Is water bath canning green beans safe?

Canning Green Beans without a pressure canner,
oh please don't do it.  

I've been teaching home canning for a long time.  I'd love to share what I've learned with you.   Simply Canning School's online video based classes .

I get this question quite often.  

"I need information about canning green beans without a pressure canner.  Can you help me? "

No, it is not safe to waterbath can green beans. Click on the links to find out why.

Botulism - a type of food poison preventable by using a pressure canner.  Green beans are a low acid food and at risk of botulism.  Use the pressure canner and it is perfectly safe!  

Which canning method should I choose.  Learn more about what type of canner to use for low acid or high acid foods.  

I'll say it again.... When you are home canning green beans you have to use a pressure canner.

What others have to say...

Sharon, thanks for stressing the pressure canning method for canning green beans. There is no other way to can green beans, not withstanding what all of our grandmas did. I worked in the operating room for 22 years as a Registered Nurse. Our preferred method of sterilizing operative instruments was by steam under pressure. U can reach a much higher sustained temperature with steam under pressure. This method kills resistant micro organisms and spores, fungus, yeast, viral and bacterial micro organisms. Just can't kill ALL of those organisms by submerging in boiling water.  Some of the most nasty organisms form spores around their cell so they can survive without a host for a long time.  Boutulism is the condition when a  nasty organism isn't killed by boiling water and comes alive again in a person's gut after it is unknowingly ingested. 

Having said that, PLEASE, everyone, there should be no hesitation when it come to using a pressure canner for non-acid foods!  The initial investment in a pressure canner is totally, totally worth it!  Thanks.
(name withheld by Sharon)  ARNP-C (Family Nurse Practitioner-Certified)

This question has been asked several are some examples.

I canned beans for the first time this year using the water bath method. I sterilized my jars, filled with snipped beans, covered with boiling water (left a one inch head space), put new lids and bands on and then boiled them covered for 25 minutes. The were all sealed for almost a week and now they are all unsealing. The beans inside smell rotten. Why are they unsealing? Thanks! ~ ~Mandy In

Hi Mandy

Green beans are a vegetable and therefore really must be pressure canned, not water bath canned. It sounds as if you did water bath canning.

This page has directions for pressure canning green beans. There are several links to more pressure canning directions on this page as well.

Other than the processing it sounds as if you did everything else right.

Unfortunately you will need to dispose of the beans already done. Throw it away where no animals can get into it. It can make them sick as well.

I'm sure this is discouraging but I hope you will try again.

I don't have a pressure cooker. How long do I need to boil jars of green beans so as to preserve them? Our parent's all canned green beans without a pressure cooker. ~ Thank You Tony D 

Hi Tony

Many people used to water bath can green beans. They process them for a very long time. However it is now recommended that you pressure can them.

You are at risk of botulism if you only water bath can.

I am sorry I can not recommend a time for you for water bath canning green beans. The only recommendation I can give is to pressure can them.

Canning Green Beans

I don't have a pressure canner. Can I do a water bath canning instead with green beans. ~Ruth IN 

Hi Ruth.

Green beans are a vegetable and to ensure safety must be pressure canned.

If you don't have a pressure canner do you know someone you could borrow from? Or you might consider freezing your green beans.

Be sure to see what else you can do with Green Beans.

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