Jona-Golds are what we use for canning apples. But there are MANY varieties that will work: Gala, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp…mmmmm. Honey Crisps are my favorite for eating fresh.
Fruits are a high-acid food and can be safely processed in a water bath canner.
Learn how to can apples!
An apple peeler-corer-slicer is a great tool when you are working with apples. However, I have noticed that with the slices so thin, the slices tend to get very soft after processing.
If I you are going to use these apples for apple pie, you may want your pieces to be a bit thicker than the slicer will make. But it works fine for apple crisps or just heating with a sprinkle of some cinnamon-sugar.
I still highly recommend the slicer. It is an incredible time-saving tool. But using a knife the old-fashioned way may just suit your needs better.
Gather Your Canning Supplies:
Prepare light or medium syrup. (I prefer light syrup.) Simply heat water and sugar in a saucepan until sugar dissolves. The best way to do this is in a tea kettle. Then, you can just pour your syrup over the apples in the jar. Super easy and way less mess. And I'm all for less mess.
You can also make a syrup with honey if you don't want to use processed sugar.
It's possible to can apples with just water, but I wouldn't recommend it. Apples tend to get very watery if they're preserved without a sugar syrup.
Peel, core, and slice your apples. Use an apple peeler or just a knife.
To prevent browning, you can treat your apples with ascorbic or citric acid. This should be available at the grocery store. Follow the instructions on the package.
After peeling, coring, and slicing apples, place in a large pot with a light syrup and bring to a boil for 5 minutes.
Fill jars with hot fruit and cooking liquid, leaving 1/2-inch headspace.
Place your canning rack in your water bath canner, but have it up out of the water. When each jar is full, remove air bubbles by using a small tool to run down in the jar (like the picture shows). They sell a canning bubble remover tool for this purpose, but I like using my orange peeler. Works perfectly.
Next, clean the rim with a wet paper towel to be sure any syrup will not interfere with the seal, and put the lid on.
Place jar in the rack above the hot water in the canner to keep warm while you are preparing your next jar. Continue until all jars are packed and ready to be lowered into your canner.
Lower jars into canner, heat water to boiling, and process.
For more details on how to use a water bath canner, follow these instructions.
Either Pints or Quarts are both processed for 20 minutes.
Canning apples instruction adapted from NCHFP.
Page last updated: 7/25/2019.