State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600511
Most fruits will have better texture if packed in sugar
or syrup although sugar is not necessary to preserve the
There are three ways of packing fruits whole or in pieces-
syrup pack, sugar pack and unsweetened pack. Fruits can
also be packed crushed, pureed and juiced.
Your selection of the packing method will depend on the
intended use. Fruits packed in a syrup are generally best
for dessert use.
Even though some unsweetened fruits may yield a slightly
lower quality product than packs with sugar, directions
are for unsweetened packs and are included whenever they are
satisfactory because they are often needed for special
diets. Fruits, such as gooseberries, currants, cranberries,
rhubarb and figs, will give good quality packs with or
A 40-percent syrup (1 cup water to 3/4 cup sugar) is
recommended for most fruits. For some mild-flavored
fruits, lighter syrups are desirable to prevent masking of
flavor. Heavier syrups may be needed for very sour fruits.
In the directions for each fruit, syrups are called for
according to the percentage of sugar in the syrup. Below is
a master recipe from which any of the syrups can be made.
It takes one-half to two-thirds cup of syrup for each pint
package of fruit.
SYRUPS FOR USE IN FREEZING FRUITS
Type of syrup Sugar Water
30-percent syrup...... 2-1/4 5-1/4
40-percent syrup...... 3-1/4 5
50-percent syrup...... 4 4-1/4
To make the syrup, dissolve sugar in lukewarm water,
mixing until the solution is clear. Chill syrup before
In general, up to one-fourth of the sugar may be
replaced by corn syrup. A larger proportion of corn syrup
may be used if a very bland, light-color corn syrup is
When packing fruit into containers be sure the syrup
covers the fruit, so that the top pieces will not darken.
To keep the fruit under the syrup, place a small piece of
crumpled parchment paper or other water-resistant wrapping
material on top and press fruit down into syrup before
closing and sealing the container.
Cut fruit into a bowl or shallow pan. Sprinkle the
sugar (quantity needed given in the directions for each
fruit) over the fruit. To mix, use a large spoon or pancake
turner. Mix gently until juice is drawn out and sugar is
Put fruit and juice into containers. Place a small piece
of crumpled parchment paper or other water-resistant
wrapping material on top to hold fruit down in juice. Close
and seal the container.
Pack prepared fruit into containers, without added liquid
or sweetening, or cover with water containing ascorbic acid.
Or, pack crushed or sliced fruit in its own juice without
sweetening. Press fruit down into juice or water with a
small piece of crumpled parchment paper as for syrup and
sugar pack. Close and seal containers.