These canning directions concern roasted peppers, packed in water.
These directions apply to peppers regardless of the colour and they also apply to chiles.
You can can peppers (hot or sweet). You can can them, pickled or plain.
Pickled peppers can be water-bathed or steam-canned. Unpickled plain ones such as these must be pressure canned.
This recipe is from the USDA Complete Guide; it requires peeling the peppers.
Ball and Bernardin provide directions for plain unroasted, unpeeled peppers.
See also: Dehydrating roasted peppers.
Quantities of peppers needed
Numbers are approximate guidelines.
Allow 1/2 kg (1 pound) raw whole peppers per 1/2 litre (1 US pint) jar.
Jar size choices: 1/4 litre (1/2 US pint) or 1/2 litre (1 US pint)
Processing method: Pressure canning only
Headspace: 3 cm (1 inch)
Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet)
Processing time: 35 minutes for quarter or half-litre (pint or half-pint) jars
Canning roasted peppers
Remove cores and seeds.
Roast peppers using method of your choice.
Cut into quarters; small ones may be left whole.
Pack into quarter-litre (1/2 US pint) or half-litre (1 US pint) jars.
Leave 3 cm (1 inch) headspace.
Optional: a pinch of salt per jar.
Top up each jar with clean boiling water (such as from a kettle, for instance), maintaining headspace.
Debubble; adjust headspace.
Wipe jar rims.
Put lids on.
Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet.)
Processing time: either size jar 35 minutes.
Processing guidelines below are for weighted-gauge pressure canner. See also if applicable: Dial-gauge pressures.
|Jar Size||Time||0 to 300 m (0 - 1000 feet) pressure||Above 300 m (1000 ft) pressure|
|1/4 litre (1/2 US pint)||35 mins||10 lbs||15 lb|
|1/2 litre (1 US pint)||35 mins||10 lbs||15 lb|
How to roast the peppers
You may roast the peppers in any way you feel that you will have the most success with. It won’t affect the canning process or safety.
If you haven’t roasted peppers before, the Presto Guide gives perhaps the most succinct version of the USDA directions:
Cut two or four slits in each pepper, and blister using one of the following methods:
- Oven or broiler method: Place chile peppers in a 200 C (400°F) oven or broiler for 6 to 8 minutes until skins blister;
- Range-top method: Cover hot burner, either gas or electric with heavy wire mesh. Place chilies on burner for several minutes until skins blister.  Presto Pressure Canner and Cooker, 23 quart model, #72-719F. 2014. Page 13.
We found that either of the suggested above methods left us pick-picking little bits of skin off for hours, though you may have better luck.
We now use the following method; it draws on a new technique that Ball has introduced as of its All New book for roasting veg:
Line rimmed baking sheets (as many as you can fit in oven at one time) with tin foil (optional but makes cleanup far easier.) Set aside. Wash, stem, seed the peppers. Put on ungreased surface cut side down. Roast at 190 C (375 F) for about 25 to 30 minutes, until the skin on some of them begins to char. (How long exactly will depend on how hot your oven runs.) Remove from oven, let cool for about 10 to 15 minutes or until cool enough to handle safely. The skin will be wrinkled. Pinch it at one end, and most of the time you will be able to pull it away entirely from the pepper in one go. If the skin isn’t that wrinkled, then you need to roast longer. If the skin sticks a lot, then you need to let it cool a bit more.
If roasting with our preferred method, budget in your mind about 2 hours prep work per half US bushel (5 kg / 11 lbs) of peppers. The other two methods were far slower for us.
How to pressure can.
When pressure canning, you must adjust the pressure for your altitude.
More information about Salt-Free Canning in general.
- Do not do larger jars.
- If you are doing hot peppers, it is one thing as a cook to brave prepping one or two peppers with bare hands; it is a different thing altogether to prepare them in industrial quantities. Wear gloves, or your hands will go dry and burn for hours on end, even with mild Jalapeno peppers. (Sweet peppers should be fine.)
- While peppers are flopping around in the jars during processing, they can be prone to pushing water out of the jar, leaving you with a low water level after processing. To help alleviate this, be sure to build up the pressure in the canner slowly and to let the canner cool slowly and naturally after processing (you should always do both, anyway, but particularly with items such as peppers and greens that are prone to pushing water out of jars.)
- Instead of the salt, you can use a non-bitter, non-clouding salt sub. We have found Herbamare Sodium-Free performs well in that regard.
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Complete guide to home canning. Agriculture information bulletin No. 539. 2015. Peppers.
Presto Pressure Canner and Cooker, 23 quart model, #72-719F. 2014. Peppers.
Serving size: 250 g, drained (about one half of a 1/2 litre / US pint jar, if 500 g went into the jar.)
- 78 calories, 10 mg sodium
- Weight Watchers PointsPlus®: 0 points (peppers are free on Weight Watchers).
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com
* PointsPlus™ calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.
What size of pepper pieces?
New Mexico says, “Chiles can be cut in pieces or left whole. Pack chiles loosely and add boiling water.”  Flores, Nancy. Sweet Green Peppers. New Mexico State University. E-308. May 2008. Accessed May 2015.
The USDA in its directions for Sweet Green Peppers says, “Large peppers may be quartered.” Texas A&M University Extension says, “large peppers should be quartered.”  Van Laanen, Peggy. Preserving Peppers. Texas A&M University Extension. L-5309. Accessed March 2015 at https://university.uog.edu/cals/people/PUBS/Food/L-5309.pdf.
Both Ball and Bernardin want peppers quartered, too.
What’s clear is no one wants you dicing them, or mincing them, etc.
Why roast and peel?
The University of California Coooperative Extension says, the roasting and peeling are for tough-skinned peppers:
Tough-skinned peppers. Peel peppers by first heating them….. Other peppers: remove stems, cores, and seeds; blanch 3 minutes.”  Harris, Linda. Peppers: Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy. University of California Coooperative Extension. Publication 8004. 1998. Page 4. Accessed May 2015.
Consequently, how you want to prep peppers depends on if you want the roasted taste and if you have the patience to successfully peel them. If you don’t care enough about the roasted pepper taste to go to the extra work of peeling them, then follow the plain unroasted directions.
Pickle the peppers if you don’t want to pressure can them
You cannot water bath or steam can plain roasted peppers packed in water. For water bath or steam canning, they must be pickled to be safe from nasties. Use a tested recipe for pickled peppers such as this one for Pickled Roasted Peppers from Ball.
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||Presto Pressure Canner and Cooker, 23 quart model, #72-719F. 2014. Page 13.|
|2.||↑||Flores, Nancy. Sweet Green Peppers. New Mexico State University. E-308. May 2008. Accessed May 2015.|
|3.||↑||Van Laanen, Peggy. Preserving Peppers. Texas A&M University Extension. L-5309. Accessed March 2015 at https://university.uog.edu/cals/people/PUBS/Food/L-5309.pdf.|
|4.||↑||Harris, Linda. Peppers: Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy. University of California Coooperative Extension. Publication 8004. 1998. Page 4. Accessed May 2015.|