Instant Pot Marmalade

Love marmalade? Here’s a fast and easy way to make just about any amount of marmalade with whatever citrus fruit – or combination of citrus fruits – you desire. I used sour Seville oranges for a classic orange marmalade for this batch and then used pink grapefruit for a second batch.

I’ve streamlined the technique from this recipe to simplify and speed up the process without compromising on flavor.

Note: This is more of a general technique than an exact recipe with very specific quantities, so feel free to adjust it for the amount of fruit you have.

  • A very loose rule of thumb is to have one cup of sugar available per piece of fruit. You may not use all of it, but you have the ability to decide how tart or sweet your batch will be.
  • While I’m writing this recipe for oranges, keep in mind you can use grapefruit, too. I’ve even heard of using oranges, grapefruit and lemons together!

Instant Pot Orange Marmalade

9 sour Seville oranges (or grapefruit)
9 cups sugar (you may not need it all, but have this much just in case)

You will also need:
Strainer/colander
Instant Pot (IP)
Stock pot (optional)
Candy thermometer
Canning jars, lids and bands (plan on approximately one-half pint (8 oz) per piece of fruit)

The basic idea here is to cook the oranges until the peels are very soft, then chop/blend those peels into tiny chunks, add sugar and cook it. Pour into clean jars, seal and allow to cool.

1. Prep the oranges

Marmalade uses the entire fruit – rind and all – so be sure to wash each piece very well before you begin. I soak mine for about 10 minutes in a sink full of water with some vinegar to clean them and remove any pesticides.

After washing, cut each piece of orange into fourths.

Place a strainer/colander over the Instant Pot liner. Give each orange segment a quick, gentle squeeze into the colander to trap the seeds and allow the juice to flow directly into the liner. Scrape out any remaining seeds and place the squeezed segment directly into the liner with the juice. Don’t worry about squeezing out every last drop of juice: this step is more to catch all the seeds.

Continue juicing and seeding all the oranges, adding the squeezed orange segments to the juice in the pot.

2. Cook the oranges

Add enough water to almost cover a little more than half the oranges, but don’t exceed the IP fill line.

Close and lock the lid and set the valve to SEALING. Press Manual and pressure cook on HIGH for 25 minutes.

When finished, allow it to rest for 30-45 minutes or until pressure releases naturally. Then carefully open the IP, releasing any pressure if needed. The oranges will be very soft at this point.

Note: While the oranges cook, sanitize your canning jars. Once they are clean and sanitized, keep them full of hot water until just before canning. (Cold jars may crack when pouring in a hot mixture.) 

Also, place a small plate or saucer in the freezer now. You’ll use this chilled plate later to check the marmalade’s consistency.

3. Process the peels

Now it’s time to break up the orange peels/rinds into tiny chunks. You can either process the fruit (in batches) in a blender/food processor or use an immersion blender right in the IP.

Whichever method you use (and I’ve used both), process until the peels are in small pieces.

I like some texture to my marmalade, so I aim for about pea sized or smaller.

4. Cook the marmalade

Add about ¾ of the total amount of sugar and stir to mix well.

Add 1-2 cups of water if needed to thin it out a bit. You don’t want it super runny, but it should move easily when stirred.

To cook the marmalade, you can either do it directly in the IP or in a stock pot on the stove. If the IP is full to 9 cups or more, I’d recommend using a stock pot, since it will be deeper. Once the mixture gets boiling in the IP it tends to bubble and splatter onto nearby walls, tables, floors, clothes, hands and fingers.

To use the IP, press Saute on the Instant Pot. To use the stove, pour the mixture into a stock pot over medium-high heat.

Stir frequently to prevent the sugar on the bottom of the pot from sticking and scorching. Place a candy thermometer into the pot and when it reaches around 100 to 120 degrees F, taste the mixture. Add more sugar as needed to achieve the flavor you desire.

Keep cooking for about 15-20 minutes, stirring often, until the temperature reaches at least 215 degrees F, or ideally, 223 degrees F. (I wasn’t able to get past 217 degrees cooking in the IP, but cooking it long enough at that temp (20 minutes or so) still worked.)

5. Test the consistency

The mixture will thicken and darken a little more when it’s close to being ready.

Test the consistency by spooning a little marmalade onto the chilled plate. Let it sit for 30 seconds and then tilt the plate. It should have a soft, gel-like that moves slightly. If the mixture is still thin and runs easily, keep cooking it and check again in 5-10 minutes. (If it doesn’t move at all, add a cup or so of water to the mixture to thin it out.)

6. Fill the jars

Once the mixture has reached the desired consistency, turn off the stove/IP. Discard the hot water from the pint jars and dry each one with a clean, dry towel. Ladle the marmalade into the jars, leaving about a ½ inch gap at the top. Wipe the tops and sides of each jar, place the lid on and screw gently to secure.

Once all jars are filled and sealed, turn them upside down to seal the lids while they cool. After several hours, if any jars haven’t sealed properly, just put those in the fridge and use them first. Sealed jars do not require refrigeration: they’ll last a very long time in a pantry or cupboard. Enjoy!


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