How to Make Delicious Quince Cheese

by Sarah - Craft Invaders

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit puree, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.


Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

The traditional method for making a fruit cheese would be to simply wash and chop up your whole fruit, cook with a little water to a puree, which you would then pass through a sieve, before adding an equal weight of sugar. Having spent hours trying to sieve fruit puree in the past I decided to take the more convenient approach of peeling and coring my fruit before cooking, so that I could simply puree my fruit with a handheld blender once it was ready.

I used about a kilo of fruit, juice of 2 lemons and about 750g of caster sugar.

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

You can see from my photo that the quince fruit browns very quickly after cutting – even when you toss it in lemon juice which I had done here.

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

Although most recipes call for you to use an equal weight of puree and sugar, I reduced ours by about 25% as I prefer my finished product to be a little less sweet. Add the sugar to your puree and cook over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, at which point you have two choices. The first is to continue to cook, stirring frequently until the paste darkens and becomes so thick that you can see the base of the pan for a couple of seconds after you have passed the spoon across it (this will take a good hour or so). This is the method to use if you want set your fruit cheese in a mould or jar.

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

I use an alternative method as I have an Aga which is always on, so for me it makes much more sense to finish it in the oven. I lined a brownie tin with cling film, spooned my puree in and stuck it in my cool oven which runs at about 130C. I gave my mixture about an hour in there at which point it was firm to touch on top, so I removed it and flipped it over onto a fresh piece of cling film and returned it to the oven for another 30 minutes or so to give the underneath a chance to firm up. As you can see our quince cheese developed a beautiful dark red colour during this time. Once your quince cheese is firm to touch leave to cool and finish setting before cutting.

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

To turn your quince cheese into pate de fruits simply cut into cubes and roll in caster sugar before serving as a petit four.

Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.

Quince cheese is said to mature over time, and benefit from being stored in the fridge for a month before using. Stored in the fridge it should keep for many months. For more Autumn preserve inspiration check out our Rosehip and Crab Apple Jelly and our Pear Piccalilli.Fruit Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve which is often served alongside cheese, or cut into cubes, rolled in sugar and served as a sweetmeat. Many autumn fruits can be used to make fruit cheeses, with crab apples, damsons and the wonderfully fragrant quince fruit being popular choices.


Quince Cheese is a traditional British paste of sweetened fruit purée, cooked into a solid, sliceable preserve and served with cheese or as a sweetmeat.

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12 comments

Kat May 16, 2017 - 12:39 pm

Can any fruit be used? Raspberries, rhubarb, apples? Have never seen quince here…

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Sarah - Craft Invaders May 16, 2017 - 2:34 pm

You can use pretty much any fruit – traditionally fruits such as apple, plums and damsons where used as you need quite a lot of fruit to make a small amount of product. High juice fruits such as berries would work out really expensive on their own, so I’d mix then in with a base fruit such as apple to give you the bulk you need. I would imagine rhubarb would work brilliantly, and taste amazing – I might try it myself!

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kathleen January 7, 2017 - 2:28 am

I used to make this because a house I rented in eastern europe had THREE quince trees. They were wormy and took a lot of work to process them into ‘marmalade’ but when life gives you quinces… Anyway, the funniest ‘aha’ moment was, when unexpected national guests showed up at my door (I’m American), I served squares of this and they marvelled, talking about how they remember when their mothers used to make it back when they were all communists and didn’t have much in the way of candies and other sweets. That really stuck with me that has somehow used food to resurrect their nostalgia.

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Sarah - Craft Invaders January 9, 2017 - 5:18 pm

What a great story Kathleen, in a way it’s why we started the blog – I have so many memories of doing things as a child such as picking fruit and watching my mother turn it into something, I always think that even if the kids just know you can make these things yourself it’s a start 🙂

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Nikki Frank-Hamilton December 5, 2016 - 4:51 pm

I always learn something new when I come here, I love that. I had to look up quince, I’ve never seen or heard of them. I thought that was a basket of lemons, boy was I wrong! I’m going to look for these beauties in the store, they are probably there, I just didn’t know what I was looking for. I found that these fruits are high in nutrients and vitamins, I’ve got to try this! Looks fun and delish!

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Sarah - Craft Invaders December 7, 2016 - 2:34 pm

Do let me know if you find them Nikki, we see them here at farmers markets and in farm shops. I hope to plant some fruit trees eventually, so hopefully will one day be growing my own 🙂

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Mary-the boondocks blog December 1, 2016 - 9:06 pm

I used to have a quince tree in the farm. We would bake them but I have never heard of this idea. Sadly the tree is no more. But I will hold on to your great idea.

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Sarah - Craft Invaders December 2, 2016 - 8:32 am

I have never had baked quince but can imagine they are delicious Mary, what a shame the tree is no more 🙂

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Gina December 1, 2016 - 3:15 pm

You just blew my mind! I’ve never heard of anything like this over in the states before. I’ve never even tasted quince. It looks so interesting and yummy and I just have to find some quince and give it a try. I wonder, do you think it would be possible to make it with agave or honey instead of sugar?

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Sarah - Craft Invaders December 2, 2016 - 8:29 am

Oh good question Gina – I have no idea! I can’t think why it wouldn’t work, but the sugar is what gives it such a long shelf-life so you might find that it didn’t store so well as when it’s made with sugar. Do please let us know if you try it with a different sweetener 🙂

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Michelle December 1, 2016 - 10:29 am

Oh I love these fruit cheese blocks. We have a company in South Africa called Safari (appropriate hey?) that sells “vrugte blokkies” and my mom would always pack us some for lunch when we were at school. I never realized it was so relatively easy to make. I must give it a try. Would the recipe work for any type of fruit?

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Sarah - Craft Invaders December 2, 2016 - 8:26 am

I think the more fibrous fruits work best such as apples, pears and plums. You could add other fruits such as berries to them, but I think if you wanted to make it from just berries you’d probably have to add some gelatin to get the dense set as they’d just cook away to nothing otherwise x

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