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Canning green beans is not difficult. To learn how to plant, grow and harvest green beans take a look here.
Green Beans are one of the easiest vegetables to grow in a garden. Before you know, you’ll have lots of green beans to harvest and then what can you do with them?
Of course, they can always be cooked immediately for dinner, but if you grow a lot of them, how can you store them for the long term? Today we’ll talk about canning green beans so they can be enjoyed all winter long. It’s much simpler than you may think.
Canning Green Beans
Green beans are a low acidic food which means they do have to be pressurized. If you are not familiar with pressure canning, Laurie, at Common Sense Home has this great article Canning Questions Answered – A Great Canning Resource here.
Canning green beans can be a long process, but just know that all the effort is so much worth it.
Let’s get started:
4.5 – 7.5 pounds of green beans will yield 6 approximately 6 pints or 3 quarts jars
After you have harvested your green beans, if they are not stringless, you will need to string and break them BEFORE canning. Also, you will need to wash them thoroughly. I actually, string and break mine into 2-inch pieces before I wash them. Either way will work just fine. The Key is just to make sure they are washed well with plain water and all the “trash” such as leaves, bugs, etc is removed from them.
Canning Salt (note: do not use regular table salt with iodine in it)
Cooking them can be done in a couple of different ways. (I use the hot pack method).
Raw Pack: Fill a large stockpot with water. Bring it to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and keep water hot.
Hot Pack: Place broken beans in a large stockpot and fill with water, covering the beans completely. Bring beans to a boil. Boil them until they are blanched – changed to a lighter green; about 20 minutes. Keep water hot and reduce heat to a simmer.
In the meantime, while water is heating, fill a large saucepan with water and place jars and lids into the pan. They need to be heated in order to allow the jars to seal properly. No need to boil, just bring water to a “hot” temperature and place jars in it. NOTE: You will need tongs to lift jars out of hot water.
Raw Pack: Using a Jar Funnel, pack raw beans tightly as possible without crushing leaving 1-inch headspace. A great tool for measuring headspace is the Bubble Remover & Head-space Tool. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt to a pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to a quart jar. Ladle hot water over beans in the jar, leaving 1-inch headspace.
Hot Pack: Pack hot beans into a hot jar, leaving 1-inch headspace. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt to a pint jar; 1 teaspoon salt to a quart jar. Ladle the hot cooking water over the beans, leaving 1-inch headspace.
Remove air bubbles with the bubble popper tool. Wipe jar rim clean using a dry clean cloth. Center the hot lid on the jar and adjust the band to finger-tight. Place jar on the RACK in a pressure canner containing 2 inches of simmering water. (This is the pressure canner I use) Repeat jars until the canner is filled.
Place lid on the canner and turn until locked. Adjust heat to a medium-high. Pressure will build in your canner. Vent steam from canner for 10 minutes BEFORE placing weighted gauge on vent; bring pressure up to 10 pounds (psi). Process raw green beans in pint jars for 20 minutes and quart jars for 25 minutes with consistent pressure at 10 pounds. (note: you will have to slowly adjust the temperature to keep at a consistent 10 pounds)
Turn off heat, very gently and carefully, remove the canner from the hot stove and allow to cool until pressure is down to zero, normally about 45 minutes.
Remove weight from canner and after 5 minutes, carefully remove the lid, turning it “away” from you to allow steam, if any, to release in the opposite direction. Let jars cool for 10 minutes without the lid on the canner before removing them.
Using a jar lifter, remove jars from the canner and place them on a clean, dry towel on the counter. Do not tighten lids if they are loose! Allow jars to cool for 12-24 hours, without disturbing them on the counter.
Check seals to make sure the jar is sealed. (If not sealed, place them in the refrigerator to cook immediately. If doing another run of beans, pour unsealed jar into them).
Label and store jars in a cool and dark area.
Canning green beans do take a bit of time but are well worth the effort. Being able to enjoy fresh green beans all winter long is a treat.
If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below and I will be glad to help you.
Enjoy your home-canned green beans!
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Dianne Hadorn is the owner of Hidden Springs Homestead nestled in the hills of East Tennessee. She is a Master Gardener and enjoys helping others learn how to grow and preserve their own food and sharing tips for living a more self-sufficient lifestyle.