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This recipe is classed as easy

Rating 3.19 / 5 (798 votes)

Prep time:
40 min, plus sterilizing jars
Cook time:
1 hr 45 min
makes about 1.5kg

James Martin's recipe for marmalade couldn't be easier. Try it and give yourself a breakfast time treat


1. To sterilize jam jars, place them in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer briskly for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the water with tongs and place upside down on a clean surface to dry.

2. Slice the oranges in half. Using a metal spoon, scoop out the flesh over a bowl to collect any juice, leaving the pith behind. Reserve the shells.

3. Put the flesh, juice and pips in a food processor and blend until smooth.

4. Push the purée through a sieve into a preserving pan or large heavy-based saucepan.

5. Now scoop out as much of the pith from the shells as possible. Slice the rind into very thin matchstick strips and add these to the sieved flesh in the pan.

6. Pour in the lemon juice and water.

7. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the rind is very soft and the mixture has reduced by half.

8. Over a low heat, add the sugar and stir until it has dissolved. Boil for about 10 minutes, skimming off any froth on the surface.

9. After 10 minutes, spoon a little of the marmalade onto a cold plate and place in the fridge. If it sets to a jelly the marmalade is cooked. If necessary, cook for a further 5-10 minutes and test again.

10. Allow the marmalade to cool slightly, then pour into the sterilized jars.


  • 6-8 small oranges, weighing about 550g
  • juice of 1 lemons
  • 1.4 litres water
  • 1.1 kg granulated sugar

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Latest Comment


How long will this Marmalade keep for please?

caz198 caz198  Posted 07 Feb 2015 3:33 PM

Just produced 3lb of lovely marmalade! Tastes yum - when I licked it off the spoon, can't wait for it to cool in the jars to try it on toast!

SarahB22060 SarahB22060  Posted 01 Apr 2014 3:34 PM

This sounds to good to be true, I'm just going to make it, just wish I knew how many jars it will fill? Will post again after making! #excited!

SarahB22060 SarahB22060  Posted 01 Apr 2014 12:23 PM

Easiest marmalade recipe ever! Turned out perfectly.

GlynisD18246 GlynisD18246 Posted 26 Jan 2014 8:55 AM

Sounds good but think I'll put the pips in muslin so they can be removed after the marmalade is cooked. Won't be using the rind either as we prefer marmalade without it. Will let you know how it works. ps will be using mandarines instead of oranges.

KarenB29633 KarenB29633 Posted 15 Oct 2013 6:19 PM

Very good recipe love this website!! I would say boil for 25-30 minutes though at the end. X

RachaelP20798 RachaelP20798 Posted 10 Mar 2013 6:14 PM

No stars just spent alot of time and money to end up with a disgusting suggery slop

SYLVIAB63606 SYLVIAB63606 Posted 28 Feb 2013 3:50 PM

Fantastic! Very easy recipe, following it to the letter and got a perfectly set marmalade. Just bought oranges to make more! I used Seville oranges and the pips had just the right amount of pectin in to set it.

LesleyA2435 LesleyA2435 Posted 28 Jan 2013 4:19 PM

Thanks for a great and very simple recipe. Ideal for us here in the Western Cape with a plentiful supply of oranges. Having read comments I was concerned when I discovered that the oranges I had bought didn't contain any pips, but decided to give it a go anyway. The result was 4 jars of perfectly set and very tasty marmalade. Thanks to AlysonR20013 for the tip re boiling time - my final boil was 25 mins rather than the suggested 10 mins but the final result was worth the wait.

DenaC56978 DenaC56978 Posted 10 Jul 2012 2:35 PM

As a novice to making preserves I was very disappointed that I could not get the marmalade to set after the specified time! After 30 minutes of rapid boiling it would not set. I followed the recipe exactly.

DebbiS27656 DebbiS27656 Posted 24 Feb 2012 1:47 PM

sangriaG52766 sangriaG52766 Posted 01 Feb 2012 11:06 AM

sangriaG52766 sangriaG52766 Posted 01 Feb 2012 11:06 AM

At first it is deceiving but when tried it comes out delicious and much more fruity than sugary. If you can't get the pips to sufficiently make a good liquid pulp, then I suggest you use a different processor/method. Don't miss the simplicity of this excellent recipe. However, if you get the wrong kind of oranges with very little pips, you will not get a sufficient amount of pectin released to set the marmalade.

sangriaG52766 sangriaG52766 Posted 01 Feb 2012 10:28 AM

I wouldn't recommend this recipe - impossible to get all the pips to liquidize sufficiently in the food processor and as a result my marmalade didn't set. Bit of a waste of time, oranges and sugar!

ElaineR42520 ElaineR42520 Posted 26 Jan 2012 9:52 AM

A brilliant, easy recipe which looks a little deceiving when all the ingredients are put in the pan. You may think there is too much water/not enough orange yet when the process is completed, the marmalade is perfect!

AlysonR20013 AlysonR20013 Posted 17 Jan 2012 9:22 PM

Having trawled through various recipe books from the great & the good, all of which seemed somewhat long-winded, I found this blinder of simplicity & decided to give it a go.
Boy am I glad I did; The result is a perfectly balanced sweet yet zingy malt whisky coloured breakfast treat. The only advice I would pass on is to use your own judgement as to the stated boiling time & not rush it - Remember that good things come to those that wait!

AndrewR33648 AndrewR33648 Posted 16 Jan 2012 11:09 AM

Great recipe for Spain, quick. easy and so cheap. I picked the oranges and the lemon this morning and now have 6 jars of gorgeous marmalade, sugar and cooking the only expense!!!

KevinW79552 KevinW79552 Posted 14 Dec 2011 1:12 PM

This is the first time i've made marmalade, living in Spain oranges are cheap this time of year. Great recipe,wonderful flavour, cost around €1 to make.

chastrat chastrat Posted 28 Apr 2011 10:11 AM

For a first time marmalade maker like myself this recipe couldn't be any easier. I've never been a massive fan of marmalade but after tasting the final product using this recipe it's easy to see why. This is nothing like the bland, jelly like substance that come in jars on your typical supermarket shelf. What you get here is a fresh, tangy, early morning wake up call for your senses. Due to the ingredients I had to hand I had to tweek this recipe slightly, using Seville oranges and preserve sugar instead of the ingredients listed but apart from that I followed the recipe word for word and although it was quite a long(ish) process the end product made it very much worthwhile. The actual preperation and cooking was also very pleasurable and relaxing with a lovely, fresh orange smell filling the house. I did actually add one small ingredient to the recipe, a splash of good Scotch whisky to give the taste an extra depth. With or without the whisky I would highly recommend this recipe to everyone.

JimmyM94584 JimmyM94584 Posted 25 Feb 2011 9:03 AM

My rating should have read 5 stars

MargueriteB89294 MargueriteB89294 Posted 06 Feb 2011 11:28 AM

I haveused this recipe as a first time jam maker and found it extremely easy. I used my magimix to chop the peel after all do you really need it to be matchstick size so much quicker.

MargueriteB89294 MargueriteB89294 Posted 06 Feb 2011 11:27 AM

I have made may pots in the past but this time I selected the easiest I could find. However I think 40 minutes is a bit tight as the peel cutting and pith removal takes at least that for a home cook. I ended up with an overload of peel and not enough liquid for a well balanced product. Finally more boiling than suggested is needed to get the set.

ChrisG75520 ChrisG75520 Posted 26 Jan 2011 2:29 PM

The recipe was easy to follow,however,i think i over did the oranges and after 12 hours it hasnt set.Do you think more sugar would help?

CliveR40813 CliveR40813 Posted 08 Jan 2011 8:30 AM

Excellent recipe, really easy & works every time. My dad says it's better than Fortnum & Mason's, but I wouldn't know!
Christine - it's 550g total but you can add more orange if you're worried about it. It's quite hard to get this wrong.

joM6371 joM6371 Posted 09 Dec 2010 7:39 PM

absolutely loved making this marmalade,the house smelt so good,i have just posted pictures on my facebook profile page [ chev.65@hotmail.com]a lot more of james's jams and marmalades to be made in the very near future...valerie xxx

valerieS3660 valerieS3660 Posted 29 Jul 2010 3:31 PM

Is this 550g of oranges or 550g each orange , 550g grams is not a lot for the amount of sugar and most small oranges weigh a lot less than 550g

christineP79741 christineP79741 Posted 16 Jun 2010 12:32 PM

First time I have made any marmalade I found this easy to prepare and it smells great cant wait to taste the finished product. Lovely colour. Definately worth five stars

MargueriteB89294 MargueriteB89294 Posted 09 Feb 2010 9:52 PM

sure is easy, but its taking forever for the mixture to come to simmer..but seems to be getting there!!
very simple, and smells gorgeous!!

payalK43409 payalK43409 Posted 14 Jun 2009 4:28 PM

look no further this is the simplest marmalde recipe by far and the end result is fantastic. Relax and let the day unfold as you make pots of luscious orangey marmalade mmm wonderful

rebekahR94708 rebekahR94708 Posted 07 Dec 2008 9:22 AM