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How To Can Beef

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How to Can BeefLearning how to can beef can be really helpful since this is one of the best alternatives to freezing beef. Canned beef is the best way to have ingredients ready at home for a quick fix meal. It is generally observed that canning is ideal for preserving high quality and leaner cuts of beef. As we all know canning is one of the best methods of



food preservation and canning of beef is a relatively easy process that can be done at home too provided there is strict adherence to safety norms.



Equipments Required to Can Beef


Canning is a process that requires certain specific equipments. These include a pressure canner and Mason-style jars.


  • Pressure Canner – This is similar to a sealed kettle. The canner works by raising pressure on the inside which thereby increases boiling point of water. The normal boiling point of water is 212 degrees F but for ensuring that canned food does not contain bacteria that causes food spoilage and poisoning, it is necessary to sterilize them. Thus meats like beef need to be heated to 240 degrees F. At this temperature, even bacteria such as those causing botulism are destroyed.

  • Mason Jar – These are jars used for canning. There are 2 lids to these jars. One is a flat disc while the other has a screw on ring. They are available in measurements of pints and quarts. They have to be cleaned and checked for damage prior to use.


How To Can Beef – The Process


Beef can be canned either cooked or raw. Some of the cooking methods that best suit canning of beef is stewing, roasting, or browning. The cooked meat can be cut into smaller pieces so that they fit in the jars. The meat can be flavored by adding salt along with boiling broth or water. An inch of headspace should be left in the jars once they are packed tightly with the meat. Remove air bubbles by running a rubber spatula along the sides of the jar.


For raw beef, the meat can be cut into convenient size and put in jars. Salt can be added to jars if desired. Headspace of 1 inch should be left and no liquid is added for canning raw beef. The jar should not be tightly packed.


  1. Clean the mouth of the jars after inserting meat pieces (raw or cooked). Adjust lids and process cans as given in the canner's operating instructions. Ensure to set the canner according to altitude. The canner should be filled with some amount of water. The jars are placed inside and lid is closed. Most of the canners would require 75 minutes for pressure cooking of pint sized jars while the quart sized jars would require close to 90 minutes.

  2. Let the canner de-pressurize completely prior to opening the lid. This can take anywhere between 10 minutes to 45 minutes. Remove jars and let them cool on a wire rack. The jars should be left to cool for 24 hours or overnight.

  3. Check sealing of jars by tilting them. Leaky jars or bubbly ones are not fit for storage. All jars should be labeled with name of contents and canning date. The canned beef jars should be stored in a cool, dry place.


Precautions to Be Taken While Canning Beef


  • It is always better to have extra jars prior to beginning the canning process. This would come in handy if one breaks or cracks.

  • Time and pressure required for effective canning varies with altitude hence check these.

  • Beef that has been precooked and then canned is believed to be more flavorful that canned raw beef.

  • Always check canned beef for spoilage prior to consuming it.


Doesn't the information on how to can beef given above make canning at home less daunting? Go ahead and can the beef since beef canned at home has a better texture and taste than commercially processed ones.


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How To Can Beef