I consider myself a pressure canning survivalist-prepper, ready-for-anything woman. I feel like Ma Ingalls cooking over an open fire and fighting off the locusts with one hand and the baby on one hip, carrying water from the creek, teaching the children by lamplight…..I am really getting carried away, aren’t I?
Just because I can pressure can beef and remembered how to pressure can vegetables, doesn’t mean I am ready to go back in a time machine to the Olden Days. I like my DVR and my Smart Phone, and I would sure miss computers and heat pumps. I will just can some stuff for us to eat this year.
( See more Easy Recipes here.)
Now all of you ladies and gentlemen who can shelves full of meats and vegetables, stews, jams, jellies are awesome! I only can a few dozen of this and a few dozen of that, but it really makes me feel accomplished.
Especially here in the time of our Wonderful Year of 2020, we found out that the people who canned and preserved food were so much more prepared for a Shelter-in-Place order than those of us who run to the grocery every other day, right?
I was ready for power failures and quick meals just by opening a jar. Hey, I can heat things up over a camp stove. That’s what we did when Hurricane Ike came through Ohio and we lost power for a full 10 days! I worked full time then too! My husband rigged up an old car battery so that I could blow-dry my hair ( no heat, just air) and I went to work. ( I think it was the cold showers that sent me to my “happy place.”)
What’s different about Pressure Canning Chicken?
As far as meats go, they are all about the same. In my case, I am canning just chicken alone to be used in a recipe upon opening. I am planning to make chicken and dumplings, chicken salad, chicken pot pie, chicken fajitas or tacos, chicken noodle dishes like soups or casseroles….anything that could use chicken and you don’t have to wait for it to cook.
I know chicken cooks quickly, but if I have it canned, I would be that much ahead in my lunch or dinner preparations. Don’t you think that’s awesome?
The steps for canning meats was included in this blog post and that method is the same. The only difference was that the first time I canned the beef, I seared it first. I am not doing that anymore. I am packing raw meat with minumum water added. The natural meat juices create the broth which gives me an additional bonus for my efforts.
I Use Raw Chicken When Pressure Canning Chicken
I used about 10 lbs of chicken breast which filled 12 pint jars. ( There was also some rump roast on sale and I filled 4 pints with beef.) I found that canning meats is so much easier because there is not a lot of prep like there is when you can vegetables, such as washing and breaking beans, shucking corn, cutting corn off the cob etc.
With the meats, I just trim all the visible fat from the meats . See those little yellow trimmings yet to be done in that photo above? Have a great pair of kitchen scissors and you are golden!
Update: I just canned 7 quarts of chicken. This batch will be for Chicken Pot Pies! We love them and now I can have one ready without waiting for the chicken to cook. My grandson loves my homemade chicken pot pie and now he can have it more often.
Let The Dishwasher Clean Your Jars – High Heat Drying
Jars and rings are cleaned, sterilized by running through the dishwasher on a heat cycle. Pack the chicken while the jar is still hot. I heat the canning jar “flats” in water and let them simmer gently for 10-15 minutes. Place the eight pints in your canner, add the water called for in the directions ( I added 3 quarts), and then let it come to a boil.
Be sure to follow all safety precautions. YOU MUST PRESSURE CAN MEATS, YOU CANNOT WATER BATH MEATS. See these instructions from the National Center for Home Food Preservation.
Do You Need To Add Salt When Pressure Canning?
I choose not to add salt to my poultry. I will season it when I prepare the dish of choice. If you decide to salt yours, not a problem. The salt does not act as any type of preservative as it is solely for flavoring only.
As I said before, I felt so proud of myself when I pulled my 16th jar from the pressure canner and set it on the counter to cool. I know that there are many people who can so much more than I do and I respect that. It is work but I know I am carrying on a tradition handed down through generations in my family and I hope to inspire my daughter ( it would be a real stretch to think I could inspire my son to can) to carry on the old-time traditions. It is what we women do!