Sure Jell (less or no sugar needed) shelf life

I just made some sugar/sweetener free orange marmalade just using the orange peels and white pulp for natural pectin as well as the box of Sure Jell (less or no sugar needed). After the 10 minute water bath how long will the jars last at room temp in the pantry since I have no sugar? Is there a preservative in the box of Sure Jell?

sure jell


I use sure gell light all the time but with sugar. so I cannot directly answer your question as you used no sugar. From what I understand, this pectin binds to calcium not sugar molecules so it works with or without sugar. I have used the recipes provided in sure gell light (claims they use 1/3 less sugar than regular sure gell recipes) and modified them by reducing the sugar even more with no issues keeping the fruit set.

I do find it seems to break down after 1-1.5 years as my jelly/jam gets a bit runny if I kept it too long. I try to use it all in 12 months anyway but have grape jelly now left from 2020 crop and it is still firm even though the fruit flavor is not as great as it was when not so old.


I’m sending the orange marmalade to a diabetic relative and they wanted no sweeter or sugar added. As long as it’s shelf good for 3 months I’m sure he’ll eat it by then. I’ll just tell him to keep it in the fridge if he can. I think I’ll keep 1 tbsp to each half pint ratio for my own jelly.

How about if you try processing in a pressure cooker? I think the sugar is what preserves it. I would be leery of experiments in canning.

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I thought about pressure canning but not sure?

12-7-2021 3-37-11 PM

Anything here look like a preservative?

I just found this quote on line, so I think I’m good.

“Most low-sugar pectins have preservatives in the box (except for Pomona’s). For Sure Jell Less or No Sugar it is the sodium citrate. But every brand uses something different”

I pressure can just about everything. With high acid foods, like your orange marmalade, you can put it in the pressure canner and let it roll for the same amount of time as the water bath canner.

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