grated beets, washed and peeled
  • 1⅓ cups (185 g) red onion, finely diced
  • 2 cups (434 g) Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar, packed
  • 6 strips of lemon zest
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp (6 g) grated fresh ginger
  • 1 3-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp (4 g) chilli flakes
  • ½ tsp (3 g) salt


In a large, non-reactive bowl (stainless steel, glass or ceramic), add grated beets and diced onions. Stir until beets and onions are evenly distributed throughout.

Add in the Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar, strips of lemon zest, lemon juice, ginger, cinnamon stick, chilli flakes, and salt. Toss to ensure beets and onions are well coated and all sugar is moistened. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to macerate for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.

Adding brown sugar to a bowl of shredded beets and lemon zest

Transfer the mixture into a large heavy-bottomed pot and place over medium-high heat. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar and to prevent scorching. Boil for 20 minutes or until mixture begins to foam. Lower heat slightly and skim off any foam with a spoon.

Check to see if the jam is ready by doing the spoon test as described in the chef’s notes. Also, taste the jam to see if there is a balance of sweetness and tartness. If desired, add an additional tablespoon (15 ml) of lemon juice to the pot if the jam is too sweet. Keep boiling after adding any additional lemon juice until the jam passes the spoon test or jam reaches 220°F (104°C).

Stirring spiced beet and red onion jam in a bowl

Remove from heat and carefully spoon into sterilized jars. Discard cinnamon stick and lemon peels. Sterilize your jars by following the steps in Jam Making 101.

Serve on charcuterie or cheese boards and/or spoon onto crostini.

A dish of spiced beet and red onion jam on a platter with cheese, meat, and crostini


*Place a plate or several metal spoons in the freezer to chill while jam is boiling. To test to see if the jam has gelled properly, spoon a small amount of the jam (about 20 minutes into boiling) onto the plate or one of the chilled spoons. Run a finger across the jam; if the jam runs together, place the pot back onto the heat and continue boiling for another 5 minutes or so. If it leaves a distinct “path” in the jam, the jam has gelled properly and is done.

*To prevent stained hands, wear gloves while grating beets with a box grater.

*Read “Jam Making 101” for tips and how-tos for sterilizing glass jars.

*Use a vegetable peeler to zest the strips of peel from lemons.

*Jam should gel properly at 220°F (104°C).

*Don’t wear white when grating beets.