Pomegranate Molasses

5 from 3 votes

Pomegranate Molasses is an essential ingredient in traditional Middle Eastern cooking. It is made by reducing pomegranate juice. Here is how to make it at home using my simple recipe.

You can try some Middle Eastern recipes: Mutabal, Black Bean Hummus, Falafel, and Za’atar.

Pomegranate molasses served in a glass jar.
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About Pomegranate Molasses

Pomegranate Molasses is a well-used, traditional ingredient in Middle Eastern cuisine. It is made by reducing the juice of pomegranate. Sometimes, a little sugar and lemon juice are added to it to enhance the taste.

Middle Eastern Pomegranate Molasses is deep, dark red, fruity, tangy, and musky. It is naturally vegan and gluten-free. This molasses enhances various dishes with a fruity, earthy, and tart flavor.

Although it is available in stores, making it at home has many benefits.

  1. It is made using fresh and the best ingredients.
  2. There are no added preservatives, flavors, colors, or chemicals.
  3. It is much more economical to make at home.

Ingredients

Pomegranate molasses ingredients.

This recipe requires just 3 ingredients: Pomegranate juice, sugar, and lemon juice.

For the best result, try to use freshly squeezed pomegranate juice. But if you are pressed for time, get the juice from the store. Make sure nothing is added to the juice.

Traditionally, sugar and lemon juice are not added to pomegranate molasses. It’s only the pomegranate juice that is reduced. But, sometimes, the pomegranate we get is not very sweet and juicy. Hence, I like to add some sugar. You can skip it.

How To Make Pomegranate Molasses

Take Out The Pomegranate Arils

Wash the pomegranates and wipe them using a kitchen cloth.

Now, cut the pomegranate in half using a sharp knife.

Keep a large bowl on the kitchen counter and hold half the pomegranate over the bowl with the cut side down.

Now, start hitting the pomegranate with something heavy. I used my rolling pin, but you can also use a meat tenderizer. Keep rotating the pomegranate as you go.

The arils will start to fall in the bowl. Keep hitting until all the seeds are collected in the bowl. Take a few seeds out using your fingers if they are still left.

Deseed all the pomegranates in the same manner.

How to peel a pomegranate steps 1-4

Make The Pomegranate Juice

Once you have removed all the arils, check for any rind or membrane attached to them. This step is crucial because if any rind or membrane is attached to the arils while juicing, it will make the molasses bitter, and you will not want to use it.

Now transfer the arils to the large jar of a high-speed blender and pulse until the arils are just broken. Do not grind too much; otherwise, the hard part of the seeds will also cause bitterness.

Pass the juice through a mesh strainer and keep pressing it with the back of a spoon to extract as much juice as possible. Discard the leftover.

Pomegranate juice steps 1-4
Pomegranate juice kept in a glass bottle.

Make The Molasses

Measure 5 cups of pomegranate juice and add it to a pan with ½ cup granulated sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. If the juice is very sweet, skip adding sugar.

Pomegranate juice, sugar and lemon juice added to a pan.

Cook on medium heat until the mixture thickens up.

Remove the foam that collects on top while cooking using a slotted spatula.

Removing the foam that collected on top.

The juice will take 45 minutes to an hour to thicken to the right consistency.

Keep stirring at regular intervals to avoid the molasses burning from the bottom of the pan.

The last 10-15 minutes of cooking are crucial. The molasses cooks very fast at the end and sometimes becomes hard after cooling, so be very vigilant.

Reduced juice.

Do a spoon test to check if it is cooked to the perfect consistency. Dip the spoon in the molasses and trace a line across the back of the spoon with your fingertip. If the line remains visible, it is cooked perfectly. Keep in mind that the molasses will thicken further upon cooling.

Doing the spoon test.

You will get 1 to 1 ¼ cups of cooked molasses from 5 cups of juice.

Remove the pan from the heat and let the molasses cool down for 10 minutes. Transfer it to a clean glass jar and refrigerate it until use.

Ready pomegranate molasses.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does pomegranate molasses turn bitter sometimes?

When the pomegranate arils are not properly separated from the rind, some of the rind gets pureed along with the arils. This causes bitterness in the pomegranate molasses. So, make sure there is no rind attached to the arils before juicing.

Can I use canned juice to make pomegranate molasses?

Canned juice has other ingredients that we might not know about. So, I recommend making molasses using fresh pomegranate juice only. If you must use canned juice, ensure it is only juice and nothing else is added.

Is pomegranate molasse the same as pomegranate concentrate?

It differs from the pomegranate concentrate, also called grenadine syrup. It is much tarter and syrupier than the syrup and much darker in color.

Why do my molasses turn brown?

This happens when you overcook the molasses. Therefore, always monitor it while preparing it and ensure that it doesn’t get overcooked.

How long can I store it?

It keeps well at room temperature for a long time (3-4 weeks). Please keep it in a cool and dry place, away from sunlight.
You can also freeze it for up to a year. Thaw and use.
The canned bottle of pomegranate molasses can be stored for up to 10 years.

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Pomegranate molasses is an essential ingredient in traditional Middle Eastern cooking, and it is made by reducing pomegranate juice. Here is how to make it at home using my simple recipe (vegan, gluten-free).
5 from 3 votes

Pomegranate Molasses Recipe

Pomegranate molasses is an essential ingredient in traditional Middle Eastern cooking, and it is made by reducing pomegranate juice. Here is how to make it at home using my simple recipe.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 10 servings

Ingredients 

  • 5 cups fresh pomegranate juice
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (optional, use if you like it sweeter)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
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Instructions 

Take Out The Pomegranate Arils

  • Wash the pomegranates and wipe them using a kitchen cloth.
  • Now, cut the pomegranate in half using a sharp knife.
  • Keep a large bowl on the kitchen counter and hold one-half of the pomegranate over the bowl with the cut side down.
  • Now start to hit the pomegranate using something heavy. I used my rolling pin, but you can also use a meat tenderizer. Keep rotating the pomegranate as you go.
  • The arils will start to fall in the bowl. Keep hitting until all the seeds are collected in the bowl. If a few seeds are still left, take them out using your fingers.
  • Deseed all the pomegranates in the same manner.

Make The Pomegranate Juice

  • Once you have taken out all the arils, check for any rind or membrane that is attached to them. This step is very important because if there is any rind or membrane attached to the arils while juicing, it will make the molasses bitter, and you will not want to use it.
  • Now. transfer the arils to the large jar of a high-speed blender and pulse until the arils are just broken. Do not grind too much, otherwise the hard part of the seeds will also cause bitterness.
  • Pass the juice through a mesh strainer and keep pressing it with the back of a ladle to extract as much juice as possible. Discard the leftover.

Make The Molasses

  • Add pomegranate juice, granulated sugar, and lemon juice to a pan. You can skip adding sugar if the juice is very sweet.
  • Cook on medium heat until the mixture thickens up.
  • Using a slotted spatula, remove the foam that collects on top while cooking.
  • It will take 45 minutes to 1 hour for the juice to thicken up to the right consistency.
  • Keep stirring at regular intervals to avoid the molasses burning from the bottom of the pan.
  • The last 10-15 of cooking are very crucial. The molasses cook very fast at the end and sometimes become very hard after cooling. So be very vigilant.
  • To check if it is cooked to the perfect consistency, do a spoon test. Dip the spoon in the molasses and trace a line across the back of the spoon with your fingertip. If the line remains visible, it is cooked perfectly. Keep in mind that the molasses will thicken further upon cooling.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and let the molasses cool down for 10 minutes. Transfer it to a clean glass jar and refrigerate it until use.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

It’s best to use fresh pomegranate juice to make the molasses.
Traditionally, sugar and lemon juice are not added to the molasses. It’s only the pomegranate juice that is reduced. But, sometimes, the pomegranates that we get are not very sweet and juicy. Hence, I like to add some sugar. You can totally skip it.
Be careful while peeling the pomegranate. If the white part (rind) mixes with the arils while juicing, the molasses will be bitter.
Don’t overcook the molasses; otherwise, it will set like a toffee.

Nutrition

Calories: 106kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Sodium: 11mg, Potassium: 266mg, Sugar: 25g, Vitamin C: 0.7mg, Calcium: 14mg, Iron: 0.1mg
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