Guide to Pressure Canning

Linda Kauppinen

By
@cyrene

If you want to can unpickled vegetables, soup stocks, beans, or any non-acidic food, you’ve got to use a special piece of equipment called a pressure canner. Seriously, this is the one rule about canning that you’ve really got to get right for safety reasons.

Other foods, including fruit, sweet preserves and pickles can be safely canned in a boiling water bath without special equipment.

Each brand of pressure canner is slightly different, and you definitely want to read through the manufacturer’s instructions carefully before using a new pressure canner for the first time.


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Method:

Canning/Preserving

Ingredients

1
purchase the size pressure canner that suits your needs

Directions Step-By-Step

1
What are pressure canners?

Equipment for heat-processing home-canned food is of two main types--boiling-water canners and pressure canners. There are many other types which are NOT recommended by the authorities (see this page for more about obsolete and unsafe canning methods)

Most are designed to hold seven quart jars or eight to nine pints. Small pressure canners hold four quart jars; some large pressure canners hold 18 pint jars in two layers, but hold only seven quart jars. Pressure saucepans with smaller volume capacities are not recommended for use in canning. Small capacity pressure canners are treated in a similar manner as standard larger canners, and should be vented using the typical venting procedures.

Low-acid foods must be processed in a pressure canner to be free of botulism risks. Low-acid foods include meats, dairy, sea food, poultry, vegetables and many fruits. See this page: Acid content of common fruits and vegetables.

Higher acid foods (and those which have been acidified and tested) that may be safely canned in a boiling water bath canner include jams, jellies, pickles, applesauce, apple butter, peaches, peach butter, pears, pear butter, spaghetti sauce without meat, tomatoes, ketchup and tomatoes.
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Pressure Canning - A Step By Step Guide

If you want to can unpickled vegetables, soup stocks, beans, or any non-acidic food, you’ve got to use a special piece of equipment called a pressure canner. Seriously, this is the one rule about canning that you’ve really got to get right for safety reasons.
Other foods, including fruit, sweet preserves and pickles can be safely canned in a boiling water bath without special equipment.

Here's how to safely can food in your pressure canner.
Alkaline and Acidic Foods...and Why It Matters
The difference between acidic and non-acidic (alkaline) foods is the single most important thing you can learn if you want to get into canning. Learn the difference, and you'll preserve jars of fabulous seasonal, local food that you can serve up even in winter. Get this wrong, and, well, it gets scary (botulism, anyone?).
The good news is that it's really easy to get this right.
Removing the Risk of Botulism from Canning - What You Need to Know
Botulism. Just the word is enough to put a terrified expression on the faces of participants in my food preservation workshops, and with good reason. But armed with some facts about this scary bacterium, you will never have to worry about it when you're canning food at home.
High Altitude Canning
If you live at more than 1000 feet above sea level, then the processing times and pressures given in almost all canning recipes don't apply to you. You need to adjust those numbers in order to can food safely at high altitudes. Don't worry - the adjustments are really simple.

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Other Non-Edibles
Main Ingredient: Non-Edible or Other
Regional Style: American
Dietary Needs: Vegetarian