Canning Dried Soaked Beans

by Merissa on January 25, 2012

in Rice N Beans

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For me, canning is not just done at the end of the gardening season. I love to can, so it is something that I will do anytime during the year. One of my "off season" canning projects always includes beans. I like to do big batch canning of beans to have on hand in my pantry. It is possible to can any type of dried bean to have on hand.

Here is a step by step tutorial on canning Seasoned Beans. These beans can be used in any recipe that you use beans in. I especially use them for chili, hamburger soup, or beans to use with Mexican type meals, like burritos or tacos. I have used them right from the jar and made bean burritos with them or I have also put a jar of them through the food processor to make them smooth and used them as a "refried" bean.

This recipe is for a pressure canner, so obviously, you must have a canner in order to make these. I have a Presto brand Pressure Canner. It is a large pressure canner that will either do 7 quarts or 9 pints. You can also double rack the pints, to do up to 18 pints. A rack is needed both at the bottom of the presssure canner and in the middle of the layers, if you double rack them.

**DISCLAMER It is very important, when using pressure canners, to follow the directions for your particular canner.

I used a mixture of Red Beans and Pinto Beans. You can use whatever mixture of beans, or one particular type, that you choose. The Red and Pinto are what I had on hand. You will need to go through the process of soaking the beans. I measured out 3 1/2 pounds of beans and soaked them overnight. You can find out how to soak dried beans here. Remember to use a big enough bowl when soaking. Soak overnight and rinse the next morning.

Gather your ingredients.

I used pints for this recipe. I used a total of 15 pint jars/lids. These must be jars that can be put through a canner. I gather all my clean jars and line them up. In each jar of pints, put this:

1/4 c. tomato sauce
1/2 t. dried onion
1 t. chili powder
1 t. jalapenos
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. cumin
1/4 t. black pepper
1/4 t. garlic powder
1 1/2 c. soaked beans

I used my canned tomato sauce and also the dried jalapenos that I had from my 2011 gardening season. You can use fresh, diced jalapenos, or omit them, if you want to.
Here are my jars filled with the ingredients.

Once the jars have all the ingredients in them, you will need to fill the rest of the jar with boiling hot water. You need to fill them with water within 1 inch of the top of the jar, to allow for headspace. Be sure to wipe the rims with a clean towel to assure a good seal and close jars with new lids and rings. Tighten rings.

Here is a picture of my canner and also the rack that is used on the bottom and another one, exactly the same, used in between my two layers.

Here is a picture of my canner with all the filled jars.

Again, it is important to follow the directions for your canner, adding the appropriate amount of water to the bottom of the canner and processing according to the manufactors directions for your canner.

These beans will need to process for 90 minutes at 10 pounds of pressure. Remember to not start your time until your canner is up to pressure. Be sure to carefully watch your canner to maintain the pressure throughout the time.

When the beans have processed for the full amount of time, allow the pressure to dissipate naturally in the canner.

Here is a picture of the canner, after it was safe to open the lid.

Allow the jars to cool on the counter before removing the rings and storing.

Until next time, Julie

Make sure you check out all the free Canning and Preserving Recipes we have on Little House Living! And don't forget to check out The Canner's Cookbook, it has recipes on how to use all your home canned goods!

I recommend a Presto Pressure Canner and the book Putting Food By for all your canning projects!

Julie is Merissa's mom and she's committed to living a frugal and simple lifestyle. Julie grows her own herbs in her garden and enjoys making things at home. You can now find her home remedies and ideas here at Little House Living.

Catch up on all the Rice N Beans articles that we've posted!

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{ 75 comments… read them below or add one }

1 marci357 January 25, 2012 at 9:20 am

Two very important things to remember: Make sure the beans are thoroughly soaked and expanded. And make sure to leave at least that one inch of headspace. Undersoaked beans can and will expand further and could leave you with a broken jar. So said my old canning book.

That is something I try to remember when I can my soups containing dried beans. But then I pressure cook my beans before adding to my soup – about 30 minutes – so I know they are about as done as possible.

Thanks – the photos will be great for newbies :)

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2 marci357 January 25, 2012 at 9:29 am

Ps: While I have two of the very huge/large double decker pressure canners, which I also use for pressure cooking bones down after butchering, I recently found a smaller canner and I am delighted with it !

It is a 10.5 quart All American model 910. It can only handle the smaller batches, but that is exactly what I was needing :) It only weighs 15 lbs (I’m getting older) and handles 7 pints or 4 quarts. Now that is not something I would consider with a large family, but it is great for a single person doing leftovers, or chicken broth from one chicken, etc. and 90% of my canning is in pints or half pints, for my single use now. And like I said, I have the two huge ones if needed. This is wonderful to grab and go for small batches :)

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3 Julie January 25, 2012 at 10:30 am

Marci, wow, your All American size canner sounds great! Where did you pick that up at? That sounds like a great find. I think that size would be handy for pressuring a whole chicken, etc…
Thanks for your comments. It is great to know there are other canners out there. It seems like it is getting to be a lost “art”. I love sharing new recipes, if you have any great ones that you use regulary.

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4 Cindy January 25, 2012 at 9:50 am

I think I’ll try this. They look Yummy. Thank you for all that you teach us.

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5 MARSHA January 25, 2012 at 11:16 am

I have always thought about canning beans but wasn’t quite sure how they’d turn out. I like to use beans in our meals & this would save so much time & prep work! Thanks so much

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6 Barb J. January 25, 2012 at 3:15 pm

I’ve never tried to can beans before. I’m glad you showed me how, and I’m glad you included your recipe for what to put in them. Figuring that out is half the problem when I can anything. Thanks!

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7 Grammy Tammi January 25, 2012 at 3:20 pm

Hi Julie, thanks for the step-by-step on canning beans! I recently bought cases of canned beans during the case lot sale at Smith’s… but now…. I’m thinking I may donating them to the church food pantry so that I can can my own! :)

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8 Melannie January 25, 2012 at 7:58 pm

Would you have any suggestions for a “sweet” been recipe, my DH loves pork & beans with brown sugar or maple syrup which are also a little spicy?

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9 Monica January 26, 2012 at 4:28 pm

So i dont have a pressure cooker canner can this be done with an open pot canning system? Ive only canned jam and applesause so this would be very new.

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10 Merissa January 26, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Unfortunately you do need a pressure canner to make this recipe. Cooked beans are a low acid food and will need to be pressurized to be shelf stable.

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11 Kay Johnson September 24, 2012 at 4:08 pm

I did it , but the beans were cooked clean through first. I had never thought of canning beans until I was tired of paying so much for them, and I had 10 lbs given to me. I soaked mine overnight and cooked them the next day and just put them in the jars and canned them in the stove. They came out great!

Hope that helps.

You can can them in a water bath or presser canner the same way.

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12 Merissa September 24, 2012 at 4:55 pm

They may have canned up ok this way but unless you plan on storing them in the fridge or the freezer, this isn’t a safe way to can them to be shelf stable since they are too low acid to keep.

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13 Julie October 1, 2012 at 4:29 pm

It is not safe to water bath beans. They are a low acid food and will support the growth of botulism. The water bath does not get hot enough to kill the botulism spores. Just in case you didn’t know, food poisoning from botulism is often fatal.

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14 Jessica Rysak November 18, 2012 at 2:05 pm

I see that two commenters have already noted that canning beans via boiling water bath (or certainly open kettle) isn’t safe, since it won’t kill botulism spores. I wanted to just clarify – the spores aren’t destroyed until 240 degrees F. We all know that water boils at 212F; that is as hot as a boiling water canner can ever reach. If you’ve used the boiling water bath method for low acid foods (vegetables, beans and meat) and been succesful, this only means that the bacteria we are concerned about was not present on your raw foods, or had not sporulated. It does not actually mean that it is safe.

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15 Michelle January 26, 2012 at 6:59 pm

When we lived in Box Elder, I hated how my jars always came out with that nice hard water stain. I started adding just a bit of white vinegar to my canner and it did away with that problem. I have never tried canning dried beans and I think it would be fun to try. This particular recipe is it a good replacement for store bought chili beans for chili? What else would you use them in?

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16 Pam January 27, 2012 at 10:19 am

Thank you so much for posting this! I have been cooking my beans and then freezing them for quick use for years but have always wanted to can them, but never really looked into how to do so. I have to get a new gasket for my pressure canner or I would totally be doing this right now… oh well! I will hopefully get to do this next week ;-) If it’s okay with you, I am going to link to this on my blog.

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17 Kerri January 28, 2012 at 6:48 pm

Hi, do you ever can these in quart jars? I have a large family and one pint is not going to.be practical.

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18 Julie January 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm

Yes, Kerri, you can make this same recipe and just use quart jars. I actually have both sizes of them in my pantry. Just double the amount on the spices, etc…to add to the quart jar and add approximately 3 1/2 cups, well soaked, beans. Do exactly the same in adding the water to the neck. I pressure them the same amount of time, also.

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19 Kathy T February 3, 2012 at 8:46 am

I love this recipe! I have been canning all types of beans for years but only add salt. This will be a very nice addition. I love having the canned beans on my shelf and keeps me from having to buy canned beans when I just need a pint or quart for a recipe.

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20 Cindy Baird February 24, 2012 at 3:54 pm

I have been wanting to try this recipe. Finally, today I get to, I’m so excited. This year I canned over 300 qts, and pints. I really do enjoy canning. I follow your blog all the time. Thank you

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21 Cindy February 25, 2012 at 11:14 am

I made 32 pints of these beans yesterday. Thank you so much for the recipe. So easy to do. I just love your blog. Wonderful ideas and recipes.

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22 Cindy March 1, 2012 at 3:44 pm

These beans havw a wonderful taste. Thank you

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23 TJPenn March 5, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Can I just enjoy my beans, green onions, and cornbread? :) Granny raised me on that meal, but she didn’t can them. I’m gonna make bean night much quicker, thank you for the recipe!

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24 Amy Gramelspacher June 21, 2012 at 8:47 pm

I’ve been looking forward to making this since I came across it. I just done 18 pints today. I’m just wondering if they should look “Dry” in the jars? I done it basically the same as you said, other then adding only about 1 cup of soaked beans (Soaked over night, over 10 hours) and filled with water.

The first batch the tomato and spices stayed at the bottom and didn’t mix with the beans and it all just looks dry.

The second batch I put the spices and tomato a the top and gave it a light shake after adding the water and lid and it mixed well, but also looks dry now.

The third batch (only 4 jars) I added much less beans and more water. So far they look okay, but they are still hot.

I’m just wondering if the dry looking jars are okay? When I say dry, I mean I can turn them over and nothing moves in the jar.

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25 Stephen July 18, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Mine came out dry last time. This time I’m soaking for a full 24 hours, and mixing the spices in.

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26 Lemon Tree August 2, 2012 at 11:44 am

does this make cooking faster?

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27 Little House on the Prairie Living August 2, 2012 at 11:46 am

They are actually already cooked (the pressure canned does that for you) so you can just open and heat to eat!

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28 Staciy Lynette Wilson August 2, 2012 at 11:49 am

I will keep this saved for when I am able to start canning!

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29 Have Coupons, Will Travel August 2, 2012 at 11:49 am

Thank you so much for the tutorial on this!

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30 Kelly Pollett Lockwood August 2, 2012 at 11:54 am

This is something that has been on my to-do list for quite some time. Thank you!

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31 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 12:02 pm

can you do this without a presser cooker?

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32 Little House on the Prairie Living August 2, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Kelly Hart, no this is done with a pressure canner.

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33 Kathy Tombley August 2, 2012 at 12:09 pm

I LOVE doing this! I have some done and it’s on my list to get several different varieties done before we start school in a wekk.

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34 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 12:15 pm

is it safe to buy used presser cookers or canners? if i am just going to be canning things i can just buy a canner right?

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35 Little House on the Prairie Living August 2, 2012 at 12:38 pm

Yes it is. Just have them thoroughly checked out before you use them for the first time. Just look up a local extension office to do that for you.

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36 Misty Long August 2, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Thanks for all your great tips! Im learning everyday how to make more from scratch and eat healthy and save money while doing it!

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37 Sheree Porter-Northcutt August 2, 2012 at 12:56 pm

Pressure cookers are different than pressure canners so be sure you get a canner. Also for those who don’t have a pressure canned but would like the ease of having home cooked beans, you can cook them and freeze them. Then you just have thawing time. We did this with kidney beans for chili. It was so nice to have readycooked beans and they thawed as the chili simmered.

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38 Angie Adams Gullett August 2, 2012 at 1:03 pm

May need to try this

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39 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 1:06 pm

ok i am very new to all this, and my fb is my only reliance on info, i google but sometimes its hard to find the right info. so if i buy a pressure canner used it should have pot, rack(s), lid, valve and gauge? and you say to look it up on my local extension office, what is that?

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40 Little House on the Prairie Living August 2, 2012 at 1:28 pm

Yes, and you can look up your nearest extension office here: http://www.csrees.usda.gov/Extension/

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41 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 1:32 pm

thank you so much!!!! you guys are awesome!!!!!

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42 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 1:34 pm

so my local extension office can check out my pressure canner and tell me if it is safe to use?

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43 Little House on the Prairie Living August 2, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Yes, they can take a look at it and test the pressure gauge to make sure it’s accurate. They should also be able to tell you if it needs a new seal.

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44 Debbe November 17, 2013 at 12:48 am

We newbies need a tutorial just like this awesome beans tutorial on canning, in general. Had I not seen it specified in a comment, I wouldn’t even have thought to consider a pressure cooker might be a different thing than a pressure canner! Also, the info that it’s ok to buy used and have it checked by extension office is invaluable. Have you done such a tutorial? I’m relatively new to your site. I love it, finding myself here more and more. Thank you so very much for all this!

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45 Merissa November 17, 2013 at 7:36 am

Each canning recipe is very different so I don’t have an indepth article on canning but we do have a pretty detailed post on our Canning Potatoes page you might want to check out.

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46 Kelly Hart August 2, 2012 at 1:52 pm

ok thanks again :)

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47 Rohnda September 25, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Thanks for posting your pictures. Just new to pressure canning and your photos helped give me some courage to try beans…. they are in the pressure canner right now, all done cooking. I’m just waiting for the pressure to be completely released so I can open the lid and see the results!!! I enjoy your site.

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48 Tracy October 8, 2012 at 4:10 pm

I don’t really like beans but I’m willing to give them another try. They’re cheap and healthy so I need to learn to like them. This is is something I really want to try. They look good, even to someone that doesn’t like beans. Thank you for sharing.

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49 Merissa October 8, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Tracy my hubby doesn’t like beans either, at all! I cooked up a jar of these last night with a little brown sugar and topped with melted cheese and he said he LOVED them!

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50 vicki angerstein October 19, 2012 at 3:53 pm

What if you just want plain canned beans? I could just put salt and fill it with water, right? Everything else should still be the same? (as far as processing it)

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51 Alicia Mullins October 26, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Would you consider these similar to Ranch Style Beans?

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52 Terrie Slocum January 4, 2013 at 2:12 pm

I just ordered a pressure canner yesterday. There are 8 of us and I want to make big batches of soups and meals and can them. I did applesauce and apples in the fall. Thanks for the bean idea. I have a lot of bags of beans from WIC from our adopted foster children. I always forget to soak them. I hope it comes tomorrow or Monday. I froze a lot of tomatoes this year, next year I am back to canning them as they take up too much room in the freezer. Have you ever canned winter squash? I froze it but also want to can that too. My kids love it. I buy it by the bushel when it is cheap in the fall.

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53 Merissa January 4, 2013 at 6:16 pm

I haven’t canned winter squash because it stores so well but I would think you could do it just like summer squash in chunks. That would actually be handy because then it would already be cooked!

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54 Heidi January 28, 2013 at 7:37 pm

I hope you got one with the weights and not the gauge. You have to watch the gauge to keep it at the right pressure but with the weights it does it for you. I use my pressure cookeralmost everyday. You can cook dried beans in 45 minutes at 15lbs. pressure. If you soak for just 2 hours you can cook them in 10-15 minutes. I guess I would never can them because it is so fast just to pressure cook them.

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55 colleen January 15, 2013 at 8:03 am

I bought dried navy beans(about 10 lbs.) a couple years back, in hopes of trying my own baked beans. I thought they had an unlimited shelf life, but have found they are harder to cook long enough to soften. I thought maybe I could try canning them in hopes of being able to use them. Do they deteriorate to the point that I should just throw them out? Any suggestions?

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56 Morgan January 28, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Funny that you posted this again today! I used a quart of these exact beans in my chili today. I love having them on hand and the spices are perfect. Thanks!

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57 Trudy February 19, 2013 at 1:33 pm

I’d love to be able to can things like this but had never even heard of a pressure canner until recently reading sites like this. Pressure canners are not something used or even sold here in NZ. To get one I’d have to get it shipped from the US. Any recommendation on what brand? what size is best? I’ve found a Presto one, are they any good? TIA.

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58 Merissa February 19, 2013 at 2:42 pm

I have a Presto 23 quart and I just love it! Never had any trouble with it. My mom also has the exact same one and she loves it too!

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59 Stephen July 18, 2013 at 7:32 pm

I got an All American canner. The plus side to them is they have a metal-to-metal seal, so there is no gasket that needs replacing as the years go by.

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60 Natalie Dana January 10, 2014 at 10:06 am

Buy the brand All American. Its a little more money upfront but will save you tons of time and money down the road. There are no gaskets you have to replace and keep on hand. When you see the construction of these units you will understand their superior quality, I have two of the All American 925 canners. Love them,

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61 Camille W May 1, 2013 at 7:00 pm

I have made these chili beans, and they are wonderful!
Question – do you have a recipe for baked beans? I am finding lots of recipes where you have to soak the beans, then bake the beans in sauce, then can them. I’d rather something more like this – soak beans, pour on your sauce, and can, and done.

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62 Merissa May 1, 2013 at 9:05 pm

Camille are you looking for something like this? Canned Pork and Beans

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63 Hilary June 9, 2013 at 9:48 pm

do you use this chili bean recipe for beans you are going to make into refried Mexican beans or do you leave out the spices when canning beans for refried beans and burritos. If you could let me know soon because I am soaking 30lb of pinto beans tonight and want to can them up tomorrow.
Thanks for your help

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64 Merissa June 10, 2013 at 5:54 am

I leave out the chili spices and just add garlic powder, onion power, and salt for the refried beans.

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65 Lindsey July 20, 2013 at 7:02 pm

I just canned my first batch of beans last night, and many of the beans ruptured. I am canning at high-altitude (6500 feet), so must increase both time and pressure to can safely. Do you think that’s why the beans broke?

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66 Merissa July 20, 2013 at 9:38 pm

My beans always break open, it’s normal :)

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67 Monica February 8, 2014 at 3:02 pm

This may seem a silly question, but can you (and/or would it be better to) mix all the ingredients up together in a bowl and then add the mixture to the jars and put the beans on top? It just seems like it would all be mixed up better. Thoughts? I love the sound of this recipe and can’t wait to try out my new 41 1/2 quart All-American canner!!

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68 Merissa February 8, 2014 at 7:09 pm

All the ingredients mix up quite well after they go through the canner.

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69 Phil February 18, 2014 at 5:00 pm

I like that idea too. Then you only have to measure the ingredients once, especially if you do the math and go by cups or tablespoons, and not have to mess with measuring into each canning jar!

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70 dianne cassidy February 15, 2014 at 5:13 am

can you just use plain beans, would you add some salt and cover with water????

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71 Merissa February 15, 2014 at 6:41 am

I’m not quite sure what you mean by plain beans? This method works with any variety of dried beans.

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72 Phil February 18, 2014 at 4:57 pm

If you mean “plain” as in not adding all the spices and tomatoes, yup, you sure can. I canned up black beans last year and only added water, salt and cumin for flavoring. Put whatever you want in there DRIED spice wise, or nothing at all. If you’re on a low sodium diet, just omit the salt altogether. It’ just for flavor since the pressure canning does the preserving. Some others have posted about the beans being “dry” in the can, that’s totally normal and fine. You don’t need liquid in the canning jar for it to be safe. The recipe I used had you cook the beans for about an hour after soaking over night, and the beans are a little too mushy. Great for soup or refried beans, but not for use as whole beans. I will definitely do this no pre-cook method next time. If you have the jars, this is waaaaay cheaper than buying them at the store, even at Aldi or the store brand. If you have to buy more jars, it’s a wash the first round, but then the next batch will only cost you lids and beans. For $3 worth of beans, I made 14 pints of canned beans, and the jars are full which means it’s pretty much the same as 2 cans of store bought. Before the weather warms up too much, I need to get out my canner and do several batches. I’ve got the canning bug again.

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73 dianne cassidy February 28, 2014 at 7:25 pm

tks Phil, very helpful.

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74 Ned Shealy April 8, 2014 at 8:51 pm

I am curious how long the shelf life would be on these. I’m not sure why canning recipes don’t really address the shelf life issue – am I just being silly?

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75 Merissa April 8, 2014 at 8:54 pm

I think it’s really hard to say. My grandma ate canned foods that were 10 years old with no issues but I never have foods around that long so for us it’s just maybe 3 years at the longest! We always use these beans up within a few months so I haven’t been able to test them :)

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