Love blueberries? Have blueberries that are no longer fresh? Let me show you how to make use of the blueberries & have a tasty, homemade & easy blueberry orange curd that you can use on lots of things. Great with a slice of banana bread, on top of overnight oats, or spread on British Scones. Also works great with frozen blueberries.
Easy Blueberry Orange Curd
By CaroJump to Recipe Jump to Video
Why Make Blueberry Orange Curd?
Most people love blueberries anyway, but when the blueberries are transformed into a curd and combined with orange extract, it makes not only a delicious spread, but is very moreish too! So good!
Home Made Always Better
Yes there is sugar in this recipe, but so too is any curd or jam you buy. So making your own will save you money, & always taste better without ‘extra’ and artificial ingredients.
The Power Of Blueberries
The humble blueberry is often overlooked for its health benefits but thankfully more people are highlighting these benefits. Blueberries contain thousands of different antioxidants. Antioxidants (many being vitamins & minerals), that help neutralise a lot of the negative side effects & damage from food we regularly consume, as well as from oxidative stress from exposure to free radicals such as pollution, cigarette smoke etc.
“Antioxidants create a barrier or a shield around the cell to help protect it from being damaged,”Dietitian Julia Zumpano, RD, LD1
The tiny but mighty blueberry can reduce inflammation and can prevent some damage to our bodies and organs.
University of Arkansas quotes blueberries as containing 13,4272 total antioxidants in low bush/wild blueberries, or 9,0193 antioxidants in blueberries grown for eating.
Blueberries are low calorie, and nutrient dense, containing many vitamins and minerals that can boost your immune system, aid proper blood clotting and promote muscle and bone strength. High in soluble fibre, which can help manage cholesterol & in turn reduce or prevent risk of heart disease.4
They have a low glycaemic index and so won’t spike your glucose levels, and are believed to help reduce blood pressure.
One cup serving (100g/3.5 oz), has just 82 calories, 4g of fibre & antioxidant content equivalent to 5 cups of apples, carrots, squash or brocolli.5
Use Fresh, Well-ripe Or Frozen Blueberries
Sometimes blueberries are expensive, but you can also make this curd from blueberries that are no longer at their best, or as I do, from frozen blueberries. I often buy the ‘Wonky Blueberries’ from Aldi. Two of the little packs is enough for making 2 jars of curd.
And if you are lucky enough to get blueberries on sale or reduced because they are not at their peak of freshness, these could be made for curd, or frozen to make another day.
See my Fig Anise Curd in the photo, spread on top of Scottish crumpets.
Recipe Yield, Servings & Nutritional Values
Recipe yield is at least 637g/22.5oz, and servings are based on 1 tbsp (UK/US tablespoon at 15g/0.5 oz). This serving size is used to provide nutritional values. For per 100g/3.5 oz values, multiply by a factor of 6.67. Nutritional values calculated from website My Fitness Pal.com. My saved recipe & values can be found by clicking the link – Blueberry Orange Curd On Myfitnesspal.com Use Myfitnesspal already? Then save to your ‘Recipes’ & not need to type the nutrition again.
Ingredients For An Easy Blueberry Orange Curd
Blueberries – fresh, ‘not-quite fresh’ or frozen blueberries all worked well in fruit curds.
Red Plums – I actually had these 5 little red plums in the fridge for quite a while, so used these to bulk out the fruit for a yield of 2 jars. (Note the weight is for the plums pitted). You could instead add strawberries if you had some past their best as these too are high in pectin. Pectin is the fruits’ naturally occurring gelatin if you like. What helps the curd to thicken up and set nicely. Otherwise just increase the blueberry amount to a total of 340g/12 oz. (That would be less than 3 of the small 125g/4.5oz packets, so you would have some left over that you eat, or use as decoration if you use the curd in my Blueberry orange curd patterned Swiss roll cake or Blueberry & Lemon Drizzle Cupcakes.
Lemons – 2 medium or large lemons are used to increase the pectin content (see above). 1 when cooking the blueberries, and 1 when making the curd. 3 or 4 small lemons could be used instead.
Sugar – my original fig anise curd recipe uses dark brown sugar, but a combination of white (granulated) and dark also works well. Use whatever you have most of or is less expensive in your area. Light brown sugar, dark Muscovado sugar and even coconut sugar work. No need to waste expensive Caster sugar since it is being melted.
Orange Extract – I used Cake Decor Valencian Orange Extract from Morrisons but Sainsbury’s sell it too. It is very flavourful and smells amazing. Pairs beautifully with the tart flavour of the blueberries.
Water – a small amount of cold tap water is added to the fruit at the beginning of cooking.
Butter – unsalted butter is recommended for all baking, because the salt percentage varies from brand to brand. You can control your salt intake, and unsalted also has a lower water content. Be sure to cube your butter before leaving out to soften a bit (1/2″, 1.25cm) for quicker melting into the mixture.
Vanilla Extract – a little vanilla extract is used just to bring out the flavours of the blueberries and orange extract. Vanilla essence or vanilla flavour not recommended as it won’t do the same job. Just omit this if need be. You can also increase the amount of orange extract to taste. Learn how to make your own homemade vanilla extract , and save money in the long run.
Eggs – UK recipes tend to use medium or large sized eggs, where US equivalent is large or extra large. For this recipe however, I have weighed the eggs for you to judge better how many you will need. I had 3 eggs that are classed as medium, and weighed a combined total of 168g/6 oz. A little more will be fine.
Make sure, that the eggs are at room temperature before using for easier emulsification. You can make curd with just yolks, or an uneven combination of yolk & whites. See my Easy Lemon Curd Recipe, where I list examples of how many to use instead of just whole eggs.
**Note, ingredient amounts in grams, ounces and cup measurements, in the Recipe Card below. Skip to the Recipe Card, or continue reading for detailed, step-by-step instructions.Jump to Recipe
Cooking & Pureeing
1. The first stage is to prepare and cook the fruit. Wash the fruit in water and white vinegar, then rinse well. (No need to leave to dry as we are cooking it). Chop and pit the plums, leave skin on, quarter one large lemon, and leave blueberries whole. Don’t omit the lemon pieces as it helps provide more pectin (a natural gelatin), to aid the thickening of the curd.
2. Add the fruit to a medium sized cooking pot, 2 tbsp water, and cook on a low to medium heat until the fruit starts to give of its juices, and break down a little. If at any point it seems too dry, add a tsp more water. See Photo 1.
3. Leave to simmer on low, for the fruit to soften, and a thick dark purple/red sauce to be formed. See Photo 2, where the blueberry & red plum juices are sticking to the sides of the pan (almost looks like blackcurrant jam).
4. Next, the blueberry mixture is removed and added to another dish. The lemon quarters are discarded, before pureeing the fruit mixture with an immersion blender, (jug blender or food processor). Just be careful of the very hot mixture that will splash and be warned it stains too. See Photo 3 below.
Making The Curd
1. Find a heat-safe bowl like glass, or metal, that will sit on top of a medium or large cooking pot, without touching the bottom of the pan. (This is known as a double boiler or Bain-marie). See Photo 4 below.
2. Fill the cooking pot with a level of 1 – 2″ (2½-5cm) of water and heat on a medium heating and allow to start to boil. Immediately turn the heat down to low (or low to medium depending on your stove top), for it to simmer lightly.
3. Place the heat-safe bowl on top of the pot, and in a separate bowl, whisk your eggs.
4. Add the sugar(s), juice of 1 lemon and the pureed blueberries to the bowl and mix together. Let the heat below gently melt down the sugar and become a thin liquidy mixture. See Photo 4.
5. Move your cooking pot onto a smaller ring, intended for cooking with a smaller sized pot. Turn the heat to medium and allow the water to simmer gently. (Changing rings is a good idea if you have problems making curd or worry about scrambling the eggs. Heating on a ring a bit smaller, will ensure the eggs don’t get cooked too quickly).
6. If you don’t have a smaller ring, check your mixture is not too hot, before you gradually add in your whisked eggs. If it is too hot, reduce the heat, or remove the pot from the stove for a little bit. You can also lift up the bowl to let heat escape, but just be very careful and cover and protect your hands and arms first.
7. Gradually add in the whisked eggs (in increments of 2 or 3) & then just 1tsp of the orange extract and mix through. Leave a few minutes before you start to add in your cubed butter, one cube at a time. See Photo 5.
8. Add one or 2 of the small cubes of butter & whisk through in-between each addition, until the butter melts. Continue mixing for about 15 minutes until thickened & reduced in volume. Alternatively, if your hands & arms get sore like me, add the butter cube & whisk through. Then using an immersion blender with whisk attachment (see Photo 5, 3rd pic), or the dough hook on a hand-held mixer, (yes you heard me right), whisk for no more than 10 seconds. Add in another cube of butter, mix through & repeat 10 second whisking. Repeat until all butter pieces have been added.
**IMPORTANT** – Make sure your mixer or blender is on the lowest possible setting. I used to use my immersion blender, but my new one is much stronger & even on lowest possible setting, is too strong & makes a big mess. So I had to use my hand-mixer & dough hook (even one dough hook & not two is fine). See Photo 6 below.
**Don’t use the dough hook attachment/blender whisk, mix for longer than 10 seconds at a time (you don’t want to blow the motor). Cook on very low, for longer, with less constant mixing, to allow the mixture to thicken more naturally, & reduce chances of scrambling the eggs.
9. In-between adding butter, every so often check the thickness of the curd with your wooden spoon. When you think it might be thick enough, test by coating the back of the wooden spoon. At first the curd would have just ran off the spoon. However, once it hangs on a bit longer & coats it – do the test.
10. The Test – run the end of a small spoon through the curd that is coating the back of the wooden spoon, (remember it will be hot, so don’t use your finger), & try to draw a clear line through it. The line will show the thickness of the curd. Is there clear definition between the layer of curd & where you scraped a line? Or is the curd not thick enough yet & thinning where the line is drawn? Be in the habit of checking during the mixing stage & you will become accustomed to what it should look like. (See photos 6 & 7 above). This test is also used when making Pastry Cream/Creme Pat.
11. Once thick enough with the clear line, (note it doesn’t need to be really really thick & set now, as it will thicken more off the heat & on chilling), remove from the heat & from the cooking pot. Let it cool for 10 minutes before adding another 1.5 tsp of orange extract. You can add a little more to taste if you like. Just mix though & have a taste test.
Cooling & Setting
1. Once happy with the flavour, transfer the blueberry orange curd to a different heat-safe bowl, & cover with cling film/plastic wrap. Like with pastry cream/creme pat, place the plastic on top of the surface of the curd, to not let any air in to form a crust. Then place a layer on top of the entire bowl and pop in the fridge till set.
2. Setting of curd can take up to 4 hours in the fridge. However, if in a hurry, this method works for me – chill for 30 minutes, then freeze for 30 minutes. Check how it is set now and if not thickened enough, place in the fridge again for another 30 minutes. Alternatively, leaving overnight in the fridge will produce an extra firm curd, that holds its shape. (See Photo 9 below where I used the quick chilling for my Fig Anise Curd)
Storing The Curd
Once thickened enough, simply transfer the curd to glass jars, such washed and thoroughly air-dried old jam/jelly jars or Mason jars. This blueberry orange curd recipe makes enough for at least 603g/22.5 oz of curd. Enough to fill the best part of 2 standard UK sized jam jars or 3 x 8oz Mason Jars/Ball Jars.
By using nice airtight lids, there is no need to sterilize or can the jars, and the curd will last for about 2 to 3 weeks. Provided you store in the fridge and never place a used spoon or knife back into the curd jar, as this will spoil the curd & not last as long. If you often can produce, the curd should be fine for 3 – 4 months6, if done while the curd is still warm.
National Centre for Home Food Preservation say:
“For best quality, store in a cool, dark place, away from light. Use canned lemon curd within 3 – 4 months. Browning and/or separation may occur with longer storage; discard any time these changes are observed.”National Centre For Home Food Preservation7
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: easy, beginner
The blueberry orange curd can not only be added to cakes, but to cookies and much more. One jar’s worth will also be enough to fill a Blueberry Orange Patterned Swiss Roll.
Serve the blueberry curd with anything you would usually spread jam, jelly or preserve on. Examples being toast, crumpets, banana bread, Wholemeal Butternut Squash Banana Bread or like in the photos, on my Air Fryer British Scones, (or try my original British Scones tutorial in the oven).
Pairs beautifully with some whipped double/heavy cream. Add a layer to overnight oats before serving or on top of some plain Greek Yoghurt. Add to any of you favourite traybakes/squares, or layer cakes such as a Classic Victoria Sandwich, or the Raspberry Swirl Victoria Sandwich. Check out my Cake recipes Page for more ideas or even use to fill cookies.
Try swapping out cherries & cherry jam with blueberries & blueberry orange curd to use in the Air Fryer Black Forest Gateau recipe above.
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- Scales or measuring cups (see my hand-measured baking ingredient conversions table )
- Measuring Spoons
- Cooking pot for figs
- Immersion blender (stick blender, jug blender, small food processor, smoothie maker etc)
- Bain Marie (heat safe bowl on top of a cooking pot, that does not touch the bottom of the pot. See notes)
- Hand Whisk
- Electric hand mixer (with dough hooks, electric whisk or a hand-held whisk. Optional -see recipe)
- Wooden spoon
- Medium sized heat proof bowl (for cooling curd)
- Cling Film (plastic wrap/saran wrap)
- Glass Jars (Masan jars, old jam/preserve jars etc. About 3 x 8oz jars. Thoroughly cleaned & dried or sterilized)
- 250 grams Blueberries (8¾ oz, about 1⅓ cup, fresh or frozen)
- 90 grams Red plums (3 oz, pitted, about 5 small plums. Optional, or increase blueberry quantity***)
- 2 tbsp Water (45ml, 1½ fl oz)
- 2 Medium – Large Lemon (Or 3 or 4 small sized, 1 m/l cut in wedges & juice of one)
- 350 grams Dark Brown Sugar (12⅓ oz, 1¾ cups. For alternatives see notes***)
- 3 Eggs, med-large (US large – extra large size, 168g/6 oz combined weight***)
- 141 grams Butter, unsalted (5 oz, ⅔ cup, cubed)
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional but beneficial, Make Your Own Vanilla Extract)
- 2¼ tsp Orange Extract
- *** See Notes (after Recipe Card)
Cook The Blueberries
- Wash the blueberries & plums in water & white vinegar & rinse well. Chop & remove the stones from the plums, leave skins on, quarter one of the lemons. Don’t omit the lemon pieces as aids thickening of the curd.
- Add the fruit to a medium sized cooking pot, with 2 tbsp water, cook on low to medium heat. Once the fruit starts to give of its own juices, reduce to simmer on low, till the fruit is soft & a thick dark red/purple sauce is formed and sticking to the sides of the pan.
Puree The Blueberry Mixture
- Remove the blueberry mixture & discard the lemon quarters. Puree with an immersion blender, jug blender or food processor. Be careful as the mixture will be very hot & tend to splash when blitzing. It will also stain!
Make The Curd
- Use a heat proof bowl such as glass or metal, that can sit on a medium or large cooking pot, without touching the bottom of the pan. (Known as a double boiler or Bain-marie). Fill the pot with about 1 to 2″ (2½-5cm) level of water & heat on a medium setting to start to boil. Immediately reduce the heat to low for it to simmer lightly & place the bowl on top of the warm pot.
- Add the sugar, juice of 1 lemon & the pureed fruit to the bowl before mixing together. Allow the heat to melt down the sugar and become a liquid mixture. Move your pot & pan to a smaller ring/burner, intended for a small sized pot & reduce the heat to low-medium. Heating on a smaller ring/burner will ensure the eggs don’t get cooked too quickly. Alternatively, check your mixture isn't too hot, reduce the heat, or remove for a little bit if need be. Lifting up the bowl to let heat escape helps, but be very careful & protect your hands & arms first.
- Whisk the eggs before adding in 2 or 3 increments to the mixture, as well as just 1tsp of the orange extract & mix through. Add in the cubed butter, one or two small cubes at a time, whisking in-between each addition, till the butter melts. Continue adding & whisking for about 15 minutes until thickened & reduced in volume.
- Alternatively, for hands/arms that tire easily, use an immersion blender & whisk attachment or the dough hook(s) on a hand-held mixer. Whisk for no more than 10 seconds at a time, on lowest possible setting, before adding in the next cube of butter. Repeat until all butter pieces have been added.
- Every so often check thickness of the curd with a wooden spoon, by coating the back of it and trying to draw a clear line through the mixture. For more on this see the detailed step-by-step process before this Recipe Card. Note it will thicken more off the heat & on chilling
- Remove from the heat & from the cooking pot and allow to cool for 10 minutes before adding another 1½ tsp of orange extract. Add more to taste if you like.
Cooling & Setting
- Transfer the blueberry orange curd to another heat-safe bowl, cover the surface with cling film/plastic wrap, then another layer on top of all of the bowl. Like pastry cream/creme pat, this is on top of the surface of the curd to prevent a crust forming. Pop in the fridge till set. This can take up to 4 hours, but if short on time try my hack. Chill for 30 minutes, freeze for 30 minutes then check if thick enough. If not, place back in the fridge for another 30 minutes. Alternatively leave overnight in the fridge for an extra firm curd, that holds its shape. (See Photo 9 before this Recipe Card for a comparison photo of setting methods for my Fig Anise Curd).
Storing Blueberry Curd
- Once thickened, transfer the curd to glass jars, such as old jam/jelly jars or Mason jars. It makes enough for 2 standard sized jam jars. Using airtight lids, with no need to sterilize or can the jars, the curd will last about 2 – 3 weeks. Keep in the fridge and never place a used spoon/knife in the curd or it will spoil sooner. If you want to can the curd, it will last 3 – 4 months1
Serving Blueberry Orange Curd
- Serve the curd with anything you would normally pair with jam, jelly or preserve. Examples are toast, crumpets, or as seen in the photos, on my Classic British Scones. Pairs lovely with some whipped double/heavy cream. Add a thin layer to overnight oats before serving or add on top of some plain Greek Yoghurt. Try the curd with Air Fryer Scones and a 2 tsp orange extract in the dough to complement the blueberry orange curd.
*Chilling/Setting Time – includes using the quicker setting method. (Alternatively 4 hrs or overnight). Some hobs/burners will take longer or be quicker to make the curd too. **Recipe Yield – Makes at least 637g/22.5 oz of curd. Enough to fill best part of 2 standard UK sized jam jars or 3 x 8oz Mason Jars/Ball Jars. Serving Size – number of servings & nutritional values bases on 1 tbsp (tablespoon). Recipe yields at least 42 tbsp, at approximately 15g per standard US/UK baking tablespoon. For 100g/3.5oz values, multiply by a factor of 6.67. Plums – chopped, skin on, and stone removed weight. Alternatives – strawberries could also be used in place of the red plums, or increase the blueberry amount. Alternative Sugar – I have also tested using 200g (7 oz or 1 packed cup) of Dark Brown Sugar plus 150g (5¼ oz or ¾ cup) Dark Brown Muscovado sugar, or white granulated. My British Scones – my popular recipe and almost real-time video – go to Classic British Scones or the Air fryer Scones version. Or watch my Scones Video Tutorial Fig Anise Curd in the photo below. Try some Plum & Orange Home Made Jam or Easy Lemon Curd Check out & print my Baking Ingredients Conversion Table
Reference: 1 Preserving/Canning – reference from National Centre For Home Food Preservation, @ https://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_02/lemon_curd.html Blueberry Orange Curd Patterned Swiss Roll
NUTRITIONAL VALUES – I am not a qualified nutritionist, and all nutritional values approximate & based on a serving of 1 tbsp (UK /US tablespoon, 15g/0.5oz). Recipe yield 42.5 tbsp, 637g/22.5 oz. For 100g/3.5 oz value, multiply by a factor of 6.67. Values calculated from website My Fitness Pal.com, where more macros can be found & saved. Go to my Blueberry Orange Curd recipe on Myfitnesspal.com
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1 Quote by Dietitian Julia Zumpano, RD, LD & taken from Cleveland Clinic website https://health.clevelandclinic.org/benefits-of-blueberries/
2, 3, 4 Antioxidant figures taken from Cleveland Clinic website, as per above.
5 Blueberry nutrition & health benefits information from University Of Arkansas, @ https://www.uaex.uada.edu/counties/miller/news/fcs/fruits-veggies/Blueberries_Full_of_Antioxidants.aspx/
6, 7 Preserving/Canning – references from National Centre For Home Food Preservation, @ https://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_02/lemon_curd.html
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