COOPERATIVE EXTENSION SERVICE
UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE, FOOD AND ENVIRONMENT, LEXINGTON, KY, 40546
FCS3-583
Home Canning Vegetables
Home canning vegetables from your garden or
local farmers market can help you save money
and gain control over what’s in your food while
preserving the bounty of summer for your family’s year-round enjoyment. To ensure safe, high
quality home-canned products, always follow
research-based recommendations when canning.
Ingredients
Select fresh, firm, young vegetables with no
signs of spoilage and process them as soon as possible after harvesting. Canning will not improve
the quality of produce. If you buy the vegetables
you are going to can, try to get them from a local farm or farmers market, since spoilage and
loss of vitamins can begin right after harvest.
Wash vegetables well, whether or not they will be
peeled before processing. Soil may contain many
bacteria, including the spores of Clostridium
botulinum. For ease of packing, uniform cooking, and even heat penetration during processing,
vegetables should be sorted or cut into uniformly
sized pieces.
Salt is optional in canning vegetables. It is used
only for seasoning and does not help to preserve
the food. If salt is used, canning salt is recommended to prevent cloudiness in the canned
product.
Filling Jars
There are two methods that can be used for
packing food into the jars—raw pack and hot
pack. Raw pack means putting raw, unheated
food into the jars. When using this method, most
vegetables should be packed tightly because the
raw vegetables will shrink during processing.
However, some starchy raw vegetables (corn, lima
beans, potatoes, and peas) will expand during
processing, and these should be packed loosely
into the jars.
Hot pack involves cooking or heating the food
for a specified length of time before packing it
into the jars. This practice helps to remove the
air from food tissues, shrinks the food, increases
the vacuum in sealed jars, and improves shelf
life. When using this method, the hot vegetables
should be packed loosely into the jars, since
shrinkage has already taken place.
Some recipes have directions for both raw and
hot packs. Others specify one or the other,
depending on which method is most suitable for
To prevent the risk of botulism, all homecanned vegetables must be processed in a
pressure canner.
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EXTENSION
Some vegetables, including broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, zucchini, summer squash, kohlrabi, and Brussels sprouts, are not suitable for home canning. Try freezing, pickling, or drying
these vegetables for long-term storage. When preserving food, always use research-based
recipes, such as those found on the National Center for Home Food Preservation website at
http://nchfp.uga.edu/, or in the University of Georgia’s So Easy to Preserve.
the specific vegetable being canned. Always use
the type of pack specified in the recipe and the
processing time that goes with that pack. If given
a choice, the hot pack usually yields better color
and flavor.
toxin that causes botulism. For these foods, the
high temperatures reached in a pressure canner
(240 to 250°F at 10 to 15 pounds of pressure) are
necessary to destroy any spores of Clostridium
botulinum that might be present. This method
prevents the spores from growing into bacterial
cells in the canned product and producing the
deadly botulism toxin. The high temperature
must be maintained for a specified length of time,
depending on the vegetable being canned, the way
it is prepared and packed into the jar, and the size
of the jar. It is important to always use the full
processing time and pressure specified in each
recipe.
The size of the jar will affect the rate of heat
penetration into the food. To ensure that all of
the food in the jar receives the full heat treatment
needed to destroy spores of harmful bacteria that
may be present, use only the jar sizes specified in
the recipe and the processing time given for each
jar size. Do not use jars that are larger than those
specified in the recipe.
Why Do I Need to Use a
Pressure Canner?
Altitude affects processing times and
pressures. The processing times and pressures given in this publication are based
on canning at or below 1,000 feet above
sea level. If you live at an altitude greater
than 1,000 feet, please consult the website
for the National Center for Home Food
Preservation located at http://nchfp.uga.edu.
High-acid foods (those with a pH of 4.6 or
lower) contain enough acid to help control the
growth of harmful bacteria and can be safely
processed in a boiling water canner. However,
all fresh vegetables are low-acid foods, with pH
levels ranging from 4.9 to 7.3. They do not contain
enough acid to prevent the growth of the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, which produces the
For more information on safe home canning and the
pressure canner method, please see Home Canning
Basics (FCS3-578).
2
Step-By-Step Canning
Pressure Canner Method
1. Assemble all equipment and utensils.
2. Visually examine jars, lids and bands for defects. Wash in hot, soapy water and rinse well. Place
the jars in simmering water to keep hot until filled. Dry the bands and set aside. Follow the
manufacturer’s instructions for preparing the lids. Many no longer require preheating before
use. Do not boil the lids
3. Use top-quality ingredients; wash fresh vegetables well. Prepare the recipe, following the
directions given.
4. Fill the hot jars, leaving the headspace specified in the recipe. Remove air bubbles and adjust
headspace, if necessary. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper towel. Center lids on jars
and apply bands fingertip tight. Do not over tighten.
5. Following your manufacturer’s instructions, place one to two inches of hot water in the pressure canner. Load filled jars into the canner, using a jar lifter. Keep jars upright at all times.
Fasten the canner lid securely. Leave the weight off the vent port or open the petcock.
6. To vent the canner, heat on high until the water boils and generates steam that can be seen
escaping in a funnel shape through the open vent port or petcock. Set a timer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes of continuous steam, close the petcock or place the counterweight
or weighted gauge over the vent port to begin building pressure in the canner. The canner
should pressurize within three to ten minutes.
7. Start timing the process when the pressure reading on the dial gauge indicates that the
recommended pressure has been reached, or when the weighted gauge begins to jiggle or
rock as the manufacturer describes. Regulate the heat under the canner to maintain a steady
pressure at, or slightly above, the correct gauge pressure for the whole processing time.
8. When the processing time specified in the recipe is complete, turn off the heat to allow the
canner to cool naturally and return to zero pressure. After the canner is completely depressurized, remove the weight from the vent port or open the petcock. At this point, the canner and its
contents will still be hot. Wait 10 minutes, then unfasten the lid and remove it carefully, with the
underside away from you so that the steam coming out of the canner does not burn your face.
9. Remove jars from canner, keeping them upright. Carefully place them onto a towel, leaving a
one-inch space between the jars for proper cooling.
10. After 12 to 24 hours, test seals and remove bands.
11. Wash outside of jars and lid surfaces. Label and store sealed jars in a cool, dark, dry place for
up to two years.
12. Enjoy your very own canned vegetables.
3
Recipes
Beans—Green (Snap, Wax or Italian)
Ingredients
2 pounds beans per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
water to cover
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare beans: Select filled but tender, crisp pods. Remove and discard diseased and rusty pods.
Wash beans and trim ends. Leave whole or cut or snap into 1-inch pieces.
• In a large saucepan, cover beans with boiling water; boil 5 minutes.
• Pack hot beans loosely into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle boiling hot cooking liquid over beans, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 20 minutes, quart jars 25 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Raw Pack
• Prepare beans: Select filled but tender, crisp pods. Remove and discard diseased and rusty pods.
Wash beans and trim ends. Leave whole or cut or snap into 1-inch pieces.
• Pack raw beans tightly into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle boiling water over beans, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 20 minutes, quart jars 25 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 14 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 9 pounds is needed
per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 19 calories, 0 g fat, 3 g carbohydrate, 1 g protein
4
Beans or Peas—Shelled, Dried (All Varieties)
Ingredients
¾ pound shelled beans or peas per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
water to cover
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare beans: Select mature, dry beans or peas. Sort out and discard discolored seeds. Wash
beans or peas.
• Rehydrate dried beans or peas by using one of the following soaking methods:
»» Place dried beans or peas in a large saucepan and cover with water. Soak 12 to 18 hours in a cool
place. Drain water.
»» Place dried beans or peas in a large saucepan and cover with boiling water. Boil 2 minutes.
Remove from heat; soak 1 hour. Drain water.
• In a large saucepan, cover soaked, drained beans or peas with fresh water and boil 30 minutes.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each hot pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each hot quart jar, if desired.
• Fill hot jars with hot beans or peas and cooking water, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 75 minutes, quart jars 90 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 5 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 3¼ pounds is needed
per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 98 to 149 calories, 0 to 1 g fat, 18 to 28 g carbohydrate, 6 to 10 g protein
(depending on variety)
5
Carrots—Sliced or Diced
Ingredients
2½ pounds carrots (without tops) per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
water to cover
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare carrots: Select small carrots, preferably 1 to 1¼ inches in diameter. Larger carrots are
often too fibrous. Wash, peel, and rewash carrots. Slice or dice.
• In a large saucepan, cover carrots with boiling water; bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
• Pack hot carrots into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle hot cooking liquid over carrots, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 25 minutes, quart jars 30 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Raw Pack
• Prepare carrots: Select small carrots, preferably 1 to 1¼ inches in diameter. Larger carrots are
often too fibrous. Wash, peel, and rewash carrots. Slice or dice.
• Pack raw carrots tightly into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle hot water over carrots, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 25 minutes, quart jars 30 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 17½ pounds (without tops) is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 11
pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 18 calories, 0 g fat, 4 g carbohydrate, 0 g protein
6
Corn—Cream Style
Ingredients
2¼ pounds sweet corn per pint
½ teaspoon canning salt per pint (optional)
1 cup boiling water per pint
Caution. Quart jars are not recommended due to the denseness
of the canned product.
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare corn: Select ears containing slightly immature kernels, or of ideal quality for eating fresh.
Husk corn, remove silk, and wash ears.
• In a large saucepan, blanch ears 4 minutes in boiling water.
• Cut corn from cob at about the center of kernel. Scrape remaining corn from cobs with a table
knife.
• To each pint of corn and scrapings, in a large saucepan, add 1 cup of boiling water. Heat to
boiling.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar, if desired.
• Fill hot pint jars with hot corn mixture, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 1 hour 25 minutes at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge pressure canner or
at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 20 pounds (in husks) is needed per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 92 calories, 1 g fat, 23 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein
7
Corn—Whole Kernel
Ingredients
4½ pounds sweet corn per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
1 cup hot water per quart
Canning of some sweeter varieties or too
immature kernels may cause browning.
Can a small amount; check color and
flavor before canning large quantities.
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare corn: Select ears containing slightly immature kernels, or of ideal quality for eating fresh.
Husk corn, remove silk, and wash ears.
• In a large saucepan, blanch ears 3 minutes in boiling water.
• Cut corn from cob at about ¾ the depth of kernel. Caution: Do not scrape cob.
• In a large saucepan, add 1 cup boiling water to each quart of clean kernels. Heat to boiling and
simmer 5 minutes.
• Fill hot pint or quart jars with hot corn, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar or ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar, if desired.
• Ladle hot cooking liquid over corn, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 55 minutes, quart jars 1 hour 25 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weightedgauge pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Raw Pack
• Prepare corn: Select ears containing slightly immature kernels, or of ideal quality for eating fresh.
Husk corn, remove silk, and wash ears.
• In a large saucepan, blanch ears 3 minutes in boiling water.
• Cut corn from cob at about ¾ the depth of kernel. Caution: Do not scrape cob.
• Fill hot pint or quart jars with raw kernels, leaving 1-inch headspace. Do not shake or press down.
• Add 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar or ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar, if desired.
• Ladle fresh boiling water over corn, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 55 minutes, quart jars 1 hour 25 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weightedgauge pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 31½ pounds (in husks) is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 20
pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 65 calories, 1 g fat, 15 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein
8
Peas—Green or English (Shelled)
Ingredients
4½ pounds peas (in pods) per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
water to cover
It is recommended that sugar snap
and Chinese edible pod peas be
frozen for best quality.
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare peas: Select filled pods containing young, tender, sweet seeds. Discard diseased pods.
Shell and wash peas.
• In a large saucepan, cover peas with boiling water. Bring to a boil; boil 2 minutes.
• Fill hot pint or quart jars loosely with hot peas, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle hot cooking liquid over peas, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint or quart jars 40 minutes at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge pressure canner
or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Raw Pack
• Prepare peas: Select filled pods containing young, tender, sweet seeds. Discard diseased pods.
Shell and wash peas.
• Fill hot pint or quart jars with raw peas, leaving 1-inch headspace. Do not shake or press down
peas.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle boiling water over peas, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint or quart jars 40 minutes at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge pressure canner
or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 31½ pounds (in pods) is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 20
pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 59 calories, 0 g fat, 11 g carbohydrate, 4 g protein
9
Potatoes (White)—Cubed or Whole
Ingredients
2½ to 3 pounds potatoes per quart
1 teaspoon canning salt per quart (optional)
water to cover
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare potatoes: Select small to medium-size mature potatoes of ideal quality for cooking.
Potatoes stored below 45°F may discolor when canned. Choose potatoes 1 to 2 inches in diameter
if they are to be packed whole. Wash and peel potatoes. If desired, cut into ½-inch cubes. Place in
ascorbic acid solution (1 teaspoon per gallon) to prevent darkening. Drain.
• In a large saucepan, cook cubed potatoes 2 minutes in boiling water. For whole potatoes, boil 10
minutes. Drain and discard cooking liquid.
• Fill hot pint or quart jars with hot potatoes, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle fresh hot water over potatoes, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 35 minutes, quart jars 40 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weighted-gauge
pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 20 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 13 pounds is needed
per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 54 calories, 0 g fat, 12 g carbohydrate, 1 g protein
10
Pumpkins and Winter Squash—Cubed
Ingredients
2¼ pounds pumpkin or winter squash
per quart
Caution. Do not mash or puree pumpkin
or squash before packing into jars. For
making pies, drain jars and strain or sieve
the cubes at preparation time.
water to cover
Directions
Hot Pack
• Prepare pumpkin or squash: Pumpkins and squash should have a hard rind and stringless, mature
pulp of ideal quality for cooking fresh. Small size pumpkins (sugar or pie varieties) make better
products. Wash, remove seeds, cut into 1-inch wide slices, and peel. Cut flesh into 1-inch cubes.
• In a large saucepan, add pumpkin or squash cubes to boiling water. Boil 2 minutes. Caution: Do
not mash or purée.
• Pack hot cubes into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Ladle hot cooking liquid over cubes, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 55 minutes, quart jars 1 hour 30 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a weightedgauge pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: An average of 16 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 10 pounds is needed
per canner load of 9 pints.
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 42 calories, 0 g fat, 10 g carbohydrate, 1 g protein
11
Mixed Vegetables
Ingredients
6 cups sliced carrots
6 cups cut, whole kernel sweet corn
6 cups cut green beans
6 cups shelled lima beans
4 cups whole or crushed tomatoes
4 cups diced zucchini
7 teaspoons canning salt
You may change the suggested proportions
or substitute other favorite vegetables except
leafy greens, dried beans, cream-style corn,
squash, or sweet potatoes.
Directions
Hot Pack
• In a large saucepan, combine all vegetables. Add enough boiling water to cover pieces and return
to boil. Boil 5 minutes.
• Fill hot vegetables into hot pint or quart jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Add ½ teaspoon salt to each pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar, if desired.
• Ladle hot cooking liquid over vegetables, leaving 1-inch headspace.
• Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with a dampened clean paper
towel; apply two-piece metal caps.
• Process pint jars 1 hour 15 minutes, quart jars 1 hour 30 minutes, at 10 pounds pressure in a
weighted-gauge pressure canner or at 11 pounds pressure in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Yield: 14 pint jars or 7 quart jars
Nutritional Analysis (½ cup): 45 calories, 0 g fat, 9 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein
12
References
Andress, E.L., and J.A. Harrison (2011). So Easy
to Preserve (5th ed.). Athens, GA: Cooperative
Extension, University of Georgia.
FDA/Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition:
Approximate pH of Foods and Food Products (2007). Retrieved January 30, 2014, from
http://www.foodscience.caes.uga.edu/extension/documents/fdaapproximatephoffoodslacfphs.pdf.
Jarden Home Brands (2012). Ball Blue Book Guide
to Preserving. Daleville, IN: Hearthmark.
National Center for Home Food Preservation,
University of Georgia (n.d.). How Do I?...Can
Vegetables. Retrieved January 30, 2014, from
http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can4_vegetable.
html.
United States Department of Agriculture (2013).
National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 26. Retrieved January 31, 2014,
from http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/search/list.
United States Department of Agriculture (2009).
USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning
(Agriculture Information Bulletin No. 539).
Retrieved January 30, 2014, from http://nchfp.
uga.edu/publications/publications_usda.html.
Additional Information
The recipes in this publication are from the
USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning. They
are used with permission for educational purposes only. Complete instructions for canning other
fresh vegetables are available in the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning or on the National
Center for Home Food Preservation website.
Authors
Sandra Bastin, PhD, RD, LD, CCE, Extension
Food and Nutrition Specialist
Debbie Clouthier, BS, Extension Associate
Educational programs of Kentucky Cooperative Extension serve all people regardless of race, color, age, sex, religion, disability, or national origin. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work,
Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Nancy M. Cox, Director, Land Grant Programs, University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment,
Lexington, and Kentucky State University, Frankfort. Copyright © 2015 for materials developed by University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension. This publication may be reproduced in portions or its entirety
for educational or nonprofit purposes only. Permitted users shall give credit to the author(s) and include this copyright notice. Publications are also available on the World Wide Web at www.ca.uky.edu.
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