This easy blackberry sauce is ready in just minutes and is perfect as an ice cream topping, oh, the joy when the warm sauce melts a perfect lemon sorbet or drizzle the cooled blackberry coulis over small cheesecake, pour over homemade pancakes or served as an elegant accompaniment to a cheese plate.

Simple ingredients and a quick cook time make this recipe work anytime. If you like this easy blackberry sauce recipe, try my small batch homemade lemon curdeasy orange curd recipe, and apple butter recipes!

Mason jar of homemade blackberry jam.

Simple Ingredients

  • Fresh Blackberries: Pick fresh ripe, and plump sweet blackberries or use a combination of berries. Sometimes using frozen berries works best, especially since they are usually picked and frozen at the height of ripeness.
  • Sugar: Plain granulated sugar is used to release the juices from the berries. This is a crucial ingredient when making blackberry sauce. It not only adds sweetness but also helps to balance the tartness of the blackberries. Without sugar, the blackberry sauce would be too tart and acidic. Additionally, sugar plays a key role in the texture of the blackberry sauce. When heated, sugar melts, creating a syrupy consistency that helps the sauce to thicken.
  • Lemon: You use both the lemon zest and fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Lemon juice is an important ingredient when making blackberry sauce because it adds a bright and tangy flavor that complements the sweetness of the blackberries. It also helps to balance the flavors and enhances the natural taste of the blackberries.
  • Cornstarch: Cornstarch is used to thicken the blackberry sauce.

How to Make the Sauce

Collage of steps to make blackberry sauce.

Rinse and dry the blackberries. Cover them with sugar in a bowl and let sit for about 30 minutes.

Fresh blackberries sprinkled with sugar in a small saucepan.

In a small saucepan combine the sugar, lemon zest, and blackberries and cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes or until the berries soften.

Mix the lemon juice and water in a small measuring cup or glass. Whisk in the cornstarch to make a paste. Pour the thickener into the blackberries and occasionally stir until the mixture thickens about 4-5 minutes.

Liquid pouring into saucepan of blackberries.

Transfer the blackberry sauce into a mason or jelly jar and let cool. The sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.

Small jar of blackberry jam.

Helpful Tools Used

  • Mesh Strainer
  • Small Saucepan
  • Measuring Cup
  • Fork or Whisk
  • Mason Jars

Recipe Notes and Variations

  • For a smoother sauce, strain the blackberry mixture through a fine-mesh sieve before adding the cornstarch mixture.
  • If you prefer a sweeter sauce, you can increase the sugar to 1/2 cup.
  • To add extra flavor, stir in a teaspoon of vanilla extract or a dash of cinnamon.

Ways to use Blackberry Sauce

Amazing as a cheesecake topping, check out my creamy 6-inch cheesecake recipe.

  • Pour over warm pancakes or french toast
  • Drizzle the warm blackberry sauce over vanilla ice cream
  • Use as a fruit filling in crepes
  • The sauce isn’t just for dessert, it’s also wonderful served over succulent roasted pork.
  • Mix the blackberry sauce in yogurt and granola.
  • Amazing with a roasted chicken.
  • Fabulous as a cheesecake topping.
Closeup of cheesecake topped with homemade blackberry sauce.

How to store the blackberry sauce

If you have any leftovers, store them in a jelly jar with a lid. The sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Common Questions

How to tell if blackberries are ripe?

A ripe blackberry has a deep dull black color, not shiny. It will feel a little soft to the touch and slightly tender. If the blackberry is red or purple, it’s not ripe yet.

How do I fix a too-thin blackberry sauce?

The amount of juice the blackberries release will vary. If the sauce is too thin, add another teaspoon of cornstarch and continue simmering. The blackberry sauce should thicken up.

How do I fix a blackberry sauce that’s too thick?

Slowly add water and stir; continue adding water until the sauce has the desired consistency.

More lovely fruit sauces


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blackberry sauce in clear jelly jar.

blackberry sauce

Small batch fresh blackberry sauce served warm over pancakes or dessert. Tasty served chilled with a cheese plate.
4.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 28kcal
Author:Sydney Dawes



  • 1 6-ounce package fresh blackberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon water


  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch


  • Rinse the blackberries and pat dry. You can cut larger berries in half.
  • In a small saucepan combine the sugar, lemon zest and blackberries and cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes or until the berries soften.
  • Mix the lemon juice and water in a small measuring cup or glass. Whisk in the cornstarch to make a paste.
  • Pour the thickener into the blackberries and stir occasionally until the mixture begin to thicken, about 4-5 minutes.
  • Transfer sauce into a mason or jelly jar and let cool.The sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.


Choose Fresh, Ripe Blackberries: Fresh and ripe blackberries are naturally sweet and flavorful, making them the best choice for your sauce. However, if fresh blackberries aren’t available, frozen ones can be a good substitute.
Add Sweetener: Depending on the sweetness of your blackberries and your personal taste, you might want to add some sweetener. Sugar is the most common choice, but honey or maple syrup can also be used for a different flavor profile.
Use the Right Amount of Liquid: A little bit of liquid can help to prevent the sauce from becoming too thick. Water, fruit juice, or even a splash of wine can be used. Keep in mind that the blackberries will also release some juice as they cook.
Cook Slowly: Cook the blackberries over medium-low heat until they break down and release their juices. This can take about 10 minutes.
Strain if Desired: If you prefer a smoother sauce without the blackberry seeds, you can strain the sauce through a fine-mesh strainer. However, this step is entirely optional and a matter of personal preference.
Add a Thickener if Needed: If your sauce is too thin, you can add a slurry made from a little cornstarch and water to help thicken it. Just be sure to cook the sauce for a few minutes after adding the slurry to get rid of the starchy taste.
Adjust to Taste: Once your sauce is cooked, taste it and adjust the sweetness or acidity as needed. A little bit of lemon juice can help to balance out the sweetness and bring out the flavor of the blackberries.
Cool Before Using: Let the sauce cool before using it. As it cools, it will thicken slightly.
Recipe can be doubled.


Serving: 2.5 ounces | Calories: 28kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Sodium: 1mg | Sugar: 6g
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