Going to can some peaches? Learn what peaches are good for canning and what makes them good for it.
Many people love to can peaches.
Peaches are one of those fruits that we don't have year round. In the winter time they are missed. So canning is a great way to enjoy that summer flavor. Its much better than buying store bought canned peaches.
👀 What To Look For
I think when it comes down to choosing peaches for canning, the only thing to really be concerned with are matters of convenience and flavor. Here is a list of things I look for in peaches I would can.
- Large in size
- Ripe but firm, not mealy
- Resists browning
- Taste great
📅 Best Time to Can Peaches
The best peaches for canning will be available in most areas in the month of August or early September. If you live in a warmer climate, you best time is at the end of July.
It is a lot easier to prepare a lot of peaches for canning if they are freestone peaches, which means the stones or pits are easily removed. If I am canning a ½ bushel of peaches I don't want to be having to spend time cutting around the pit.
The freestone peaches typically take longer to ripen than clingstone, so you want to wait later in the season to can your peaches. Plus I think it's a good idea to just enjoy the fresh peaches while they are available and can some at the end of the season.
Now when it comes down to particular freestone varieties, any variety will work. Any peach that you can pick yourself would be a great option, because you can get a lot for your money that way.
📏 Size of Peach
If you buy small peaches it will just increase your work of peeling and taking out pits. It's best to choose larger varieties.
Red Haven peaches may a good choice, because they are one of the most popular peaches, so it's easier to be able to pick them yourselves or be able to buy them in mass quantities. They are a good size peach. You really don't want to use small peaches because it's going to be a lot more work.
Downside of the Red Haven is that some years the flesh can stick to the pit somewhat and they aren't truly freestone. But every peach that ripens after a Red Haven will be a true freestone.
❔ How Many Peaches Per Jar
The most commonly used jar type is the quart sized mason jar. If you have good sized peaches you probably need about 5 per jar. Make sure to have some extra just in case it takes more.
🏆 Best Varieties
Here is a list of other varieties that are freestone and great to can.
- Red Globe
- Canadian Harmony
🚫 Resist Browning
Another thing you want to look for is can you find a peach that doesn't turn brown when cut. This will make your canned peaches more attractive. Not a necessity, but we do eat with our eyes so keep that in mind.
The Crest Haven variety is an example of a peach that is resistant to browning. If you can't find a variety that says it's resistant you can always use citric acid or lemon juice to prevent browning.
💡 Top Tips
When you can peaches you want them to be ripe, yet firm, and not mealy. I choose to can peaches that are ripe enough to give to gentle pressure.
One of the problems with grocery store peaches near the end of the season is that they are in cold storage too long and tend to be mealy. If you want to can peaches from the store do so earlier in the season. When we get into August and September, it's vital to buy directly from the source if you can.
Where is the best place to buy a good peach? Click here to read my article on shopping for peaches.
Is August Lady a good canning, peach?
I have not had that variety before myself. You really can, can any peach. Typically ones that are firm enough when ripe are the best options.
Is autumn lady a good peach for canning. Does it come off the pit easily? I am new at canning so don't want to make mistakes and ruin good peaches.
I couldn't confirm that they are a freestone, but since they are a late season variety - the last peach for some orchards - they should be great for canning. You could always test one, see how easy the pit is removed.