Canning the food you grow in your garden is a great way to preserve your harvest and ensure that you have food on hand all year round. Some vegetables are better suited for canning than others, so it is important to make sure that you only can ones that are known to preserve well. Unlike freezing your foods, canning generally preserves the nutrients and flavor better, and keeps the food much fresher than a freezer can. Also, during a power outage, canned foods do not spoil like freezer preserved foods do. The best vegetables for canning are:
Just carrots and water, nothing complicated. All you have to do is peel them and preserve them in a jar with water, salt is optional, and you have them ready to eat year round
An easy vegetable to grow, and an easy vegetable to can, corn makes for great canning. Remove the kernels from the cob, add water, and can. Corn keeps well for winter soups and stews.
Pickling cucumbers is no new way to preserve them, but is one of the most popular and easiest ways to preserve garden cucumbers for year round enjoyment. Pickles are a favorite for sandwiches and on their own, and keep for an amazingly long time.
Onions pickle well, and when added to a mixture of spices and vinegar, are great with meats and sandwiches. You can either can them whole, which takes much longer to cure, or in thin slices that quickly absorb the spices and liquid in the jar.
Another great vegetable for pickling, asparagus soaks up the flavors of the spices in the jar and makes for a great addition to meats and sandwiches, or even to enjoy on its own.
With only water and a small amount of canning salt, canned peas allow you to preserve the flavors of summer for winter soups, stews, or on their own.
Canned tomatoes are another very popular preserved vegetable from the garden that is great to have on hand. Whether with pastas, in stews, or soups, canned tomatoes are a versatile canned vegetable that you will be glad you preserved.
Canning or pickling Brussels sprouts with spices like garlic and cloves brings a whole new flavor to the vegetable. They are great with meats and bread or as a snack on their own.
Canning cabbage, also known as sauerkraut, brings the flavors out of the cabbage and gives it a whole fresh new taste. Sauerkraut heated up is perfect with meat and potato dinners, and gives you a great salty flavor from the pickling.
Canned spinach is a great addition to pastas like lasagnas and casseroles, and it is a good way to keep spinach year round. Can be either done as a puree, or in large chopped leaves, and keeps well and does not lose its natural flavor.