Canning Beef Stew

Canning beef stew

How to Can Beef Stew


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My family really likes canned beef stew. Beef stew is one of those recipes that you’re not quite sure if your family is going to like the canned version vs. the store bought version. I was a little skeptical first, but was hoping my family would at least try it. It turns out canning beef stew is really easy, I should have tried it sooner!


My family were good sports, and it turned out they loved it! This canned beef stew recipe is definitely now on my list of go-to canning recipes.


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If you are new to pressure canning, beef stew is one of the easiest things for you to learn how to can.


Note: You cannot can beef stew without a pressure canner. Because meat is a low acid food it MUST be pressure canned.


Step by Step Canning Video


Unsure how to use your pressure canner? Watch as I prepare this beef stew recipe step by step.



A lot of recipes require a lot of preparation and cooking prior to canning, but for this recipe you put all of the ingredients in the jar raw (even the meat!), and then all of the ingredients are cooked in the jars during the pressure canning process.


If you have never eaten meat cooked in a pressure canner before, it is amazing! It’s very tender and FULL of flavor, and you won’t want to eat beef stew any other way again.


If you follow this following recipe step by step, your beef stew will turn out perfect every time. If you just got your pressure canner or are thinking about buying one and still not sure how to use it, let me walk you through the entire process step by step.


Beef Stew Canning Recipe


  • Roast or stew meat
  • Potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Celery
  • Beef bouillon


You don’t have to use exact measurements for this recipe. One 3-lb. chuck roast will be enough meat for about 6 quarts of beef stew. For 6 quarts you will also need approximately 2 large onions, 6 stalks of celery, approximately 1 carrot per jar, and 1-2 potatoes per jar.


Easy recipe for canning beef stew.


Sterilize your canning jars, lids, and rings. I sterilize mine by running them through the rinse cycle on my dishwasher. Just leave them in the dishwasher until you are ready to use them.


Prepare the beef bouillon by adding about 4 tbsp. of bouillon powder to 12 cups water (you need about 2 c. per quart canning jar). Heat to boiling.


Chop carrots, celery, and onions, and then peel and chop the potatoes.


Canning Instructions


Place 1 tsp. salt into each sterilized canning jar. Layer beef, potatoes, carrots, onions, and celery in canning jars. Add heated bouillon, leaving 1 inch head space. You can easily measure the head space with this inexpensive canning funnel.


If you don’t have enough bouillon to fill all the jars, just add a little hot water to make up the difference.


Wipe rims of jars with damp paper towel or dish towel, and then place the rings and lids on the canning jars.


Easy recipe for pressure canning beef stew.


Some people ask how long it takes to pressure can meat. Because meat is a low acid food, it takes close to the longest for it to process compared to other foods, so you can count on it taking up to 1 1/2 hours to process in the pressure canner.


Fill the pressure canner with 2-3 inches of water and place the jars in the pressure canner, and then secure the lid on the canner.


Process the prepared jars in pressure canner at 10 pounds pressure for 70 minutes for pints or 90 minutes for quarts. When timer goes off turn off the heat on the stove.


After the pressure has been completely released from the canner, remove the lid from the canner. Remove jars from canner and place on a towel on the kitchen counter to cool. It will take hours for the jars to cool completely, so let them sit until they are completely cooled off.


Make sure lids are sealed before storing in the pantry.  If you have any jars that didn’t seal, place them in the refrigerator and eat them in the next week. Sealed jars can be safely stored 1-2 years.


To serve, you can eat as-is or to thicken the stew, remove some of the liquid from the stew, add a couple tablespoons of cornstarch, stir, then add back to stew to thicken it (the cornstarch is added after canning because cornstarch is not safe to can).


Canning Supply List

Click here to download the canning supply list for this recipe.


If you live about 1,000 feet in elevation, download this altitude adjustment chart to find out how much extra pressure you need to use to can this recipe.


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Did You Try this Recipe? Tag @creativehomemaking on Instagram and hashtag it #creativehomemaking

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Canning raw stew. One of my favorite beef stew canning recipes.

Canning beef stew recipe

Easy recipe for canning beef stew

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47 Comments on "Canning Beef Stew"

  1. (5/5)

    This so informative! I read, read again and read all comments to get tips and ideas from others. Came out perfect! Thank you for sharing and be blessed! (I plan on trying with Venison this winter)


  2. (5/5)

    We raise our own meat and take it to the butcher shop. The meat is packaged and froze when we pick it up so I am wondering if it’s safe to use meat after unthawing?


  3. (5/5)

    Hi! Yes you should be able to substitute chicken for the beef, just make sure the processing time is safe for the chicken. It should be very similar to the beef.


  4. (5/5)

    Have you tried this recipe with chicken? And swap the bullion to chicken flavor. Im gonna try it both ways. Iff to my ball book to make sure i have safe time amounts. This looks easy and will keep my son with healthy food choices in the pantry!!!


  5. Hi again. I just watched the video and got my question answered! One more question though. Is it okay to put 7 quart jars in the canner?


    1. Yes! You can put 7 one-quart jars in your canner at one time. That is the most jars you can put in at one time.


  6. Hi there. This is my first time canning stew and really love your recipe. However, I’m a little confused with the directions. You said to “fill the pressure canner with 2-3 inches of water and place the jars in the pressure canner.” Are you putting hot water in the canner after you put the jars in the canner? How are your jars prepared? Do you keep them hot before you put the ingredients in them? Can’t wait to try it!


    1. Glad you got your questions answered. Yes, the video gives step by step instructions for the entire process. Good luck!


      1. The manufacturer says to put rack in the canner – add 12-cups of water.’
        You need to warm up the water to approx. 185°F, then you can add your warm filled jars to the canner. jars


  7. Hello, I hot water canned beef stew last week,tonight one jar blew the top ring off. Big mess ,what could of happened.


    1. Hi there, I hope you canned the beef stew in your pressure canner. You can’t process beef stew in a boiling water canner, the temperature doesn’t get hot enough to kill the bacteria. It’s possible your jar was too full, that does happen sometimes.


  8. Can you take out the celery and onions. And just do the other stuff and have it still be safe to can. Cause I love this idea but I’m a very picky eater and cant stand celery and onions .


    1. Hi there, yes you can totally leave out the celery and the onions. When pressure canning you process according to the acidity level of the lowest acid food. Since the meat has the lowest acidity level, you can leave out or change the vegetables without changing the safety of canning the stew.


      1. Thank you so much I’m going to try this , this week as my first attempt at pressure canning. I’m praying it goes well


  9. IS the small amount of salt used because of the high sodium content of the bouillon? If so, when using a homemade beef broth, can more salt can be added, as the potatoes will absorb most of it?


    1. Hi! Yes you can definitely add more salt if you want to. It will not affect how you process the jars. The salt is just for flavor.


  10. I thought celery couldn’t be canned because of the toxins it releases. What makes this recipe okay? I am really excited to try this.


    1. Hi! It’s my understanding that for the reasons you stated that it is not safe to can celery by itself. There is no tested method for canning celery. However, it is safe to can it in small amounts in a recipe that has been tested. You can read more about it here.


    1. Yes! You could definitely add tomatoes to this recipe. Tomatoes have a low enough pH level that it won’t affect the processing of the stew in the pressure canner. You can adjust the amount of vegetables, just make sure not to exceed the total headspace.


    1. Hi! You can add any other vegetables you like. The rule when pressure canning is that for any low acid food you add (so pretty much any vegetable), you want to use the amount of pressure for processing that you would use for the lowest acid vegetable. So you would need to find a chart that shows the acidity level of vegetables, and whatever has the highest pH, use that amount of pressure. Any food that has a pH level higher than 4.6 has to be pressure canned, but some vegetables have less acid than others, so some have a higher pH level than others. Here’s a page/chart I found that explains it better. Hope it’s not too confusing, but after you get this figured out you can feel more safe about pressure canning 🙂


  11. Hi! I have an Instant Pot (IP) and would love to try canning your beef stew using it. Any tips or directions on this?

    Thank you for your recipes. If I can convert them using the IP, I would like to try all of them!


    1. Hi! You can make beef stew in your instant pot, but you can’t can it. The great thing about the pressure canner is that it actually cooks the beef stew in the jars. You can’t do that with the instant pot.


  12. Rachel does the cooking process start once you put the lid on the pressure cooker on once it gets up to 10lbs of pressure?


    1. Hi! You start the timer when it gets up to 10 pounds pressure. If the pressure falls below 10 lbs at any time during the processing time, you need to re-start the timer after it gets up to pressure again.


      1. It’s important to follow all of the canning instructions. This includes letting the canner vent for 10 minutes after steam begins to come out of the hole on the top, then close it with whatever covers it. I have the rocker on top. You begin counting the 90 minutes when the pressure reaches 10 lbs or the rocker begins rocking.


  13. Hi there, enjoyed your tutorial. Can’t wait to try! I have one question, I have looked into canning just potatoes by itself but from what I could gather it wasn’t recommended, so is it safe in this recipe?


    1. Hi! Yes it is totally safe to can potatoes in a pressure canner. You can process them by themselves. It is recommended though, to make sure they are peeled first. Here is my recipe for canning potatoes.


    1. Hi! I haven’t tried that…the cornstarch you put in after you open it back up to eat it, it’s not safe for canning. You could try using the clear jel to thicken it before canning, but I’m not sure you would be happy with the resulting consistency of it. You would have to mix the clear jel in with the liquid before putting it in the jars. I’m not sure how that would work since you are actually cooking the vegetables in the liquid that’s in the jars. I know clear jel works great for this when making pie fillings, but I’ve never used it in a recipe I’ve prepared where you are actually cooking the recipe in a pressure canner. You could try it with one jar and see how it turns out??


      1. Where is the best place to buy Clear Jel? I am Canadian and it’s about $30 for 1lb. Which includes shipping


        1. Hi! Is that from Amazon? Amazon has it for a lot cheaper than that. If you have a local health food store or grocery store that has bulk foods they might have it. A couple of those types of stores near where I live have it for about $3 per pound in bulk.


  14. HI I am sensitive to bouillon as it is very high in sodium. I know newer ones are on the market but I have not tried them yet. Could. Use beef broth with fresh herbs added instead?


    1. Hi! Yes I don’t see why you couldn’t do that. The bouillon is just for flavor, it doesn’t affect the safety of canning this recipe.


  15. I haven’t pressure canned before. I know that in water bath canning, you have to COVER the jars with water. Your directions say “Fill the pressure canner with 2-3 inches of water “…so I don’t need to cover the jars with 2-3 inches of water?


    1. Hi Kay, I know that’s confusing, it took me awhile to get used to. In pressure canning you DO NOT cover the jars with water, the 2-3 inches of water in the bottom is all you need. In pressure canning it’s the steam and pressure that do all the work to kill the bacteria. Hope this helps! 🙂


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