Honey-Sweetened Apricot Thyme Jam

Every July, I buy a 25 pound box of apricot seconds and spent the next week scurrying from one recipe to the next.

It’s a race again time to get all that fruit cooked into jams, chutneys, mustards, and other preserves before they begin to soften, brown, and develop moldy patches.

Some might question this behavior, but when you love apricots as much as I do, it is imperative to squirrel away as many pounds of this sunny, short-seasoned stonefruit as is possible when they’re available.


One of my very favorite apricot preserves is a honey-sweetened jam, gently flavored with something herbaceous. It’s a really good trick, because it takes a basic preserve and transforms it into a perfect pair for cheeses, roast meats, and other sweet-and-savory applications.

measured fruit

Over the years, I’ve made it with rosemary, with lavender, and even with fennel fronds, for a little licorice kick. However, one of my very favorite herbs to pair with apricots is fresh thyme. It’s got an earthy quality that matches up beautifully with tart apricots.

Whenever I make apricot jam, I skip the knife and pull the apricots into pieces with my fingers. It’s also a nice (if slightly messy) way to get your kids involved with the preparation.

cooked jam

Make sure to pick a honey that has a neutral flavor. You don’t want something assertive like buckwheat interfering with the apricots and thyme. Also do know that honey-sweetened preserves don’t keep as well as sugar-sweetened ones once opened.

If your household struggles to use up half pints of jam, consider preserving this jam in the very small four ounce jars to better prevent spoilage and waste.

finished jam vertical

Honey Sweetened Apricot Thyme Jam

Thyme has an earthy quality that matches up beautifully with tart apricots in this honey-sweetened jam.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Preserves
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 3 250 ml jars
Calories: 409kcal
Author: Marisa


  • 1 quart apricots approximately 1 1/2 pounds
  • 3/4 cup honey 8 ounces
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves


  • Prepare a small boiling water bath canner and three half pint jars. Place the lids in a small saucepan and bring to a very low simmer.
  • Wash the apricots. Cut in half, remove pits and roughly chop.
  • When all apricots are chopped, gather them into a bowl and add the honey and thyme leaves. Stir until the honey is dissolved into the fruit and the thyme leaves are distributed throughout the fruit.
  • Scrape fruit into a low wide pan, like a skillet or braiser. Place over high heat and cook, stirring very regularly, until the fruit is bubbling madly and has thickened a bit. This should take 7-10 minutes.
  • You know the jam is finished when you can pull a spatula through it and the space you’ve cleared doesn’t immediately fill back up with jam.
  • When the jam is finished cooking, remove the pan from the heat. Funnel the jam into the prepared jars.
  • Wipe rims, apply lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.
  • When time is up, remove jars and place them on a folded kitchen towel to cool. When they are cool enough to handle, remove rings and test seals. If seals are good, wash off any sticky residue from the jars and store them in a cool, dark place.
  • For best flavor and texture, eat your apricot preserves within a year of making them.
  • If any of your jars didn’t seal, place them in the fridge and eat promptly.


Calories: 409kcal | Carbohydrates: 105g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 6mg | Potassium: 861mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 98g | Vitamin A: 6105IU | Vitamin C: 33mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 1.7mg


How are you infusing herbs into your preserves this summer?

About Marisa

Marisa McClellan is a food writer, canning teacher, and dedicated small batch canner who lives in Center City Philadelphia. Find more of her jams, pickles and preserves (all cooked up in her 80-square-foot kitchen) at her blog, Food in Jars. Her first book, titled Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year-Round, is now available.

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  1. Sounds so good!! I think I need to start stocking up on my apricots. And fast!

  2. We are not big jam eaters, so I hadn’t thought much about making more jam this year; we are still finishing last year’s strawberry. But I have a pork kebab recipe that I make A LOT, and I hate spending the money to buy the organic apricot jam to not have all the sugar and preservatives of the cheaper kind. It NEVER crossed my mind to can my own! So thank you SO much for posting this recipe. I know what I will be looking for at the market this week!

  3. Very nice, honey in jam sound good.

  4. Yay, honey sweetened jam! That looks yummy!

  5. Another fabulous jam!

  6. Absolutely LOVE apricot jam! Looking forward to trying yours, Marisa!

  7. Loving this BRIGHT summery color!

  8. Great recipe, thanks! 🙂

  9. Jenny Flake says

    Oh I love this jam flavor so much!! Lovely!!

  10. What a great way to preserve those fleeting apricots!

  11. Such a unique flavored jam…..one I would certainly love to indulge in!

  12. I love apricot jam, but I’ve never tried making it (or any other jam, for that matter) with honey. Sounds like a great idea and I will definitely try it! Thank you.

  13. Marisa,
    I never see apricots, though I’ve never really looked for them around here. Peaches, yes, and nectarines too. But not apricots.
    I do love buying seconds of fruit and veg for canning, though, it appeals to my frugal nature.


  14. Is there a problem with using raw honey? Once I prepped, I was short on apricots, used less honey but suddenly wondered if it needed to be pasteurized for safety…

  15. I love the apricot-thyme combo!

  16. This jam flavor sounds incredible 🙂 I have got to try this!

  17. Cassandra says

    What kind of headspace should I leave when pouring the jam in the jars?

  18. 5 stars
    This recipe sounds absolutely perfect! I will have to hunt down some apricots and give it a try! WooHoo!

  19. Do you peel them?

  20. Faith Elliott says

    How do you keep this more of a jam consistency, and not a butter?

    • When sweetened with honey, apricots almost always tend towards a butter consistency. That jam consistency is a product of the addition of sugar.

  21. Lynda Mattix says

    This recipe doesn’t seem to use pectin. Should pectin be used or is it even needed?

  22. Looks delicious! Question: can I substitute peaches for apricots? Many thanks!

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