How to Can Peaches the Easy Way!
I have a ton of peaches on my trees this year, however, I do not have any room in my freezer to freeze them so it looks like I will be doing a lot of canning. Good thing canning peaches is quick and easy! Today I’m going to show you just how simple it is.
What do you need to can peaches?
- Steam Canner with Rack or Water-Bath Canner with Rack
- Canning Jars
- Canning lids and rings
- Jar lifter
- Large pot of boiling water
- Sharp knife
- large cookie sheet
- Towels and dishcloths
(Check out the best selling canning products on Amazon).
Step 1 – Select Your Peaches
You will need peaches that are sweet and ripe. They should not be mushy, but they also should not be rock hard. Just as ripe as you would eat them fresh.
What are the best peaches for canning?
Select varieties of peaches that make the work easier, for example, cling-free (also called freestone) peaches are varieties where the pit comes out easily. We’ve always used elberta peaches for canning, since they are nice and large.
How many peaches will fit in one quart sized jar?
Depending on the size of your peaches, you can get about 4 peaches per quart sized jar. The simple syrup recipe here should be enough for 3-4 jars.
Step 2 – Prepare Your Bottles and Lids
Place your jars and rings into a dishwasher on the sterilize setting. If you don’t have a dishwasher, you can easily place your jars in your boiling water canner and bring the water to a boil for 10 minutes. Place the lids in a small saucepan and heat to a simmer, but don’t boil.
Step 3 – Remove the Skin From the Peaches
Rinse your peaches, then place them into a pot of boiling water and blanch for 30 to 60 seconds. After blanching, place them into an ice water bath to keep them from cooking.
The skins should just slip right off. The beauty of this is that you don’t even need to use a knife! If they don’t slip off, try putting them back into the boiling water for a few more seconds. If they still don’t slip right off, your peaches might not be ripe.
Step 4 – Cut the Peaches and Remove the Pits
I like to half my peaches, but many people like to quarter them or even slice them. That is entirely up to how you like to serve them. Cut out any brown spots and mushy areas.
NOTE: Peaches will turn brown when exposed to air, even air in a sealed, sterile jar. To keep the fruit from turning brown, sprinkle 1/4 cup lemon juice or Fruit-Fresh Produce Protector (which is just a mix of citric acid and vitamin C) over a bowlful. Then stir the peaches to make sure all the surfaces have been coated.
Step 5 – Place Peaches into the Bottles
Put your cut peaches face down (pit side down) in your hot and sterilized bottles. Fill bottles with peaches to the line of the lip of the bottle (where the curve ends.) It’s a good idea to pack them fairly tight, without squishing them, they aren’t as likely to float up to the top and turn brown.
Step 6 – Prepare the Syrup
The syrup is just a mixture of sugar and water, you could also use fruit juice. I like a lighter syrup, I figure my kids get their fair share of sugar without adding it here. Here is a chart of how much sugar to add for different types of syrup:
Just add the desired amounts and bring the syrup to a simmer in a medium saucepan.
Carefully pour the hot syrup into the bottles until your peaches are covered. Leave a 1/2 inch of space at the top of the bottle. Use a butter knife and carefully slide it down each side of the bottle to remove any air bubbles.
Some people don’t want to use the simple syrup.
Can I use juice or water to can my peaches?
Since peaches are more acidic, you can can them in water. You could also use half water/half juice (apple or white grape juice).
You could also sweeten the syrup naturally with pure organic maple syrup or honey. Let me know in the comments below how these methods turn out, since I haven’t done it before!
Step 7 – Put on Lids and Rings
Be sure you use a clean damp cloth to wipe around the rim of your bottle. Then place your lid on top of the bottle and screw on the ring. Careful not to over tighten… you can do that later, once the sealed cans have cooled down.
Step 8 – Place on the Steam Canner or Hot Water Bath
Place the jars on the Steam Canner careful to avoid the holes or into a hot water bath. Process quarts for 20 minutes + any altitude time adjustments.
Start the processing time when you can see steam coming out of the hole in the lid or in a hot water bath when the water starts to boil.
Lift jars off of the steam canner or out of the hot water bath with a jar lifter and move them to a draft-free location and let them cool without touching or bumping (usually takes overnight).
Once they are cooled, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sealed. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (making a popping sound), it is not sealed.
And there you go! If canned properly, canned peaches should last for 1-2 years… although if your family loves them as much as my family does, they won’t last that long!
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How to Can Peaches the Easy Way!
- Medium saucepan
- 12 Fresh Peaches or 4 peaches per a quart sized jar
- ¼ cup Lemon juice or your favorite Fruit Fruit-Fresh Produce Protector
- 2 cups Sugar
- 6 cups Water
- yield: 7 cups light simple syrup... add more sugar if you want a medium or heavy syrup, see chart above
Prior to Canning:
- Select peaches that are sweet and ripe.
- Place your jars and rings into a dishwasher on the sterilize setting.
- Place the lids in a small saucepan and heat to a simmer, but don’t boil.
To Can Peaches:
- Place rinsed peaches into a pot of boiling water and blanch for 30 to 60 seconds.
- After blanching, place them into a ice water bath to keep them from cooking.
- Pull the peels off the peaches
- Cut the peaches and remove the pits
- Cut out any brown spots and mushy areas.
- Sprinkle 1/4 cup lemon juice or Fruit-Fresh Produce Protector over a bowl full of peaches (to keep them from going brown)
- Stir the peaches to make sure all the surfaces have been coated.
- Put your cut peaches pit side down into hot, sterilized bottles.
- Fill bottles with peaches to the line of the lip of the bottle (where the curve ends).
- You can pack peaches fairly tight, without squishing them.
- Carefully pour the hot syrup into the bottles until your peaches are covered.
- Leave a 1/2 inch of head space at the top of the bottle.
- With a butter knife, slide down each side of the bottle to remove any air bubbles.
- Use a clean damp cloth and wipe around the rim of your bottle, place lid and screw on the ring
- Place the jars on the Steam canner being careful to avoid the holes or into a hot water bath.
- Process quarts for 20 minutes (+ any altitude time adjustments).
- Processing time begins once you see steam coming out of the hole in the lid or in a hot water bath
- Lift jars off of the steam canner or out of the hot water bath with a jar lifter and move them to a draft free location to let them cool (usually overnight)
- Make sure jars aren't touching or bumping
- Once cooled, store all sealed cans in long term storage. Any unsealed cans (you'll hear a popping sound when you press on the lid), should be placed in the fridge and consumed in the next few days.
- Add the desired amounts of sugar for syrup.
- Bring to a simmer in a medium saucepan.