preserve chestnut in whiskey syrup

How to preserve chestnut (homemade gift)

Preserve chestnuts when they are in season is a good idea to enjoy them throughout many months ahead. And if you use a cute jar and add a festive label, they can make a perfect Christmas gift.

Whenever canning or preserving food in jars, it’s very important to use clean and sterilized jars, possibly new. You can follow these steps to make sure the jars are sterilized.

The secret to easy-peel chestnuts is soaking them in water and then parboiling them before they roast. This softens and loosens the inner skin which makes them easy to peel. It will still take a while to peel all of them so make sure to plan time ahead. The ingredients listed below make more than two 8 oz. jars (250 ml), but many chestnuts usually break or are not good. If you manage to save all of them, this amount will make 3 jars. Also, I have used whiskey but you can also use cognac, rum or triple sec, following your taste.

If you are looking to make other homemade gifts for this Holiday season, check out this article with all my ideas: Christmas gifts or this post about gluten-free cookies.

Step by step to preserve chestnuts:

Check out the full recipe to make chestnuts in whiskey syrup:

How to preserve chestnut (homemade gift)

4 from 1 vote
Course: SnacksCuisine: MediterraneanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time


Total time




  • 1 cup sugar (200 g)

  • 1 cup water (240 g) 

  • ¼ cup whiskey (60 g)

  • 35 oz chestnuts (1 kg)

  • 2 vanilla beans

How to

  • Roasting the chestnuts:
  • Wash the chestnuts and use a sharp paring knife to score a straight line laterally or an ‘X’ shape across the rounded part of the chestnut.
  • Parboil the chestnuts for 4 to 5 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F/220°C.
  • Place them on a baking tray well spaced and roast them in the oven at v degrees F for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the inner nut is soft and tender and the outer shell has peeled back. 
  • When it’s cool enough to handle but still hot, peel back the outer and inner shell to pop out the chestnut. 
  • Making the syrup:
  • Stir the sugar with water and split vanilla beans, in a saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves.
  • Remove from heat and stir in ¼ cup of whisky. Pack the roasted and peeled chestnuts (see above) into sterilised jars. Add a vanilla bean in each jar.
  • Pour over the warm syrup to completely cover. Seal lids tightly. Flip the jars over and let them cool down in this position.
  • Store in a cool, dry place for at least 1 week before eating, or up to 6 months. Place in the fridge after opening.

Want more recipes like this?

Follow me @martainthejar on Instagram and see!

Ready to try this recipe?

Save it from my Pinterest @martainthejar !

If you’d like to stay updated on all the recipes I publish, follow my Instagram account. You can also write me there anytime you might ahve

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *