What is Canning?
Canning is a method of preserving your food from spoilage. It was stored inside a container, and it was sealed and sterilized by heat. There are different types of Canning methods. One is pressure canning, and another one is steam and water bath canning. Low acids foods come under pressure canning, and preserving high acid foods comes under steam canning. Another name for steam canning is atmospheric canning.
Can you do canning in an Instant pot?
The research data has revealed that you shouldn’t use an electric cooker for pressure canning. As per the United States Department of Agriculture, they had not released any statement verifying to use of pressure cookers for pressure canning.
And another research data released by Utah state university, electric pressure can’t manage 15psi units of pressure. So they stated that cookers shouldn’t be used for canning.
Some pressure cooker products have claimed that they can maintain 15psi units of pressure. And one of the products is Instant pot. The Instant pot has one of the features called Canning, you can see the front display panel and it has internal pressure which can maintain up to 15psi units of pressure.
The question why Utah state university released data that the unit has failed in the test?
The company claimed it is because of the altitude level. The key to preserving food is every different altitude has a different boiling point which has different atmospheric temperatures and high temperatures. High temperatures can kill the bacteria inside your pot.
Types of Canning
Water Bath Canning
Water bath canning helps to preserve high acid foods. It helps keep the food fresh and ready to use it for later. You can find that foods are acidic which naturally kills off bacteria and helps to avoid food poisoning.
The instant pot is used to prepare all meals. It is used to boil water or baking bread. The instant pot helps to perform the water bath canning method. For instance, all you need to store your food on a jar to preserve in a pot that is capable of boiling water.
If your instant pot is big enough then it can store jar and helps your water bath can. In an instant pot, you are going to boil the water and store it in the jar.
Do you want to know the process water bath can? Let see about their process,
Place a cloth at bottom of the instant pot. Store your food in the jar for preservation and place it in a pot containing water. Let the water boil over for some time and after taking the lid on the pot. After removing the lid, let your pot rest for 5 minutes or more. Now you can take the jar out and store it for 12 hours or more in a suitable place. Now your water bath canning process is complete, and you can store it in the jar.
Since we know that canning works in a high acid recipe like strawberry jam, tomato sauce, pickled pearl onions. As heat kills the bacteria in the jar and it makes oxygen to remove from the jar. Thereby creating a vacuum which leads the lid to suck inward and seal.
This procedure is used to preserve low acid foods. If low acid foods are stored, it starts to form a bacteria named Clostridium Botulism. C. botulism is an odorless, tasteless poison known as botulism toxin which can severely damage and leads to death.
The National center of home food preservation (NCHFP) implemented a law regarding food preservation. Since then low acid food needs a regulated temperature for safe canning.
Instant Pots are not guaranteed to maintain needed pressure so they are incompetent for pressure canning.
Steam canning is used to preserve high acid foods like apples, strawberries, salsas, etc. Since it has a high acid level, they are less in danger to be exposed to food poisoning caused by Clostridium Botulism.
Canning needs a proper sterilization process. Stream canning temperatures are lower than pressure canning which carry out the procedure in Instant pot.
Some of the safety rules for steam canning,
Use high acid food
Steam canning requires a temperature of about 212 Fahrenheit. As mentioned earlier the temperature is lower than the pressure cooking. High acid food kills bacteria.
Refer to the tested food
Reference points can save your cooking from unexpected falls. It gives you a detailed plan for the canning process requirements such as pressure, liquid, and heat.
To produce a stream, instant pots are used. The stream is produced, when the water boils under a required temperature which helps in sterilization.
Use the heated jar that can keep a high level of temperature inside the instant pot. If you use non-heated jars that can’t handle a high level of temperature, it will cause damage to the jar.
Elevation and process time
Adjust your recipe according to the different boiling points. The maximum time duration for the process is 45minutes or less. The stream is produced after the starting of processing time.
It is important to cool your jars at room temperature for 12 hours. Refrigerate the jar for cooling and now your food is ready to use for consumption.
Now let’s see how to can in an instant pot?
Before using the jar, you have to make sure there are no cracks in the jar. So it will save you from beforehand while you are canning. The next step is you can sterilize the jar in the instant pot.
Place your jar in the stand after adding the needed amount of water and vinegar. Now close the jar and seal the vent. Begin the steam cycle for 1 minute.
You can add the food in the hot jar leaving 1/4 inch headspace.
Clean the borders of the jar and it makes sure to give you a tight seal each time. Place the lid on tightly then set venting after placing them in the instant pot.
After setting into the stream, wait for the float valve to come up. Once it comes up, start your processing time.
When it finishes off the processing time, switch off the Instant pot so the pressure can come down.
After the float valve comes down, open the instant pot and take the jar out but be careful you might burn your hands. So let it cool down and leave them for 12 hours, now your stream can is done.
Instant Pot Max
Instant pot max was introduced with a canning feature. People questioned how effective are these features?
Canning food preserves and increases the shelf life of the food. But how it can be safe in the instant pot? Will, it can properly?
As you know the canning process needs to follow the safety measures and kill off bacteria under the right temperature. The matter of canning shouldn’t be taken lightly.
The combination of time and temperature kills the bacteria when the heat is maintained.
The Instant pot max is the first USDA approved electric cooker for home canning. But it was not yet approved for all foods. Since altitude plays an important role during canning, so you shouldn’t can in the Instant pot max.