Canning Pears

Canned Pears final
A jar of pears

When I was a child my grandmother had a pasture full of pear trees. The pears these trees produced were small but of unequaled flavor to anything I have found in the grocery store. If you have pear trees on your property or have access to a quantity of delicious pears and want to can them, follow these guidelines:

Choose ripe fruit of ideal quality (sub par fruit will not improve in the canning process, so always start with an excellent product), allowing the fruit to ripen for at least 1 day after harvest.

Hot Pack:  Fruit can be packed using a very light, light or medium syrup; or by heating white grape juice, apple juice or water. Wash, peel and cut lengthwise in halves and remove core. Dip them in an ascorbic acid mixture to prevent browning and then drain well. Boil drained pears 5 minutes in water, syrup or juice then pack hot pears into hot jars, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Fill jars with liquid used for cooking them, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe jar rims, adjust lids and process in a boiling water bath.

Pints: 20/25 minutes (20 minutes for elevations under 1000 ft and 25 minutes for over 1000 ft)

Quarts: 25/30 minutes (25 minutes for elevations under 1000 ft and 30 minutes for over 1000 ft)

Note: Though a raw pack method can be used for canning pears, a hot pack is generally preferred. If a raw pack method is desired, follow the instructions for canning peaches with a raw pack.

Quantity: An average of 17-1/2 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 11 pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints. A bushel weighs 50 pounds and yields 16 to 25 quarts—an average of 2-1/2 pounds per quart.

Liz Meimann

I received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees in Food Science at Iowa State University. I love to quilt, sew, cook, and bake. I spent many years gardening, canning, and preserving food for my family when my children were at home.

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