This cherry marmalade is so easy to make! It requires only 4 ingredients and will be your new favorite healthy spread for quick, but tasty breakfasts. The sweet cherries pair so beautifully with the zesty orange flavor while the chia seeds do all the work to reach that almost jelly like texture that spreads perfectly. Use fresh or frozen cherries!
I find myself craving tart flavors often in the morning. I’ll make this strawberry and rhubarb oatmeal bowl regularly when the fruits are in season, but was looking for something with a similar flavor profile that I can reach for all year long.
This cherry and orange spread will definitively be perfect to suit that craving. I have seen my dad add large dollops of orange jelly on his toasts in the morning and realized I needed to give the marmalade idea a try.
But store-bought marmalades are so overly sweet and bitter! And making homemade marmalade the classic way takes some time and still requires a large amount of sugar.
So, here is my marmalade version: healthier and smoother in bitterness flavors with a delicious sweet cherry variation.
What you will need to make this cherry marmalade
- Orange: You will need one large orange for the whole marmalade, which is much less than what you need for a classic marmalade recipe. Choose a Navel orange, if possible, for their extra sweet taste and juicy flesh.
- Cherries: Sweet and bright red cherries are so delicious in this spread! Use fresh cherries when they are in season or otherwise grab a bag of frozen ones. Their unique sweet taste helps tamper the bitterness from the orange zest and balances the flavors.
- Chia seeds: No pectin in there! With a little resting time, the chia seeds thicken the mixture into a jam consistency, no cooking required. You will get tons of omega-3 and fiber in bonus.
I prefer to use chia seeds that are ground first to get a closer texture to jam, but I have made this recipe with whole seeds and it worked very well too.
- Liquid sweetener: Skip the big load of white sugar that is traditionally used to make marmalade and add a hint of either maple syrup or agave nectar instead. You won’t need much added sweetener since the orange and the cherries are already sweet enough.
Making marmalade is complicated, isn’t it?
Not in this case. This is a fuss free, small batch, quick and healthy marmalade. It might not follow the rules of the making of a classic marmalade, but the flavors of that fruit spread is close enough and so addictive!
To make it, you will simply combine the ingredients using a food processor to a smooth texture and let it set in the fridge overnight if possible.
If in a pinch, you can let it rest only for 2 hours, but I recommend you plan ahead and make it the day before you want to enjoy it. Allowing the jam to rest overnight won’t only make sure it reaches a nice thicker texture, but will also helps develop a stronger flavor.
The texture of this marmalade is closer to the one of a regular jam when using already ground chia seeds.
To do this, blend a larger batch (about 1 cup) of whole chia seeds into your blender until you reach a flour looking mixture, then store in a air-tight container in the fridge.
What to do with all that ground chia seed? Bake with it! When a recipe ask for an egg, replace it with a chia egg. Works especially well for muffins, pancakes, cakes and cookies.
1 Chia egg = 1 tbsp ground chia seed + 3 tbsp water + resting time of 10 minutes.
How to eat this cherry marmalade
This spread is delicious simply on toasted bread, but you should also try it combined with vegan cream cheese.
Swap the sugary and processed store bought jam for this one when making peanut-butter and jelly sandwiches.
Or, top a simple breakfast oatmeal bowl with this spread to make your meal so much tastier.
I hope you will love this Cherry marmalade recipe as much as we do! If you try it, please leave a comment below and rate the recipe to let us know how it was.
Cherry marmalade – Raw and Healthy
- Food processor
- 30 fresh or frozen cherries pitted
- 1 large Navel orange juiced and zested (should give you about 1/2 cup of juice)
- 2 1/2 tbsp ground chia seeds see note
- 2 tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup or to taste
- Start by preparing the ingredients: Zest the whole orange and set aside. Then juice the orange. Also, pit the cherries if using fresh ones and if using frozen cherries, start by thawing them for a few seconds in the microwave.
- In the food processor, add 20 pitted cherries (keep the other 10 aside), the orange juice, ground chia seeds and agave nectar. Process until you reach a smooth texture, about 30 seconds.
- Add the remaining 10 cherries and pulse once or twice, or until they are roughly chopped, but not completely processed.
- Transfer the cherry mix in a medium bowl. Add the orange zest and mix well.
- Let sit in the fridge for at least 2 hours to allow the jam to set. Enjoy cold. Keep in the fridge in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.