Fresh Family Meals Made for Everyday Life

Canning + Preserving

Feed your family healthier food all year round by preserving the flavors of the season. These tried and true recipes and methods for saving fruits and vegetables are perfect for beginners.

Is canning really worth it?

In our opinion? Absolutely! When you can, freeze, or otherwise preserve fruits and vegetables, you’re doing so when they are in season. This means:

  • You’ll save money. Produce is much cheaper when it is in season.
  • Your food will taste better. If you live in a cooler climate and have ever eaten a “fresh” tomato in January, you’ll know that it is a sad imitation of a summer tomato.
  • You’ll always have quality produce available. If a storm traps you at home, or the grocery shelves are looking a little bare, you’ll still have a stash of fruits and vegetables at home.
  • You’ll have instant gifts. A jar of jam or a bottle of homemade hot sauce is always appreciated—who doesn’t love food?

If I want to freeze vegetables, do I need a big freezer?

Freezing is one of the simplest ways to get started with food preservation. There’s no worrying about whether a jar lid sealed, or making sure your ingredient ratios are just right.

And you don’t necessarily need a lot of space! Frozen herbs take up about as much room as a tray of ice cubes. Frozen corn can be frozen flat in freezer bags, making it easy to slide them in to small spaces.

Where should I start with canning or preserving?

Start with whatever you are the most likely to eat! Instant pot applesauce is super simple, and is way more interesting than what you’d buy in a store. Our method for storing winter squash is perfect if you got a little overenthusiastic in your garden planting. And homemade pumpkin puree will give your favorite fall baked goods more flavor.

What supplies do I need for your canning recipes?

For all water bath canning recipes, there are a few things you MUST have:

  • Jars, lids, and rings. Obviously, if you’re going to can, you need something to can IN. You can find canning jars in most grocery or hardware stores.
  • Water bath canner or large stock pot. To make your canned goods shelf-stable, you need to submerge the filled jars in a boiling water bath. Any large pot will work– in fact, most “canners” you can buy are actually just big stock pots with a canning rack stuck inside. If you already have a big pot, you can just buy the rack (don’t skip this—it both protects the jars and makes sure your food gets cooked all the way through!).
  • Jar lifter. Wet glass jars are SO slippery. Spend the few bucks and get yourself a good jar lifter.
  • Dish towels, knives, cutting boards, colander, other general kitchen tools. Everything else you really need for canning, you probably already have in your kitchen!

There are a few other items that make your canning experience easier, but these are what you absolutely need.

Our most popular preserving and canning recipes:

Check out some of our favorite canning recipes for beginners!

Lifting jar of jam out of waterbath canner.
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Four stacks of mason jars of various sizes, all filled with canned goods.

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