Recipe: Soft Refrigerator Honeysuckle Jelly

Savor the South Sampler

Pickles and Preserves: a Savor the South® cookbook by Andrea WeiglAs the summer heats up, cool down with fresh recipes from our Savor the South® Sampler series! Every Tuesday this summer we’ll be featuring a new recipe from one of our Savor the South® cookbooks. Rediscover some of your favorite summer dishes and ingredients with a southern twang, like catfish burgers, sweet potato hummus, or a new twist on Eggs Benedict (bourbon, anyone?).

Today’s recipe is from Andrea Weigl’s Pickles and Preserves: a Savor the South® cookbook. Weigl is the food writer for the Raleigh News & Observer and lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her recipe transforms a childhood favorite—honeysuckle flowers—into a unique jelly. Spread it on toast or enjoy over fresh fruit for a nostalgic treat.

Connect with Weigl on Twitter @andreaweigl, and “like” the Savor the South® book page on Facebook for more news and recipes. Also, check back here next Tuesday for another Savor the South® Sampler recipe!

Soft Refrigerator Honeysuckle Jelly

I can tell when the honeysuckle is in bloom. I catch whiffs of it traveling on the wind through the open car windows when I’m driving or in the evening when I’m sitting on my screened porch. I was inspired to use those fragrant flowers to create a jelly by chef Bill Smith. Each spring, Bill uses honeysuckle blossoms to make a sorbet that he serves at Crook’s Corner restaurant in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. One taste of that sorbet transports people. It takes me back to being a gangly nine-year-old searching out honeysuckle blossoms to suck the sweetness inside. (The children in my neighborhood call them honey suckers.) For Bill’s recipe, check out his cookbook, Seasoned in the South: Recipes from Crook’s Corner and from Home (New York: Workman, 2006). After many experiments, I discovered that I could use a honeysuckle infusion, as Bill does in his sorbet, to make a jelly. This recipe makes more honeysuckle infusion than you’ll need for the jelly. I use the leftover infusion to make lemonade. This jelly is delicious poured over fresh sliced peaches.
Servings: 2 half-pint jars


  • 4 cups honeysuckle blossoms packed but not crushed, green parts removed, including leaves and tips
  • 5 1/3 cups cool water
  • 1/2 large lemon (juice only)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 4 Tbsp instant pectin (also called no-cook freezer pectin)


  • Place the honeysuckle blossoms in a large nonreactive bowl and add the water. Use a plate to weigh down the flowers so they’re completely submerged. Let sit out overnight.
  • The next day, strain the juice from the blossoms and reserve. Measure out 1 2/3 cups honeysuckle infusion and place in a bowl. Add the lemon juice.
  • Combine the sugar and pectin in a large bowl. Stir to prevent lumps of pectin in the jelly.
  • Pour the honeysuckle mixture into the bowl with the pectin and sugar. Stir briskly with a whisk for 4 minutes until the mixture is thoroughly combined and starts to thicken.
  • Ladle the jelly into clean plastic freezer jars, seal with lids, and place in the refrigerator. The jelly will be soft set after 24 hours and will keep for 1 month in the refrigerator.


From Pickles and Preserves: a Savor the South® cookbook by Andrea Weigl. Copyright © 2014 by the University of North Carolina Press.