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How to Can Homemade Chili

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If you are looking for the best recipe ever for canning homemade chili, you don't need to look any further! My family is picky about their chili. Seriously, if your family doesn't like your canned food better than what you can buy at the store, you may be wasting your time canning your own food, especially if it is your spouse who doesn't like the canned food you've made!

Can Homemade Chili Be Canned?

Oh my, yes! Homemade chili can be canned. But you will need a pressure canner to can it. If you are going to can anything with meat or beans in it, it has to be pressure canned. Because meat and beans are both low acid foods, chili can not be canned in a water bath canner.

canning homemade chili

Finally, The Perfect Recipe for Canning Chili

When I am testing out canning recipes, my family HAS to like it, or I don't bother making it again. Some recipes are definitely better than others, and chili recipes are no exception.

I've experimented with several different chili recipes, and this is the one I came up with. I was really surprised with how good it turned out, and my family LOVED it! Finally, the perfect chili recipe.


3 c. dried pinto or kidney beans
5 tsp. salt
3 lb. ground beef
1 1/2 c. onions, chopped
1 c. bell peppers, chopped
1 tsp. black pepper
3 to 6 tbsp. chili seasoning mix*
8 c. tomatoes, chopped
4 c. tomato juice
1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce

*Note: You can use either store-bought chili seasoning mix or my homemade chili seasoning mix.

Wash beans and place them in a large stock pot. Cover them with water, at least 2 inches above beans. Soak overnight.

[Quickstart method: Bring beans and water to a boil and turn off heat. Place lid on pan and let set for 1 hour before using.]

Rinse beans and replace with fresh water. Add 2 tsp. salt. Heat until simmering and cook for 30 minutes. Drain water from beans.

In a large skillet, brown hamburger, onions, and bell peppers. Place them in a large stock pot and add beans. Add tomatoes, tomato juice, tomato sauce, 3 tsp. salt, pepper, and chili seasoning mix. Simmer 5 minutes.

Ladle hot mixture into sterilized canning jars, leaving 1 inch head space. Wipe rims of jars with a clean dish towel and place lids and rings on jars.

Process jars in pressure canner at 11 pounds pressure for 75 minutes for pints and 90 minutes for quarts. After pressure has been released from the pressure canner, remove the jars from canner and let them cool on a kitchen towel on the counter until lids seal (if they didn't already seal in the canner).

How Long Does Canned Chili Last?

Canned foods such as chili have a shelf life of at least 1-2 years, if you store the jars in a cool dark place.

Yield: 6 quarts or 12 pints

New to pressure canning and want to be walked through the pressure canning process step by step? Check out my video based canning courses.

Copyright 2016, Creative Homemaking, LLC. This article may not be reprinted.

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Rachel Paxton
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