Home canned grapes have a delicious, wine-like flavour to them.
They are delicious spooned over a bowl of thick Greek yoghurt, or ice cream.
They are also good mixed with some pieces of fresh fruit (such as orange sections and banana slices) for a mixed fruit cocktail — use the juice off the canned grapes as a syrup. You can also use them in fruit salads or jellied salads.
Or, drain and use in savoury dishes such as “Grape, Celery, and Couscous Salad”, or “Pork Medallions with Roasted Parsnips and Roasted Grapes.”
On this page, we work through the USDA procedure for home canning grapes. You may can these in plain water for maximum flexibility, or in sweetened water (see Sweetening Options below.) If you are using table grapes, you may well find they are sweet enough on their own as is.
To be clear, this is a procedure for canning grapes as fruit in their own right: not made into jam, jelly or juice, etc.
Note: Utah State extensions offers this tip about seeded vs seedless varieties: “Seedless grapes can be canned whole for use in fruit salads and molded gelatin desserts.
If seeded varieties are used, halve and remove seeds before canning.” Jensen, Christine and Charlotte Brennand. Grapes. Utah State University Cooperative Extension. March 2010. Use the tip of a knife to get the seeds out (and discard them.)
Quantities of grapes needed
Numbers are approximate guidelines.
On average, as a very rough guideline, expect to need about 1 kg (2 lbs) grapes per litre (US quart) jar
- 6 kg (14 lb) of grapes = 7 litres (US quarts) canned grapes
- 4 kg (9 lbs ) of grapes = 9 x ½ litres (US pints) canned grapes
- 1 lug grapes = 12 kg (26 lbs) = 12 to 14 litres (US quarts) canned grapes
If you are going to can these in a sugar syrup (see Sweetening Options below), prepare that first and set aside.
Jar size choices: Quarter-litre (½ US pint) OR half-litre (1 US pint) OR 1 litre (1 US quart)
Processing method: Water bath or steam canning
Headspace: 2 cm (½ inch)
Processing time: 10 minutes, all jar sizes
- Stem and wash grapes.
- Have a pot of water boiling.
- Add the grapes in small batches at a time so that the water will come back to the boil quickly.
- Let the grapes boil for 30 seconds, then fish out of pot immediately with slotted spoon or sieve.
- Repeat until all grapes are blanched.
- Divvy berries out amongst jars, leaving 3 cm (1 inch) headspace.
- Divvy blanching juice out amongst jars, leaving 2 cm (½ inch) headspace.
- If short of canning liquid, top jars up with boiling water from a kettle.
- Debubble, top up with more liquid as required to retain headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Process jars regardless of chosen size from above in a water bath or steam canner for 10 minutes; increase time as needed for your altitude.
The USDA also gives raw-pack directions for canning grapes.
If you are canning the grapes in plain water, note that raw packs are not generally advised for sugar-free canning of fruit. Raw packs have a shorter quality shelf life; the sugar acts as a bit of a “fixatif” to help extend that a little.
[Optional] To can sweetened. You can make a light sugar syrup, following the National Center’s directions for a light or very light syrup.
For sugar-free methods, we’ve had tasty sugar-free results using liquid stevia in the following proportions: Per quarter-litre jar (½ US pint), ⅛th teaspoon liquid stevia. Per half-litre jar (US pint), ¼ teaspoon liquid stevia. Per 1 litre jar (US quart), ½ teaspoon liquid stevia.
You may also wish to try Splenda ®.
Both would leave a clear liquid in the jar.
Some may ask about honey; the downside we can see is that honey could make the jar liquid “murky”; generally in home canning murkiness is relied upon as an indicator of something having gone wrong in the stored jars. Honey would also change the flavour.
The small quarter-litre (1 cup / ½ US pint / 8 oz) jars are handy for baking; you may wish to can some of those jars unsweetened for maximum flexibility when you go to use them.
Note that both red and green grapes will lose their pronounced red and green colours respectively and end up very pale.
If you try to blanch too many grapes at once, the water will take forever to get back to a boil for blanching and your grapes may cook and turn to mush.
How to water bath process.
How to steam can.
When water-bath canning or steam canning, you must adjust the processing time for your altitude.
For stevia, Better Stevia liquid stevia was the stevia used.
More information about Sugar and Salt-Free Canning in general.
Grapes – Whole. United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Complete guide to home canning. Agriculture information bulletin No. 539. 2015. Page 2-16.
Cooking with canning
Serving size: quarter-litre (1 cup / 8 oz / 250 ml)
Per quarter-litre (1 cup / 8 oz / 250 ml): 168 calories, 5 mg sodium
Weight Watchers PointsPlus® and SmartPoints®: Per ¼ litre (1 cup / 8 oz / 250 ml): 0 points (grapes are free on Weight Watchers.)
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com
* PointsPlus™ and SmartPoints™calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of both registered trademarks.
* Better Stevia ® is a registered trademark of the NOW Foods Company.
|↑1||Jensen, Christine and Charlotte Brennand. Grapes. Utah State University Cooperative Extension. March 2010.|