Canning corn doesn’t have to be difficult. And with a vegetable that tastes this good, why wouldn’t you want to ensure that you have enough stored for anytime you need them? The fact is, canning your own corn is the perfect way to always have enough around, as well as know exactly what’s included in them.
The hardest thing about buying corn from the supermarket, is not knowing what the corn went through during the factory’s canning process. What additives were included in the product and how will it affect your health? How much sweetener, if any was added, or how much salt? Many people are on low sodium diets and the question will come up when buying canned corn.
Plus, another great bonus of canning your corn right at home, is that you decide where to buy the corn from in the first place. Simply head to your nearest farmer’s market and there you have it; perfectly-grown corn that’s come from the very area you live in. Not only does it mean you have a much healthier product to begin with, but you’re also giving a financial boost to your own community by buying local.
Gather all of the equipment you need for the process, including all the ingredients, as well as the hardware. If you’re like me and prefer to buy the corn ears whole from the farmer’s market direct, make sure to use a good-quality serrated blade to cut the corn kernels away from the storks. Depending on how many jars you want to prepare, use around 8 ears of corn per quart jar.
Make sure you rinse all the jars and lids, then sanitize them accordingly, ready to use for your prepared corn. Make sure to have lids and jars that are specifically made for canning. These include jars like this.
When canning corn, you might use one of two methods. Both will give you the same end results, it’s just a matter of personal choice which one suits you more. You might either raw-pack the corn, or hot-pack the corn.
To raw pack, simply place the kernels loosely into the hot, pre-prepared jars. Make sure you leave a one-inch gap, called a headspace. Never press down on the corn. Just make sure you add enough to stay below the one-inch line. Too low and there will be too much air in the jar. Too high and the expansion may explode the jar. A one-inch gap is perfect.
The hot pack method is a little different. As the name implies, cook the corn kernels in a saucepan. Use one cup of boiling water to every four cups of corn. With a medium-high heat, bring to the boil, then reduce and let boil for another 5 minutes. Once finished, ladle the corn into the prepared hot jars, again ensuring you leave a one inch headspace.
Before sealing the jars, make sure you remove any air bubbles by using either a spatula, or skewer. Run it around the edges of the jars, as well as through the heart of the corn several times. The excess air bubbles need to be removed before the jars are sealed. Only once the air bubbles have been removed, do you close the lids and tighten them to fingertip tightness.
Get your prepared pressure canner and load the hot jars onto the internal rack. Do not place the jars directly on the floor of the pressure canner, otherwise the underside of the jars won’t properly process and this could lead to food contamination. Only once you are sure you have all the jars stacked inside the right way, do you put the lid on and start the cooking process.
Once the pressure canner is on, allow the steam to vent for a minimum of 10 minutes, to ensure the temperature inside the canner is of a sufficient intensity. Once 10 minutes is passed, close the vent and continue cooking until the pressure inside the canner reaches 10 pounds (more if you live at a higher altitude).
Only once the canner has reached 10 pounds of pressure do you start the timer. Give the cooking time 55 minutes for pint jars (85 minutes for quart jars), ensuring the pressure does not fall, otherwise, you need to restart the process again.
Once finished, do not open the canner until the pressure has dropped back to zero, then wait an extra 2 minutes to be sure. Open the lid and wait another 10 minutes, then transfer the jars to a towel on your bench top. Make sure no breeze or cooling effects occur, or the jars may crack. Allow them to cool for at least 12 hours before storing them.