Canning 101: Your Guide To Homemade Canned Goods

Canning is making a comeback with chefs and savvy home cooks. Canning creates tasty goodies that are full of the flavours of the season. This summer, whip up delicious canned creations to savour summers’ bounty all year long.

Photo courtesy of 
Tori Avery

What You’ll Need

Jars with lids: You’ll need mason jars that will be big enough to hold whatever you’re making. If you’re making pickles you’ll want larger jars compared to ones you’ll need for jams or chutneys.

Large pot with lid: You’ll also need a large enough pot to hold your jars and enough boiling water to cover the jars. If your pot comes with a wire rack, this will be beneficial during the sealing process.

Jar Lifters: Jar lifters are not entirely necessary but if you’re planning on doing a lot of canning, these could be worth the small investment.

Photo courtesy of 
Tori Avery

Your Ingredients

To create the best canned goods, you’ll need the best ingredients. Visit your favourite farmers’ market or grocery store with reputable produce and pick the freshest, plumpest and blemish-free fruits or vegetables. Don’t hesitate to talk to the famer and ask them what’s best for canning at this time of year. They will provide you with a knowledgeable answer – after all, they are the professionals. From peaches, berry jams and jellies, to pickles and beans, asparagus and tomato sauce, the options are endless.

Photo Courtesy of Intellectual Takeout

The Process

Sanitize Your Jars: First, wash the jars, lids, and screw bands in hot water, and rinse them thoroughly. Next, place the jars upright on a wire rack in a large pot, fill the pot with hot water until the jars are completely submerged. Bring the water to a boil and let the jars and lids simmer for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the hot, sterilized jars and lids one at a time and allow them to drain.

Prep Your Ingredients: Prep and chop all your ingredients so they are ready for the canning process. Whether you’re making jam or pickles, this is the time to get everything ready. Once the ingredients are prepped, pour them into the sanitized jars and wipe the sides meticulously.

Sealing: Once the jars have been filled and wiped clean, place your lids on top and hold them down tightly while you screw on the tops tightly. Once the jars have all received a proper lid, place them in large pot equipped with the wire rack, and fill the pot with hot water. Add enough water to cover the jars by 2 inches, and bring the water to a boil. Boil the jars for 10 minutes; remove the jars from the water and allow them to rest for 24 hours. After 24 hours, take this time to notice the indent in the lid and listen for the ‘pop!’ – this means the jars have been properly vacuum sealed and your canning has been a success!

Utilize a rainy day to get through a portion of your canning. Homemade canned goods are a great option for hostess or thank you gifts and are always appreciated by friends and family. Reach out to aunts and uncles, grandparents and other family members for tried and true canning recipes. Involve kids, nieces and nephews, and girlfriends in the process to keep those family recipes and traditions alive.

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