I imagine that you are coming here to find out how to can green beans because you have more than you know what to do with.

Either your garden is producing beans like crazy, or you found a great deal at the local farmer’s market. Regardless of the situation, you have come to the right place.

can green beans
Canning Green Beans is a fantastic way to preserve your bountiful garden harvest.

Although we love to eat fresh green beans for dinner, sometimes, there are just too many to eat before they go bad.

We will use our fresh picked beans in our green bean casserole and even make Garlic Green Beans in our Instant Pot.

However, there are many times that the green beans will start to turn limp before we can devour them all.

And that is when we gather our canning equipment and start to can our green beans. But not just any canning equipment. We pull out our Presto Pressure Canner for the job.

dial pressure canner
There are two types of pressure canners. This one is a dial gauge pressure canner and the other type has a weighted gauge. (Photo courtesy of Sue Rae Edmondson / Shutterstock)

Because beans are a low-acid food, pressure canning is required to kill micro-organisms and to prevent botulism. It is not recommended by the National Center for Home Food Preservation to process green beans in a water bath canner.

But don’t stop reading now — it really is easy!!!  

I will take you through step by step instructions on how to can green beans using a pressure canner.  

How To Can Green Beans

Start by preparing pint size jars by sanitizing them. This is easy to do in a dishwasher or boil the jars for 10 minutes in a large pot.  Let them cool until they can safely be handled.

Then gather approximately 9 pounds of fresh picked green beans. Trim off the ends and discard any damaged areas. Once the beans are trimmed, you should have approximately 16 cups of raw beans.

Fresh picked beans from our garden that have the ends trimmed off.

Place the jar lids in a small skillet and keep warm.  This is where having a magnetic lid lifter comes in handy, and well worth the investment to prevent burnt fingers!

Now fill a large stock pot with water and place on high heat to achieve a nice rolling boil.

While you are waiting for the water to boil, place 3 quarts of water into the pressure canner. However, because all pressure canners are different, be sure to follow your manufacturer’s instructions on what’s required for your specific canner.  

pressure canner water
Our pressure canner recommends 3 inches of water in the bottom of the pot. We also add white vinegar to the water to prevent water stains on the lids of the jars.
**Hint – place 2 tablespoons of white vinegar in the water to prevent water stains on jars.  

With the lid off, turn on medium heat to warm the water but not to a boil.

Pack the beans in the canning jars, leaving 1 inch head space at the top of the jar to allow for expansion during the canning process. This process is called ‘cold packing’.  That is because we do not cook the green beans before canning.

Next use a ladle to pour the boiling water into the jars leaving the 1 inch head space at the top.  The top of the green beans should be completely covered.

Cold pack the green beans into room temperature mason jars.

Many people will add 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of salt into the jars at this point.  This is not required to preserve the beans, it is purely for those who like salt.  We always skip this step and add various seasonings when we cook the canned green beans.

Now use a plastic utensil to slide down the side of the jars to release any air bubbles.  Add more water if necessary to cover the beans while still leaving 1 inch of head space.

Next, wipe the rim of the jar with a clean cloth. Using a lid lifter, add a warm lid and apply the ring and tighten to only finger tight.

remove air bubbles
After you fill the jars with the boiling water, run a plastic utensil down the inside of the jars to remove any air bubbles.

Use your jar lifter and place it into the pressure canner. Repeat process until all jars are filled.

The Pressure Canning Process

Before you lock the pressure canner lid in place, make sure you can see light through the vent pipe. Then place the lid on your canner and lock it in place.

Over medium-high heat, allow the pressure canner to form a steady flow of steam that can be seen, heard or felt coming through the vent pipe. This typically takes 10-15 minutes for our Pressure Canner.

Allow that steady steam to continue to flow for 10 minutes. Then place 10 pounds of pressure on the regulator of a weighted pressure canner (and 11 pounds on a dial pressure canner) and wait for the valve to seal.

jars in pressure canner
Our pressure canner can hold 7 wide mouth pint jars.

Start the canning timer when the pressure reading on the dial gauge indicates that the recommended pressure has been reached. Or for canners with a weighted gauge, the time begins when it begins to jiggle or rocks back and forth.

Process green bean pints for 20 minutes, and quarts for 25 minutes.  *Times and pressure may differ slightly depending on your altitude.

Once the Processing Time Expires

At the end of processing time, turn burner off and remove canner from heat source. Let the pressure completely reduce which will be indicated when the cover lock pin drops down. Do not remove the regulator or lid until this drops! For our canner, it will take anywhere from 20-30 minutes for this to happen.

Once the cover lock has dropped, remove the regulator and let the canner cool for an additional 10 minutes.  Remove the lid carefully by liftng the back of the lid up first so the steam escapes away from you.

jar lifter on green beans
Use a jar lifter to remove the cans and set them on a thick towel to cool for 24 hours.

Now remove the canned green beans from the pressure canner using your jar lifter and place on a thick towel to cool.  Within several minutes you will hear that wonderful ‘pop’ sound indicating that the jars are sealing.  Let cool for 24 hours.

After they have completely cooled for 24 hours, check to make each jar has properly sealed. Do this by pressing on the center of the jar lid. If it moves up and down, the jar has not sealed. Immediately placed non-sealed jars in the refrigerator and use within a week.

Label the sealed jars with the contents, date, and batch number if canning multiple batches of green beans. Then store in a cool, dry place for up to 1 year.

successful canning
Store canning jars in a cool, dark place like in our DIY Canning Cabinet.

Happy Canning!

Mary and Jim

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How to Can Green Beans

Ingredients

  • 9 pounds of green beans to make approximately a 9 pint batch
  • 14 pounds which will make approximately a 7 quart batch. Choose only fresh filled out, and firm beans.

Instructions

  1. Prepare your jars by sanitizing them – easy to do in a dishwasher or boil the jars for 10 minutes in a large pot. Let the jars cool until able to be handled. Heat the lids in hot water until ready to use. I place the lids in a small frying pan in water and keep them on a back burner until they are needed.

  2. Fill a large stock pot with water and place on high heat to achieve a nice rolling boil.

  3. Place 3 quarts of water into the pressure canner follow your manufacturer's instructions on what's required for your canner). **Hint – place 2 tablespoons of white vinegar in the water to prevent water stains on jars. With the lid off, turn on medium heat to warm the water but not to a boil.

  4. Prepare your beans. Wash in cold water and then cut each end off. If they are string beans, remove the string from the top of the bean. Remove and discard any bad spots.

  5. Pack the beans in the canning jars, leaving 1 inch head space at the top of the jar to allow for expansion during the canning process. This step is called 'cold packing'. That is because we do not cook the green beans before canning.

  6. Using a ladle pour the boiling water into the jars leaving the 1 inch head space at the top. The green beans should be covered with the water.

  7. Optional – place 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of salt into the jars at this point. This is not required to preserve the beans, it is purely for those who like salt.

  8. Use a plastic utensil to slide down the side of the jars to release any air bubbles. Add more water if necessary to cover the beans while still leaving 1 inch of head space.
  9. Wipe the rim of the jar with a clean cloth. Add a warm lid and apply the ring to only finger tight. Use your jar lifter and place it into the pressure canner. Repeat process until all jars are filled or your pressure canner is filled – whichever comes first.

  10. Make sure you can see light through the vent pipe on your lid, then place the lid on your canner and tighten. Turn burner on high heat.

  11. Heat pressure canner until there is a steady flow of steam that can be seen, heard or felt coming through the vent pipe. Continue to heat for 10 minutes, reducing heat if necessary to allow for a steady flow of steam.

  12. Place 10 pounds of pressure on the regulator (or 11 pounds for a dial pressure canner) and add it to the vent pipe. Heat canner on high setting. As pressure develops, the cover lock will lift – this means there is pressure in the canner.

  13. Processing time begins when the pressure regulator (the weight) begins to rock gently or the dial pressure gauge has come to pressure. Adjust the heat to maintain a slow steady rocking motion.

  14. Process pints for 20 minutes, and quarts for 25 minutes. *Times and pressure may differ slightly depending on your altitude.
  15. At the end of processing time, turn burner off and remove canner from heat source. Allow the pressure to naturally release by waiting until the pin drops back down. Do not remove the regulator or lid until this drops!

  16. When the pin/cover lock is down, it is time to remove the weight and let the canner cool for another 10 minutes.

  17. Remove the lid by lifting the back of the lid up first so the steam escapes away from you.

  18. Remove jars from canner using your jar lifter and place on a towel to cool. Within several minutes you will hear that wonderful 'pop' sound indicating that the jars are sealing. Let cool for 24 hours.

  19. Remember to label your jars with the contents, batch number, and date. Store in a cool, dry place.

Recipe Notes

Recipe courtesy of Old World Garden Farms

How To Can Green Beans – The Safe Way To Preserve Your Crop
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