Canning Pears


Canning pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

A couple of weeks ago I was given several buckets of pears. I laid them out in a single layer in the mudroom so they could ripen and soften. Then the weather began to turn cold and I set aside a day to work on them before they froze in the unheated room.

How to can pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

One sinkful at a time, I washed, peeled, sliced, and soaked in a solution of water and lemon juice to prevent browning. Hubby loves pears in heavy syrup so that was my goal.


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It's easy to water-bath can fruit using the raw-pack method, but I really dislike that the fruit floats in the finished jars. It also seems to absorb the liquid in the jars during the canning process, leaving the top pieces of fruit high and dry in storage. Opening the jar later can be a bit of a disappointment.

How to can pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

This can be prevented by simmering the fruit in the syrup before canning; the fruit is softer after the simmering process too. After simmering I used a slotted spoon to transfer the pear slices from the pot to the jars, then topped them off with the hot syrup from the pot. After running a plastic knife along the sides of each jar to dislodge bubbles, adding more liquid if necessary, and wiping the jar rims, I added the canning lids and bands. Into the water bath canner they went, and were processed for 25 minutes for pints (we live more than 1,000 feet above sea level so I have to add an additional 5 minutes to the usual 20 minutes of processing time).

No floating fruit this time, and the jars are so pretty lined up on the counter to cool. One jar didn't seal, so we ate the contents with dinner the next day. They were delicious.

If you need more in-depth directions for canning pears, my tutorial on canning apples gives the basics with step-by-step photos. Be sure to adjust the processing time for pears and for your altitude.

Caramel pear jam, the most decadent jam on the planet!

I kept half a dozen pears aside to make Spiced Caramel Pear Jam and put 2 gallon-size Ziploc bags of peels and cores into the freezer for jelly-making later.

That Spiced Caramel Pear Jam is delicious in these jam bars, too. Just sayin' but you really should make some!


How to can pears in syrup, from Oak Hill Homestead



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