Peach Pit Jelly

One of my favorite things about summer here in the south is that you can find peaches everywhere… and if you’re lucky enough to live near an orchard, you can grab a whole box of them without spending a fortune. There’s so much you can do with those peaches.

We spent a little time this past weekend and now have a big box of them sitting on the kitchen counter. We made a big batch of ice cream last night and I’m looking forward to “putting up” the rest of what we can’t eat over the coming days.
Eat them straight from the box of course (after washing them), but then there’s peach ice cream, peach cobbler, peach crisp, and even savory dishes like peachy crockpot chicken, or something like apple and peach chutney.

Peach Collage

And do you know what all of those dishes along with pretty much every other recipe have in common? You don’t use the pit. Even when you can or freeze your peaches, those are removed first.

Being frugal at heart, I couldn’t just let them go to waste. There’s still so much flavor from the little bits and pieces of flesh left on. So why not put that to good use and make a batch of peach pit jelly?

The recipe below is from the very first Kindle cookbook I published – Homemade Jelly and Jam Recipes.

Peach Pit Jelly
  • peach pits, enough to half fill a large kettle
  • enough water to cover pits
  • 5 cups sugar
  • 1 pkg powdered pectin
  1. Prepare 4 half pint jars and lids by sterilizing them, keeping them hot, and get your hot water bath canner ready.
  2. Throw peach pits from cooking, eating or canning project into a large kettle, cover with fresh water (a couple inches over the pits) and just set aside on the counter overnight.
  3. Note: You want to end up with at least 4 cups of juice after boiling. The more pits you have in the pot of water, the richer and darker the jelly will be.
  4. The next day put the pot on the stove and bring to a boil, cooking for about 30 to 45 minutes at a nice, rolling boil, but not too hard. Stir occasionally. Remember, you want to end up with 4 cups of juice, so add more water if you need to, and continue to boil.
  5. Remove from heat and let sit long enough to handle.
  6. Set up a 'jelly bag' over a pot, or lay several sheets of cheesecloth in a large colander suspended over a large pot.
  7. Pour the mixture into the prepared strainer and allow to strain; do not push or force it.
  8. When totally strained, measure 4 cups juice into a large cooking pot, stir in the sugar until it's dissolved, and put back on medium-high heat to return to a boil.
  9. When it boils, stir in the pectin, and return to a rapid boil, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  10. Test with your cold metal spoon for doneness by dipping the spoon in the liquid and removing. When jelly no longer drips from the spoon and slides off slowly in a sheet instead, it has jelled properly.
  11. Remove the pot from the heat, skim off any foam, and ladle hot mixture into hot, sterilized jars, leaving about ¼ to ½ inch headspace in jar. Apply the lids and process in hot water canner for 10 to 15 minutes (adjusting for altitude.)
  12. Remove from heat, let sit for 5 minutes, then remove jars to a towel covered counter, leaving plenty of room in between jars for air circulation.
  13. Let sit undisturbed for 12 to 24 hours.
  14. Yields 4 half pint jars.


Homemade jelly made from peach pits

Apple and Peach Chutney Recipe

I love the flavors of fall, but am not quite ready to give up on summer either. Why not combine two of my favorite fruits as we transition from late summer into fall – Apples and Peaches. I love how the sweet fruit flavors combine in this sweet and spicy chutney. I love serving this with grilled chicken. The jars of preserved chutney also make a great holiday gift. Just add a piece of fabric and a bowl over the lid and you have a pretty homemade present.

Apple Peach Chutney
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Condiment
  • 8 apples
  • 12 peaches
  • 1 onion
  • 1 pound raisins
  • 1 pound brown sugar
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 tbp ground ginger
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  1. Peel the peaches, remove the pit and dice them into small chunks. Do the same with the apple and onion.
  2. Put all ingredients (including the fruit and onion) into a large pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and slowly simmer everything for 2 hours. All the fruit will be tender and the chutney will start to thicken.
  3. Pour the mixture into sterile jars. Tap each jar on the counter (carefully) to release air bubbles. Process in your canner according to the manufacturer's instruction for 10 minutes. Or store the jars in the fridge and use your chutney within a few weeks.

You can easily cut this recipe in half for a small batch of chutney. The recipe as is makes about 7 pints of chutney.

Strawberry Pineapple Freezer Jam

When strawberries are in season, I am always on the look-out for new recipes to use this family favorite.

We have plenty of regulars, even another strawberry freezer jam, but this recipe offers a little surprise – pineapple.  The flavors complement each other so well, and the texture is incredible.

If you’re looking for a new freezer jam to make with your strawberries, give this one a try.  I think you’ll be pleased.

Strawberry Pineapple Freezer Jam
Recipe type: fruit, jam, freezer
  • 1 to 2 pints fresh strawberries, washed, drained, and hulled
  • 2½ cups fresh pineapple, peeled and finely chopped
  • 7 cups sugar
  • 2 pkgs (1¾ oz) powdered pectin
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 4 pint size freezer containers with lids
  1. Place strawberries in a large mixing bowl and crush them with a potato masher. You'll use between 1 and 2 pints to get the 2½ cups needed for jam, depending on the size of the strawberries.
  2. Measure out 2½ cups strawberries and place in a separate bowl.
  3. Add the pineapple to the measured strawberries.
  4. Slowly add the sugar and stir until well combined.
  5. Place the cold water in a saucepan over medium heat and add the pectin.
  6. Stir continuously until water begins to boil; boil 1 minute, then remove from heat.
  7. Pour the water mixture into the fruit and stir well to combine; continue stirring 4 minutes.
  8. Pour into pint canning jars or freezer containers; cover.
  9. Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours, then put in freezer.
  10. Jam will be just fine in the freezer for up to 6 months.
  11. When ready to serve, remove from freezer and allow to come to room temperature, about 1 hour.
  12. Always cover and refrigerate any uneaten portions; use within 3 to 4 weeks.


Orange Marmalade Recipe

There is nothing better in the morning than a nice cup of tea and a piece of toast that has homemade orange marmalade spread all over it. The good news is that making this fruit spread is a lot easier than you may think.  Give it a try … I think you’re going to love it.

I first started playing with marmalade recipes when I started reading a lot of English novels. Just hearing about the tea and toast made me want to sit there with my book and enjoy the same treat. I bought a jar of marmalade at the grocery store, but didn’t care for it much. This homemade version is much better. It also makes for a nice afternoon treat.


Homemade Orange Marmalade
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 4 half pint jars
  • 6 large sweet oranges
  • 3 cups water
  • 6 cups sugar
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  1. Prepare 4 half pint jars and lids by sterilizing them, keeping them hot, and get your hot water bath canner ready.
  2. Prepare the oranges by washing them well (removing any stems), thinly slice into circles, then quarter, discarding seeds as you do.
  3. Put the orange slices and water in a large cooking pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, boiling for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Remove from heat and let sit out overnight in a cool place.
  5. The next day, put pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, continue at a rolling boil for 1 hour, stirring frequently.
  6. Remove from heat and let stand for 4 to 5 hours in a cool place.
  7. Add the sugar, stir to dissolve, then put pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.
  8. Stir frequently while you continue boiling the mixture until it forms a jelly texture.
  9. Test with your cold metal spoon for doneness by dipping the spoon in the liquid and removing. When jelly no longer drips from the spoon and slides off slowly in a sheet instead, it has jelled properly.
  10. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
  11. Ladle hot mixture into hot, sterilized jars, leaving about ¼ to ½ inch headspace in jar. Apply the lids and process in hot water canner for 10 to 15 minutes (adjusting for altitude.)
  12. Remove from heat, let sit for 5 minutes, then remove jars to a towel covered counter, leaving plenty of room in between jars for air circulation.
  13. Let sit undisturbed for 12 to 24 hours.

This recipe was adapted from one featured in the Homemade Jelly and Jam Recipes Kindle book. Grab your copy today for more jelly, jam and marmalade recipes.

Homemade Jelly and Jam Recipes on Amazon Kindle

I’m excited to announce the first in a series of HBHW Cookbooks that I am writing exclusively for Amazon Kindle.   Did I say excited?  I mean thrilled!

The reason I’m so passionate about Amazon Kindle is because it allows me to publish my recipe books at a price that’s affordable for everyone.  If you’re not familiar with Kindle, don’t worry.  Scroll down and you’ll find information about how to download the Kindle ebook to other devices, even your computer or laptop.  It’s really quite simple once you know all your frugal e-reader options. Won’t you take a moment and check out what my new Kindle book has to offer?

Homemade Jelly and Jam Recipes

This  is a collection of 35 tried and true family recipes for jellies, jams, fruit butters, and marmalades from the Hillbilly Housewife.

Made from fresh fruit and ingredients that YOU control, these recipes not only taste better than store bought, they also allow you the chance to create some hand-me-down recipes of your own.

Don’t worry if you’ve never made homemade jellies and jam before.  You’ll find a section in the book that covers the basics of jelly and jam making, along with helpful tips and a FAQ section that will cover just about every question you have.  This little ebook is designed to make the whole process simple and easy.

Want to get started right away but don’t have all the equipment you need to can jelly and jam? No problem! The freezer jam recipes are easy to make and you don’t need any special equipment.

Take a peek at just a few of the recipes you’ll find inside:

    •     Strawberry Freezer Jam
    •     Grape Jelly
    •     Apple Jelly Made From Peels and Cores
    •     Red Currant Jelly
    •     Hot Pepper Jelly
    •     Peach Butter
    •     Apple Butter
    •     Orange Lemon Marmalade
    •     Fig Jam
    •     Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
    •     Apricot Jam

Click on and enjoy this fun and frugal Kindle ebook today!

Download the US Version

Download the UK Version

As mentioned earlier, there are some who are puzzled about getting a book on Kindle. This is the question I’ve received repeatedly:

“I would love to read this, but I don’t have a Kindle.  What do I do?”

Here’s the good news. You don’t need an Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a variety of devices that have Kindle Apps. For example, there may be an app for your phone, iPod or iPad. You can get a full list of free Kindle apps here.

If you don’t have one of those devices, you can still easily download my Kindle ebook right on your own computer or laptop.  You’ll see right below the ‘Buy’ button the words “Available on your PC.”  Click on and it walks you right through.  It’s easy to read Kindle ebooks right on your computer via the “Cloud Reader“. I’ve been using that one myself and it works like a charm.

With the list of affordable Kindle books growing by leaps and bounds, you can see why I was so excited to jump aboard.  I’m hoping to add quite a few of my own titles to that list over the coming weeks and months.

Won’t you please take a look at Homemade Jelly and Jam Recipes?  I know once you see what this little Kindle ebook has to offer, you’ll want to dig right in and start preserving your own jelly and jam!  Click on and order your copy  today!

Grilled Cheddar And Granny Smith Sandwich

  • 4 slices whole-grain bread
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon or Spicy Brown mustard
  • 2 oz cheddar cheese, finely grated and divided
  • 1/2 medium Granny Smith apple, cored, halved, and sliced lengthwise in thin strips

Preheat grill or griddle to temperature.
Lay out the 4 slices of bread. Lightly brush one side of each piece of bread with oil.
Flip 2 pieces of bread over and spread evenly with mustard.
Sprinkle half the cheddar cheese on both slices covered with mustard.
Place a layer of apples evenly over the cheese, then top with remaining cheese.
Top each with other half of bread, oiled-side-up, to make 2 sandwiches.
Cook sandwiches over medium heat on grill or in a cast iron skillet until light golden brown on bottom.
Flip with a spatula and continue cooking until cheese melts and bread is golden brown on other side.
Cut sandwiches in half and serve. Makes two servings.

Strawberry Shortcake Recipe

One of my favorite treats and desserts this time of the year is strawberry shortcake made with  fresh berries. I get them from a local produce stand.

  • 3 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1/2-1 cup sugar
  • Pound cake
  • Whipped topping or whipped cream

Slice the strawberries into a bowl and add the sugar. I like to start with 1/2 cup of sugar and add more if needed. It really depends on how sweet your berries are. Allow the berry/sugar mixture to sit for at least 10 minutes.

Slice the pound cake, top with the strawberry mixture. Add a bit of whipped topping, whipped cream or even vanilla ice cream.


Now doesn’t that look yummy?

Homemade Strawberry Shortcake


How To Freeze Peaches

I love peaches, I love peaches even more when they are frozen!!! As a kid, my mom would always buy bulk peaches when in season and freeze them in big batches. I liked eating them when they were still frozen but found it difficult when frozen in large batches. So I came up with this idea…its cheap, easy, healthy and tastes great!!!!

Free stone peaches
Sugar (keeps them from turning brown)

Slice your peaces into thin slices, no need to peel them…just make sure they are washed. Place slices on a wax paper (or parchment paper) lined cookie tray. Sprinkle with sugar. Place tray into freezer (make sure you have an empty shelf ready to go!) Once peaches are frozen, remove from tray and place into ziploc bag. Get all the air out of the bag and place in freezer again. This makes a wonderful…healthy snack during the summer. You can enjoy them one at a time or ten at a time! ENJOY!

Note: You can do the same thing with fresh mangos. Did it today and what a healthy cold treat!!!

Just for Mom Fruit Salad

  • 1 can prepared lemon pie filling
  • 12 oz. frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 1 – 15 oz. can tropical fruit salad, drained
  • 1 – 15 oz. can pineapple tidbits, drained
  • 2 – 11 oz. cans mandarin oranges, drained
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries

Mix lemon pie filling and whipped topping together in a large bowl. Add fruit to mixture and chill in refrigerator from 4 hours to overnight.

When ready to serve, top with fresh strawberries or fruit of your choice and whipped topping.

Avocado Papaya Salad

  • 4 ripe papayas
  • 2 small avocados, diced
  • 1/3 c cashews, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 c cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1 c arugula, chopped

Halve 2 of the papayas and discard seeds. Set aside.

Peel the other 2 papayas and discard seeds. Cut into small chunks and place in a medium bowl.

Add avocados, cashews, cilantro, lime juice and shallot to diced papayas and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with arugula.

Fill the 4 scooped out papayas with salad and serve.

Thanks go Carrie for this wonderful recipe. Click here for more whole foods recipes.

Freezer Cooking

4th Of July Dessert Recipes

With 4th of July just around the corner, I thought I’d share some of my favorite simple dessert recipes with you. Whenever we are invited for a cookout or family get-together on Independence day and I’m asked to bring dessert, I whip up one of these flag cakes. It’s simple to make but looks really nice as a center piece or on the buffet table.

Flag Cake

•    1 package cake mix (white or yellow) *
•    8 oz  whipped topping (thawed)
•    1 pint blueberries rinsed and drained
•    2 pints strawberries or rasperries  rinsed and sliced

Prepare cake according to package directions and bake in a 9×13 inch pan. Cool completely.

Frost cake with whipped topping. Place blueberries in a square in the top left corner, and arrange sliced strawberries as stripes to make an American flag. Chill until serving.

* using a store bought cake mix is a great time saver, but when I can, I just make up a batch of this yellow cake recipe. It doesn’t take much longer to make and tastes better.

A fun healthy snack or dessert is these simple fruit kabobs. They look very pretty as well.

Flag Cake

4th of July Fruit Kabobs

•    Bananas
•    Strawberries
•    Large Fresh Blueberries
•    Kabob Skewers

Slice bananas into large chunks.  Alternate fruit on skewers. Serve immediately.

Last but not least here is a fun dessert that also doubles as a simple activity for the kids. I recommend you either do this outside and have the kids work with the sprinkles over paper plates for easy cleanup.

Pretzel Sparklers

•    Long rod pretzels
•    White chocolate, melted or white chocolate frosting if you have younger kids doing this.
•    Sprinkles (red, white and blue) or star cake decorations

Melt the white chocolate. Dip the pretzel rod halfway into the melted chocolate then sprinkle the sprinkles over the wet chocolate. Lay on waxed paper or place in a cup to dry.

Watermelon Sorbet Recipe

Here’s a simple summer dessert that’s perfect when you have some watermelon leftover. It’s a light and airy watermelon sorbet that you can make either in an ice cream maker or following the special directions below to make it using your freezer and a food processor. Either way it’s a delicious frozen treat that you don’t have to feel bad about indulging in.

Watermelon Sorbet

  • about 6 cups of watermelon cut into small chunks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp lime or lemon juice
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup

Start by adding the watermelon to your blender. You want to blend it into a smooth mixture. Depending on the size of your blender you may want to do this step in two or even three batches. Pour the watermelon puree (it’s very watery) into a large bowl.

Put about 1/4 of the watermelon mixture into a large sauce pan and heat it with the sugar, and lime juice over low heat until all the sugar is dissolved. Add the salt and the remaining watermelon puree. Last but not least stir in the corn syrup making sure it gets well incorported.

Allow this mixture to cool, then stick it in the fridge. Once the sorbet mixture is well chilled, get out your ice cream maker and freeze the sorbet in it according to the manufacturer instructions.

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, pour the sorbet mixture into a large casserole dish or baking pan and stick it in the freezer overnight. Cut it into large chunks the following day and throw those in your food processor. Pulse it lightly until you get a nice sorbet consistency.

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the freezer for up to a week.


How To Make A Watermelon Smoothie

Watermelon smoothies are a great healthy way to stay cool and refreshed this summer. They are very simple to make and you can very them up quite a bit. These smoothies are also the perfect way to use up all that extra watermelon that’s left when you buy a big one. Here’s how to make these simple smoothies.

Start by cutting some of the watermelon into bite sized chunks. Make sure the rind is off and you remove any seeds. Now you’re ready to work on your smoothie.

Watermelon Smoothie

  • 3 cups watermelon chunks
  • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (option)
  • 1 tsp lemon or lime juice
  • sugar to taste if needed

Put everything into your blend and blend until smooth. If the watermelon is good and ripe you should not need any extra sugar. It should also provide enough moisture to turn this into a deliciously creamy smoothie. If the mixture seems a bit try, add a splash of milk or fruit juice to thin it out.

You can also leave out the yogurt if you prefer and just increase the watermelon chunks to 4 cups.

Cucumber Watermelon Soup

Two of my favorite summer flavors are watermelon and cucumber. They are both so refreshing. This simple cold soup combines the two for a perfect summer treat. It makes a great healthy snack when you need to cool down on a hot summer day. It’s also a perfect appetizer when you are entertaining outside in the summer.

  • 3 cups of watermelon chunks (seeds and rind removed)
  • a splash of lime or lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro or flat leaf parsley
  • 1 small cucumber (peeled and seeds removed)
  • pinch of salt

Get out your blender and add the watermelon chunks, lime or lemon juice and cilantro. Blend everything until it is getting pretty smooth. Cut your cucumber into chunks and add it to the blender along with a little salt. Blend until there are still some small cucumber chunks in the soup.  Taste and add more salt if needed. Chill the soup in the fridge before serving.

If you prefer a completely smooth soup, put everything in the blender at once and process until smooth.

No Waste Fresh Apple Cider

I discovered this purely by accident. I was simmering down some apples in my crock pot to make apple pie filling. I put them on low and left.

When I came back I noticed that I had put way too much water on them so I just caught the apples in a slotted spoon and fished them out for my filling. I noticed however the excess water smelled very strongly of apples.

I added some sugar and cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, cardamum, ginger and about a teaspoon of lemon juice to make it tangy, stirred it all up and gave it a taste. Miraculously my unappreciated apple water had become delicious spicy cider.

I chilled it causing all of the little bits of apple pulp to go to the bottom and all that was left to pour was delicious, clear, juice. Nothing bought, nothing wasted.

I came out with almost half a gallon of cider but with a whole cup of sugar it was too sweet. I would recommend half a cup of sugar per half gallon of juice. Ii also don’t see why other fruits would not work just as well like plums, cherries, peaches or pears.

Highly Recommended – Penny Pinching Mama

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