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I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
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Monday, October 22, 2007

Home Canned Kidney Beans & Lima Beans

Even though I cook the majority of our meals from scratch I do like having homemade convenience foods in the pantry. Home canned beans are one of those convenience foods. I decided to can kidney and lima beans today. In an earlier entry I mentioned canning kidney beans but did not give the method. The first question is why would you can beans when they are so inexpensive in the stores. Consider that a bag of beans will cost me about $1 and give me about 16 - 500 ml jars at a cost of 6 cents per jar. Economically this is considerably cheaper than store bought canned beans bought on sale at 79 cents per can.

Home Canned Kidney and Lima Beans

Dried beans are extremely easy to can but you do need to pressure can. Dried beans can be canned anytime throughout the year as long as you have a supply of dried beans. These are convenient to have on the pantry shelf ready to use. Economically it is best to can a full canner load. There are several methods of canning beans including the USDA recommended method. I used a different processing method based on a long soak followed by slow heat then processing. The jars look quite nice!

I ended up with 17 - 500 ml jars of kidney beans, eight were red kidney beans and the remainder were dark red kidney beans. I only had enough lima beans for 3 - 500 ml jars but we don't use a lot of lima beans so that should be fine for now. While on first glance this looks like a lot of kidney beans consider that 3 to 4 jars go into a batch of chili so I really only have enough kidney beans for four large batches of chili meaning I will be canning kidney beans again the first part of the new year.

Canning Dried Beans
kidney, lima, navy, etc.

Soak beans overnight or 12 hours. Drain. Fill sterilized 500 ml jars about 2/3 full with the soaked beans. Pour water over the beans leaving 1 - inch headspace. Wipe the rim and adjust two piece caps. Place the jars in the pressure canner and put the lid on. Heat on medium heat for 30 minutes. Increase temperature to high and vent canner according to your manufacturer's recommendations. Pressure can 75 minutes at 10 lb pressure for 500 ml (pint) jars. Turn off heat. When canner has depressurized, remove jars and allow to cool. Check for seals then label and store.

9 food lovers commented:

tweezle said...

I did kidney beans last year, and the directions said to fill 3/4 full. There was no slow heat - and I ended up with beans that had burst and were very, very thick and pasty. I'm going to try your method this time. Your beans look lovely and what I want mine to look like. Do you think the slow heat helps?

Garden Gnome said...

Hi tweezle :) This method is slightly different than in the BBB. I've used that method as well with success. This method was easier to put together for canning. The slow heat is really to bring the beans up to temperature before the venting process starts. The entire PC method consists of venting, processing and cooling as tested using hot product. The beans have a slightly firmer texture using this method. The liquid naturally thickens because of the starch content but you can rinse the beans before using if desired.

Anonymous said...

Hi garden gnome: I tried canning kidney beans this year. I followed your basic procedure for the pints. But i actually used quarts, the following is what i did: 4 pounds of beans (light and dark mixed), parboiled for 30 minutes, then put equal amount of beans into 7 quart jars (each approx 3/4 full of beans), filled jars about 1 inch from top of jar with water, then pressure canned at 15 pound pressure for 1 hour and 15 min. They look great. Enjoyed your web page and recipes.

Garden Gnome said...

Hi :) Thanks for visiting and I'm glad you are enjoying my blog. I'm glad your beans came out fine and look good. I've only canned in 500 ml (pint) jars which is what the processing pressure and time was for.

One thing about pressure canning is you don't increase pressure unless you are above 1,000 feet above sea level when going from pints to quarts. What you do is increase time. So for quarts if under 1,000 ft above sea level you would pressure can at 10 pounds pressure for 90 minutes. Your beans should be fine but a might be a bit over processed.

Mouse said...

Can you tell me how the beans turned out? Were they firm and mostly whole, like the ones from the store? Did they burst?

Thanks for this! I'm going to try this when I have a chance.

Garden Gnome said...

Hi Mouse and thanks for visiting :) The beans come out just like store bought. No they don't burst although occasionally there may be a split bean.

Anonymous said...

If you cook ham and lima beans in a crockpot, can you go ahead and debone the meat and pressure can beans and meat for later use?

Suzn said...

I have never grown Kidney Beans b4 until this year. Now I have plants with pods ready to be picked and shelled. Want to pressure can them but everything I read says DRIED. Does this mean I have to DRY them for a spell before canning-???

Sorry to be so stupid about all of this-!

Karen Brown said...

Can you can kidney beans with meat and potatoes and also can you can them after they are cooked if so how long thank you for your help