by Texas Homesteader ~
I grow asparagus in my garden each spring. But even if you’re buying it, asparagus is both fresher and less expensive when it’s in season. Wouldn’t you love to enjoy fresh asparagus throughout the year? Me too!
So I decided to preserve my fresh asparagus by canning it!
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Dealing With Bulk Asparagus
Lucky me – I came across a great deal on fresh asparagus and I brought home quite a bit of it. RancherMan & I both love asparagus!
So I steamed and served fresh asparagus as a side dish for a couple of days – it was blissful.
But what to do with the rest of it? I’d love to enjoy fresh asparagus throughout the year.
So I decided to preserve it by canning it! (Note, there is a list of several canning posts at the end of this post. Check it out!)
I’ll share with you how I canned my asparagus. But remember, there are lots of variables for safe canning. Things such as altitude, canner styles, etc. and they often have different directions. Please follow the directions for your canner and location for a delicious yet safe outcome.
The most important thing to know is that asparagus is a low-acid food so it must be pressure-canned for safety. I decided to can mine in quart jars so that I could leave the spears nice & long.
So I brought out and washed up a canner-load of 7 quart jars. And I also brought out my pressure canner, new canning lids and rings, jar lifter, a sauce pan and a larger kettle for boiling water.
What Size Canning Jars – Regular Mouth or Wide Mouth?
Regular mouth jars work fine for these foods since it’s easy to remove them from the jars. Plus regular-mouth canning lids are usually a little less expensive than wide-mouth canning lids.
Although I prefer wide-mouth jars for asparagus, I didn’t have enough for all of the jars I’m canning today to be wide-mouth. So some of this batch of canned asparagus spears would have to be canned in regular-mouth jars.
But I know the asparagus will shrink a bit during the canning process so it still shouldn’t be a problem removing the asparagus from the jars when we’re ready to eat it. So I know my regular-mouth jars will work too.
Regular mouth jars or wide mouth jars – your preference works here. The canning instructions are the same whether using wide mouth or regular mouth quart jars for canning your asparagus.
After I had thoroughly washed the jars I placed them on a cookie sheet and set them in my oven heated to 220 degrees. This helps sanitize the jars & also keeps them hot as I prepare my asparagus spears.
Using Tattler Reusable Canning Jar Lids
Whenever possible I like to use Tattler lids because they’re reusable. I’ve had and used (and re-used) the Tattlers I have for several years now.
If you’re using regular one-time-use canning lids the only difference will be that you won’t need the extra step of tightening the lid differently like you do with Tattler lids. Regular canning lids only need to be finger-tightened once. Tattlers are tightened less loosely going into the canner and you finish tightening them when they’re removed from the canner. All other instructions are the same.
Now I set to finishing my preparations by putting a large kettle of water on to boil, then I boiled a separate small container of water to use for my * Tattler Lids.
When the water was hot (but not boiling) I removed the pan from the heat & placed place the rubber rings in the water to soften them.
Then I washed up the flat white portion of my Tattlers and set them aside.
I love these Tattler lids! I was always somewhat dismayed over the waste of traditional canning lids because you used them once and threw them away.
But now that I’m Using Tattler Lids I’m able to wash & reuse them for years. This has been one of my happiest crunchy purchases, y’all.
About Tattler Reusable Canning Lids
Tattlers fit regular canning jars and use standard rings too. The canning procedure is exactly the same as with traditional canning lids with the exception of how tight you put them on before processing and the fact that you go ahead & tighten them the rest of the way after processing.
According to the Tattler website:
TATTLER REUSABLE CANNING LID USAGE
Tattler Lids do require a bit of variation from conventional metal lids. Being a two piece combination with a rubber gasket ring, Tattler Lids must remain a bit loose during processing in order for the jar to vent the pressure that has built in the jar during processing. An online customer gave us a very good tip on how tight is ‘Just Right’. To get the feel for the correct tightness prior to processing, place the jar on a counter top or other smooth surface, then place your index finger on the lid (do not apply too much pressure while tightening the metal band). Screw the metal band on until the jar begins to spin on the counter top (or other smooth surface). This is the perfect tightness for processing!
THE FOLLOWING FINAL STEP IS CRUCIAL TO ENSURE A GOOD SEAL:
Once the process is completed and the jars are removed from your canner, Let the bubbling die down (approximately 4-5 minutes), as this is pressure still releasing from the jars. Place a towel over the still hot jars (for safety) and finish tightening the metal bands. Now, let your jars cool naturally and when cool to room temperature, remove the metal band and lift the jar slightly by the lid. It should be well sealed. Your food is ready for storing (store without metal screw bands).
Now that all the preparations are done I’m finally ready to start canning my asparagus.
Filling Canning Jars With Asparagus
I’m using the raw-pack method so I washed the spears and cut them to the correct length to fit in my quart jars.
- Pack fresh washed asparagus into canning jars with the spear tips pointing up.
- Add about a teaspoon of canning salt to each jar .
- Poured boiling water into the jars, leaving 1″ headspace.
- Wipe the rim of each jar with a clean wet rag to make sure there were no bits of food on them that would keep canning jars from sealing properly.
- Secured canning lids onto the jars – only finger tight. (see instructions above if using Tattler reusable lids)
Now that my jars of asparagus are ready I placed them in the pressure canner. I canned those spears at 10 lbs for 40 minutes. (follow your canner’s directions)
Then I turned off the heat under the canner and allowed it to gradually cool and reduce the pressure inside the canner before I attempted to remove the weight.
After it was cool and the pressure dropped, I removed the canner’s weight and opened the canner lid. (be sure to always tilt the lid away from you so you’re not burned by rising steam!)
I used my jar lifter & brought the hot jars out of the canner and set them on a kitchen towel to cool overnight.
If you’re using regular single-use lids you’ll hear them plink as they cool. That tells you the jars are sealing. If you’re using tattlers you’ll test them in the morning to assure they sealed.
The following morning I removed the canning-lid rings and tested for proper seal of the flat Tattler lids by very gently applying upward pressure. The lids stayed tight. Yea – success! The jars all sealed properly.
Now that I have my asparagus safely canned, I washed the jars with a hot soapy rag and placed them in my pantry.
They’ll be ready for us when we’re in the mood for asparagus!
There ya go – asparagus for RancherMan & me to enjoy throughout the year! So much better and less expensive than the commercially canned version in the store. And zero-waste too since I’ll reuse my canning jars and Tattler reusable canning lids over & over again.
I enjoy asparagus with a small pat of melted butter and a light sprinkling of salt & pepper. What’s your favorite way to eat asparagus?
Asparagus is a low-acid food. So it must be pressure canned to make it shelf stable. But it's easy. And it results in several shining jars of shelf-stable asparagus in your pantry to enjoy for months to come. #TexasHomesteader
- 25 lbs Fresh asparagus spears
- 7 Quart Large-mouth canning Jars, (can use regular mouth if needed)
- Canning Salt optional
Wash a canner load quantity of quart jars (about 7). Place clean jars on a cookie sheet & place them in a cold oven, turn oven to 220 degrees to keep them hot.
Bring large kettle of water on to boil. You'll be using this water to pour over the asparagus when you're canning it.
In a separate small pan boil about 2 cups of water. Remove pan from heat & only then place canning rings and lids into the pan, cover the pan with its lid to keep hot.
Wash asparagus spears and cut off tough ends. Cut asparagus spears to fit into your jars. Pack asparagus spears tightly in jars, spear side up.
Add 1 teaspoon canning salt to each quart of asparagus (optional) and then fill jar with boiling water, leaving 1" headspace.
Wipe each jar mouth with a clean wet rag to remove any food residue and attach canning jar lids and rings. (the tiniest spec of food residue will keep your jar from sealing!)
Process in a pressure canner at 10 pounds pressure for 30 minutes (pints) or 40 minutes (quarts).
Other Canning Posts
- Crazy Canning Lady: Successes & Failures
- Pressure-Canning Asparagus
- Canning Pears In Light Syrup
- Pear Preserves In Water-Bath Canner
- Water-Bath Canning Pear Relish
- Honeysuckle Jelly – Water-Bath Canned
- Canning Clover Blossom Jelly
- Wild-Plum Jelly Recipe & Canning
- Canning Blueberry Jam
- Pressure-Canning Fresh Corn
- Water-Bath Canning Homemade Apple Pie Filling
- Canning Cinnamon/Vanilla Applesauce
- Homemade Apple Cider
- Canning Fresh Tomato Pasta Sauce
- Pressure-Canning Homemade Broth
- Canning Jar Storage Solution
- Reusable Canning Lids An Eco-Friendly Option
…And Many More
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