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How to Make Dandelion Jelly

Updated on March 20, 2017

Dandelion in Bloom

A beautiful dandelion plant in my back yard by our ground garden.
A beautiful dandelion plant in my back yard by our ground garden. | Source
5 stars from 1 rating of Dandelion Jelly!

A Little About Dandelion Plants

Whenever most people hear anyone mention dandelion, the first thing that pops into their head is the word weed. Dandelion has received a pretty bad rap over the years as an evasive weed that infects lush green lawns. While it is true that the plant can spread quickly, one of the things that we have forgotten in our quest for turf like yards is that dandelion is edible. The entire plant from blossom to root and it is actually quite nutritious.

The blossoms can be made into jelly, syrup and wine. The flavor is reminiscent of honey. The added sugar brings out the natural sweetness in the flowers but the pollen in the blooms provides a nice, crisp honey taste that is quite pleasing on the tongue. No food coloring is required because your finished product will be a nice, sunny natural yellow.

The dandelion leaves are a great addition to salads and steamed, like you would steam spinach or kale. They are quite nutritious and 1 cup of dandelion greens gives you a whopping 535% of the RDA of vitamin K, 114% of the RDA of vitamin A, 32% of the RDA of vitamin C, 10% of the RDA of calcium and 9% of the RDA of iron. With zero sugar of any kind and only 25 calories in that cup of greens, adding dandelion greens to your diet is quite beneficial to your health.

Moving on down to the roots, they require a little more preparation than the greens or the blossoms. Think of them like you would a carrot or other root vegetable. They will need to be peeled and the simplest way to cook them is by boiling them like you would a potato. The liquid can also be consumed as a tea or the roots can be dried and roasted as a coffee substitute.

Dandelion is an example of what I like to call a perfect food. It is completely edible from top to bottom. It has many excellent benefits, is nutritious and tastes pretty good. It's such a shame that such a beneficial, beautiful plant has gotten such a bad rap.

How to Make Dandelion Tea in Photos

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Pick approximately 1 quart of dandelion blossoms.Remove the petals.  Removing the petals is easier once you get used to it.Put 2 cups of petals into a sauce pan.Add 5 cups of water.  Turn the heat onto medium/high.  Boil the petals for 15 to 20 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let them steep for a few hours, at least until the mix comes down to room temperature. Take a piece of cheesecloth and secure it to the top of a bowl.Pour your tea through the cheesecloth to remove the petals.Squeeze the cloth to remove any liquid in the petals.Once all the liquid is removed, discard the petals.Your finished dandelion petal tea is ready for use.
Pick approximately 1 quart of dandelion blossoms.
Pick approximately 1 quart of dandelion blossoms. | Source
Remove the petals.  Removing the petals is easier once you get used to it.
Remove the petals. Removing the petals is easier once you get used to it. | Source
Put 2 cups of petals into a sauce pan.
Put 2 cups of petals into a sauce pan. | Source
Add 5 cups of water.  Turn the heat onto medium/high.  Boil the petals for 15 to 20 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let them steep for a few hours, at least until the mix comes down to room temperature.
Add 5 cups of water. Turn the heat onto medium/high. Boil the petals for 15 to 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let them steep for a few hours, at least until the mix comes down to room temperature. | Source
Take a piece of cheesecloth and secure it to the top of a bowl.
Take a piece of cheesecloth and secure it to the top of a bowl. | Source
Pour your tea through the cheesecloth to remove the petals.
Pour your tea through the cheesecloth to remove the petals. | Source
Squeeze the cloth to remove any liquid in the petals.
Squeeze the cloth to remove any liquid in the petals. | Source
Once all the liquid is removed, discard the petals.
Once all the liquid is removed, discard the petals. | Source
Your finished dandelion petal tea is ready for use.
Your finished dandelion petal tea is ready for use. | Source

How to Make Dandelion Tea

The first thing you need to do before making your jelly is make the dandelion tea. There are many different ways to make this tea. This is the way that I make mine to get the dandelion blooms ready for making the jelly.

  1. Pick a little over a quart jar full of dandelion blossoms. You'll need 2 cups of the petals to make the tea.
  2. Remove the yellow petals from the blossoms. You can leave the blossoms whole if you do not want to remove the petals but the end result will have a bit of a bitter honey taste instead of a sweet honey taste. I remove the blossoms by taking my thumbnail and pressing into the center of the flower while dragging my nail to the outside of the flower. After doing this with a couple of the blossoms, you'll get a feel for how much pressure that you need in order to get the petals out.
  3. Once you have 2 cups of petals, put them into a sauce pan and add about 5 cups of water. Using medium high heat, cook the petals until they come to a boil.
  4. Boil the petals for 15 to 20 minutes then turn the heat off.
  5. Allow the petals to steep for a few hours or at least until the tea reaches room temperature. Steeping for a few hours will intensify the flavor. Do not try to save the petals in the water for longer than 24 hours. It will break down very fast, rot and REALLY smell bad. (I know this from experience, you don't want to smell this AT all.)
  6. Take a piece of cheesecloth and stretch it over a bowl.
  7. Dump the tea through the cheesecloth to remove the petals and allow the tea to through into the bowl.
  8. Squeeze any remaining liquid out of the petals by twisting the cloth. When you have all of the liquid out, the petals will be clumped together in one dry fibrous mass. It really reminds me of matted damp hair.
  9. Discard the petals.
  10. You are now ready to make your jelly.

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Basic Jelly Making Tips

There's a few things that you will want to remember when making this jelly in addition to any other jelly that you decide to make.

  • Never leave the stove when you are making jelly. Be sure to do things like going to the restroom before you start.
  • Have everything ready and measured out before you start. Especially having the sugar measured out.
  • Your jars should be washed and boiling in the waterbath before you start. Never pour hot liquid into cold jars because this can cause them to break.
  • Always place hot jars onto a towel, never directly onto the counter top. Hot jars on a cool surface can break. This applies every time you remove the jars from the hot water in the canner.

All Times are Approximate and Do Not Include Cooking Time

Prep time: 1 hour
Cook time: 20 min
Ready in: 1 hour 20 min
Yields: 5, 1/2 pint jelly jars or 2 pints with 1 1/2 pint

Ingredients You Will Need to Make Dandelion Jelly

  • 3 cups dandelion tea
  • 4 1/2 cups sugar, Domino or Organic to avoid GMO sugar
  • 1 box powder pectin
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice

How to Make Dandelion Jelly in Photos

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Measure out 3 cups of the dandelion tea.Add the tea, 1 box of powdered pectin and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to a pan and turn the heat on medium/high.Constantly stir the mixture until it starts to boil.Add all 4 1/2 cups of sugar at once and stir.The jelly will start to thicken, keep stirring.Keep stirring the mixture until it reaches a full rolling boil.Once it has reached a full rolling boil, set the timer for 1 minute and keep stirring.After one minute, turn off the heat.Remove the empty jars from the waterbath canner.Fill each jar with the jelly, leaving 1/4" headspace.Using a hot, wet paper towel, clean off the edge of the jars in case any of the jelly has spilled over onto them.  This helps them seal better.Put the jars back into the waterbath canner and bring it back up to a boil.  Process for 15 minutes then remove the jars and allow them to cool and seal for 24 hours.
Measure out 3 cups of the dandelion tea.
Measure out 3 cups of the dandelion tea. | Source
Add the tea, 1 box of powdered pectin and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to a pan and turn the heat on medium/high.
Add the tea, 1 box of powdered pectin and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to a pan and turn the heat on medium/high. | Source
Constantly stir the mixture until it starts to boil.
Constantly stir the mixture until it starts to boil. | Source
Add all 4 1/2 cups of sugar at once and stir.
Add all 4 1/2 cups of sugar at once and stir. | Source
The jelly will start to thicken, keep stirring.
The jelly will start to thicken, keep stirring. | Source
Keep stirring the mixture until it reaches a full rolling boil.
Keep stirring the mixture until it reaches a full rolling boil. | Source
Once it has reached a full rolling boil, set the timer for 1 minute and keep stirring.
Once it has reached a full rolling boil, set the timer for 1 minute and keep stirring. | Source
After one minute, turn off the heat.
After one minute, turn off the heat. | Source
Remove the empty jars from the waterbath canner.
Remove the empty jars from the waterbath canner. | Source
Fill each jar with the jelly, leaving 1/4" headspace.
Fill each jar with the jelly, leaving 1/4" headspace. | Source
Using a hot, wet paper towel, clean off the edge of the jars in case any of the jelly has spilled over onto them.  This helps them seal better.
Using a hot, wet paper towel, clean off the edge of the jars in case any of the jelly has spilled over onto them. This helps them seal better. | Source
Put the jars back into the waterbath canner and bring it back up to a boil.  Process for 15 minutes then remove the jars and allow them to cool and seal for 24 hours.
Put the jars back into the waterbath canner and bring it back up to a boil. Process for 15 minutes then remove the jars and allow them to cool and seal for 24 hours. | Source

How to Make Dandelion Jelly

  1. Measure out 3 cups of the dandelion tea and put it into a saucepan. Turn on burner heat to medium/high.
  2. Add the 1 box of powdered pectin and the lemon juice.
  3. Stir constantly until mixture comes to a boil.
  4. Add the sugar all at once and stir.
  5. Keep stirring until the mixture comes to a full rolling boil, meaning it continues to boil while you are stirring it.
  6. Set your timer for 1 minute and keep stirring.
  7. At the end of the 1 minute, turn off the heat.
  8. Remove your jars from the waterbath.
  9. Ladle the hot jelly into the jars leaving 1/4" headspace at the top.
  10. Wipe the edges of the jars with a hot, wet paper towel to remove any of the jelly that may have gotten onto the rim.
  11. Put the lid and ring on each jar and tighten finger tight.
  12. Put the filled jars into the waterbath canner and bring it back up to a boil. Set the timer for 15 minutes.
  13. Once the time is up, remove the jars from the waterbath and place on a towel someplace where they won't be disturbed and away from any drafts for 24 hours so they can seal.
  14. Once the 24 hours has passed and all jars have sealed, open one and enjoy your dandelion jelly!

© 2014 Helena Ricketts

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    • Helena Ricketts profile image
      Author

      Helena Ricketts 2 years ago from Indiana

      You should! It tastes amazing. If you decide to make the jelly, please come back and let me know what you thought.

    • profile image

      DebMartin 2 years ago

      Hmmm. Every Spring I have a yard full of dandelions. They're pretty enough but kind of an invader. Perhaps jelly is in order as I'm pulling them out anyway.

    • mueblesdejardin profile image

      Muebles de jardin 3 years ago from madrid

      good info, thank you!

    • Helena Ricketts profile image
      Author

      Helena Ricketts 3 years ago from Indiana

      @TurtleDog Thank you so much! It's an excellent plant that has SO many uses.

    • TurtleDog profile image

      TurtleDog 3 years ago

      A simply amazing lesson on dandelions as food. Just that alone would make a great post but you really nailed it with the recipes. A great way to use this pesky 'weed' Great stuff. Easily voted up and awesome

    • Helena Ricketts profile image
      Author

      Helena Ricketts 3 years ago from Indiana

      Oh! I forgot to mention to collect them from animal pee free and pesticide/herbicide free areas, that is an excellent point!

      They are such a wonderful plant. I have fallen in love with them.

      WOW! I'd be interested to find out what kind of weed that is! It sounds horrible but interesting at the same time. Some types of nettles are beneficial, I don't know very much about them because I haven't seen too many here in Indiana but I hear that some varieties are edible and quite good.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Most interesting. We don't have very many dandelions in our yard.

      Our weeds are more along the lines of stinging nettles and miserable, creeping things known locally as "goat heads." I don't know the real or scientific name of these pesky plants, but when they go to seed, the seed pods are horrid, hard, spiny little balls that are very painful to step on, and are even capable of puncturing bicycle tires!

      What dandelions I occasionally find, I cannot be certain are not contaminated by cat pee from the several neighborhood cats who make their rounds through our yard. (I love cats, so that, in itself, is not a problem.)

      Voted up, interesting, and useful, however--maybe I'll have to find and plant some dandelions on purpose!

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