Spiced peaches are the old fashioned Southern treat you didn’t know you have been missing! Summers ripest peaches are prepared with whole spices. Cinnamon, allspice and cloves creates a spicy treat worthy of dessert. This is a vintage classic for Thanksgiving dinner, a delicious dessert by itself or with ice cream and a wonderful homemade food gift at Christmas time!
My Grandma Madge made amazing spiced peaches. In our home her special jars of spiced peaches were legend and one of the best treats on our Thanksgiving table. Now I’m the main provider of this vintage treat for the family. It is so lovely to open a jar of ripe summer peaches in the cold, snowy winter! The bold flavors of whole spices make that experience even more special!
What are spiced peaches?
Spiced peaches are more common in the Southern US and they were more common in my grandma’s heyday. Now many people have not heard of this special treat. Spiced peaches are just peaches canned with some whole spices which give them a wonderful cinnamon and spice flavor like you would get in mulled apple cider or pumpkin pie!
This is a true spiced peach recipe with heavy syrup, ripe peach halves and whole spices. Similar recipes for pickled peaches also call for vinegar which is a bit of a different animal! I’ve even seen variations where the recipe calls for packing the peaches in honey and spices!
The magic of my grandmother’s spiced peaches was partly time. We canned the peaches in the summer and then didn’t open the first jar until Halloween or Thanksgiving! It was hard to wait but waiting gave us the BEST flavor! Letting these jars sit for some time makes them SO delicious!
Learning how to can peaches
Canning is easier than you think! Even my four year old helps with the process. If you are ready to try canning for the first time or it has been awhile check out my easy beginning guide for canning peaches!
My guide will teach you everything you need to know about equipment, altitude, jar preparation, and all the details about preparing the peaches for canning! It is all easy stuff but having a quick start guide will save you trouble and get all your questions answered in one place.
How to use spiced peaches
- Serve with Thanksgiving dinner. This was my family tradition and they make a beautiful and colorful addition to the holiday table!
- Spiced peaches make a very thoughtful food gift – great for Christmas or as a hostess gift
- Use for dessert with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream
- Serve with baked ham, roasted chicken or turkey
- Use as a topping for waffles or pancakes
A Note about whole spices
You can usually find whole spices in the grocery store spice section. If you have a store with a bulk section this is usually more cost efficient.
I keep some whole spices around through the year. I them in the fall for crock pot mulled cider and in the winter to make my famous corned beef!
LOOKING FOR MORE PEACH RECIPES?
- Easy Peach Cobbler (Use home canned peaches for delicious peach cobbler!)
- Fresh Peach Bread With Peach Glaze
- Cinnamon Swirl Peach Bread
- How to Can Peach Jam
Home Canned Spiced Peaches (My Grandma's Recipe)
For the Spiced Peaches
- 10 lbs peaches about 15 large
- 14 cinnamon sticks
- 3 1/2 teaspoons whole cloves
- 3 1/2 teaspoons whole allspice
To Make The Syrup ( I use heavy but you can use medium or lite, see the notes below)
- 12 cups granulated sugar I suggest heavy syrup for this
- 12 cups water
- Prepare your water bath canner and clean jars. Start the canner coming to a boil. If it is ready before the fruit you can turn it off. It will come back to a boil very quickly when you are ready.
- Put spices into the jars. 1/2 teaspoon of whole allspice, 1/2 teaspoon of cloves, 2 whole cinnamon sticks per jar.
- Prepare desired sugar syrup by heating water and sugar in a sauce pan until sugar is dissolved. Set it aside. (See notes at bottom of post for different types of syrups.)
- Blanch peaches by dipping in boiling water for 30-60 seconds. Use a large slotted spoon and do 5 peaches at a time. Immediately remove peaches to a sink or bowl with ice water to stop the cooking.
- Slice each peach in half along the natural line of the peach. The skin will slip off easily after it is cut. Remove skin, pit, and any little fragments of pit left in the peach.
- Fill one jar at a time. Each peach half is supposed to be packed pit side down. As you fill a jar, cover the peaches with hot syrup leaving 1/2" head space.
- Load 7 quarts into a boiling water bath canner. Make sure the jars are covered by at least 2" of water.
- Bring the water back to a boil. Process for 30 minutes. If you live above 1,000 feet you need to add more time to adjust for altitude. At 1,001 - 3,000 feet add 5 minutes. At 3,001 - 6,000 feet add 10 minutes. At 6,001 - 8,000 feet add 15 minutes. At 8,001 - 10,000 feet add 20 minutes
- Remove jars of peaches and place on a towel to cool. Allow them to come to room temperature. The lids will seal at this time. Any lids that do not seal need to be processed again or refrigerated and eaten within a week. Sealed jars can be labeled and stored on a shelf out of direct light for up to two years.
I read each and every comment and I try to respond to questions asap, so ask away! If you’ve made a recipe, I would love to hear about it! Please come back and share your experience and give the recipe a 5-star rating so other people will know how much you loved it!
Can you make this using pints?
Sure! You can just use the processing time for pints of peaches. Enjoy! Oh, and I might use half the spices that you would put in a regular jar…
What is the processing time for pints? I am in Oklahoma and have ordered Georgia freestone peaches to be delivered middle June 2021. Appreciated your comment on waiting until Thanksgiving to open. I am afraid I would have been in that jar sooner!
Hi Herma – I’m so excited for you! Great question. Pints can be processed for 20 minutes and adjust accordingly for altitude if needed in Oklahoma! Enjoy that fruit, hon.
Thank you for including time adjustment for higher elevations. I am trying your recipe today. I am also processing some other foods and your time adjustment is very helpful!
Hi Katherine, You are most welcome! I’m glad it is helpful!
Do you have to blanch ripe peaches or can you eliminate this step?
Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I just had a baby and I’m a bit behind on emails and comments right now! If your peaches are VERY ripe you can probably slip the skins right off. Blanching helps of the peaches are being difficult and you can’t get the skins off easily. Basically it is up to you how you would like to do it!
Lori M McArthur
Thanks for the recipie. I amde spiced peaches last year but couldn’t find the recipie. This looked delish. I mixed both pint and quart jars because it was what I had, and processed it for the longer time. Had some syrup left so I did a couple jars of plums. We will see how they turn out.
Hi Lori – Sounds like a wonderful canning project in the books! I bet the plums will be wonderful 🙂 I’m going to try some spiced pears this year! I did some spiced pear sauce last year and it was wonderful. Hopefully I can get some recipes tested and written up for everybody at the end of summer! Happy Canning!
These sound amazing! I’ve had spiced pears before, but this is perfect for peach season! Can’t wait to make these!
Thanks! I have never done spiced pears but I really need to try it this fall! It would be wonderful.
Hello. I made this recipe a few days ago and all seems to be well, however when i took the jars from my canner i noticed that some of the syrup had come out of the jars during the half hour that they were processing. Only a frectional amount of liquid was lost, so little thst i would not have noticed save that the outside of the jars were a little sticky. 2 days later, the seal still holds and the contents appear to be fine. What do you think? Thanks!
Hey Peter, Great question! It is normal to loose a bit of the syrup during the canning process. When it is just a small amount there is no concern according to USDA. If you were to loose say half your liquid or something crazy the safe bet would be to refrigerate and eat the fruit asap. I hope that helps! Also I’ve learned from experience that removing the ring lids and rinsing both the ring and jar makes it easier to get the lids off after a year of storage! Nothing worse than feeling like you can’t get into your peaches!
All said is great! I added 1 tablespoon of a balsamic vinegar in half of my spiced peaches along with 2 whole black pepper corns. Then your spices and they are amazing!!
oooo – the balsamic sounds like a heavenly addition! Nicely done!!! I love seeing somebody take a recipe and make it their own. Thank you for sharing!
Made these a couple of weeks ago and we tried a jar. There is a very bitter taste. Could it be I used too spice?
When spices are cooked too long they can turn bitter! Do you live at a very high altitude or did you add extra processing time for any reason? Another possibility is that the jars had some soap residue in them when you started canning – this seems less likely to me but I thought it might be worth checking. One other option is to look into the quality of spices. I would make sure what you are using is fresh – no more than two years old, and that it is from a decent source. I use both bulk from Winco and Costco varieties and have found the quality to be solid. I’m so sorry it didn’t turn out well – that is very frustrating! I hope you are able to figure out what happened.
Hi Mirlandra, There is a typo under notes, for medium syrup 0 cups sugar to 12 cups water
. Just thought you would want to know.I will use this recipe for my 1st attempt at making canned peaches. Thankyou
Hi Carol – Thank you so much for catching that! It is 9 cups of sugar!!! I have gone in and fixed the typo. I’m always so glad when readers let me know of those little things. Good luck on your first peach canning adventure! I’m getting excited to put mine up in just a few weeks 🙂
I will be getting tree-ripe peaches tomorrow and came across your grandma’s spice peach recipe, sounds really good! I was wondering if you had a trick to get the stone out of a peach that is not freestone? Thanks and I am looking forward to trying your recipe.
Hi Teri! Ripe peaches oh you lucky girl! We are not quite into peach season here yet so I’m a little green with envy. Do you happen to have a serrated grapefruit spoon? That might help you cut down smoothly around the pit and sort of just slice it out. I haven’t tried it but the grapefruit spoon is one of my go to for random little things like that. You can usually grab one inexpensively at somewhere like Bed Bath and Beyond. You might also be able to use an ice cream scoop if you have a sharper metal edged one – it would depend on the size of your scoop. If the pits are really stubborn you can slice the peaches instead. It is a different presentation but still delicious!
You are right these are the best peach dessert there is. I used to make these with my grandmother, I lost her recipe, but I did remember everything but the whole allspice. Thank you shop much.
Oh Romona – You made my heart so happy!!! Recipes are very special links to the past for me and I know how special it can be to find a recipe that has been lost! I hope your peaches turn out wonderfully. Happy canning!
GREAT recipe! Do you by chance have a recipe for a pear jam that has whole cloves in it. I remember it was one of my grandma’s and she always reminded us not to eat the whole cloves. When she passed away many years ago, all her recipes were taken or lost. Thought I would asked. Thanks.
Oh Beverly, I’m so sorry! It is hard to loose family recipes that way! I’ve never made pear jam before but I think if you were willing to experiment a bit you might be able to recreate the recipe! I’ve done this with some of my grandparent’s recipes that have gotten lost. You might start here with this recipe for spiced pear jam: https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/spiced-pear-jam/ It calls for ground clove but you could try subbing whole cloves instead and see how it turns out. If you have any memory of how many cloves your grandmother had in each jar you could try adding that amount. This recipe has a reader comment about adding a few whole cloves to each jar: https://www.cooks.com/recipe/hf7pv60x/pear-preserves.html Please let me know if you find something that works for you!
I believe the word is “heyday”
Thanks, Stan! You are absolutely correct. My mind struggles with spelling but thrives in the creativity of cooking. I’ve made the correction to the text 🙂
Would ground allspice work? If so, how much per jar…? I can’t find whole allspice.
Hi Ana – You can use ground allspice but I would use just a bit – a 1/8 tsp per jar. Sometimes I have good luck finding whole allspice in bulk foods or I have been known to buy apple cider mulling mix and pick the whole allspice out. It only takes a moment and gets the job done – usually at a rock bottom price 🙂 It is a goofy trick but it works!
We made a half batch to try this out. Waited just ten days then tried: lovely flavor, now making a full recipe. Thank you for including the processing time for pints.
Hi Jen! Nicely done! I’m so glad you enjoyed it enough to give it another try. Happy canning!
Should lemon juice be used in this recipe to prevent retardation?
Hi Lynn – I’m not sure what the term retardation means in reference to canning. I’ve looked it up and don’t find a definition that makes sense here. I know lemon juice is sometimes called for in various fruit canning recipes. I don’t use it for this peach recipe and it is not a safety issue if that is your question. Let me know if that doesn’t answer your question! Best of luck with your canning 🙂
I couldn’t find any fruit fresh so I checked my old Joy of Cooking and found 3Tbsp lemon juice in 1quart water. I put it in a big bowl and put my cleaned peach haves in it. They kept their color during my drawn out processing. Did 4pts of spiced peaches in medium syrup as an experiment. We’ll see if everyone likes them.
Gave recipe a 4 but have to see how they taste in in a month or two
The Joy of Cooking is a great reference! I don’t own many cookbooks with the arrival of the internet but that is one that I keep on hand no matter what!
hi miranda, my peaches are getting brown around the whole clove at the top of the jar…is thus safe?
Hi Jo! Yep!!! This is normal. Mine are doing the same thing. This is just coloration from the spices. Enjoy those peaches!
I have been looking for this recipe for over 20 years since my mother died. Because my mother called them ‘pickled peaches’, I could only find the vinegar recipe. When I searched for ‘spiced’, all I got was Nigella. I finally found this today when I added ‘traditional to the search.
(I am an avid cook myself, and would love to get in touch to share.)
Thank you for saving this recipe just for me! I am now a great grandma and will finally be able to pass this on to my family.
Oh Kati!!!!! Thank you SO much for telling me. This brings me such joy!!!! My grandma passed away in 1989 and I’m sure she would enjoy knowing that something she blessed us with is getting shared. I hope your grands and great grands enjoy these as much as we do!
I don’t have a canner, could you do a few. Jars at a time using a large stock pot?
Hi Helen – This is a great question! Water Bath Canning is a process that isn’t defined by the type of pot used. All you need is a metal rack of some sort to keep your jars from resting directly on the bottom of the pot and a pot big enough that the jars you put in can be covered with water by a few inches. You might be able to find a little rack that would fit your pot somewhere like the dollar tree. Just make sure if it is a low quality rack that it is strong enough to hold the jars. You could even use two placed on top of each other at right angles to give more support. I hope this helps! Let me know how it goes. These peaches are a wonderful treat!
Can’t find, or don’t have a rack, just put a hand towel folded in half or a couple of wash clothes in the bottom of the pot. You just need a bit of “cushion” on the bottom of the pot. And cover with 1 inch of water – that plenty.
That’s 1 inch of water OVER the top of the jars when processing.
Hi James – I have to say I haven’t heard of this one before! I agree that it would give space between the jars and the pot but I’m concerned about how heat would be conducted through. When I recommend something to new canners I need to be careful only to suggest things that are USDA approved for safety and this would be something I wouldn’t try in my house.
What is the best way to save the syrup after the peaches have been eaten? Also, I have a tall 12 qt stock pot that I use for canning. Can you stack jars on top of one another when canning? That is the only way I can get more than a handful of 1/2 pint or pint jars into it at once. Thanks!
Hi Lynn – those are great questions! I save my syrup in the jar the peaches were in for a week or freeze for longer.
Stacking jars in water bath canning is called Double Decker canning. It is not considered a safe option. If you know you enjoy canning it would be better to consider buying your own canning kettle or find a friend who would be willing to loan you theirs. Canning friends are fun to find anyways 😉 Good luck to your canning ventures whatever you decide!!!!
Love this recipe. My son just dumps a jar in a baking dish and makes a crumb topping. So good, so easy
Thank you for sharing
Hi Mari! That is such a fun way to do it! Thank you for sharing – it sounds super tasty!!! I think I might need to come over and eat at your house 😉
I have just completed this recipe yesterday, and I am ecstatic with how they have turned out! I am excited to see how they taste in a few months, and I plan to give most of them away at Christmas time! I was wondering if there is anything that can be done with the syrup left in the jar when the peaches are gone? I was thinking of maybe reducing it a little bit, and pouring over some ice cream. Is this something you would suggest, or should the syrup be discarded?
Hi Zack – Congratulations on your canning! That is a great question. The syrup is so tasty! You can eat it over ice cream (I have never reduced it but it sounds good). You could use it as a sugar soak on a cake. It can be stirred into cocktails or just sipped plain out of a glass like juice. You could even eat it with some regular canned peaches for a bit of the spiced peach flavor. Certainly don’t discard it!
How many pint jars would I need for this? I’m going to do slice so there will be more fruit than if I did half’s in the jars. I want to use my Presto Electric canner and it will not process quarts… I didn’t see in the recipe how many quarts the recipe makes… you mentioned pears is another quote.. my Grandma Alexander made pear preserves in a very heavy, lightly spiced syrup . She cut the pears in thin wedge strips, you could almost read the news paper through them after processing ( she cut them about 1/8th” thick I think…. they were AMAZING!
Hi Nancy, If you plan to do pint jars just plan on about double the jars than quarts. But the slicing is going to change it a little bit. That is hard to predict, sorry. I’ve never used a presto electric canner. Those pear preserves sound amazing! I did a spiced pear jam last year as an experiment and it was over the moon. I’m canning next weekend and hoping to try to refine the recipe so I can get it posted for everybody.
It’s peach season and I can’t wait to try canning some this year! Would it mess with the safety of the recipe, if I altered the seasonings a bit? I was thinking of using just the cinnamon or maybe a little clove with it, since I don’t have allspice. Thanks!
No you are absolutely good to adjust those spices! Great question! Enjoy those peaches 🙂
Would it be ok to slice the peaches before packing into the jar, or would that put too many peaches/not enough syrup per jar? Don’t wanna mess this up, lol
Hi Julie – Great question! You can totally slice these. If you end up needing a bit more syrup just make more. But I think you will need a little less. You might find that slices come out more strongly flavored though… More surface area of the fruit gets exposed so more flavor gets absorbed sooner if that makes sense.
Just finished! This is the recipe that I searched for, the authentic winter spiced peaches. So fun, my husband even helped. Used ripe Colorado peaches, the best. All your steps are so helpful. I did not have whole Allspice, so added a bit of ground to syrup.migh,t not do that again. These are Christmas gifts. Thanks !
Hi Janice, I’m so happy this was a great experience for you! They do make wonderful Christmas gifts. I’ve never had the pleasure of a Colorado peach but I hope I will get to one day! We really don’t live that far away from there 🙂
Does this recipe make 7 quarts? I’m attempting this today with the medium syrup! So excited!
Yep, 7 quarts! Enjoy 🙂
Can you tell me more about how to water bath them? How long for what temperature? I understand how to do everything but need a but more details on the temp of the water in the water bath, and how long to cook them for at what temperature.
Hi Rachel, It sounds like you might be trying to use a thermometer? I’ve never done that with canning. The water bath needs to be brought to a simmer and kept there while the jars are processing. The time depends on your altitude. My beginning water bath canning post has more information on that which might help you quite a bit: https://www.mirlandraskitchen.com/water-bath-canning-tips-and-equipment/
Thank you for sharing this recipe! It was very easy and I can’t wait to try them. I made them using the light syrup since we are trying to cut back on sugar. Needless to say we will be eating them sparingly. I grew up eating spiced peaches every Thanksgiving! Been so disappointed not being able to find them. Thanks to your recipe I can make my own!
Hi Carol, This makes me so happy! And they are still wonderful in lite syrup! That is the beauty of starting with wonderful fresh peaches! Enjoy your Thanksgiving treat 🙂
I made another 7 qts yesterday using peaches that I picked up last Friday from The Peach Truck, this is the 2nd year I have used your recipe and it is absolutely delicious. My mother was from Georgia, so I grew up eating spiced peaches and these taste just like what we would get down south. Thank you for sharing this, my whole family is grateful.
You made my day! Thank you. It gives me great joy to know that recipes are bringing people joy. I’ve made several trips to Georgia but never in peach season! One of these years I’m going to rectify that 🙂 I need to try some good Georgia peaches!
How long do I need to wait before tasting??
In our family we usually cracked the first jar at Thanksgiving. But that was more our family tradition than anything else. You could absolutely crack a jar in a week and see how it is. Just keep in mind it will get stronger over time. I once saved some jars several years and they were REALLY strong (and FYI for home canning you are not supposed to save stuff that long but I was young and probably thinking I knew better!)
Can you make a low sugar version?
Absolutely! Just make a light syrup which will be way less sugar. You can grab all the syrup recipes in my Peach Canning Recipe: https://www.mirlandraskitchen.com/how-to-can-summer-peaches/