Homemade Pomegranate Molasses is a useful DIY food condiment, used in middle eastern cuisine to add flavor to meals.
My pomegranate molasses recipe is made of real seedless pomegranate juice and is the base of this easy recipe!
What is pomegranate molasses?
Pomegranate molasses is a reduced boiled down thick syrup made of pomegranate juice.
A small quantity of sugar can be added or not, and lemon juice is optional as well to add more tartness to the molasses.
The molasses made of fresh pomegranate fruit seed pulp is a traditional middle eastern, Mediterranean Levantine food ingredient, that is used to flavor meals.
In these areas, they use a tart variety of pomegranate to prepare the distinctive flavor profile of an authentic pomegranate molasse paste.
I use what I get and that's a not so sweet version of pomegranate.
unfortunately, I don't know if these pomegranate variations have a name.
Nonetheless, I believe you can make stunning useful homemade molasses with real pomegranate fruits at home!
More recipe ideas just before the recipe card below.
Where to buy Pomegranate Molasses?
If you don't want to make your own molasses from scratch (although I totally recommend you try it out for obvious quality reasons), then you have the option of buying it.
Pomegranate Molasses can be found in Middle Eastern & Mediterranean grocery stores such as in Turkish, Iranian and Lebanese grocery stores.
Sometimes, if you are lucky, you can acquire a bottle of pomegranate juice thickened molasses in your local supermarkets.
Otherwise, just order the condiment online.
Molasses vs Syrup & Grenadine
The major difference between the molasses and pomegranate syrup Grenadine is the lack of sugar in the former.
Molasses are prepared by cooking down the fruit juice to a thick consistency.
The molasses turn darker and the result is an almost brown and red color
Pomegranate syrup includes more sugar to preserve it better and because it's mainly used in drinks.
Grenadine is such as syrup which is super popular in the French-speaking countries.
The commercial Grenadine syrup version is ruby red colored and includes other flavor agents to create a distinctive taste.
On the other hand, again, molasses is tart and is used in meals just like you would use a balsamic sauce.
It can be used in many different ways and adds a lovely distinctive flavor to your meals.
This is why pomegranate molasses is a condiment and the syrup simply a sweet beverage syrup.
You can substitute other tart flavored natural pastes, condiments, and sauces with pomegranate molasses, such as:
- Balsamic Vinegar cooked down
- Tamarind Paste
- Plum Sauce cooked down
- Lingonberry Jam mixed with lemon juice
- Cranberry Sauce thickened by cooking down or mixing with honey and lemon juice
- Date paste with lemon juice
Just keep in mind that the molasses substitution should be a thick tart and not all that sweet paste to qualify as a substitute.
This Pomegranate molasses includes sugar and is prepared with pure real pomegranate fruit juice.
Hence, the juice is preservative free.
It's also completely gluten-free and vegan.
How to make it?
To prepare your own homemade pomegranate molasses you will mainly need time and pure pomegranate juice
You have the option to add sugar and lemon juice to your cooking molasses, these should be kept at a minimum.
Some people use commercial pomegranate juice but that's a poor lazy choice to make a flavorful pomegranate condiment.
You never know what they add to those pomegranate juice packets!
To make your own molasse you simply need to boil it down to a thick consistency.
It's very straightforward and easy.
Do the only downside is that it takes a while to reduce the pomegranate juice.
However, you need to keep an eye on the reducing juice because you don't want it to burn on.
So, while your pomegranate juice is turning into thick molasses, you can cook your dinner or prepare some other treats.
The pomegranate juice is finished reduced whenever you think it's thick enough.
It can take about to 60-90 minutes!
The fruit condiment keeps really well over a very long period of time.
Some people claim they keep theirs over years in the cupboard unopened.
Once opened, I mostly store it in the fridge to avoid mold growth.
This is important in a hot and humid climate.
- Use a drizzle in fruit salads or to your Persian Shirazi salad
- Add some to your dips and sauces
- Prepare a roast chicken in fruit molasses
- Add it to cocktails and drinks
- Create a pomegranate glaze for meats and vegetables
- Mix together a pomegranate vinaigrette salad dressing
- Fesenjan - Iranian stew
- Fattoush salad with zaatar and molasses
- Tabbouleh with pomegranate flavors
- Persian style stuffed Fish with Pomegranate
Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comment section further below!
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Homemade Pomegranate Molasses Recipe
- If you haven't done that yet, prepare your pomegranate juice first. I like mine without seeds, but if you don't mind the taste of seeds in the pomegranate juice, then just blend them to a juice and strain the bits.
- Keep a cooking pot ready and pour the juice into it. Keep on the heat.
- At this point you mix in the sugar or lemon juice, it's optional.
- Bring the whole mix to a rolling boil. Then reduce the heat to a simmer
- Now all you need to do is to slowly reduce the pomegranate juice to a thick molasses. It needs to cook slowly down or else it will burn on or the taste will be compromised.
- The cooking down can take about 60-90 minutes. Stir at times and keep an eye on the thick syrup.
- The molasses is ready when it has thickened totally as seen in my pictures. The molasses will look more liquid when cooking hot, so you can do a test by dripping some into a cold plate or a glass with cold water. That way you will know the consistency quickly and you can decide if you want to bottle it up or let it cook and reduce further. You can choose how thick you want your fruit molasses, it's up to you but don't over do it for obvious reasons.
- Fill the molasses into a clean and sterilized jar. Fill it up to the rim, close with the clean lid well and turn upside down to create a vacuum. Leave it that way for 24 hours.
- Store in a cool and dry place until further use. Keep in the fridge once opened. Don't forget to label with the date and the contents.
- You can add sugar and lemon juice, it's completely optional. I prefer it without the sugar because I use my pomegranate molasses mainly in savory meals. The aim is to season food with the molasses and it should be rather tart. If you want it tarter, then add the lemon juice.