Fig Spread

Fig Spread

I nearly knocked a lady over in the produce section the other day when I saw a display of fresh figs and made an abrupt U-turn with my cart.

If you’re not a fig fan you probably don’t know that they only show up twice a year, and for a very short time at that. I didn’t even have a plan when I started picking up packages of this sweet fruit. I just knew that there was a possibility they’d be gone if I came back later in the week.*

About an hour later, I had a batch of this yummy Fig Spread that has {so far} perked up my morning toast, and made a delicious base for a Pear & Fig & Caramelized Onion Flatbread.

Canning frightens me {I’ll shoot a Glock 9mm at a gun range, but won’t try to “put up” food in my own kitchen…???}. But one look at the fig display and I started thinking about buying Ball jars in bulk and canning Fig Preserves for all my friends. I even went online to the University of Minnesota’s Extension Office to learn how to can, but after reading warnings about delivering clostridium botulinum {a.k.a. botulism} along with these homemade goodies, I decided to stick with my more comfortable “eat it or freeze it” method of preservation.

A pound of Black Mission Figs, a little water, honey, balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt came together to make a delicious spread in less than 30 minutes.

4.7 from 3 reviews
Fig Spread
  • 1 pound fresh figs, stemmed and chopped
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  1. Place chopped figs in medium saucepan and add water. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring, until figs are broken down. About 10 minutes.
  2. Cool slightly, then puree the mixture {using an immersion or regular blender}, then return to saucepan.
  3. Add vinegar, honey and salt. Cook mixture on low, stirring frequently, for an additional 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Fresh figs are naturally sweet, so they don't need additional sugar. You can omit the honey altogether if you like - or add more if you want your spread thicker.

* I was surprised and excited to see fresh figs in 2-pound packages at Costco this past week!



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18 Responses to Fig Spread

  1. Elaine August 20, 2014 at 7:24 pm #

    Oh, yum! Surely the apple in Genesis was really a fig! Your photo looks so seductively delicious I may actually have to haul out the pots. And those other things (what did you call them again??? Oh yes – ingredients!!) Thanks for a moment of inspiration, Morgan!

  2. Thalia @ butter and brioche October 1, 2014 at 7:52 pm #

    I am a serious fig fan, so this recipe is perfect for me! I have never made a fig spread before.. so I definitely need to try the recipe, thanks for sharing it.

    • Morgan Wood October 13, 2014 at 9:49 am #

      Thalia – thanks for stopping by. Let me know if you make any tweaks that you love!

  3. Bonnie Beck October 12, 2014 at 6:56 pm #

    Sounds so good! I made fig spread a while ago with chopped dried figs, (fresh not in season) leftover white wine, honey. I added crushed ginger and chopped basil at the end. Oh, my, so delish.

    • Morgan Wood October 13, 2014 at 9:49 am #

      Oh yum – THAT sounds delicious too. Will have to experiment and play with flavors!

  4. JungliniMama August 5, 2015 at 5:09 pm #

    So far, I have made two small batches. The second, I followed your recipe exactly until I added a little thyme in at the end. Of course, it was yummy before, but the thyme does add a little extra something.
    The first batch, I varied partly on purpose and partly by accident. The on purpose part were the substitutions and additions. The subs were freshly squeezed juice of 1 orange plus enough water to make half a cup of liquid (water), Pomegranate vinegar I found at Trader Joe’s (balsamic vinegar), agave nectar (honey), and 1/4 tsp smoked sea salt + 3/4 tsp kosher salt. At the very end I added about 1/2 cup minced crystallized ginger.
    The accidental part was that I dumped the figs and what little orange pulp was in the mesh strainer into a sauce pan, combined all the remaining ingredients except ginger in a measuring cup, mixed them well, and dumped them in with the figs to cook down together, stirring over medium-low heat for 15ish minutes.
    The combination of intention and oopsie is quite pleasing. The end product is complex and almost strawberryish. Since I developed an allergy to strawberries just a few years ago, I am overjoyed to have something so close.
    Thank you for this recipe. I will have great fun with it!

    • Morgan Wood August 5, 2015 at 7:00 pm #

      Wow! First, thank you for taking the time to come back and share your experience. I LOVE what you’ve done, and I think I’ll try your creative variations myself!!!!! Have fun :)

  5. Cynthia June 23, 2016 at 2:33 pm #

    I made this for a baby shower I am having. All I can say is, Oh baby!!!

    • Morgan Wood June 26, 2016 at 12:51 pm #

      So glad you liked it!

  6. Darlene Brinkman July 24, 2016 at 9:41 am #

    I saw this post and am going to try it. Do you refrigerate it or can process it? I am blessed with a fig tree that I can pick from for two weeks! So my friends either leave me alone or come to help!

    • Morgan Wood July 24, 2016 at 10:40 am #

      Hi Darlene! I’m jealous of your fig tree! I would surely come help :) I refrigerate my spread and have even frozen some. By process do you mean canning? That’s something I’ve yet to try!

  7. PeterZaleski September 17, 2016 at 12:52 pm #

    I just got back from a two-week trip in Germany. While visiting one of my wife’s relatives they served a fig spread with a little bit of sharp mustard in it. It was just fabulous on the cheeses they served. I just bought a Dalmatian fig spread at the local supermarket. I mixed some sharp German mustard in it. It’s sort of tasted like the German experience but not quite. Any ideas out there.?

  8. Sian Lambert September 7, 2017 at 7:18 am #

    I think I might be trying this tonight – accidently bought a tray of figs at the whoelsalers this week

    • Morgan Wood September 9, 2017 at 8:02 am #

      Let me know if you do! Try them sliced thin on pizza with pear, gorgonzola and top with arugula!

  9. Manon September 14, 2018 at 5:58 am #

    For how long will this stay well in the fridge?
    Or else I’ll just put some in the fridge and some in the freezer.
    I just bought a kilo of figs and I am the only one at home who enjoys them so I’ll never be able to finish them all on time I think haha!
    But this recipe looks really good.
    And do you know if you can perhaps freeze the figs a a whole? And just take a few out of the freezer whenever I want some?

    • Morgan Wood September 14, 2018 at 10:43 am #

      Hi! Great question … I’d put some in the freezer for sure. I’ve never frozen whole figs… But if you’re looking for another way to use them, this flatbread is delicious!

      • Manon September 15, 2018 at 3:35 am #

        Thanks a lot!
        The flatbread looks delicious. I am vegan but maybe I can try to swap the cheese for some crumdled tofu!

  10. Ursula September 17, 2018 at 3:34 pm #

    I just made this. It’s very good. I used half the salt and next time I won’t use any. I think I like it a little sweeter rather than salty.

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