Home canned carrots will be soft. But the flavour and smell is wonderful. They almost smell orange, and so fresh coming out of the jar. The pressure canning enhances the flavour of the carrots.
They are great in a squash and carrot mash.
They are great just opened and poured in, along with their carrot broth, into soups and stews you are making.
You can also can them half and half in a jar with a veg that takes a relatively similar time, such as green beans. As with all vegetable combos, you process for the longest time.
Carrots must be pressure-canned; there is no alternative way to can them unless you pickle them.
Here’s an easy recipe for jazzing up a jar of home canned carrots: Green beans and carrots provençal.
See also: Dehydrating carrots
Quantities of carrots needed
Numbers are approximate guidelines.
On average, as a very rough guideline, expect to need about 1 kg (2 1/4 lbs) of carrots per 1 litre (US quart) jar of canned carrots (weights given exclude carrot tops.)
- 7 kg (17.5 lb) of carrots = 7 litres (US quarts) canned carrots
- 4.5 kg (11 lbs ) of carrots = 9 x half-litres (US pints) canned carrots
- 1 US bushel carrots = 22 kg (50 lbs) = 17 to 25 litres (US quarts) canned carrots
A drained half-litre (1 US pint) jar of home canned carrots will yield about 350 g (12 oz) of solids.
Jar size choices: Either half-litre (1 US pint) OR 1 litre (1 US quart)
Processing method: Pressure canning only
Headspace: 3 cm (1 inch)
Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet.)
Processing time: Half-litres (pints) 25 minutes; litres (quarts) 30 minutes.
Serving size: 250 g
Fat: 0 g
- Wash, peel, then re-wash the carrots.
- Slice or dice them.
- HOT PACK: Put in a large pot of water, bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and simmer 5 minutes. OR RAW PACK: skip this blanching step.
- Pack into ½ litre (US pint) jars or 1 litre (US quart) jars.
- Leave 3 cm (1 inch) headspace.
- Top up with clean boiling water (such as from a kettle, for instance), maintaining headspace.
- Debubble, adjust headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet.)
- Processing time: ½ litre (US pint) jars for 25 minutes OR 1 litre (US quart) jars for 30 minutes.
Processing guidelines below are for weighted-gauge pressure canner. See also if applicable: Dial-gauge pressures.
|Jar Size||Time||0 to 300 m (0 - 1000 feet) pressure||Above 300 m (1000 ft) pressure|
|1/2 litre (1 US pint)||25 mins||10 lbs||15 lb|
|1 litre (1 US quart)||30 mins||10 lbs||15 lb|
How to pressure can.
When pressure canning, you must adjust the pressure for your altitude.
More information about Salt-Free Canning in general.
- Carrots must be peeled before canning, because most of any botulism spores will be on the skin. For the same reason, you even wash before peeling, to avoid driving such bacteria deeply into the flesh of the carrot. So: wash, peel, then wash again to rid your carrots of as much surface bacteria as possible to reduce the bacterial load going into the canner.
- Pack carrots more tightly into the jar if you are doing a RAW PACK, as they will shrink more.
- Instead of clean boiling water, you can use the blanching water if you wish — the jar might just be a bit more cloudy on the shelf.
- Hot pack is an extra step, but it is preferred by most experienced canners for a higher-quality end product.
Carrots — Sliced or Diced. United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Complete guide to home canning. Agriculture information bulletin No. 539. 2015. Page 4-10.
Serving size: 175 g, drained (about one half of a 1/2 litre / US pint jar, presuming the average jar contains a yield of 350 g solids.)
Per 175 g: 72 calories, 120 mg sodium
Weight Watchers PointsPlus®: 175 g = 0 points (carrots are free on Weight Watchers).
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com
* PointsPlus™ calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.
Peeling carrots for home canning
Carrots must be peeled before home canning. Peeling them reduces the microbial load on the carrots, and pressure canning times were developed based on peeled carrots with reduced microbial loads. Leaving the skins on for canning, with the subsequent increase in bacteria left on them, would require testing to see if different processing times are required. At this point, no one has asked that question or offered funding for an answer to be reached.
The National Center explains on their blog:
Although we do not know all of the exact reasoning from USDA when the canning process was developed for carrots to be peeled, it is true that we only recommend canning procedures as they were developed during laboratory testing. One important difference to canning between peeled and unpeeled carrots is the potential difference between bacterial loads going into the canner. In other words, removing the peel from carrots substantially reduces the amount of bacteria on the carrots. Carrots with peel left on, even if washed well, would likely contain more microorganisms when compared to peeled carrots. Before recommending canning carrots with peels left on, we would need to see product development testing that accounted for the increased microbial load and any other possible changes with peel included in the jars. Although you don’t see much reduction in fiber after canning, you will still lose some of the nutritional value in the peel that comes with heating and sitting in water, just as you do with the flesh of the peeled carrot. There is no nutritional analysis or comparison available for carrots canned with or without peels, especially since carrots canned commercially do not contain the peel, and those are the source of most of our nutritional values for canned foods. As for all those carrot peels, well, at least at home the peels could be turned into excellent compost!” 1
Baby Carrots in Pressure Canning and Pickling
The USDA / National Center for Home Food Preservations’s recommendations for pressure canning carrots presume that you are starting with large, whole carrots. It would appear, though, that they don’t necessarily see an issue with canning “baby” carrots — those bags of small carrot pieces peeled, cut and shaped from larger carrots.
The National Center comments:
To our knowledge, no testing has been done for canning low-acid baby carrots versus regular full, size carrots. Our canning recommendations for carrots were developed using full size, 1 to 1-1/4 inches in diameter, carrots. (See https://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_04/carrots_sliced.html ). We are not aware of any risk from using manufactured baby carrots, but again, we are not aware of studies specifically examining their use for home canning either.
We have created a pickled baby carrot procedure for canning in our lab, using store-bought, already peeled baby carrots. We did not notice a discernible difference in raw pH over raw large, peeled carrots, but we were not specifically trying to make those comparisons, either. (In other words, the pH of the store-bought baby carrots was well within the expected range of regular raw carrots.) If you are pickling baby carrots, even though we only used one source and brand, our pickling procedure for others should offer adequate safety margin…
Not all ‘baby carrots’ are even manufactured the same. Some are cut from larger carrots, some are harvested very young, tiny carrots. To our knowledge, many or even most are skinned by mechanical peelers and polishers…. The USDA directions for canning carrots used, and assumes, people are wanting to can fresh carrots and follow the directions for prepping them as given in the canning procedure (the first link above). Those are our recommendations for canning carrots at home, in addition to the pickled products (including relishes with carrots) we offer.” 2
The broth that comes out of these jars of carrots is aromatic, flavourful and chock full of nutrients; it’s a crime to pour it down the drain. No money can buy you vegetable stock this good. Put a large sieve over a bowl or container, and empty the jar of carrots into that sieve to capture and freeze the carrot stock for future use in soups, stews, risottos, etc.
Judging Good Quality Home Canned Carrots
Here, for the record, is a description of what a good quality jar of home canned carrots will look like, according to the National Center for Home Food Preservation:
May be canned whole if small; otherwise slice or dice. Must be peeled or scraped; smooth surface preferred. Diameter of slices less than 1¼ inches desired. Size and shape should be uniform throughout jar. Color may be vary pale to deep orange, depending on variety, but should be uniform. Free from root hairs, traces of peel and stems. Free from fibrous or wide, woody-looking carrot slices. Liquid should be clear, free of sediment and only contain a tint of color from the carrot.” 3
Cooking with home canned carrots recipes