One of our readers Amber H. sent us this guest post on canning meat. She shows you how each step goes and can help you save money by getting your meat on sale, buying in bulk, and canning it to use later. Doing this can help your stockpile, save on the electric freezer bill because you wont need to put this in the freezer!
How to Can Meat
75 minutes for pint jars and 90 minutes for quart jars. That extra 15 minutes for quart jars is necessary. It's REALLY important to follow the instructions precisely! I've been canning meat for a couple of years and we absolutely LOVE it! We use canned chicken, beef chunks, and hamburger. It is wonderful to have meat fully cooked and ready to go!
I recently saw a show of some sort on TV about someone that canned their own meat. Have a pressure cooker and all that was wondering though about the shelf life. How long should it be stored safely before it needs to be tossed? I am going to give this a shot. Now if they will only have a big meat sale to make my day.
I have recipes for canned apple cake and pumpkin bread if you wish to have them! Just let me know! Thanks
I am scared to can meat because of all I hear about bacteria. How long does canned meat last on a shelf and how can I tell once I open whether it's good or not? Thanks and I really would like to try this. Is venison done the same way?
You REALLY should state that a pressure canner is absolutely necessary for canning meat. And if you have a hand-me-down or garage sale pressure canner, you need to have the gauge checked at your local county extension office. Pressure canning is wonderful but there is a big learning curve in order to know all the dos and don'ts. If someone does it wrong, there could be very serious health consequences.FWIW, we can chicken breast in broth. I have heard that most canning authorities really suggest some sort of liquid any time you can meat. We tried ground beef but I couldn't stand the texture of the finished product...it was kind of grainy. I prefer to fry up a big batch and then use freezer bags for ground beef. Pork stew, chicken soup (no rice or noodles,) chili...these are the things we can regularly)
I just canned chicken for the first time with my Zaycon chicken. All the books I have say to put water in the jar with the chicken. The extra water keeps the jar full rather than half full like some of the pictures above. From what I've read, it's a personal preference thing.
And I should add... check the instructions that came with your pressure cooker. You likely only need 1-2 inches of water in your canner (which will speed up the "rocking" process). Additinally, most instruction manuals include the directions for canning meats, vegetables, and sauces.
You do not need to fill the jars with water when canning beef (or in my case, it's more often moose) that is raw. If you brown it first you should fill it half way with beef broth, but cooking raw you do not need to add any liquid. Pack the jars very tightly. The meat shrinks up a lot in the cooking process. We can meat and fish year round here in Alaska, and love having quick, healthy dinners that can be stored outside of a freezer. My husband's favorite way to eat canned moose is shredded on sandwich bread with dijon mustard. I even pack small pieces in the kids' lunches and they enjoy dipping it in ketchup or mustard.
Tiki,My main reason for canning is for those busy nights when I have forgotten to thaw and need meat in a hurry for taco's, casserole, etc. It's fabulous on sports nights as we often have practice and games right at 5 p.m. It's already cooked, you just pop the top, warm and put it into what you are preparing. Another reason is to have cooked proteins in your food storage and of course to save on freezer space.
I can meat all the time. Yes, you can can fish the same way. It is very convenient to use because it is already cooked and saves time. I use it in my casseroles, soups and stews, bbq sandwiches, barritos etc. I have also made fish loaf with canned salmon and my famil loves it!
The reason I can my meat instead of freezing is 1)convenience - meal prep is so fast if the meat is already cut up and cooked, I don't have to remember to thaw it and I can have some meals ready in minutes 2)the meat falls apart when reheated like shredded chicken, beef, pork - so yummy and no time shredding it 3) if power goes out I don't have to worry about my meat going bad 4)easy to take on campouts also without having to worry about it going bad. There is no limit to what you can do with the meats. Some of my favorites are bbq pork sandwiches. (Open jar, dump into sauce pan, add bbq sauce and simmer until warm - done!) I use chicken, pork, or beef chunks for various stir fry/Chinese dishes, and Mexican dishes. Taquitoes are awesome with the meat ready to go too. Stroganoff, casseroles, chicken salad. I also can ready made meals with the meat and sauce together. I put water in with all my meats and use the broth separately or with the meat depending on the dish I'm making.
I have a temperature question. If the meat is cold, do you need warm jars and warm water? Wouldn't it work to just use room temperature jars and water in the canner so they can all warm up inside the canner?
Great Post!! I just got a pressure cooker this summer and started learning how to can, mostly homemade jams and veggies so this definitely will broaden my horizons.
Why would you choose to can your meat instead of freezing it? Are you limited to the way you use it once it's been canned?
no you can not can meat with a water bath canner....must be pressure canned to kill the bacterias....very important. depending on your canner, it is also based on pressure in your canner for different meats. never tried beef before but love canned chicken makes great chicken salad, soups, etc...
I don't have a canner. Does it work with a hot bath on the stove? Does anybody know how to can fish?