Pressure Canning Potatoes!

Canned potatoes are an absolute must in my cellar. I love the convenience of being able to grab a jar of potatoes off the shelf to heat up as a side dish or add to a roast. I recently bought 30 pounds of potatoes on sale and couldn't wait to get them in the pressure canner!  Since potatoes are in the low acid category, they do require pressure canning as opposed to water bath. 

I'm going to share my method of canning potatoes, however, be sure to follow the instructions specific to your own pressure canner.  I also highly recommend the "Ball Blue Book of Canning".

First, prepare the jars by sterilizing them. This can be done in the dishwasher or by putting the jars in boiling water for 10 minutes. Prepare the lids by placing in almost-boiling water for about 5 minutes.

Now get a large pot of water boiling. This water will be used to fill the jars after packing in the potatoes. 

Rinse out your pressure canner and put about 4 inches of water in it and put on the stove over low heat to get the canner heated up. (of course, check your canner instructions just in case they are different.)

And get yet another large pot of water boiling on the stove. This water will be used to blanch the potatoes.

Wash the potatoes. Peel the potatoes and remove any discolored spots.

Cut the potatoes into cubes about 1 1/2 to 2 inches in size. As your cutting them up put them in a bowl filled with water and about a cup of lemon juice. This is to keep the potatoes from turning brown. When you're finished cutting up the potatoes, drain them. 

Next pour the potatoes into the large pot of boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Be careful not to cook too long or your potatoes will be mushy. After 2 minutes, drain and pack the potatoes into the jars leaving 1 inch of "headspace", the space needed for expansion during canning process. 

Now you're ready to use the other pot of water to fill the potato-packed jars with hot water. The potatoes should be covered with water and still leave a 1 inch headspace. Wipe off the rims of the jar with a clean cloth. Put the lids and rings on the jars snugly. 

Place the filled jars into the pressure canner using a jar grabber. Put the lid on the canner but leave the weight off.

Let the canner vent for 10 minutes. After the 10 minutes, place the weight on and let the pressure build to 11 pounds. With my canner, the weight begins to shake when the pressure has built. Process for 35 minutes.

When the processing time is done, turn off heat and allow the canner to cool and the pressure drop before opening the canner. It may take 45 minutes to an hour for the pressure to drop. DO NOT try to speed up the cooling process! Opening the canner too soon may cause liquid to be lost from the jars.

After the pressure has dropped, lift the jars out of the canner using the jar grabber and place on a wooden cutting board or a towel to cool in a draft-free area. Be careful not to bump the jars together. When the jars have cooled, usually overnight, check to make sure they have sealed. To do this, just press the center of the lid gently with your finger, if it pops up and down the jar did not seal. If this happens, place in refrigerator and consume right away. If the lid doesn't pop up and down then the jar sealed correctly!

What's so great about canned potatoes is that they are already cooked so all you have to do is open a jar, heat them up and they're ready to eat! So convenient and so delicious!