8 Best Fig Preserves Substitutes: Let’s Figure It Out

What are the best substitutes for Fig Preserves?

Are you looking for the best fig preserves substitute? Fig preserves are like the unsung heroes of the pantry, right? I mean, who doesn’t love that sweet, jammy goodness? But sometimes you can find yourself in the kitchen with no fig preserves in sight. Well don’t worry, because we’re diving into the world of fig preserve substitutes, and trust me, it’s more exciting than you’d think!

Try using: Dates, Dried Apricots, Prunes, Raisins, Fig Jam, Honey, Maple Syrup, or also Agave Nectar.

Alright, let’s get down to business. Well, according to my extensive research (because who doesn’t love a well-researched food article?), these substitutes often bring a bit more to the nutritional table. Extra fiber, some vitamins – it’s a win-win!

The world of fig preserve substitutes is vast and exciting. Embrace the unexpected, try something new, and who knows, you might discover a flavor profile that’s even better than the original. So, what substitute will you be experimenting with first?

What are Fig Preserves?

Fig preserves are like little jars of magic for your taste buds! They’re essentially a sweet and sticky concoction made from figs, sugar, and sometimes a hint of lemon juice for that perfect balance of sweetness and tartness. The process involves simmering the figs with sugar until they transform into a thick, luscious spread with an delicious, jam-like consistency. It’s a fantastic way to capture and savor the natural goodness of figs, preserving their flavor for enjoyment throughout the year. Spread it on toast, swirl it into yogurt, or get creative with it in various recipes – fig preserves are a versatile addition to your culinary arsenal.

What can I substitute for Fig Preserves?

Here are some of the best ingredients to substitute the flavor and role that fig preserve provides in your recipes.

  • Dates
  • Dried Apricots
  • Prunes
  • Raisins
  • Fig Jam
  • Honey
  • Maple Syrup
  • Agave Nectar

Fig Preserves substitutes


Dates are nature’s sweet gems – they’re actually the fruit of the date palm tree and are packed with natural sugars, fiber, and various vitamins and minerals. They have a rich, caramel-like sweetness and a chewy texture, making them a versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes.

Now, let’s dive into using dates as a substitute for fig preserves. Here’s a simple guide:

  1. Date Paste: Start by making a date paste. Just remove the pits from the dates and blend them with a bit of water until you get a smooth, thick consistency. This paste can then replace fig preserves in many recipes.
  2. Spread it on Toast: Just like fig preserves, date paste is fantastic spread on toast. Try adding a dollop to your morning toast or use it as a sweet base for nut butter.
  3. Baking Sweet Treats: Have you ever tried using date paste in your baking? It works really well in cookies, muffins, and energy bars, adding natural sweetness and moisture.
  4. Smoothies and Shakes: You can also blend dates into your smoothies or shakes for a natural sweetener. They pair well with fruits, nuts, and even a touch of cinnamon.
  5. Sauces and Glazes: Or why not create sweet sauces or glazes for meats and vegetables by combining date paste with complementary flavors like balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, or citrus juices.
  6. Stuffed Dates: Get creative and stuff dates with nuts or cheese for a delightful appetizer. It’s a sweet and savory combo that never disappoints.

Experiment with the quantity of date paste based on your desired level of sweetness. Dates bring a unique flavor profile to the table, and you might just discover a new favorite ingredient!

Dates as a substitute for fig preserves.

Dried Apricots

Dried apricots are exactly what they sound like – apricots that have been dried to remove their water content, leaving behind a sweet, concentrated fruit with a chewy texture. They’re a fantastic addition to your pantry, offering a burst of natural sweetness and a unique flavor profile.

Now, let’s explore how you can use dried apricots as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Apricot Jam or Spread: If you can find apricot jam or spread, that’s a direct substitute. It shares a similar fruity sweetness with fig preserves and can be used in a one-to-one ratio in most recipes.
  2. Rehydration for Spread: If you have dried apricots, you can rehydrate them by soaking in warm water for a few hours. Once softened, blend them into a smooth paste. This can then serve as a spread or filling, akin to fig preserves.
  3. Baking and Desserts: Chop up some dried apricots and incorporate them into your baking endeavors. They work well in cookies, cakes, and muffins, offering a sweet and chewy element.
  4. Salads and Savory Dishes: Diced dried apricots can add a delightful sweetness to salads or savory dishes. They pair wonderfully with meats, cheeses, and grains, bringing a touch of fruity goodness.
  5. Glazes and Sauces: Or why not create glazes or sauces by simmering chopped dried apricots with a bit of water or fruit juice. This can be brushed onto meats or used as a topping for desserts.
  6. Snacking: Of course, let’s not forget the simple joy of snacking! Enjoy dried apricots on their own or paired with nuts for a quick and tasty treat.

Apricots are a great source of fibre in our diet and it is beleived to can help prevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain and even some cancers.

Dried apricots


Prunes are dried plums, known for their sweet and somewhat tangy flavor. They have a deep, rich sweetness and a chewy texture, making them a versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes. While prunes are often associated with digestive health, they’re also a delightful addition to various recipes.

Now, let’s explore how you can use prunes as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Prune Puree: Similar to date paste, you can create a prune puree by blending prunes with a bit of water until you achieve a smooth consistency. You can use the paste as a sweet and sticky substitute in many recipes.
  2. Baking and Desserts: Prune puree or chopped prunes can also be incorporated into your baking adventures. They work well in cakes, muffins, and bread, providing natural sweetness and moisture.
  3. Sauces and Glazes: Or you can always create sweet and tangy sauces or glazes for meats by simmering prunes with complementary flavors like balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, or orange juice.
  4. Spread on Toast or Crackers: Prune puree can be spread on toast or crackers for a quick and satisfying snack. And if you want bit of added texture just sprinkle in some nuts or seeds.
  5. Chutneys and Compotes: Combine prunes with other fruits, spices, and a bit of sugar to create chutneys or compotes. These can be used as accompaniments to meats, cheeses, or desserts.
  6. Smoothies and Shakes: Blend prunes into your smoothies or shakes for a natural sweetener. They pair well with a variety of fruits and add a thickness to your beverages.

Remember to adjust the quantity based on your desired level of sweetness. Prunes bring a unique depth of flavor, and their natural sweetness can be a delightful surprise in both sweet and savory dishes.

Prunes as a substitute for fig preserves.


Raisins are dried grapes, and they are also nature’s sweet little jewels. Their concentrated sweetness and chewy texture make them a versatile ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes. Now, let’s dive into how you can use raisins as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Raisin Paste: Try blending raisins with a bit of water to create a raisin paste. This can then be used as a spread or filling, just in the same way you would use a fig preserves. Remember to adjust the water quantity to achieve your desired consistency.
  2. Baking: Incorporate chopped raisins into your baking recipes. They always work well in cookies, bread, and muffins, providing bursts of sweetness and a chewy texture.
  3. Oatmeal and Cereal: Stir raisins into your morning oatmeal or cereal for a natural sweetener. This can add a pleasant sweetness and a delightful contrast in texture.
  4. Trail Mix: Or you can create your own trail mix by combining raisins with nuts, seeds, and perhaps a touch of chocolate. It’s a really convenient and tasty snack for on-the-go energy.
  5. Chutneys and Relishes: Combine raisins with other fruits, spices, and vinegar to create chutneys or relishes. These can then be used as condiments for meats, cheeses, or as a side dish.
  6. Rice and Grain Dishes: Why not add raisins to rice or grain dishes for a hint of sweetness? They pair well with savory ingredients, creating a well-balanced flavor profile.
  7. Salads: Sprinkle raisins on salads to add an exciting burst of sweetness. They complement both leafy greens and heartier salad ingredients.

Remember, raisins bring a natural sweetness, and their versatility allows them to seamlessly fit into a variety of dishes.

Raisins as a substitute for fig preserves.

Fig Jam

Fig jam is a delightful spread made by cooking figs with sugar until they reach a thick, jammy consistency. It also shares a similar sweet and fruity flavor profile with fig preserves, making it a fantastic substitute. Here’s how you can use fig jam as an alternative:

  1. Direct Spread: The most straightforward way to use fig jam is as a direct spread on toast, crackers, or also as a topping for pancakes and waffles. It’s an easy and delicious way to enjoy its sweet goodness.
  2. Baking: You could also substitute fig jam in baking recipes that call for fig preserves. Whether it’s in cakes, pastries, or cookies, fig jam can provide the same fruity sweetness and moisture.
  3. Sauces and Glazes: Mix fig jam with a bit of water or juice to create a glaze for meats, especially poultry or pork. It adds a sweet and tangy flavor that can elevate your dishes.
  4. Cheese Pairing: Fig jam is also known as a classic companion for cheese. Serve it alongside a cheese board with various cheeses like Brie, Camembert, or goat cheese for a delightful balance of flavors.
  5. Yogurt Parfaits: Swirl fig jam into yogurt for a quick and tasty parfait. Add granola or nuts for some crunch, and you have a simple yet satisfying treat.
  6. Sandwiches and Wraps: Use fig jam as a condiment in sandwiches or wraps. It pairs well with both savory and sweet fillings, adding a burst of flavor.
  7. Salad Dressing: Mix fig jam with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and also a touch of mustard to create a unique and flavorful salad dressing.

Remember, the versatility of fig jam allows you to get creative in the kitchen. Feel free to experiment with different dishes and discover new ways to enjoy this delicious spread.

Fig jam as a substitute for fig preserves.


Honey is a natural sweet substance which bees produce from the nectar of flowers. You can buy it in its natural honeycomb state, but more commonly we see it in on supermarket shelves in jars in its pasteurized form. It has a distinct and rich sweetness, along with various flavors depending on the types of flowers visited by the bees. Now, let’s explore how you can use honey as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Direct Spread: The simplest way to substitute honey for fig preserves is to spread it directly on toast, muffins, or also crackers. Its natural sweetness can add a delicious touch to your morning routine.
  2. Baking: Use honey as a sweetener in baking recipes that originally call for fig preserves. It works well in cookies, cakes, and also muffins, providing a unique flavor and moisture.
  3. Glazes and Marinades: Create sweet glazes or marinades for meats and vegetables by combining honey with complementary flavors such as balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, or Dijon mustard.
  4. Yogurt or Oatmeal Topping: Drizzle honey over yogurt or some oatmeal for a natural and wholesome sweetener. Add some nuts or also a selection of fruits for extra texture.
  5. Cheese Pairing: Honey also pairs wonderfully well with cheese. So, why not serve it alongside a cheese platter, and you’ll experience a delightful contrast of flavors.
  6. Salad Dressing: Mix honey with some olive oil, lemon juice, and also a pinch of salt to create a sweet and tangy salad dressing. It can add a burst of flavor to your favorite salads.
  7. Tea or Coffee Sweetener: Instead of traditional sugar, sweeten your tea or coffee with honey. It provides a different sweetness and a unique taste.

Remember to adjust the quantity of honey based on your desired level of sweetness. Honey brings its own distinct flavor to the table, and its versatility allows you to experiment in various culinary endeavors.

Honey as a substitute for fig preserves.

Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is a natural sweetener made from the sap of sugar maple trees. The sap is collected, then boiled down to create the sweet and flavorful syrup that many love. It has a distinct, rich taste with delicious caramel undertones. Now, let’s explore how you can use maple syrup as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Direct Drizzle: The simplest way to use maple syrup is as a direct drizzle over pancakes, waffles, toast, or even yogurt. Its unique flavor adds a delightful sweetness.
  2. Baking: You can also substitute maple syrup for fig preserves in baking recipes. It works well in cakes, cookies, and also muffins, imparting a natural sweetness and a hint of maple goodness.
  3. Glazes and Sauces: Then you could try creating sweet glazes or sauces for meats and vegetables by combining maple syrup with complementary ingredients like Dijon mustard, soy sauce, or balsamic vinegar.
  4. Oatmeal or Porridge Topping: You could also drizzle maple syrup over your morning oatmeal or porridge for a sweet kick. Try adding nuts, fruits, or a sprinkle of cinnamon for extra flavor.
  5. Salad Dressing: Mix some maple syrup with olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and also a pinch of salt to create a unique salad dressing. It can add a sweet and savory twist to your salads.
  6. Smoothies and Shakes: Blend maple syrup into your smoothies or shakes for a natural sweetener. It pairs really well with fruits and adds a delightful depth of flavor.
  7. Cheese Pairing: And just like fig preserves, maple syrup pairs well with cheese. Serve it alongside cheese for a simple and elegant appetizer.

Maple syrup’s distinct flavor brings a touch of warmth to your dishes, making it a great substitute.

Maple syrup

Agave Nectar

Agave nectar, also known as agave syrup, is a natural sweetener derived from the sap of the agave plant. It has a mild, neutral flavor and is often used as a healthier alternative to traditional sugars due to its lower glycemic index. Now, let’s explore how you can use agave nectar as a substitute for fig preserves:

  1. Direct Drizzle: Use agave nectar as a direct drizzle over pancakes, waffles, yogurt, or also toast. Its mild sweetness complements various breakfast options.
  2. Baking: Substitute agave nectar for fig preserves in your baking recipes. It works really well in cakes, muffins, and also cookies, providing a gentle sweetness and moisture.
  3. Smoothies and Beverages: Blend some agave nectar into your smoothies or beverages for a natural sweetener. It dissolves easily and also adds sweetness without overwhelming the drink’s flavor.
  4. Fruit Salad Dressing: Mix agave nectar with citrus juice to create a light and refreshing dressing for fruit salads. It enhances the natural sweetness of the fruits.
  5. Yogurt Parfait: Layer agave nectar with yogurt and granola for a simple and tasty parfait. It adds sweetness without the need for additional sugar.
  6. Iced Tea or Lemonade Sweetener: Stir agave nectar into iced tea or lemonade as a liquid sweetener. It blends well, offering a subtle sweetness to your refreshing beverages.
  7. Glazes for Grilled Meats: Or why not create sweet glazes for grilled meats by combining agave nectar with spices, soy sauce, or vinegar. It adds a delightful caramelized finish.

Remember, agave nectar is sweeter than sugar, so you may need less than the amount of fig preserves called for in a recipe. Adjust to taste and enjoy the mild sweetness that agave nectar brings to your dishes.

Agave syrup.


Are Fig Preserves the same as jam?

While fig preserves and jam share some similarities, they’re not exactly the same. Both are sweet spreads which you make by cooking fruit with sugar, but the main difference lies in the fruit consistency. Jam is usually made with crushed fruit, resulting in a smoother texture, while preserves contain larger fruit pieces or even whole fruits, giving them a chunkier feel.

Are Fig Preserves healthy?

Figs are rich in fiber, which is great for digestion, and they also provide essential vitamins and minerals. However, it’s important to keep in mind that preserves typically contain added sugar, so moderation is key. If you’re watching your sugar intake, you might want to opt for varieties with less added sugar or consider making your own at home. As with any food, enjoying fig preserves as part of a balanced diet is the way to go.

Why are my Fig Preserves runny?

The consistency of preserves is influenced by the ratio of fruit to sugar and the actual cooking process. If your fig preserves turned out runny, it might be due to not cooking them long enough or not using enough pectin, a natural thickening agent found in fruits.

Try simmering your preserves a bit longer to allow more water to evaporate and achieve a thicker texture. Alternatively, you can add commercial pectin or incorporate fruits naturally high in pectin, like citrus fruits, to help with the setting process.

Summary for Fig Preserves substitutes

We hope you have found our list of suggestions interesting. And just remember if you do find yourself in a figgy conundrum, there are always options to choose from!

  1. Dates: Simmer these little gems down, and you’ll get a similar rich sweetness. It’s just like nature’s caramel.
  2. Dried Apricots: With their sweet and slightly tart profile, dried apricots can also step in and add a delightful twist to your recipes.
  3. Prunes: Don’t underestimate prunes! They bring a deep, sweet flavor that can work wonders as a fig substitute.
  4. Raisins: These humble buddies can lend a natural sweetness to your dishes, giving you a hint of that figgy goodness.
  5. Fig Jam: I know, it sounds counterintuitive, but if you have access to fig jam instead of preserves, it can often do the trick. It’s a close cousin, and the flavors are usually quite similar.
  6. Honey: Honey can add a touch of sweetness to your recipes. It won’t replicate the texture, but it brings its own unique charm.
  7. Maple Syrup: Maple syrup introduces a rich sweetness with a hint of earthiness, giving your dishes a different but delightful flavor.
  8. Agave Nectar: This natural sweetener can step in gracefully, especially in recipes where you want to control the sweetness level precisely.

Now, don’t just stop at swapping – get creative! Experiment with these substitutes in your recipes, from spreading them on toast to using them in glazes or sauces. So, which substitute will be your culinary sidekick today? Happy cooking!

Okay – that’s you all sorted with suitable substitutes for fig preserves.

We have gathered together a lot more facts on ingredients such as herbs, spices, oils, nuts, etc. if you would like to learn some more.

Or if you need to swap out another ingredient have a look at our Substitutes section.