Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Canning Rice

This weekend I canned rice.  I really love canning and enjoy canning foods that we eat regularly.  This provides for easy meals when I'm out of time, lunches for my husband to take to work, ready to eat food if we lose power or have to run out for any reason.

I was unable to find any information on canning rice in my canning books, and the typical canning recipe sites.  MANY referred to canning rice and said, "Don't do it."

Why?  Is it unsafe?

No.  It gets mushy.

Oh for crying out loud.  When I am STARVING, and need to eat something, will I honestly care if my rice is mushy??  I think not.

So I continued in my hunt for instructions on canning rice.

I finally found this like minded gentleman.



His instructions from the videos....

Pint Jars
2/3 cup brown rice (a little less actually)
Fill with water to 1/4 inch BELOW the inch line
Allow canner to vent 7 minutes before putting on the weight.
15lbs pressure for 17 minutes.


I was eager to get started.  But I only had white rice.  I considered this long and hard, and decided to simply cut the canning time.

I did NOT do this recklessly.  Let me explain.

15lbs pressure assures that your canner and the goods inside reach 250 degrees F.  Commercial canneries can their low acid foods at 250 degrees for over 3 minutes to kill botulism.  That's right... 3 minutes. :)

Normally cooking brown rice takes 40 minutes to simmer, while white rice takes 20 minutes.

I felt quite safe canning my white rice for 8 minutes at 15lbs pressure.

It ended up being more time than that anyways, since I was in the middle of a diaper change when the timer went off.  Such is the fabric of my life.



Now I have several jars of rice made up.  It will be very useful to throw in a pot of soup if I am in a real rush, have my husband keep a few at work for lunch, grab some if we are in a hurry and rushing to go somewhere.  I probably won't can anymore than this batch, until I run out.  Since rice is easy to store and prepare, these would only be for real emergencies, or when I am at my wits end for food.  I try hard to plan ahead for meals and these should last a good long time in the pantry.



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8 comments:

  1. I, too, thought it was brilliant that I came up with the idea to can rice. That way, for my 3 month storage, I have meals ready-to-eat that won't require storing so much water for preparation. I like your comment about "Oh for crying out loud. When I am STARVING, and need to eat something, will I honestly care if my rice is mushy?? I think not." Some people get a little carried away don't they! I am wondering if you have opened any jars...how did it taste? Was it hard to get out of the jar?
    Aleisa M. cougarangel83@gmail.com

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  2. I have! I found the rice to taste pretty normal but it was really, REALLY packed it the jars and is initially like chopping a brick of rice. So I haven't used them for 'gran and eat'. I have used them in tomato soup with rice and cheese, chicken soup, and chili. During the heating process I am able to break the rice up into its normal grains. I think this could be improved by putting less rice in each jar.

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  3. Dumb question. The rice was uncooked before the canning, correct?
    Thanks. Love your site.

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  4. Yes, uncooked.
    I was pretty happy with them. Cannot tell the difference when it is incorporated into a meal. And, like I said, I think putting slightly less rice in each jar will improve the usability.
    Thank you!

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  5. What altitude are you? I can at 15 pounds pressure because I live at 4800 ft. altitude. I am trying to figure out what the time would be for white rice here.

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    Replies
    1. We are just a few hundred feet above sea level, so I normally can at 10lbs. I used 15lbs on THIS recipe as a precaution, based upon my research of canning and botulism. I highly recommend all canners read it up for themselves to have a firm understanding of the topic.

      This recommends just adding 10 minutes to the time of the given recipe for your altitude.
      http://www.freshpreserving.com/sites/default/files/AltitudeCharts.pdf

      I also recommend using LESS rice in each jar than was stated above, as they came out very much like bricks of rice. Usable, and could be broken up back into rice grains, but I think it will be easier with less rice.

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  6. I see that I have commented numerous times on the fact that they came out like bricks. LOL This may give the reader the idea that I hated them. That is not the case. I just forget what I comment from time to time.

    I was HAPPY to have rice already cooked in my pantry. It makes meal time much easier when I don't have to dirty another pan, or wait 30ish minutes to get rice to put into whatever dish I am cooking. The taste was absolutely the same and I did not think it turned out too mushy at all, as it was still clearly little granules of rice.

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