Sweet and spicy, this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly is delicious on cheese trays, spooned over cream cheese or goat cheese, in grilled sandwiches and it makes a wonderful grilling glaze.
I have to blame, or maybe a better word is “thank”, Scott for the inspiration for this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly. Yes, “thank” is definitely a better word!
We were out grocery shopping several weeks ago, a few days before we were planning to leave town for a six-day visit with our daughter and her family in Memphis. Scott spied a display of large, beautiful pineapples for a ridiculously cheap price. He picked one up and placed it in our cart.
“But we’re headed to Memphis is just two days,” I said, thinking about all I had to do before our trip.
“You’ll figure out something to do with it,” he replied.
And that was that. I was already beginning to think about Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly as we stood in line at the checkout counter.
I’m so happy the pineapple ended up in my cart, as I love having a stash of this delicious Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly in my freezer. Yes, I did say freezer – although this is not an official “freezer jam” recipe. Being a bit lazy, I store all of my jams and jellies in the freezer, in lieu of the more traditional hot water bath canning method.
Need a quick, easy and super delicious appetizer? Just spoon this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly over a block of cream cheese or a round of goat cheese. Add a nice selection of crackers and you’ve got a fabulous (and beautiful) appetizer in the blink of an eye.
What to do with pepper jelly
Other than serving over goat cheese or cream cheese (pictured above), there are lots of delicious ways to use pepper jelly. Here are a few ideas.
- Serve in a small bowl, along with crackers and cheese. We especially like it with smoked cheddar, but it’s also delicious with Havarti, Gouda, Fontina, Comte, Gorgonzola, hard goat cheese… For a really special treat, serve it on a cheese board with these Copycat Rosemary Pecan Rainforest Crackers.
- Spread it on Brie, then wrap the round with phyllo or puff pastry. Bake until golden and cheese is gooey.
- Spread warm cornbread with butter and a spoonful of pepper jelly.
- Use this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly as a glaze for roasted pork tenderloin.
- Make a grilled ham and cheese with a spread of Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly between the layers, yum!
- Season salmon with salt and pepper, then add a layer of pepper jelly. Broil until done.
- Use it for a salad dressing.
- Mix equal amounts of grainy or Dijon mustard with this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly for a delicious dipping sauce.
- Use it for a sweet and sour stir-fry. Saute garlic and ginger in a splash of oil then add thinly sliced chicken breast. Stir-fry for a few minutes until chicken is almost cooked. Remove chicken with a slotted spoon and stir-fry veggies. Return chicken to the pan, add a generous scoop of Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly, a tablespoon of rice vinegar and soy sauce, to taste. Serve with rice and a sprinkle of cashews.
- For a super fun and gourmet PB&J substitute this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly instead of regular jelly!
Making this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly is not difficult. Once you’ve got the pineapple and peppers diced, it’s simply a matter of combining them with rice vinegar in a large pot. Next, the mixture is brought to a boil and boiled for two minutes after adding sugar and liquid pectin (see tips below). That’s it, just spoon it into jars and you’re done!
Pick up a pineapple, a few habaneros, an orange bell pepper and a box of Certo next time you’re grocery shopping. Give this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly recipe a try. Whether you’re or long time jam/jelly maker or you’ve never attempted it, I think you’ll be thrilled with the results!
Café Tips for making this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly
- This recipe calls for Certo. Certo is a liquid pectin that is available at most larger grocery stores. You’ll find it with other canning products, but I’ve found that it varies from store to store, in regards to where it’s located. Some stores stock it in the baking aisle while others display it near the plastic wraps and food storage bags. An employee will be able to direct you to the right place. You can also find it online.
- Habanero peppers are very hot, ranging from 100,00 to 300,000 on the Scoville Heat Scale. Jalapenos, in comparison, fall into the 2,500 to 8,000 range. Habaneros can also vary in heat from pepper to pepper, so be cautious with how many you use, depending on your heat tolerance. I like to start with one or two and then taste the jelly before the final two minutes of boiling. You can always add more at this point, but you can’t take away the heat!
- Jam and jelly making is an exact science. Measure the ingredients carefully and, for good results, don’t try to adjust amounts.
- The jelly won’t look thick enough at first. It needs to set at room temperature for 24 hours and will thicken as it sets.
- A wide-mouth funnel is very helpful when making jam and jelly. It makes transferring the mixture from the pot to jars super easy and mess-free.
- I love these Weck Tulip Jars for jams and jelly, especially if I’m giving it as a gift.
- Feel free to use the hot water canning method with this Pineapple Habanero Pepper Jelly if you prefer but switch out the rice vinegar for regular distilled vinegar. Here is a step by step instruction guide from Ball/Kerr.
- 1-3 orange habanero peppers seeded and finely chopped
- 1 orange bell pepper seeded and finely chopped
- 4 cups finely chopped fresh pineapple, drained
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 cup rice vinegar*
- 5 cups granulated sugar
- 6 ounces Certo liquid fruit pectin 2 packs
Place finely chopped habaneros, bell pepper, pineapple and crushed red pepper flakes in a large pot. Add vinegar and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes.
- Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
- Add Certo and bring to a rolling boil. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously.
- Remove pot from heat and skim off any foam on the surface.
- Ladle jelly into clean jars leaving 1/2-inch space at the top. (this will allow for expansion in the freezer.)
- Cover with lids and allow the jelly to sit for 24 hours, then place in freezer.
If using hot water bath method, cover jars and immediately proceed with water bath canning method. Jelly may take 24 hours to set.
See Café tips for more detailed instructions and extra tips. Recipe adapted from Genius Kitchen.
Makes 48 ounces of jam. The Weck Tulip jars (shown above in the post) are 6-ounce jars so that would make 8 6-ounce jars of jelly.
*If canning with a hot water bath, use regular distilled vinegar instead of rice vinegar.
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