Canning pineapple for your food storage is quite easy. It can be labor intensive and a bit messy, but it is so worth it!
When I started canning a few years ago, it had not occurred to me to can fruit for food storage. Vegetables, pickles and jams and jellies are obvious, but it wasn’t until this past year that I realized I could actually can fresh fruits. I’m so glad I did! Having canned fresh pineapple on hand is so handy for baking, pineapple sandwiches or for a pizza topping.
Pineapple is canned using the water bath method, so you don’t even need a canner if you don’t have one. It can be hot or raw packed.
Pineapples are just coming into season, and I was fortunate to find them on sale this past weekend. I went ahead and picked up 3 and will purchase more throughout the season.
There are a couple of options when it comes to what type of syrup to use, so you will need to decide this before you begin the process.
(Recipe is for about 6 pineapples. Just adjust according for the number of pineapples you have.)
In a large stainless steel pot, combine 1 cup sugar to 5 cups water. Bring to a boil and stir constantly until dissolved. Add your cut pineapple and stir to evenly combine and heat approximately 30 seconds, just long enough to heat through.
Place skins and cores of pineapples (NOT the leaves) into a large stock pot. Add enough water to cover by 2″. Boil for 15 minutes. Strain through coffee filters or cheesecloth before adding to pineapple in jars.
Heat a pot of water just to boiling. Place pineapple in jars and ladle enough water to proper headspace.
Next, gather the canning supplies – rings, lids, funnel, ladle, pot to heat water, de-bubbling tool, canning pot and of course, jars. I typically use pint jars, since that’s closest to the amount I would usually use per recipe.
To avoid dirt or debris getting into your jars, go ahead and wash your pineapples in a sink full of water, giving them a good scrub with a dishcloth. As an extra precaution, I wash everything that will be used in the canning process each and every time I begin a canning project. Even though it was washed before it was put away after the previous session, I do not want to take any chance with anything contaminating my end product.
Before you begin cutting and preparing the pineapple, get the water started heating in you canner pot. Place your washed jars into the water so they can heat gradually and sterilize as the water comes to a up to temp in the canner pot. Remember, hot food into hot jars to avoid thermal shock.
I like to place my cutting board in a old cookie sheet to catch the excess juice and to cut down on the mess. Peel and cut your pineapple into slices or chunks, or a combination of both.
No matter which syrup option you choose, the rest of the process is the same:
- Remove the hot jar from the canner water.
- Fill with pineapple and syrup to within 1/2″ headspace. De-bubble, wipe the rim of the jar, place ring and lid, tightening to fingertip tight.
- Place back in canner and proceed to filling the next jar.
Once your canner is full , cover it with the lid and turn your heat to medium high. Make sure your jars are covered by at least 1″ in water. Once the water begins to boil, set your timer for the correct processing time. 15 minutes for pints, 20 minutes for quarts.
When the processing time is done, turn off the heat and leave the canner covered for 5 minutes. Then remove the lid and move jars to a towel or mat in a draft free area to cool.
And that’s it! Aren’t they gorgeous?!
If you’d like to add pineapple to your food storage, now is the perfect time. The peak season is March – July, so it’s at it’s tastiest, and will be cheaper to purchase than when it’s not in season.
I hope this is helpful and I hope you’ll give it a try!