Orange Pepper Jelly

Donna Graffagnino Recipe

By Donna Graffagnino StillWild

30 Min
30 Min
Stove Top

This jelly is wonderful served with crackers and cream cheese or as a warm sauce for Boudin Balls or Coconut Shrimp.

pinch tips: How to Peel Hard Boiled Eggs


2 - 6 oz
cans frozen orange juice concentrate
2 1/2 c
4 - 6
jalapeno or cayenne peppers, coarsely chopped
1/2 c
jalapeno or cayenne peppers, seeded and minced
4 1/2 c
3 pkg
powdered pectin or 4 pouches of liquid pectin
red & yellow food coloring (optional)

Directions Step-By-Step

Wearing plastic gloves, remove seeds and ribs from 6-8 jalapeno or cayenne peppers and mince peppers. Store in covered container in refrigerator until needed. Separately reserve seeds for later.
Combine orange juice concentrate with water. Add reserved seeds and coarsley chopped jalapeno or cayenne peppers to orange juice and store in refrigerator overnight.
Strain seeds and peppers from orange juice and discard. If you desire a very clear jelly, strain juice and seeds through a fine mesh strainer, then again through a layer of white paper towels and discard peppers. seeds and residue.
Add reserved minced peppers to strained OJ. In large sauce pan combine orange juice and powdered pectin pectin; cook on high heat, stirring constantly, until bubbles form around edges.
Add sugar, stirring well, and bring back to a full rolling boil. Cook for 1 minute stirring constantly. Remove from heat and skim foam from top. If you want a richer orange color add add 2 drops of yellow to 1 drop of red food coloring. Stir and repeat until it reaches desired color.
Pour into sterile jelly jars to within 1/2 inch of top. Seal tightly and process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes, remove from hot water and allow to set. I've found that orange jelly is sometimes finicky and won't always set up firm, so the hot water bath should do the trick.

I always keep the fire on low under the jelly when putting it into the jars and the last several jars always set up better.

*Note: Orange jelly could take up to 2 weeks to completely set, yet sometimes it only reaches a soft set, depending on temperature, humidity and who knows what else!
*Tip: Place clean jars on a baking sheet and place in a 250 degree F oven for 20 minutes. Reduce temperature to 225 degrees F to keep jars hot until ready to use.

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Spreads, Jams & Jellies
Main Ingredient: Sugar
Regional Style: Southern

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Barbara Pendley Barbee
Feb 8, 2012
Question about step 5?? Do you let them sit at room temp. or in the refri?
Alisa Guynn Alisa
Feb 8, 2012
I can't wait to try this! We love spicy foods and our jalepeno peppers were exceptionally hot this year out of our garden. Thanks for this unique recipe!
Donna Graffagnino StillWild
Feb 9, 2012
Room temp. As the jelly is cooling I occasionally turn the jars upside down so the minced peppers stay distributed throughout the jelly.
Donna Graffagnino StillWild
Feb 9, 2012
Here's a recipe for Texas Pickles:
These are delicious poured over a block of cream cheese and served with crackers. If you find the peppers too hot, add more sugar.


5 lbs. Jalepeno Peppers (sliced)
4 C. White Vinegar (5% min.)
4 C. Water
5 lbs. Sugar
1/2 bottle Pickling Spice (tied in cheesecloth)
2 T. Salt


Combine vinegar, water, salt, sugar & pickling spice (tied in cheesecloth). Simmer 45 minutes. Add peppers & simmer 30-45 minutes.

Pack sweet jalepeno peppers in 1/2 pint jars, seal and process in water bath 15 minutes.

*Note: The more surgar you use - the less heat. For milder pickles, remove seeds before cooking. Fresh peppers are VERY HOT! Use gloves when working with fresh jalepenos.

*Recipe can be doubled.

Karla Everett Karla59
Mar 8, 2012
This jelly recipe looks delicious ...saved
Kathleen Hagood Nature_Mommie
May 28, 2012
I am in a jelly making mood. I will definitely try this one! Saved.
Kathleen Hagood Nature_Mommie
Jun 1, 2012
I am on step two. I have the juice and peppers in the fridge for overnight. I lifted the edge of the plastic wrap, and it smells marvelous. I can hardly wait, but even when I get it made, I have to wait a few weeks. That's the tough part! :)
Kathleen Hagood Nature_Mommie
Jun 1, 2012
Aack! Donna, as I mentioned, I have begun this jelly. I just now read step 3 carefully, and it mentions adding pectin, but there is no pectin in your ingredients list. (I had been wondering if I would have problems with it setting up.) Anyway, I need to know whether you use liquid or powder pectin and how much. I will be cooking this tomorrow, so please help me.
Donna Graffagnino StillWild
Jun 6, 2012
OMG! So sorry for the omission! I use 1 pkg powdered pectin in this recipe.
Kathleen Hagood Nature_Mommie
Jun 6, 2012
Thanks Donna! That's what I used. Thanks for the recipe.
Elaine Laskowski hathor
Aug 23, 2012
Don't throw away the peppers when you drain them from the orange juice mixture....If you like spicy Chinese type food use them to make orange chicken. I made the jelly from this recipe but saved the peppers and made a delicious Orange Beef dish using them, but it would also make a good dish using pork or chicken. Just sayin'. I just love hot and spicy so this recipe was right up my alley.
Donna Graffagnino StillWild
Sep 4, 2012
Great idea, Elaine!
Kristi Crawford krittergirl40
Sep 9, 2012
Do you water bath them to get them to seal and then can they go in the pantry or do they have to be refrigerated?
Donna Graffagnino StillWild
Sep 11, 2012
Kristi, I don't water-bath them. Make sure the jars are hot and fill with hot jelly. Wipe rims and put jar lids on tightly. Lids will "pop" to indicate that an air tight seal has formed once the jelly begins to cool. It only needs to be refrigerated after opened.