Open jar of Salted Cantaloupe Jam, with a halved cantaloupe behind

I take a lot of pride in where I live. I know a lot of folks consider Indiana a “fly over state” and that might be a negative to the vast majority of citizens in this country, but I’ll let you in on a little bit of a secret—us Midwesterners enjoy the fact that we’re off the radar.

I love that I have neighbors who never will bother me unless I need them to, and then they’d give me the shirts off their backs. I love that I can drive for hours and hours and see little more than farmhouses and cornfields. I love that I can keep my car unlocked (and running) while I pop into the post office. And I love that I can drive up to any one of two dozen farm stands within a five mile radius in August and buy farm fresh cantaloupe by dropping a few quarters in an old coffee can.

Salted Cantaloupe Jam


A Beginner’s Guide to Canning Salsa

Come out of this course with six jars of homemade salsa and a heap of canning confidence!

  • Learn what tools and supplies you need to stock your kitchen
  • Master all the techniques you need to can food safely
  • Overcome any fear you have about canning
  • Cook along with a canning expert with over 25 years of home canning experience

Southern Indiana isn’t really well-known for a lot of stuff (other than being Louisville’s hat), but one thing we do excel at is making some seriously mean cantaloupes. In particular, Jackson County, Indiana—which is just north of where we live—is pretty well-known in the region as having the best cantaloupes in all of the Midwest. Folks drive hundreds of miles to visit this rural Indiana county just to grab a cantaloupe or two! I’m not sure what it is about this area that produces the sweetest, juiciest, biggest cantaloupes you’ll ever see, but I’m not complaining.

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

We only planted a handful of cantaloupe plants this year, but we have no less than 473,000 melons on the vines right now (not only are cantaloupes grown in this area incredibly delicious, but they’re also incredibly prolific). And as much as I love eating cantaloupe morning, noon, and night, the truth is, we’re a little bit overwhelmed with our haul. Melons are one of those summer items that can be really difficult to preserve for winter eating, but I figured it might be worth a shot to try turning some of our bounty into some cantaloupe jam to enjoy during those cold January nights. And, man, was that ever a good idea.

The idea for salting the preserves came from the fact that summer dinners for me growing up meant a giant bowl of cantaloupe on the kitchen table for dessert. And next to that bowl was always the salt shaker. Just like all sweet foods, a little bit of salt sprinkled on some fresh cantaloupe slices really sets it off. I figured those flavors would be really interesting combined into a jam.

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

Because of the welcoming of our little girl, I haven’t had the chance to do as much canning this summer as I normally like to, but I was so happy I carved out an afternoon to make this cantaloupe jam. Not only is it delicious, but there is something about canning that makes me feel incredibly connected to my roots. My parents canned food. My grandparents canned food. My great-great-grandparents canned food. My soul tells me I should be canning on a weekend afternoon in August. It’s hard to explain, but there is something about ladling bubbly jam into steaming hot jars that makes me feel a little more connected to my past. To me, canning is so much more than just stocking away some food (although, that’s a nice perk, too).

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

Because of this love of canning, I am so happy to be participating in Ball Canning’s International Can-It-Forward Day for my third year. I’m excited anytime I get a chance to spread the love of food preserving! I’m so proud to work with an incredible Indiana company like Jarden Home Brands (makers of Ball and Kerr Mason jars).

Can-It-Forward Day is this upcoming Saturday, and they will be live streaming seminars and canning demonstrations on their website to help folks get excited about canning. If you’ve ever wanted to get started canning but were too afraid or intimidated, this Saturday is a great way to get your feet wet!

Now, go make some cantaloupe jam! Enjoy.

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

Yield: 8 half-pints
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Cantaloupe certainly isn't the first fruit you think of when it comes time to make jam, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be on your "must can" list! This Salted Cantaloupe Jam is a new favorite in our house.

PLEASE NOTE: This isn’t a pH tested canning recipe. See our notes after the recipe if you're concerned about how to store this jam safely.


  • 6 cups diced, very ripe cantaloupe
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 5 tablespoons powdered pectin
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt


  1. Fill a waterbath canner with water, and place inside eight half-pint jars (make sure the water covers the jars). Bring to a boil. Place lids and rings in a small saucepan with hot water and heat, but do not boil.
  2. Bring cantaloupe, lemon juice, and 3 1/2 cups of sugar to a boil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a full, rolling boil that cannot be stirred down (it should take 10-15 minutes).
  3. Once the mixture is at a full boil, whisk together the remaining sugar and the pectin. Whisk the mixture into the cantaloupe mixture.
  4. Bring mixture back to a full boil, and then boil hard for 2-3 minutes, or until the mixture looks thickened and is set. I like to test it by putting a small amount on a spoon and placing it in the freezer for a few minutes. If it's jelly-like when it's cold, it's set! If not, boil for a few more minutes.
  5. Once set, remove from heat, and stir in the vanilla extract and salt.
  6. Remove the hot jars from the waterbath canner, and turn the canner back up onto high.
  7. Ladle the jam into the hot jars, leaving a 1/2" headspace. Using a clean, damp cloth, wipe any extra jam from the rim of the jars, and then place on the lids and the rings—tightening just until snug, not overly tight.
  8. Place the jars in a rack in the waterbath canner, bring to a boil, and process for 10 minutes. Remove from canner, and let cool completely. Check seals after 24 hours—the lids shouldn't flex or move when pushed down on. Store sealed jars in a cool dark place for up to a year. Any jars that don't seal, place in the fridge and eat within a month.


This isn’t a pH tested canning recipe. We’ve had good luck with it, but we are master canners and have the ability to test the recipe at home to ensure shelf stability. We recommend sticking with a tested canning recipe if you are newbie.

If you are new to canning and you're concerned about the safety of this recipe for shelf storage, you can always store your jars in the fridge or freezer.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 64 Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 56Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 54mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 0gSugar: 14gProtein: 0g

At Wholefully, we believe that good nutrition is about much more than just the numbers on the nutrition facts panel. Please use the above information as only a small part of what helps you decide what foods are nourishing for you.

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Hi
    New comer to cantaloupe jelly. Never heard of it or tried it. Made it tonight with my garden fresh fruit. I’m so excited for my family to try this. I was licking the bowl while I waited to pull from the water bath. Thanks so much for sharing this awesome recipe.

  2. I have to admit that I was skeptical about trying this but I had a fruit to use up so I gave it a shot and WOW I am so glad I did. This was so easy to make and it is delicious. It is going to be a wonderful treat for us come this winter.

    Oh and before I forget to say this, I totally agree with you about living off the radar. My home is in Michigan and I wouldn’t trade it for anywhere in the world!

    1. Hi Mary Katherine! We haven’t tried that. If you give it a go, we’d love to hear how it turns out!

  3. Made a double batch of this (had to cook it way longer for that reason) with one change…instead of regular vanilla extract i used Watkins brand butter vanilla extract. The outcome was an exquisite trifecta of sweet, salty, buttery goodness. My tastebuds swore they were at a carnival! Oh Em Gee!!! This recipe has just replaced my original cantaloupe jam recipe. Thank you so much!

    1. Thanks so much, Donna—we’re so glad it was a hit! Your butter vanilla extract swap sounds delicious. We appreciate you taking the time to tell us about it!

  4. Can then recipe be multiplied? I have enough cantaloupe to make six batches. I know some recipies don’t work out when you make multiple batches in one. It would be so helpful if I didn’t have to make six separate batches. Thanks.

    1. Hi Gia! The general rule of thumbs is to not multiply more than 10 jars in a batch or you’ll risk it not gelling up. So if you think you’ll be making more than 10 jars, you’ll need to start another batch! Let us know how it turns out for you!

  5. Is there any way to know how much cantaloupe is actually used. Ive found other recipes that make less that calls for 14 cups of cantaloupe.

    1. Hi Jay! I’m not entirely sure I understand your question, so please clarify if this doesn’t address your concern. Our recipe calls for 6 cups of diced, very ripe cantaloupe. Yields can vary based on how much juice the fruit releases and how long you cook it down. But we’ve found that our very ripe fruit gives us about 8 half-pints of jam. I hope this helps!

  6. HELP!!! I have made 2 batches of this jam so far. We have LOTS of cantaloupe. It tastes sooo good! I was told by an admin, on a social media page, that this recipe is shelf stable due to the low acidity of the fruit. I’m pretty new to canning. I don’t want to make anyone sick and I see that there is always an opinion on everything from everyone

    1. Hi Valerie! This isn’t a pH tested canning recipe. We’ve had good luck with it, but we are master canners and have the ability to test the recipe at home to ensure shelf stability. We recommend sticking with a tested canning recipe if you are newbie. In the meantime, you can store this recipe in the fridge or freezer!

  7. So happy to have found this article. I’m saving it for next season. We had a bumper crop of cantaloupe this year, my first year. I wish I had found this earlier. They were so sweet and delicious. Tasted like candy. You’re the second person I’ve heard say Indiana cantaloupe is the best in the past month. Matter of fact, I live in Harrison County!!! So many thanks from a fellow southern Hoosier!

    1. Hi, Jacqueline! Thanks so much for taking the time to connect with us. We really appreciate it! And congrats on your bumper cantaloupe crop this year! We can’t wait for you to try out this jam next season. It’s the perfect way to preserve those sweet, Indiana cantaloupe! =)

  8. Made the jam today. now my husband eat it on a peanut butter sandwich and loved it. is there something else you can do with salted melon jam?


    1. Hi, Becky! You can use this jam anywhere you like, really. Some great places to look for inspiration are anywhere you would use other jams and jellies, and anywhere you would have used fresh cantaloupe. Folks in the comments have mentioned putting this jam on toast, biscuits, pancakes, waffles, ice cream, and even cheese boards! You’re only limited by your imagination and your taste buds. Finding what’s delicious to you and your family might take some experimenting, but it promises to be deliciously good fun! Enjoy!

  9. So I just got done making and canning this, and first of all: YUM! I’m a newer canner, so I’m sure this is operator error, but somehow I only ended up with 3 3/4-ish half pints of jam. I followed the ingredients list exactly, so I have no idea what I did wrong! Any suggestions are welcome!

    1. Hi, Robin! We’re so glad you enjoyed the jam! It doesn’t sound like you did anything wrong. Yields can vary based on how much juice the fruit releases and how long you cook it down. So it’s possible that your smaller yield was just right for your fruit!

      Since you mentioned that you’re a newer canner, we do want to note that any jars that aren’t full (like that 3/4-ish jar you had) shouldn’t be canned. So use up the not-quite-full jar first! You can just stick it in the fridge and eat it within a few weeks.