Monday, January 10, 2011

Canning Chicken

I love having canned chicken, already cooked, ready to go on my shelves. I have so many recipes I can use it in and continually find new recipes that are easily adaptable to canned chicken. With canned chicken on your shelves it is so easy to compile a list of food storage recipes using chicken for your short term food storage.

If you have a pressure canner it is very easy to can your own chicken. If you don’t I’ll also include instructions on how you can freeze your cooked chicken and the chicken broth for your favorite chicken recipes.

This is a good time of year to buy chicken for canning. I prefer canning chicken breasts – boneless and skinless – because it is easier and I like the meat. However, you may wish to can mixed dark and white meat or any combination thereof. You can also buy the whole chicken or any combo of chicken parts and cook, remove meat and can.

Here are the basic directions for canning both the chicken meat and the broth, which you will also love having on hand. I’m also including the recipe for frozen chicken mix and frozen chicken broth that is great if you have freezer space. This is a great idea to have chicken and broth ready to go for your favorite recipe. It is also a good way to take advantage of sale prices you may find on chicken. However just a suggestion: Start hinting to Santa now that you want a pressure canner for Christmas next year…He may have to start saving his pennies now!! I’m also including my favorite recipe using canned chicken. Having the chicken cooked and ready to go makes this a quick dinner favorite.

Home Canned Chicken
In a large pot on the stove, cook chicken with water to cover the chicken,until done. De-bone if necessary and cut into small to medium size chunks. (If using chicken breasts you can either cut the meat into chunks before cooking or after it is cooked.

While meat is cooking warm clean jars on a baking sheet in your oven, on low heat. Keep canning flats warm in a pan of hot water on low on your stove top. When chicken is cooked and cut up, add 1 chicken bouillon cube to each pint or quart jar (you can add 2 per quart if you wish). Fill with boiling water, (NOT the broth it was cooked in) leaving 1” headspace per jar. Wipe jars, add canning flats and rims.

Follow your pressure canner directions exactly. Process pints for 75minutes and quarts for 90 minutes at 13 lbs. pressure (15 lbs. if using a weighted canner instead of one with a gauge).

For broth:
Take reserve broth from cooked chicken and refrigerate several hours or overnight. Skim off fat, reheat and pour into jars leaving a 1” headspace. Process pints for 20 minutes and quarts for 25 minutes at 13 lbs. pressure (for gauge canner) and15 lbs. pressure (for weighted canner).

Remove jars from canner when pressure has dropped completely and wipe with a clean dishcloth, label with date and store.

Frozen Chicken Mix
11 lbs. chicken (any combo of white and dark you wish)
4 quarts water
3 T. parsley flakes
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 t. salt
½ t. pepper
2 t. basil
Combine all ingredients in a large kettle. Cover and cook over high heat until water boils. Simmer until meat is tender, about 1 ½ hours. Remove from heat. Strain broth and refrigerate until fat can be skimmer. Cool chicken, remove any bones or skin and cut into chunks or pieces. Put into 6 freezer containers or freezer bags or use a food saver and freeze. After removing fat from broth put into 6 more freezer containers or jars leaving about ½” headspace at the top. Seal and label containers; freeze. Use within 3 months. Y: 6 pints chicken and 6 pints broth.

Cheddary Chicken Pot Pie
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 c. milk, divided
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 pkg. (3 oz.) cream cheese, softened
¼ c. chopped celery
¼ c. shredded carrots
¼ c. grated parmesan cheese
½ t. salt
3 c. cubed cooked chicken (or 1 pint cooked chicken, drained)1 pkg. (10 oz.) Frozen chopped broccoli, cooked & drained
1 egg
1 T. oil
1 c. buttermilk complete pancake mix
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
¼ c. sliced almonds (optional)
Combine soup, ½ c. milk, onion, cream cheese, celery, carrots, parmesan cheese & salt. Cook & stir till mixture is hot & cream cheese is melted. Don't boil. Stir in broccoli and heat through. Pour into ungreased 2 qt. baking dish. In a medium bowl, combine egg, oil & remaining milk. Add pancake mix & cheddar cheese, blend well. Spoon over hot chicken mixture. Sprinkle with almonds if desired. Bake uncovered at 375ยบ for 20-25 minutes or till golden brown. Y: 6 servings

1 comment:

Ann said...

Is it okay to not cook the chicken before canning it? Thanks!