We have five feijoa trees*. We planted three when our son was born (we have this habit of planting fruit trees to celebrate the birth of a child), and then my Dad gave us two more as a birthday present. We didn’t complain, surely you can’t have too many feijoa trees. The trees are technically still babies at 3 years old, however, each new year our feijoa harvest doubles in size. This year we are getting enough to eat our hearts full and even preserve some for winter.

Feijoa & Ginger Chutney | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

Every afternoon it is the children’s task is to head out to the chicken run, which doubles as an orchard, to collect the fallen feijoas and eggs from the chook house. They know not to pick the feijoas off the tree, learned the hard way when impatience led to trying a hard sour fruit straight from the tree. It is the perfect job really for little able bodies so much closer to the ground. And the reward is they get to choose the biggest fruit to eat once they have completed their task. With many of our feijoas being on the ginormous end of the feijoa-size-spectrum, they are two happy campers.

So all the little feijoas get left in the fruit bowl to be scooped and frozen or made into my favourite chutney. Once you eat feijoa chutney you are kind of spoiled forever as it really is the best chutney around…

Feijoa & Ginger Chutney | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

Feijoa & Ginger Chutney | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

And for those reading this from other lands, feijoas are native to Central America, aka pineapple guava / guavasteen. Whomever had the genius to try their luck at growing them in New Zealand I love you the world over. They are heavenly fruit, sweet and juicy with a unique perfume that has you reaching for more. We have friends who plan their trip to New Zealand just so they can be here during feijoa season. That is how good they are.

*The varieties we grow are Kaiteri, Apollo and Anatoki.

Feijoa & Ginger Chutney | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

Feijoa Pear & Ginger Chutney.

Serves: Makes approx. 6 x 300 ml jars

This is my go-to chutney recipe that I often make in autumn when we have excess fruit on hand. Here I have used feijoa and pear as the base fruit however any combination of autumn fruit can be used. The pear adds pectin to help set the chutney without loads of added sugar.


1 kg scooped feijoa flesh

1 kg pears or apples; peeled, cored and roughly chopped into 1cm dice

2 medium onions, finely chopped

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

3cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped

1 cup raisins or sultanas

1/2 cup unrefined sugar; muscovado, rapadura, coconut sugar

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon mixed spice

1/2 cup malt or apple cider vinegar


  • In a large pot combine all the ingredients. Leave to stand for an hour to infuse the flavours and soften the fruit.
  • Bring to a gentle boil. Simmer on a low heat for 1 1/2 hours until thickened - it will thicken more as it cools.
  • Carefully spoon the hot chutney into hot sterilised jars. Screw on the lids and leave to cool on a wooden board. Store chutney in a cool, dark place for up to a year. Once opened keep refrigerated.


Find tips on preserving and sterilising jars HERE




  • Ana Galloway
    3 years ago

    They certainly have to be one of my favorite fruit! And the chutney is delicious too!!!

    • 3 years ago

      I know you moved all the way home just so you could eat feijoas again! x

  • 3 years ago

    Once again, thanks for the inspiration Nicola! Just what I needed with a whole heap of small feijoa’s left in the fruit basket. I made it with apple and left out the sugar ~ it’s brewing away at the moment and tastes awesome! Instead of throwing the apple peels out, I cut them in 2-3cm strips, coated them in cinnamon and they are now drying in the dehydrator. I imagine they’ll make a nice crunchy snack.

    • 3 years ago

      Hi Irma, I am sure it can be made without the sugar as the raisins are plenty sweet. I like using rapadura for its caramel flavour and its not too sweet.
      And I like the idea of those apple peels. My dehydrator has been going on overdrive with pears, persimmons, beetroot and kale chips. Such a great way to prepare easy snacks for the kids. Hope to see you soon 🙂

  • Sherri Boston
    12 months ago

    Hi. I have been making Feijoa Chutneys for years now, and this now has to be my all time favourite. I didn’t have any of the sugar variety’s in your recipe, so used raw sugar. I made with Pears, and I think this is the key…have made with Feijoa and Apple many times, but this is great. The consistency is perfect. Thanks for sharing this recipe with us all.

    • 12 months ago

      Thanks Sherri, any sugar can be used because it is a smaller quantity it won’t overpower the flavour.
      I agree pear truly makes this chutney shine 🙂 Enjoy!

  • Angela Nicholls
    11 months ago

    Hi Nicola,
    can you use the whole feijoa (skin and flesh)) and just thinly slice it for this recipe? I see some recipes do use the whole feijoa and it would save time.

    • 11 months ago

      Hi Angela, yes you can use the whole feijoa, personally I didn’t like the taste when I tried this myself. Probably because it is a low-sugar preserve the tartness of the skin overpowers compared to a chutney with higher sugar that would mask the taste. Let me know how you go if you try using the whole feijoa 🙂
      Thanks, Nicola

      • Angela Nicholls
        11 months ago

        Thanks Nicola for your reply. I peeled the feijoa first and then chopped them up. I used a mixture of feijoa, pear and apple to make up the 2kg of fruit. It all came out lovely and tastes really good even though I overdosed a bit on the ginger. I am grateful to find a recipe that uses very little sugar. Most of the recipes call for 500g and more sugar!! So it is good to try one with less sugar and see that it works beautifully.
        Have you ever used dextrose as a sugar substitute in any of your baking/cooking? I do for baking but I never see it promoted as a sugar substitute in any recipes and I’m beginning to wonder if I’m doing the right thing or not?

        Do you ever come to Christchurch with your cooking workshops?


        • 11 months ago

          Hi Angela, great to hear! It is a very versatile recipe as long as you use the basic quantities of fruit etc. I share lots more low sugar and now sugar preserving recipes in my new cookbook if you get a chance to check it out.
          I haven’t used dextrose myself as I prefer to use a quality unrefined sugar such as rapadura or muscovado. This is just my preference and know there are plenty of sugar options out there so use what you are comfortable with.
          I come to Christchurch once a year to run a day of workshops, usually term 3. I haven’t got the exact date yet for this year but have August penciled. Would you like me to add your email address to my events newsletter – sent out once a term or so? They do fill up fast so a good way to hear about them first 🙂

  • JoBeth
    10 months ago

    Hi Nicola,
    Looking forward to trying this chutney, any particular type of pear or apple you would recommend?
    Thanks JoBeth

    • 10 months ago

      Hi JoBeth, I use any well-ripened pears for this recipe, my favoutite being Bosc or Concorde. And cooking apples such as granny smith or Gravenstein, but braeburn also works well. Some varieties will take longer to soften down and some will be juicier and therefore need longer cooking to evaporate the liquid. I hope this helps 🙂

  • Rebecca Andre
    4 months ago

    Hello Nicola, I’m writing from California and am not sure what you include in your teaspoon of mixed spice. Can you please explain? Our feijoa tree is in full production now. I’ve been making jam out of the fruit but your chutney recipe sounds divine. Thanks for sharing!

    • 4 months ago

      Hi Rebecca, mixed spice is generally a combination of cinnamon, ground ginger, cloves and nutmeg so these mix of the sweet spices will work just fine. Great to hear you have an abundant tree, we are of-course at the other end of summer with summer fruit just beginning. Can’t wait!
      Happy cooking, Nicola

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