Preserving Michigan Fresh green beans

Pressure canning is the only safe way to can green beans.

As green beans begin appearing in gardens and farm markets around Michigan, a question often asked is how to preserve this tasty vegetable? Michigan Fresh green beans are a popular vegetable and enjoyed in many varieties and forms. However, these beans have some steadfast recommendations related to the safe and proper home preservation. Green beans can be frozen or canned, only in a pressure canner. Low-acid foods including vegetables must be canned in a pressure canner to be safely preserved and to prevent the risk of foodborne illness due to botulism. Michigan State University Extension reminds home food preservers that water bath canning is not adequate for the safe preservation and should never be used when home canning vegetables or other low-acid foods.

Pressure canning of green beans can be completed using a hot or raw pack following the directions below:

  • Hot pack: Cover the beans with boiling water; boil for 5 minutes. Pack the hot beans into the hot jars, leaving 1 inch headspace. If desired, add ½ teaspoon salt to pint jars; 1 teaspoon salt to quarts. Fill jar to 1 inch from the top with boiling water. Remove the air bubbles. Wipe the jar rims.
  • Raw pack: Pack beans tightly into jars, leaving 1 inch headspace. If desired, add ½ teaspoon salt to pints, 1 teaspoon to quarts. Fill jars within 1 inch of top with boiling water. Remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rims. Adjust lids.

Recommended process time for snap beans in a dial-gauge pressure canner.

Canner pressure (PSI) at altitudes of

Jar size

Process time (min.)

0 - 2,000 ft

2,001 - 4,000 ft

4,001 - 6,000 ft

6,001 - 8,000 ft

Pints

20

11

12

13

14

Quarts

25

11

12

13

14

Recommended process time for snap beans in a weighted-gauge pressure canner.

Canner pressure (PSI) at altitudes of

Jar size

Process time (min.)

0 - 1,000 ft

Above 1,000 ft

Pints

20

10

15

Quarts

25

10

15

What can you do with canned green beans if you are trying to finish last year’s supply of home preserved green beans? Try this recipe below to add more vegetables to your diet as well as utilize canned green beans.

Green Bean and Tuna Salad

Ingredients

14 ounce package elbow macaroni (try whole-wheat pasta)

15 ounces of green beans (drained)

½ can tuna packed in water (drained and flaked with a fork, about 6 ounces)

½ cup sweet pickles (diced, if you like)

½-cup onions (diced)

1 cup plain low-fat yogurt

½ cup light mayonnaise

1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice

½ teaspoon pepper

Directions:
  1. Prepare elbow macaroni according to package directions and drain.
  2. Add green beans, onions, and tuna. If using sweet pickles, add that in too.
  3. Mix yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and pepper together and toss with macaroni mixture.
  4. Chill before serving.

USDA What’s Cooking, recipe from SNAP Ed Recipe Finder

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