Having quick and easy ready-to-eat meals at home is a great way to be prepared. This easy tutorial for pressure canning meat is the perfect solution. The raw pack method is easy to follow and you can simply add the meat to soups, stews, casseroles or eat straight out of the jar!

Quart sized mason jars filled with raw meat.

When you live on a homestead or want to be prepared with easy pantry meals without buying store-bought options (filled with unknown ingredients), having jars of canned meat on hand is a really great option.

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One of our best tips for preparedness (especially in case of a winter storm or power outage) is to diversify your food storage. It does you no good to have hundreds of pounds of meat, packaged and frozen when the power goes out. Not only will you NOT want to get into those freezers if the power is out, but likely, you won’t have an easy way to cook them.

Canned meat is the perfect solution. It’s fully cooked, tender, juicy and packed full of flavor. You can eat it straight from the jar (if needed), or add it to casseroles, stews, and stews.

Why Should You Learn to Can Meat?

  1. Preparedness – As I mentioned above, it’s a great way to be prepared.
  2. Convenience Meals – There will inevitably be those times when you’ve had a long hard day, and cooking up a meal from scratch is the very last thing you want to be doing at the end of the day. Having some ready-made food on hand can really save the day!
  3. It Saves Freezer Space – If you’re a hunting family or raise your own meat, or just like to buy meat in bulk, you know how precious freezer space can become. Being able to can some of the meat you get can really help save valuable space for other items that are best frozen.
  4. It Tastes Amazing – Hopefully, your mind isn’t thinking about store-bought canned meat, that’s a completely different food altogether. Homemade canned meat tastes like the most tender roast you’ve ever eaten! The meat is juicy, tender and packed full of flavor (for extra flavor, be sure to add the optional salt to each jar!).
  5. BONUS – Each jar will create an amazing broth! Be sure to use this in your soup or use it as a base for gravy.

Can You Water Bath Can Meat?

No, you cannot water bath can meat. No exceptions. A water bath simply does not get to a high enough temperature to make food safe for storage.

Do I Have to Use a Pressure Canner to Can Meat?

Yes, 100% you must use a pressure canner to can meat. A pressure canner is mandatory because meat is a low-acid food. A pressure canner is the only way to get the meat up to a high enough temperature, for a long enough time to make it safe for food storage.

Don’t be intimidated by your pressure canner. I know we’ve all heard stories of great-great-grandma blowing up her pressure cooker while cooking in the kitchen. But nowadays, pressure canners come with so many built-in safety mechanisms that you’ll have ample warning before anything that drastic happens.

Refer: Indian dinner recipes (Vegetarian dinner recipes) | Guide to the Kitchen – Coral

If you want more tips and tricks, plus an in-depth canning course, check out our canning class here. Carolyn will walk you through the whole process, from start to finish, and teach you step-by-step methods to safely can at home.

Raw Pack Method for Pressure Canning Meat

Woman holding a bowl of cubed raw venison with canning jars on the counter in front of her.

The process for canning meat is very basic and straight-forward. I always recommend starting with clean and dry canning jars and starting the water heating in your pressure canner.

Then, have all your meat (whether beef, venison or other wild game) cubed and ready to go. That means removing excess fat, silver skin, and gristle, etc. This will make the overall process much quicker.

Woman adding cubed meat into a quart sized canning jar.

With clean hands, fill your jars with cubed meat up to the shoulder, leaving about 1-inch head space. I’m using quart jars, but you could also use pint jars if you have a smaller family.

Woman adding salt to jars of raw meat.

Add 1 teaspoon salt to each jar, if desired. The salt in this recipe is purely optional. I like to add it for flavor, but it’s not needed for any preservation benefits. If using pint-sized jars, scale the salt down to ½ teaspoon.

Woman adding boiling water to jars of raw, cubed venison.

Pour boiling water into each jar, filling with only a couple inches of water. The meat will release its juices during the canning process and create a very flavorful broth.

Woman wiping the rims of her quart sized mason jars filled with raw venison.

Wipe the rims of your jars with a clean, damp cloth. This will remove any food particles to ensure a proper seal.

After this step, I like to take my clean finger and run it along the rims of the jars, feeling for any chips or knicks in the jar, or food particles or dried on salt that may not have been removed with the cloth.

Woman screwing on canning lids to her quart sized jars of cubed venison.

Read more: How To Use A Coconut | Coral's Blog – Food Blog – Cooking Guide

Add lids and rings to jars, tightening just to finger-tight. No need to wrench the lids on with all your strength. Just tighten as much as you can using only your fingertips.

Woman lowering a jar of venison into a pressure canner.

With the heat to your canner turned off, carefully lower your jars into the pressure canner and set on a rack inside the canner. Once all jars are loaded, put the lid onto your canner following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Woman sealing the lid of her pressure canner.

Turn the heat back on and allow the pressure to build up without the rocker or weighted gauge on. Once steam is pouring out through the valve, set a timer and allow it to continue venting for 10 minutes.

After steam has vented for 10 minutes, add your weighted gauge (or jiggler, or rocker, etc.) and allow pressure to come up until dial gauge reads 10 pounds (for sea level, adjust accordingly for higher elevations. I use a 15-pound weight.).

Once pressure is reached, keep the pressure steady for 90 minutes of processing time. After 90 minutes of full pressure has passed, allow the pressure to release naturally.

When pressure is released, remove jars and allow them to cool completely on the counter for 16-24 hours. (Use a canning tool to remove as they will be hot jars.)

After 24 hours it is safe to remove the rings, check for proper seal and clean jars up as needed.

If you happen to have a jar that didn’t seal properly, simply put it in the refrigerator and enjoy it within a few days.

See more: What Is A Potato Croquette | Coral's Blog – Food Blog – Cooking Guide

Other Canning Recipes & Tutorials:

  • Preservation 101: Introduction to Canning
  • Preparing for Canning Season
  • How to Water Bath Can
  • Pressure Canning Mistakes – Avoid These 5 Common Mistakes
  • Canning Mistakes to Avoid When Water Bath & Pressure Canning
  • Can I Pressure Can in the Instant Pot?
  • Where To Find Canning Supplies When There’s a Shortage
  • The Abundant Pantry: Canning 15 Minute Pantry Meals
  • How to Store Your Canning Bands
  • How to Pressure Can Black Beans
  • How to Can Beef Stew for Easy Convenience Meals
  • Canning Bone Broth or Stock (Chicken, Beef, or Vegetable)
  • Easy White Bean Chicken Chili – Pressure Canning Recipe
  • How to Make Pickles (Pickled Cucumber Recipe & Best Canning Method)


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