Wild Maryland Cookbook​

Butchering Information


DNR Cookbook

Autumn Olive Jam


autumn olive berries 

Autumn olive trees are an invasive species introduced from Asia that can be a nightmare for native habitat land managers. The tree has silvery brown bark, darker green and oval leaves with a little bit of frill around the edges and bright red juicy looking berries. Cooking and eating these berries instead of letting the birds spread them far and wide is a delicious way to help control this invasive species.



Put a couple of plates in the freezer to use later. Sterilize the jam jars of your choice in boiling water or the dishwasher. Add the autumn olive berries, water and chopped apple, if using, to a large pot on medium heat. Stir frequently, smooshing berries for about 15 minutes until the fruit softens.

Press the hot fruit mixture through a metal sieve or food mill to remove the seeds. Heat the resulting juicey pulp with the sugar or honey and lemon juice over medium, stirring frequently and skimming off any foam. Add pectin if using. When the mixture thickens, drop a little spoonful onto a cold plate.

If you can run your finger through the jam and leave a clean line it’s done. Let the mixture cool, continuing to stir to prevent separation. Add a little squeeze of lemon juice to each jar and pour in jam, leaving a little bit of head space. Cover with sterilized lids and if planning to use quickly, turn upside down to cool or for long term storage, process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes. Enjoy!


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  • 8 cups ripe autumn olive berries, stems removed and rinsed well
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 under-ripe apples, just cored and roughly chopped or 4 tablespoon dry pectin
  • 2 cups honey or sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice

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