How to Make Home Canned Nuts (all types: peanuts, walnuts, pecans, almonds, etc.) - Easily! With Step-by-step Directions, Photos, Ingredients, Recipe and Costs

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Yield: as many pint jars  or half-pints, as you like

Making and canning your own nuts (peanuts, almonds, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, etc.) is relatively easy to do. Canned nuts  has the advantage of producing shelf-stable jarred nuts that will last for at least a year, stored in a cool dark place, like a basement. The USDA says that freezing is easier and produces as satisfactory a product, but that takes up room in a freezer!

Ingredients

  • Nuts - any type: peanuts, almonds, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, etc., and quantity.

Equipment

  • 1 Canner (a huge pot to sanitize the jars after filling (about $30 to $35 at mall kitchen stores, sometimes at big box stores and grocery stores.). Note: we sell canners and supplies here, too - at excellent prices - and it helps support this web site!
  • Ball jars (Grocery stores, like Publix, Kroger, Safeway carry them, as do some big box stores - about $7 per dozen 8 ounce jars including the lids and rings)
  • Lids - thin, flat, round metal lids with a gum binder that seals them against the top of the jar. They may only be used once.
  • Rings - metal bands that secure the lids to the jars. They may be reused many times.
  • Jar grabber (to pick up the hot jars)- Big box stores and grocery stores sometimes carry them; and it is available online - see this page. It's a tremendously useful to put jars in the canner and take the hot jars out (without scalding yourself!). The kit sold below has everything you need, and at a pretty good price:

Directions - Step by Step

Step 1 - Prepare the jars and water bath canner

Wash the jars and lids

This is a good time to get the jars ready! The dishwasher is fine for the jars; especially if it has a "sanitize" cycle. Otherwise put the jars in boiling water for 10 minutes. I just put the lids in a small pot of almost boiling water for 5 minutes, and use the magnetic "lid lifter wand" (available from target, other big box stores, and often grocery stores; and available online - see this page) to pull them out.

Get the water bath canner filled and heating

Fill your water bath canner about 2/3 to 3/4 full of water and get it heating on the stove.

Start heating the oven

This is also a good time to get the oven preheating to 250°F (120°C)

Step 2 - Shell the nuts.

Perhaps it isn't obvious, but yes, you do need to shell the nuts and discard the shells (the shells make great mulch in your garden).

Step 3 - Bake the nuts

Spread a single layer of nut meats on baking pans and place in a 250°F oven. Stir the nuts occasionally, heating only until the nut meats are dry but not browned. Watch carefully that they don't scorch.

Step 4 - Pack the nuts into the jars

Pack hot nuts into half pint or pint jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Do not add any liquid to the jars. Wipe jar rims. Adjust lids and process.

Step 5 - Processing the jars in the water bath canner

Process (i.e., heat sanitize the jars and their contents) in a Boiling Water Canner with the water in the canner 1 to 2 inches above the tops of the jars:

Recommended process time for Nut Meats in a boiling-water canner.

 

Process Time at Altitudes of

Jar Size

0 - 1,000 ft

1,001 - 3,000 ft

3,000 - 6,000 ft

Above 6,000 ft

Half-pints or Pints

30 min

35

40

45


Step 6 - Remove the jars

Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool on a wooden cutting board or a towel,  without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight), here they won't be bumped. You can then remove the rings if you like, but if you leave them on, at least loosen them quite a bit, so they don't rust in place due to trapped moisture. Once the jars are cool, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sucked down. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. If you put the jar in the refrigerator right away, you can still use it. Some people replace the lid and reprocess the jar, then that's a bit iffy. If you heat the contents back up, re-jar them (with a new lid) and the full time in the canner, it's usually ok. You're done!

The jars of nuts are safe to store on the shelf, preferably a cool, dark place, for 1 to 2 years.


This document was extracted from "So Easy to Preserve", 5th ed. 2006. Bulletin 989, Cooperative Extension Service, The University of Georgia, Athens. Revised by Elizabeth L. Andress. Ph.D. and Judy A. Harrison, Ph.D., Extension Foods Specialists.

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