Canning Green Beans for Food Storage
Freshly harvested string beans are one of my favorite vegetables. The first year I started my garden, I planted a lot of different types of bush and pole beans. I loved the different colors and shapes. I may have gone a little bit overboard.
After eating my fill and giving a lot away, I blanched and froze extra to enjoy over winter. I was disappointed with the frozen string beans. I didn’t like the rubbery texture or the squeaky feeling they had on my teeth when I chewed them. I decided to try canning string beans instead.
The mission of canning green beans is what prompted me to invest in a pressure canner. Like carrots, string beans are a low acid food and can only be canned safely by using a pressure canner. I did some research and purchased the least expensive one I could find, Presto 16-Quart Aluminum Pressure Canner. It holds a canner load of 9 pint sized jars and I can lift a full canner load off the stove without help.
Harvest your string beans in their prime when they are tender and small to medium sized. String beans grow quickly and I like to pick them every day so they don’t grow too big, but sometimes they get away from me. Select the small to medium sizes string beans for preserving. The large or seedy pods may taste ok when eating fresh, but they don’t hold up very well to canning and tend to get soft. Wash and store in zipper bags for a few days until you have enough for a full canner load. I like to aim for about 10 pounds to fill 9 pint sized jars.
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