The Ultimate Guide to Canning Peaches: From Choosing the Perfect Variety to Processing Jars

Sharing Is Caring!

Canning peaches is a delightful way to preserve the sweetness of summer and enjoy the flavors of ripe peaches all year long. Whether you’re a seasoned canner or a beginner looking to learn the process, this guide will walk you through the steps to can peaches successfully. We’ll explore the differences between freestone and clingstone peaches, discuss the best peach varieties for canning, and provide variations for canning peaches without sugar or with light syrup. Get ready to elevate your canning game and savor the sweetness of perfectly preserved peaches all year long. So, grab your apron and let’s dive into this ultimate guide to canning peaches!

 This post contains affiliate links. This means I may earn a commission should you chose to sign up for a program or make a purchase using my link. There is no added cost to you but your purchase through my links helps support our content! Not to worry- I truly believe in and/or use everything I promote!

Freestone vs Clingstone

To choose the best peaches for canning, it’s important to understand the different peach varieties and their unique characteristics. Peaches come in a wide range of flavors, textures, and colors, each offering its own distinct qualities that can make a difference in your final canned product. By familiarizing yourself with these varieties, you can confidently select the perfect peaches that will shine in your jars.

Freestone

One popular peach variety is the freestone peach. As the name suggests, these peaches have a pit that easily separates from the flesh, making them a breeze to work with during the canning process. Freestone peaches are known for their juicy and sweet flavor, making them an excellent choice for canning. Their firm texture ensures that they hold up well in the jars, providing a delightful bite every time you open one.

[ez-toc]

For beginners, freestone peaches are recommended as they save time and effort during the slicing process, resulting in cleaner and more intact peach slices.

canning peaches

Clingstone

Another variety to consider is the clingstone peach. Unlike freestone peaches, the flesh of clingstone peaches clings tightly to the pit, requiring a bit more effort to remove. However, don’t let the extra work deter you, as clingstone peaches offer an intense and robust flavor that can add depth to your canned peaches. The flesh of clingstone peaches tends to be firmer, making them a suitable choice for pie fillings or other recipes that require a sturdier texture.

Best Peach Varieties for Canning

There is a wide range of heirloom and specialty peach varieties that can offer a truly unique flavor experience. When choosing peaches for canning, look for ripe, unblemished fruits with vibrant colors and a sweet aroma.

Elberta Peach

Elberta peaches are well-known for their sweet, rich, and slightly tangy flavor. They have a pleasant aroma and a juicy, golden-yellow flesh. Elberta peaches hold up exceptionally well in the canning process. Their firm flesh maintains its shape, making them a reliable choice for canning whole slices or halves. Elberta peaches are commonly grown in various regions across the United States, particularly in California, Georgia, and South Carolina.

Red Haven Peach

Red Haven peaches are celebrated for their delectable sweetness with a balanced acidity. Their smooth and firm texture makes them a favorite among peach enthusiasts. Red Havens are excellent for canning due to their firmness, which ensures the slices or halves stay intact during processing, resulting in attractive canned peaches. Originally from Michigan, Red Haven peaches are now grown in several states in the Midwest and Northeastern regions of the United States.

Suncrest Peach

Suncrest peaches are renowned for their intense, tropical-like flavor with a perfect blend of sweetness and acidity. They are incredibly juicy and aromatic. Suncrest peaches maintain their juiciness and flavor during the canning process, making them an excellent choice for preserving the true essence of summer in a jar. Suncrest peaches are commonly grown in California and other warm regions with a Mediterranean climate.

Hale Haven Peach

Hale Haven peaches offer a delightful, classic peach flavor that is sweet and mildly tart. They are aromatic and have a pleasing texture. Hale Havens hold up well in the canning process, making them a reliable option for canning sliced or

canning peaches without a canner

halved peaches without losing their taste or texture. Hale Haven peaches are commonly grown in various states across the United States, including California, Georgia, and South Carolina.

Babcock Peach

Babcock peaches are treasured for their incredibly sweet and succulent flesh with low acidity. They have a delicate floral aroma that adds to their appeal. Babcock peaches can be easily canned as their soft flesh holds its shape well during the canning process. They are a great choice for those who prefer softer canned peaches. Babcock peaches are commonly grown in California and some other peach-producing states.

Overall, these peach varieties are excellent choices for canning due to their exceptional flavor profiles and ability to withstand the canning process. Depending on your location and the peach season, you can find these varieties in local orchards or farmer’s markets, particularly in the regions where they are commonly grown. Choose the ripest, freshest peaches for the best results when canning and enjoy the taste of summer all year long!

Plants by Stark Bro's

Step-by-Step Guide to Canning Peaches

To begin, gather all the necessary equipment and ingredients for canning peaches. This includes:

  • Sterilized canning jars, lids and bands
  • Large pot or pressure canner
  • Jar lifter, funnel, ladle, and a bubble remover and headspace tool
  • Timer
  • And of course, fresh, ripe peaches.
homemade
Canning Pot with Rack and full Set + ½ Pint ladle Measuring Cups – Supplies Kit for Beginner, Food Grade Stainless Steel Accessories Starter

Step 1: Prepare Peaches

Prepare your peaches by washing them thoroughly under cool water. Blanch the peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds, then transfer them to an ice water bath to loosen the skins. Peel the skin off, halve the peaches, and remove the pits. Slice the peaches into desired sizes, halves or slices is recommended. Consider saving the peach pits and peels to make delicious Peach Pit Jelly.

Step 2: Prepare Jars

Fill a large pot or pressure canner with water and bring it to a boil. Place the canning jars in the boiling water to sterilize them. Submerge the lids and bands in a separate pot of hot water.

Step 3: Choose Your Syrup

  • No Sugar Variation: For a sugar-free option, pack the sliced peaches into jars without adding any sweeteners. Cover peaches with filtered water up to 1/2 inch headspace.
  • Light Syrup Variation: Prepare a light syrup by combining 4 cups of water with 1 cup of sugar (adjust to taste) and bring it to a boil. Pack the peach slices into jars and cover with the light syrup, leaving a ½ inch headspace.
water bath canning peaches

Step 4: Remove Bubbles & Debris

Use the bubble remover tool to remove any air bubbles trapped inside the jar. Wipe the rim on the jar with a clean wash cloth dipped in hot water or vinegar to remove any residue or stickiness. Place the lids on top and screw the bands fingertip-tight.

Step 5: Process The Jars

Line the bottom of your canner or stock pot with a canning rack or extra rings to ensure the jars are not sitting directly on the bottom. Submerge the jars in the large pot filled with boiling water, ensuring they are fully covered by 1-2 inches of water. Process 25 minutes for pints and 30 minutes for quarts, ensuring the water stays at a boil throughout the entire canning time.

Step 6: Storing The Cans

Once the processing time is complete, carefully remove the jars and let them cool on a towel-lined surface. Allow them to cool for at least 12-24 hours. After cooling, check the seals, remove the rings and label the jars with the date. Store them in a cool, dark place.Properly Labeling and Storing Your Canned Peaches is the next crucial step in the canning process, ensuring you can enjoy your delicious peaches for months to come.

To maintain the best taste and texture of your peaches, it’s recommended to consume them within a year of canning. However, if you notice any signs of spoilage, such as bulging lids, an off smell, or mold, it’s best to err on the side of caution and discard the contents.

canned peaches recipe

In most cases, well-preserved canned peaches will remain safe to eat beyond the recommended timeframe, but their quality may deteriorate over time.

Conclusion

Canning peaches is a rewarding experience that allows you to savor the taste of summer throughout the year. Whether you prefer no sugar or a light syrup variation, the water bath canning process ensures your canned peaches are safe and delicious. Start your canning journey with these beginner-friendly steps and enjoy the fruits of your labor long after the peach season has passed. Happy canning!

Hey Beautiful! I’m Tara, garden enthusiasts, keeper of chickens, herbal homesteader and stay at home mom of 3 tiny humans and a sourdough starter named Ma. I love teaching others how to live a self-sufficient and sustainable life through homesteading, scratch cooking, and remembering to live barefoot, wild and free!

Get A Free Guide To Preserving Farm Fresh Eggs!

Learn to preserve the abundance with this FREE guide containing over 10 different ways to turn those fresh eggs into a shelf stable product you can use all year round!

Come See What We're Up To On Social Media!

Check Out Our Latest Products

Subscribe To Our Email List

Our Latest Posts

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More To Explore

Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top