F is for Fig Jam – An Easy Recipe for Kids to Make

I am brand new to Periscope, so it thrills me whenever there is a live audience on the other end of my videos.  It’s especially fun when they chime in with comments, ask questions, and tap the screen to give me some hearts! Last week, when I was talking about my Cook the Alphabet cooking curriculum for kids, they helped me to decide the featured ingredient for my Letter F lesson plan.  F is for Figs…so let’s make Fig Jam!

Ingredients for Fig JamF is for Fig Jam

I wanted to use ingredients that are readily available, and settled on using dried figs for this simple Fig Jam recipe.  In my lesson plan, the students will prepare jam – but that’s not all.  They’ll use it to dress up some grilled cheese sandwiches, so they can taste the combination of the sweet jam alongside the slightly salty cheese and crunchy toast.  Of course, the curriculum also includes a variety of fun math and literacy activities – all focused on the letter F and about issues related to food!

The recipe is very simple, and only requires a few steps: rehydrating the dried figs in some simple syrup…


…adding in some chopped peeled apple


…and lemon zest + juice

making fig jam

…and then pureeing the mixture in the food processor, along with a splash of balsamic vinegar and a handful of walnuts.

making fig jam

Fig Jam – Serves a crowd


1 ½ cups water
½ cups sugar
½ pound dried figs (8 oz.)
½ green apple
1 lemon
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
pinch salt
¼ cup shelled walnuts, optional


  1. Combine the sugar and water into a saucepan.
  2. Bring it to a boil and stir to dissolve the sugar.
  3. While you wait for the water to boil, cut off the tiny piece of stem that is left on each fig.
    Set aside the stems for your compost.
  4. Once the sugar is dissolved, add the figs (but not the stems).
  5. Peel and core the apple.  Cut half of the apple into a few large chunks and add them to the fig mixture.  Eat the rest.
  6. Zest the lemon, and add the zest to the mixture.
  7. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into the mixture.
  8. Simmer the fig mixture for 5 minutes.
  9. Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for approximately 10 minutes.
  10. Carefully pour the mixture into the bowl of your food processor.
  11. Add the balsamic vinegar.
  12. If using walnuts, add them now.
  13. Pulse the food processor to blend the mixture until it is smooth.
  14. It’s now ready to use as a spread on your fancy grilled cheese sandwiches!

Many thanks to Valley Fig Growers for sending me some figs to use in my recipe!  Thank you for supporting my efforts to help teachers cook with kids in the classroom 🙂

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3 Responses to F is for Fig Jam – An Easy Recipe for Kids to Make

  1. Michelle Stern says:

    I’m also getting active on Snapchat (come find me! michellejstern), much to the dismay of my teenage children. It has been such a fun way to play on social media, all while maintaining my true authentic self – with a focus on cooking and sustainability 🙂

  2. Lisa Liss says:

    I love this idea! Would it be ok to borrow this recipe to use for a teachers symposium agriculture conference?

    • Hi Lisa,

      Thank you for writing! You could probably share the recipe, with credit. But the lesson itself is licensed for one teacher. I would really love for more teachers to learn about my work – so I would be reluctant to have you share too many details…

      I am presenting at a conference too – which one will you be at? Please tell me more about your plans and we can work something out.

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