Easy Seville Orange Marmalade

Guest Post from my Mum today as I don’t like marmalade at all! I thought you guys might like this recipe though.  All her own words so take it away, Mum:

I found this recipe many years ago and, having seen many others over the years, still cannot fault it.  It does require a pressure cooker, which, until I married 32 years ago, I had had no experience of – when I first started using it all those years ago; I was terrified of it, being convinced it would explode! I can say that I am now quite comfy with it, though it does give me the odd scare if its equilibrium is disturbed – for example, if someone walks past and hits the loose floorboard by the cooker, it screams and gushes steam out from under the weight!

The original recipe calls for the oranges to be frozen, but it is not essential. You just cut the cooking time by half on the first cooking.  The advantage of being able to use frozen oranges is, of course, that the Seville orange season is short, normally January/ February each year, and sometimes, having spotted them in the shop, you just don’t have the time to make the marmalade immediately.

2lbs Seville oranges
2 pints of water
4lbs granulated sugar, or jam sugar if you want to make it more expensive!
4 tablespoons of lemon juice.

 You can scale this up or down easily, though much will depend on the size of your pressure cooker. These quantities are the maximum mine will take. 
This made 2 x 500g jars and 4 x 250 jars, so about 4 lbs in total. Sorry, I work in pounds and ounces, but my jars come from France and Italy, where I stock up each year on the wonderful preserving jars they sell so cheaply over there.

Put the jars to warm, minus lids if they are screw top, minus the rubber seal if they are the rubber seal and wire closure type, in a very low oven, whilst you make the marmalade.

Put the oranges in the pressure cooker with the water, put the lid and the pressure weight on and bring to the boil and to pressure (15lbs) or max or whatever is the top setting on your particular monster. Once at pressure, cook for 20minutes if frozen and 10 minutes if not. Turn off the heat and slowly the pressure will revert to normal. You can speed this up by taking the pressure cooker to the cold tap and running cold water over the lid. Even after 32 years, I still consider this is a step too far! Once the pressure is off, the lid comes off easily – don’t rush it – yes, you can sometimes get it off when it is still under pressure, if you are strong enough, but the contents will potentially spray everywhere, and they will burn. I normally switch off the gas, and make a cup of tea whilst it sorts itself out.

Remove the oranges to a colander over a bowl with a slotted spoon. They should be soft and tender and a thin skewer should pass through the skin easily. Cut each one in half on a plate, to catch the juice, and with a soup or dessert spoon scoop out the inside pips, pith and all into the remaining liquid in the pressure cooker with any juice collected in the bowl. Put the lid back on and bring up to 15lbs/max/whatever for a further 5 minutes. Cool as before and then strain the liquid and orange flesh etc through a fine sieve into a bowl.  It is OK to press the flesh quite hard to extract the maximum of juice and pectin and doesn’t make the end result cloudy. Return the liquid to the pressure cooker. Scrape off any pulp from the outside of the sieve and add to the liquid, then discard the residue of pips etc.

The remaining skin shells need then to be sliced thinly, about the thickness of a matchstick, or thicker if you like coarse cut marmalade, and added to the liquid with the sugar and lemon juice.

I use the same pressure cooker without the lid to finish off the marmalade, but if you make larger quantities you will need to use a preserving pan. You need to bear in mind that the mix of liquid, sugar and peel will rise up as you boil it and you do not want it to boil over.

Warm the liquid etc over a medium heat to gently dissolve the sugar, stirring regularly. You know it is dissolved when you no longer can feel the gritty texture of the sugar between wooden spoon and pan.  Then bring to a rapid, rolling boil for 10 minutes before testing for set. Stir regularly, so that the peel doesn’t sink and burn, but watch out as it can get quite explosive and will burn badly if it erupts onto your hand.

To test for setting point, take a very small spoonful and pour onto a cold plate. Leave for a minute or so then slowly push your finger through the marmalade sample. If it wrinkles, it is ready.  Alternatively, use a jam thermometer and cook to 105C.  How quickly it gets to setting point is variable as it will depend on the age of the oranges, and the level of pectin in them.  The last lot I made took 15 minutes to get to setting point, and I checked it using the finger test, and the thermometer to be sure. Nothing is worse than runny marmalade as it gets everywhere, except on the toast.

Once setting point is reached, turn off the heat, add a knob of butter, and give it a quick stir to melt it and mix it in and then leave for 5 to 10 minutes before potting up.  This stops the peel sinking or floating.  The butter prevents scrum forming and seems to make the marmalade glossier.

Gently fill each jar, making sure you get an even distribution of peel between all the jars. Using a jam funnel helps for this and avoids sticky jars. Put the lids on tightly and leave to cool before labelling.  Purists would probably go for waxed discs, cellophane tops, and rubber bands, but I prefer the French/Italian jars with either metal lids or rubber seals and a wire clamp. It is very satisfying when you hear the metal lids snap as the vacuum is created, and I think the jam/marmalade stores better and for longer.  I have even reused shop bought jam jars, with the telltale vacuum seal lids, and these too will snap and reseal when filled with hot jam.

Store in a cool, dark place – we have a wardrobe in the garage full of jams, pickles and other preserved goods, that does the trick.



Filed under Jams and Preserves, Moderately easy

21 responses to “Easy Seville Orange Marmalade

  1. Penny Younger

    I have been making marmalade at first on the hob and then in the microwave for about 40 years and this recipe gives me more marmalade as a ratio of weight of fruit to jars of marmalade and is so much easier than any other recipe I have used. Thank you

  2. Mercy

    I have just used your marmalade recipe using my farily new pressure cooker, all I can say is thank you, it’s great, there was just a little left in the pan so I have it on toast for lunch, yum 👅.

  3. This is the best marmalade recipe! So quick and easy. I used half the Sevilles I bought and the rest are in the freezer. The result is delicious, really intense flavour.

  4. Mike

    Great recipe, works a treat – I can thoroughly recommend it!

    I made the marmalade with the last Seville oranges I could get hold of in London late in February. I followed the recipe to the letter and the end result was magnificent. As always, a bit fiddly the first time (never made marmalade before) but next time it would be a lot easier. I used a jelly bag and stand to strain the cold liquid – as I had one, I thought I might as well get my money’s worth – and it was brilliant, really easy. I was very apprehensive but it was all straightforward and the set was perfect (it did look liquid on going in to the pots but it was hot at that stage and that’s normal – but as a novice, I still wasn’t sure).

    I’m not a marmalade eater but the 100 per cent positive feedback comes from my partner, neighbours, family and other friends who tried it. They all raved about it.

    A big thank you!

  5. Anonymous

    I have just used this recipe in my new 3litre stove top pressure cooker. I halved the amounts and now have two x 250 jars of wonderful thick cut marmalade. The oranges were supermarket ones from south africa. This recipe was so easy and quick! Thank you.

  6. Anonymous

    Wonderful recipe! I made half the amount in my 3ltr pressure cooker. It took half hour to reach setting point but I think it was because I used standard sweet oranges, not seville. The preparation is easy and quick. Thanks to your mum!

  7. Anonymous

    Amazing recipe, quick and easy. Thank you!

  8. Niamh

    This recipe has revolutionised my marmalade making. Instead of hours of slicing, juicing and stirring it takes just over an hour to make 7-8 pots of delicious marmalade. It’s not as dark or intense as the slower version but delivers great sharpness and a lovely clear set. Delighted to have come across this recipe, many thanks to your Mum for passing it on.


    Hello Anna! Feb 12 2018…….am about to try yr Mama’s pr cooker marm as oranges have been hanging about ignored….will let you know result


    Finished marmalade today……your mother’s recipe…….v v v good

  11. Roisin

    A very belated thank you for sharing your Mum’s recipe. I was really struggling with marmalade-making but came across this recipe about 5 years ago and haven’t looked back. Already excited about my next batch as I just bought loads of Seville oranges at the market yesterday. Warm greetings from Dublin, Ireland.

  12. Sharon Hills

    Anna, please thank your mum for a great recipe. Used my Instant Pot and got great results.

  13. Niamh Morris

    Just to reiterate, 3 years on from my original comment above, I have now made dozens of jars of marmalade from this recipe and it never fails. Just made 20 jars today.

  14. Anonymous

    Been looking for a pressure cooker recipe for ages -and the marmalade was perfect! THANKS so much !

  15. Anonymous

    Just made this with the last of the Seville oranges in the shops. Left it for a about 45 minutes after first cooking of the the oranges (unintentional but got interrupted!). Also had to boil for about 30 minutes before it set (perhaps due to late in the season oranges). The result is a dark, intense marmalade – just how I like it. Reminds me of the taste of a well known Oxfordshire brand of marmalade. Thank you for sharing and such clear instructions.

  16. Annie Williams

    I’m about to use this recipe for the third time. Thanks for such practical and clear instructions . The results are always delicious and eveyone who’s tried it wants some more !

  17. Robert

    I love this recipe, always works and always gives fabulous intense-tasting thick marmalade. This year I have bought my Sevilles early and frozen them because I want to make Lemon marmalade first with the Sicilian specialty lemons which my local Lidl has just got in. Am going to try the above recipe with lemons, but any advice from anyone with experience making lemon marmalade please let me know.

  18. Mary

    Great recipe thanks Anna

  19. Anonymous

    A fan of the pressure cooker since the mid 70’s, I made it for my husband &, because he likes that well known Vintage quality brand we could no longer get it, I used some muscovado sugar to darken it. It worked well & others said they liked it so I gave away two pots. Although I still have some of last years left I’m just about to use the recipe again with this years Seville oranges. It’s a winner!

  20. Angela Mackay

    Thanks for sharing this I made my first ever marmalade and it’s perfect!

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