Canning Sweet Potatoes

Canning Sweet Potatoes

The method for canning sweet potatoes is very simple. You preserve sweet potatoes in a sweetened syrup that you can control the amount of sugar that goes into it (and you can avoid any corn syrup that you might find in a canned version!). Either way, making them homemade tastes much better than the store bought variety. As the holidays roll around, you’ll have plenty on hand to use for casseroles or yummy pies!

Canning Sweet Potatoes

What You Need:

  • About 10 pounds of sweet potatoes
  • 7 ½ cups of water
  • 2 ½ cups of brown sugar or raw sugar
  • 4 1-quart jars, sterilized

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

First, clean your potatoes and remove any imperfections.

If you find that peeling raw sweet potatoes is a little difficult, then boil them first for
10-15 minutes. Remove from the water, allow to cool, and peel. They should be soft on the outside but should not be mushy. The insides should still be moderately firm.

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

Otherwise, peel the sweet potatoes and boil for 10-15 minutes.

In a large saucepan combine the water and sugar. Stir periodically until the sugar completely dissolves.

Remove your sweet potatoes from their boil.

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

Cut your sweet potatoes in large chunks. Make sure they are not so large they cannot fit in your jars. *Do not puree the potatoes, this will make them too dense to can.*

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

Wipe any sweet potato remnants off the openings of your jars if necessary. This must be done to ensure a proper seal.

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

Pour your syrup (or boiling water) into the jars. Leave about a ¼ to ½ inch headspace.

Be sure to check your jars for bubbles and remove any you find. The opposite end of most kitchen utensils works just fine for this.

Canning Sweet Potatoes - Little House Living

Wipe your rims, and attach your canning lids. Make sure your rims are tight and secure. Process quarts at 10 pounds of pressure for 90 minutes. Pints can be processed at 65 minutes.

*Please check with your local extension office to get the correct times/temps/altitude adjustments for your area.

Do not remove the jars from the pressure canner for several hours after canning until the pressure has completely gone down. I like to leave mine overnight just to be safe.

Ready for more? Try Canning Potatoes and make sure you check out all the free Canning and Preserving Recipes we have on Little House Living!

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

Have you ever tried canning sweet potatoes? What do you use home canned sweet potatoes for?


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  1. I’m wondering why you wouldn’t use the water you boiled the potatoes in for your syrup. It seems to me that there would be a lot of good nutrients and flavor in that water.

  2. Do you know if you can can butternut squash? I actually did very well with my squash crop and have some left over. Thanks, Connie

    1. I looked it up in Putting Food By and it looks like you can. They must be pressure canned (after they are cut in chunks like Sweet Potatoes) and you don’t use a syrup solution…just water and salt if desired. Pints are 30 minutes and Quarts are 40 minutes at 10 pounds of pressure.

  3. I would love to can sweet potatoes raw and not use sugar. Can you outline the process for me? I am new to canning and don’t have a canner; i have only used a stove top method of boiling water.

    1. You cannot safely can sweet potatoes using just the boiling water bath method. They are a low acid food and MUST be pressure canned to avoid botulism completely. Sorry.

  4. How long after getting the sweet potato’s out of the ground, can I can them ? Also I do not have a pressure canner, but will be using a water canner. I am planning on letting them boil for about an hour. Do you think this will be long enough ? Thanks for your help. Dale

      1. Can do a water bath only it will take 3 hours or 180 minutes. That is the way my grandmother and her mother before did it and they lived to be over 100. Your kitchen, your rules.

        1. Thank you for this helpful information. I am curious if that same amount of time is good for all foods you process water boil method?

        2. I would love to have your recipe. Salt? Citric acid, etc? I LOVE the ways of canning from my grandmother, great grandmother era. Thabk you so much for sharing.

        3. Love to know that nethos I only do water bath canning right now and haVe an abundance of sweet potatoes I waNt to cann

  5. Bless you. I had a bushel of sweet potatoes sitting here waiting for me to can. I am 65 years old and have been canning foods all my life and never knew you could pre-boil them to make them easier to peel. I have some arthritis in my hands and had been wondering how I would ever peel all of those. Thank you soo much!

  6. Been canning sweet potatoes for years, however I have never put any sugar or salt in the jar. I have one jar that is 12 years old and it is still good. I keep one jar of anything I can that is different just to see how long I can keep it. I have a quart of green beans that is 42 years old, I had 2 but we ate one last year. Still good.

  7. Your sweet potatoes are beautiful. However, I have to disagree with leaving the potatoes (or anything that you can) in the canner for hours or overnight after canning. By doing so, you run the risk of the batch developing flat sour.

  8. I just purchased 80 lbs of sweet potatoes to can. I usually do as you suggest and chunk my potatoes however my food processor will dice 1/2 inch cubes. I am thinking of cleaning the potatoes well and cubing the potatoes peels and all to can to get the most nutrients. Thinking due to the size they could be raw packed with syrup and pressure canned. What are your feelings on this?

    1. I always raw pack my sweet potatoes, cover with boiling water and water bath can for 3 hours. No problems so far.
      Tried oven canning one year, that was not successful. Lost quite a few jars so don’t recommend that method.