Selected by Sam* (Senior Guide)


3 - 4 cups (about 475g) of fresh or frozen strawberries, raspberries, pitted sweet cherries, blackberries or blueberries, or a mix

A dash of salt

¼ cup (60ml) pure maple syrup

2 tablespoons chia seeds

½ teaspoon (2ml) pure vanilla extract

Squeeze of fresh lemon juice (optional)


Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 13 - 22 minutes


Makes 325 - 375ml


Keeps in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or can be frozen for 1 to 2 months


Heat. In a medium pot, stir together the berries, maple syrup, and salt until combined. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until the berries have softened (they will release a lot of liquid during this time).

Mash. Reduce the heat to medium and carefully mash the berries with a potato masher.

Thicken. Add the chia seeds and stir until combined. Simmer over low-medium heat, stirring frequently (reducing heat if necessary to avoid sticking) for 8 - 15 minutes more, until a lot of the liquid has cooked off and the mixture has thickened slightly.

Flavour and cool. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and lemon juice. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate, uncovered, until cool, at least a couple of hours. For quicker cooling, pop the jam in the freezer, uncovered, for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

Notes from Sam: The jam will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. It also freezes well! I made blackberry jam in August and kept it in the freezer, in a mason jar, until January, it defrosted quickly in the fridge and tasted as good as it did the day I made it.

If you substitute the maple syrup for granulated sugar, keep in mind the refining process (if any) that sugar has been through. Learn more about the use of bone char in the sugar refining process here.
Hit up a Local Farmers' Market , roadside stalls (This popular roadside stall in Squamish even does home deliveries in the summer!), or you could even go and pick your own berries directly at a farm like U-Pick @ North Arm Farm Pemberton for example.
You can fill your own container/bag and purchase the chia seeds from a store offering bulk and zero waste ingredients. Check out some of the stores in the Sea to Sky and Vancouver here.
Look for BC grown berries in your supermarket, shop at a Farmers' Market, or, if you order your groceries through an online company like, opt for BC grown produce. The ultimate option - forage* your own berries if they grow near your home!
*Please do your research and make sure to properly identify fruits before consumption and consider the environment they've been picked from - e.g. have they been sprayed with any chemicals or been subjected to any pollutants or toxins from roadways etc? Do wildlife depend on these as a food source?
Depending on the berry, they are usually in season between June and September. Making a jam out of your fresh berries whilst in season to freeze, is an efficient way to store and make use of produce whilst still shopping seasonally.
Check out what foods are in season in BC when HERE.
You can look at We Heart Local BC for updates each month as to what's in season.

*Adapted from Angela Liddon's Berry Chia Seed Jam

Photos by Keir Atkinson