Fig and Lemon Preserves Easy homemade fig preserves; can them in a water bath or make them freezer preserves.

Another name for this yummy fruit spread could be Fig Marmalade. The lemon is pleasantly noticeable but not overpowering. I am putting it on everything these days! Spread it on cream cheese and toasted bagel or croissant, toasted sourdough bread, my Fig Jam Cake, and poured over brie cheese for a party-oh, and there was that late night bowl of ice cream…..

Fig and Lemon preserves on a bagel with cream cheese and jar of preserves in background

My favorite kind of small batch canning for jams and preserves is the freezer method like Strawberry Freezer Jam and Peach Freezer Marmalade but giving jars of Fig and Lemon Preserves a quick “water bath” is worth it to be able to give them as gifts this Christmas without freezing them so I have a variety. If I know I’m going to use the preserves in less than a month, I’ll skip the water bath and just store them in the fridge.


Publix just had them BOGO this past week. I would have bought more if I hadn’t found the huge fig tree in my “distant neighbor’s” yard. Read that fun story here.

I bought these purple beauties in the picture above because my green figs in the picture below (taken last year) were not quite ripe when I was ready to make the preserves.

White bowl of green figs with one cut in half

Publix just had them BOGO this past week. I would have stocked up on a sale like that if I hadn’t found the huge fig tree in my “distant neighbor’s” yard. Read that fun story here.

Making Fig and Lemon preserves (or Marmalade) are as easy as tossing the few ingredients in a large sauce pan and cooking it down for a couple of hours. The hardest part (not hard at all-just inconvenient) is to make sure jars are sanitized before spooning in the hot mixture. It’s not enough to wash them, you really need to go ahead and dip them in the pot of boiling water you are already going to boil to give the jars of preserves a water bath. No pressure cooker needed!

If you are looking for another way to use Fig and Lemon Preserves, try my Fig Jam Cake made with Slow Cooker Fig Jam and add a dollop of whipped cream and a spoonful of Fig and Lemon Preserves.

Feel free to message me with any canning questions you may have or leave a comment below. I’d love to hear what you make with figs this season!

Fig and Lemon Preserves
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
2 hrs
Water bath
10 mins
Total Time
2 hrs 10 mins

Another name for Fig and Lemon Preserves would be marmalade. The lemon is noticeable but not overpowering.

This recipe makes such a small amount, I often don't use a water bath and just put the preserves in the fridge if I know I will use it in less than a month.

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: fig, fig preserves, lemon, marmalade
Servings: 3 cups
  • 4 cups fresh, ripe figs [1 (16-oz container)]
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 small lemon, very thinly sliced about 1/4 cup
  1. Rinse the figs in a bowl of cold water. Remove stems from figs. I like to use kitchen shears. 

  2. Cut the figs in half from top to bottom. This will help them cook faster.

  3. Combine all the ingredients in a 3-quart saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, 1 hour, stirring occasionally. You will have to stir more often as it starts to thicken. Mixture is ready when it is slightly thickened.

  4. I like to use a potato masher at this point to help break up any large pieces of fig so it is spreadable.

  5. While the mixture is simmering, bring a large pot of water (12-cups) to a boil. Dip three 1-cup jars into the hot water to sterilize them. Let them dry on a kitchen towel.

  6. Spoon the hot mixture into jars. Seal with Mason jar lids and rings. Heat the rings up in boiling water a few minutes before sealing.

    If you are going to keep the preserves in the fridge for a short period of time, there's no need to give them a water bath.

  7. Place a small round cooling rack in the bottom of the pot of boiling water so the jars are not resting directly on the bottom of the pot. Bring the water back to a boil and boil 10 minutes. Remove the jars with tongs with rubber grips on them or canning tongs and let them cool completely. You should hear the rings pop when they seal.


Author: gritsandgouda

Hi! I’m Kathleen. I’m a food stylist, recipe developer, cookbook author, and event planner loving life in a charming town called Gardendale, Alabama, with my husband and two teenage children. I love to cook and laugh…not necessarily in that order.

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