How to Can Blueberry Pie Filling

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Blueberry pie is the ultimate summer treat. Canning blueberry pie filling allows you to enjoy that summer goodness all year long! Preserve blueberries with this simple and tasty recipe for home-canned blueberry pie filling.Canning blueberry pie filling lets you enjoy this summer treat all year long! Preserve blueberries with this recipe for home-canned blueberry pie filling.

* * *

Blueberries are one of my favourite summer fruits. I love to eat them fresh, and frozen blueberries can’t be beat! I usually buy a bunch in the summer and freeze pounds of them to use throughout the year in baking, on top of cereal, in smoothies, in oatmeal, on ice cream and yogurt, or just to eat by the handful. But one of my favourite ways to preserve them is to make home-canned blueberry pie filling.

We purchase organic blueberries from a local farm and every year our order seems to get larger and larger! This year I ordered 40 pounds to preserve in various forms and to get us through the year (because I just refuse to pay top dollar for berries from other countries when they’re not in season here, especially non-organic ones that have been sprayed with all sorts of chemicals. Yuck!)

We do have four blueberry bushes of our own, but since this is our first summer in our new home and we only just planted them this spring, we don’t have nearly enough to enjoy fresh and preserve too. (Plus, we have a three-year-old who likes to swipe all the blueberries off the plant as soon as they’re ready to eat!)

I’ve been canning blueberry pie filling for a few years now and every year I seem to put up more and more jars because it is such a handy thing to keep on hand in the pantry all year long! It makes for a super quick and easy dessert if you need to whip something together at the last minute, and I actually find that using this home-canned pie filling makes for a thicker, less runny pie filling than you get when making it fresh.

This recipe is adapted from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, which I affectionately call my “canning bible.” It’s packed with 400 recipes for canning everything from jams, jellies pie fillings and preserves to stocks, soups, sauces and so much more. If canning is something you want to learn more about or you want to expand your repertoire of home canning recipes, I can’t recommend this book highly enough!

If you already own a copy of this book, you might notice that I’ve made a few minor changes to the recipe. For one, I’ve doubled the batch because I just don’t see much point in doing all of the prep work just to make a measly three or four pints. Plus, I like to can my pie filling in quart jars because I find that one quart of blueberry pie filling is the perfect amount for a standard 9-inch pie.

Now, if you’ve read any of my canning recipes before, you know I always stress that you should follow a tried and tested recipe and don’t alter it as it could make your recipe unsafe. However, once you understand how canning works, you can actually tweak recipes a bit here and there. 

Basically the most important thing when water-bath canning fruits like blueberries is that you maintain the acidity levels as this is what prevents botulism spores from growing. Typically when canning most fruits you are able to use the water-bath method because fruits are already high in acidity. The addition of lemon juice helps to make sure that acidity is maintained. 

Blueberry pie is the ultimate summer treat. Canning blueberry pie filling allows you to enjoy that summer goodness all year long! Preserve blueberries with this simple and tasty recipe for home-canned blueberry pie filling.From there, it’s recommended that you don’t change a recipe too much as adding different ingredients can affect the acidity level. However all I did with this recipe was swap plain water for blueberry water (for extra flavour), and add nutmeg (which is quite common in similar canning recipes).

I much preferred the flavour once I added the nutmeg. Of course, nutmeg is completely optional, and you could even make your pie filling without nutmeg and then add it later. Or try cinnamon instead! But I personally find that the nutmeg really brings out the flavour of the blueberries in this pie filling.

Canning pie filling in general is also super easy even if you’re a total canning newbie. You don’t need much in the way of special equipment, but one thing that is highly recommended is using Clear-Jel, which is basically a thickener that takes the place of flour or cornstarch in pie filling. 

Clear-Jel is recommended for canning because flour and cornstarch can end up clumping together and affecting the quality of your canned pie filling. Clear-Jel is a corn derivative just like cornstarch, but is is made to withstand the heat of canning and maintains its consistency. It’s widely recommended for use in canning pie filling and is even considered to be the safer method. But mostly it’s a quality issue.

Using Clear-Jel (cook-type, not instant) will ensure your pie filling comes out of the jar just as good as when it went in!

Otherwise I do recommend a few basic canning tools that will make your life much easier (and spare you from scolding your hands with boiling water or hot pie filling!) These are the tools I use, love and recommend:

Blueberry pie is the ultimate summer treat. Canning blueberry pie filling allows you to enjoy that summer goodness all year long! Preserve blueberries with this simple and tasty recipe for home-canned blueberry pie filling.Once you have everything you need, you’re ready to get canning!

As for what to do with your canned pie filling afterward? Well, of course you can make some delicious, flaky homemade pie crust and use your blueberry pie filling to make a traditional homemade blueberry pie. But there are so many other ways to enjoy it too!

Try it over cheesecake, mixed with yogurt or oatmeal, or for a really quick and easy dessert, dump pie filling into a baking dish and cover with a mixture of rolled oats, butter and sugar to make a crumble. (You can use the same crumble topping that I use for my homemade apple crumble to make a blueberry crumble with this pie filling).

And of course, you could always just crack a jar and eat it with a spoon. There is absolutely no shame in that;)

Oh, and if you like this recipe, be sure to check out my recipe for home-canned cherry pie filling too! While I love blueberry pie, cherry pie is by far my favourite, so I ALWAYS make sure to stock up on home-canned cherry pie filling each summer.

What about you? What’s your favourite type of pie? How else would you use this home-canned pie filling? Leave a comment below and let me know!

How to Can Blueberry Pie Filling

How to Can Blueberry Pie Filling

Yield: 3-4 quarts or 7-8 pints
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes


  • 14 cups blueberries (washed and de-stemmed)
  • 3 1/3 cups Sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups ClearJel
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • water


  1. Prepare canner, jars and lids.
  2. Fill a large stainless steel pot halfway with water and boil over high heat. Add blueberries and cook for one minute.
  3. Drain blueberries, allowing blueberry water to drain into a bowl. Cover blueberries to keep them warm. Reserve 4 cups of the blueberry liquid. *Note: If you accidentally forget to reserve the blueberry liquid, just measure out 4 cups of regular water.
  4. In a large stainless steel pot, mix sugar and Clear-Jel. Whisk in 4 cups of reserved blueberry liquid and bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
  5. Stirring constantly, reduce heat and boil lightly until mixture begins to bubble and thicken (it will get quite thick and you will feel resistance so you'll know when it's thick enough).
  6. Stir in lemon juice and nutmeg and cook for one minute, stirring constantly.
  7. Remove from heat and gently mix in the warm blueberries.
  8. Remove hot jars from canner one at a time and ladle hot pie filling into each one, leaving just a bit more than one inch of headspace. Remove any air bubbles with a knife and adjust headspace if needed.
  9. Wipe rim, place lid on jar and screw band down until fingertip tight.
  10. Place jars in canner and make sure they're completely submerged in water before placing the canner lid on. Bring water to a boil and process jars for 30 minutes. Once processing time is up, turn off the heat, remove the canner lid and allow jars to rest in the canner for another 5 minutes.
  11. Remove jars and let cool completely before storing in a cool dark place.


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  1. Erin

    I’m allergic to nutmeg, could cinnamon be substituted instead or can I completely omit this from the recipe? Thanks!

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Erin,
      Yes, you can substitute cinnamon or omit the spices altogether. Just don’t add more spices than the recipe calls for as this could throw off the PH balance of he recipe and could possibly pose a safety issue when canning.

  2. Georges Lebel

    Hum, interesting. Should it be 3,5 quarts or 7 pints ?

    Anna Sakawsky on July 12, 2019 at 12:34 pm
    Hi Lori!
    This recipe makes about 4 quarts or 8 pints.

    Anna Sakawsky on April 24, 2021 at 3:52 pm
    Hi Deena,
    This recipe makes 3 quarts or 6 pints.

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Georges,

      This recipe is adapted from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, which states that the recipe should make 4 quarts / 8 pints. However in practice, I typically only get 3 quarts / 6 pints out of this recipe. Sometimes there’s a little extra leftover that I’ll put in the fridge, but not enough to can. The amounts can sometimes vary. I always prepare extra jars just in case, but usually I get about 3 quart jars or 6 pints from this recipe. Sorry about the confusion!

      • Shirley Tam

        Can sub the sugar with Splenda or Stevia

        • Ashley Constance

          Hi Shirley – if you’d like to use other sweeteners, it is recommended that you look for recipes that specifically use those sweeteners. Here is more information – Canning with Less Sugar

  3. Janice

    I’m moving hundreds of miles from my overachieving blueberry bush (9 gallons this year!). I’m using all the half pint jars I have to take jam with me to my new home, and I’ve still got buckets of berries. I was all set to try this recipe when I realized it makes 3 quarts. I’ve only got 2 one-quart jars. Then I realized, I can make a pie! Thanks! Boy, I’m gonna miss that bush. 🙁

  4. Georges Lebel

    Bonjour Anna, here in Quebec it is blueberries high season. We got kilos from our garden. We will make preserve as you suggest. To do so, we have two questions : first, can we substitute sugar with maple syrup ? Second, can we substitute Clearjel with chia as the thickener ?
    Merci, have a nice day.

    • Tish Painter

      Great questions, Georges!
      First, yes – you can substitute maple syrup for sugar in canning recipes without any safety issues. However, it will change the product described in Anna’s recipe. The amount to substitute seems dependent on taste preference. One source said for every cup of sugar substitute 2/3 cup maple syrup and reduce the overall liquid by 1/4 cup. BUT as Anna nor I have tried this recipe with a sugar substitute, we can not guarantee the finished product will be the same. This link has some good information on canning fruits with syrup. ( It seems that the product quality may be a concern when making the switch but not safety of the product.
      Secondly, chia seeds have not been tested for use as a thickener and I would not try it. Your best bet would be to omit the thickener completely for canning. The pie filling will be fine to can without the thickener and then you are free to thicken it as you wish when you will actually use it. Again, do not can anything with chia seeds for safety reasons.
      Enjoy all those wonderful blueberries!

  5. Donna

    Getting ready to make a batch of your blueberry pie filling. My blueberries are frozen. Do I need to thaw them first or adjust any cooking time? Wish me luck!

    • Tish Painter

      Hi Donna,
      When using frozen berries, the process is the same with a couple of adjustments.
      First, measure the berries while frozen (like as fresh) for accuracy.
      Second, thaw the berries but as you do do, drain and save the juice they leave and set aside.
      Then follow the process in the recipe including heating in water and draining/saving the liquid (separately from thawed juice).
      When measuring the 4 cups liquid for the recipe, use the thawed juice first and then continue with the warm juice if needed.
      The rest should is the same as in the recipe.

      • Olivia Bejaran

        This is gonna be great! How many finished quarts does the 14 cups make? (On avg)

        • Olivia Bejaran

          Oops! Just saw it, nvm!

  6. Deena

    How many quarts does this make?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Deena,
      This recipe makes 3 quarts or 6 pints.

      • Donna

        Oh my! I just made 6 pints of this heavenly goodness! I actually had some extra and put it in 2 1/2 pint jars in the fridge. Not sure if I measured wrong or didn’t fill the jars enough. Those two pints in the fridge probably won’t make it through the night! We will eat it with a spoon! Sooooo good! Used the blueberries from my yard. I have enough to do another batch tomorrow, was gonna make jelly with those but now I may just make more pie filling!

        • Tish Painter

          That’s wonderful, Donna! The actual amount of filling really depends on many factors including berry size and volume. That is why I always prep one or two extra jars for the extra that may occur. I don’t always need them, but they come in handy when I do. 😉

  7. Sona

    Hi Anna, Is there anything I can do with all this leftover blueberry water after canning my pie filling?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Sona,
      If you have blueberry water left over you can turn it into juice or jelly!

      • Trina

        Hi Anna,
        I just made a triple batch of your pie filling and wound up with 9 quarts. I saw above that you mentioned making jelly with the leftover blueberry water. Do you have a recipe for that, or suggestions?

        • Tish Painter

          Hi Trina,
          I am impressed that you were able to make such a large batch of this yummy pie filling! Great job! 🙂

          Jellies are generally very easy. You will only need the juice and some sugar and pectin (and sometimes lemon juice). The amounts of each will vary depending on the pectin you will use. There are several brands out there and you can get a good jelly using any of them (powder or liquid, regular or low sugar). Each package will have recipes inside for jellies and jams for you to follow. For a blueberry jelly just follow the instructions for the berry jelly (it will work for all berries not listed individually). And you can add a bit of water to the juice to make the total amount of juice needed for your recipe if you are little bit short on the volume.

          The process will be similar to Anna’s Spiced Plum Jelly recipe in which she uses a liquid pectin. However, some measurements may be slightly different depending on your choice of pectin and I would remove the spices unless you wanted a touch of the nutmeg like Anna used in her pie recipe. Here is her spiced plum jelly recipe for reference:

          I hope that helps. 🙂

        • Anna Sakawsky

          Hi Trina,

          Tish had some good tips. If you want to use a powdered pectin for your jelly, here’s a good recipe to follow (just sub your blueberry juice for the blackberry juice in this recipe).

          • Babs

            Can this recepie be used for making huckleberry pie filling?

          • Tish Painter

            As I have not tried to can huckleberries in any way, I can not say for certain. I would venture to say that it probably can be done as most berries are similarly handled for canning. I may not use the nutmeg (unless you choose to do so) but I would say to give it a try and see. Maybe do a small batch as a test to see if it turns out the way you like it.

          • Anna Sakawsky

            This recipe is adapted from the Ball Complete Book of Home Food Preservation. It calls specifically for blueberries so I can’t guarantee that huckleberries would work in place of the blueberries in this exact recipe. It shouldn’t be a problem as far as safety is concerned as huckleberries are quite a high acid fruit, but I’m not sure of the amounts or how much liquid you would get out of them for your filling.

  8. Janet Rogers

    If you use frozen blueberries do you still need to blanch them?

    • Lou

      Do you just add the blueberries to the boiling water and cook for one minute or do you bring them back to a boil and cook for one minute after that?

      • Angie Stys

        When it’s time to make the pie, how long should it bake, seeing as how the filling is already prepared and edible? Should it still bake for 50 minutes or so?

        • Ashley Constance

          Yes it still needs to bake as long as the recipe says – follow the directions for the specific pie crust recipe you are using 🙂

          • Angie Stys

            Thank you ?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Yes, you need to bring them up to a boil first.

      • Cindy

        I wish I would have known that because I just made 2 batches and I did not bring the blueberries back up to a boil. Other than that they taste amazing and I hope they come out ok

      • Corrie Norman

        This recipe looks amazing but just to be sure I understand – do I need to boil my blueberries if they are frozen?

  9. Jin

    I’m so excited to try this recipe! Can I make this with a sugar substitute such as erythritol?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Jin,

      I’ve never tried using a sugar substitute like this but in theory you could. It wouldn’t affect the safety of the finished product however it may affect the flavour so I’m not sure quite how it would turn out. I would maybe try doing a small batch first and then try that out a few days later after it’s had a chance to sit on your shelf for a few days and then if you like the result go ahead and can more. But you may find you don’t like the flavour in the end so I would just start small. The other thing you can do is reduce the sugar content. Again, sugar has no bearing on safety with canning so it would be safe to reduce the sugar. It just might affect the overall flavour and quality of your finished product.

      • Jin

        Great, thank you!

    • Kathleen Marie Green

      A sugar substitute? Why do that if you are looking into fresh canning techniques that have been introduced for hundreds of years.
      Why change a good thing? Personally I wouldn’t give my family anything
      called erythritol! I know they say it’ s natural, but it can’t be as good as plain old refined sugar…just my opinion. However, if there’s a diabetic in the family and you want to eliminate refined sugar maybe someone out there can help, but if that is not the reason then keep it simple, the way granma used to make it.

  10. Deborah Bailes

    This is My first year of Canning and it’s been a great joy!
    When you measure your fruit do you use a liquid measuring cup?
    I attempted to make Cherry Jam and used Turbinado Cane Sugar. It has a more course texture verses Domino Granulated Sugar. The batch did not have a firm set. It is more like a sauce. Do you think the substation of Sugar could have been the problem?
    I’m enjoying all the information on your boards!

    • Pat

      sticky mess. I am sure it will come out like store bought. transferring berries is also messy. I think I will just make the fruit canned and add the clear gel to the semi finished pie.

      • Anna Sakawsky

        You can also can up the filling without the clear gel and add a thickener When you’re ready to make your pie. At this point you can use clear gel or you can use another thickener like flour or cornstarch.

      • Alicia

        Hi! A little late to the conversation but I just made this using 14 cups of blueberries I just picked from my bush. I followed instructions but got exactly 4 quarts out of it. Is that ok? It tastes delicious. Just nervous about the acidity since I got 4 instead of 3 but still only used 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Thanks

        • Anna Sakawsky

          Hi Alicia! Yes as long as you followed the directions and have the correct headspace, etc. if you got a full 4 quarts instead of 3 then it’s fine. I always prepare an extra jar just in case for this exact reason. I always find that the end result is either a little more or less than what it “should” be. Sometimes it’s little things like extra cooking time, temperature, size of the berries, etc. that can cause a difference in the end yield. Totally normal and safe so long as you followed the directions:)

  11. Cissy

    Thank you for this recipe!!!

  12. Doris Mussman

    i,m excited to find your post,as i didn’t know anything about canning pie filling, i will be canning blueberry pie filling tomorrow, and in four days canning peach pie happy to learn about CLEAR jell !! i do have one question however, is there any way to keep the blue berry skins more tender rather than chewy after they are cooked ? thank you for so much information.i’m only 80 and still learning !

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Doris!

      I’ve never had a problem with blueberry skins being chewy once canned. Not with this recipe anyway so I’m not sure what to tell you. If you follow the recipe as it’s written you should have no problems:)

  13. linda

    Can you use stevia for part of the sugar.

  14. Jeanine Carlson

    My Clear Jel was clumpy, so my first batch of pie filling had small hard lumps in it. I sifted the next time around, with much better results. I made one batch with fresh lemons and one with Realemon. The fresh batch was delicious; the other, less so. Thanks for this great recipe with its excellent instructions.

  15. karen cool

    is the liquid clear gel thats used for making jam the same as the clear gel for pies? ive only been able to find jam one

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Karen,

      I’m not sure I’ve seen Clear Jel for jam. Unless you’re talking about Sure Jell? And if so, no they’re not the same. Sure Jell is actually pectin for helping jam set, whereas Clear Jel is a modified corn starch that is used for thickening things like pie filling. Sure Jell would likely make your filling too thick and more like a jam than a pie filling. Clear Jel can be hard to find though so it’s not very well known. Here is where you can purchase Clear Jel online: Hoosier Hill Farm Clear Jel

      • Cindy

        Carnet foods also sells Ultra Gel and it’s amazing. That’s where I buy mine from. Also the nutmeg makes a HUGE difference, 1 tsp is the perfect amount

        • Mary

          Can u use less clearjel if you want a softer set, we would use it more for over cake or on our dessert pizzas. Not sure why the berries need to be boiled. My husband was thinking more whole berry, not mushy?

          • Anna Sakawsky

            Hi Mary,

            Yes, you could use less Clearjel or even none at all and just thicken your pie filling when it comes out of the jar. If you omit it, fill to 1/2 inch headspace and then drain out 1/3 cup of liquid before adding thickener. As for boiling/blanching the blueberries, this is actually done to get the air out of the fruits as otherwise this can cause fruit to float to the top and can cause extra air to try to escape the jars while they’re being processed which can cause sticky liquid to pour out and over the rim preventing a seal. I don’t think the extra one minute of blanching makes them any more mushy than putting them in a boiling water bath for 30 minutes naturally will. They still maintain their shape:)

  16. Holly

    Is it safe to assume you process the same length of time for both the pints and quarts?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Yes, same processing time, however you’ll need to increase the processing time if you live more than 1,000 feet above sea level. I’ll make a note about that in the post.

  17. Ken Smith

    I feel that you need to re-check number 10, as I feel you have a few items mixed up. Example #9 add lid, #10 submerged without lid. Some people may not know. But beside that I like the recipes and I am a first time user with clear-jel. Thank you for a different/better way of canning a pie mix.

    • Ken Smith

      I understand you are talking about the canner lid but some may not.

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Ken! I totally see what you’re saying! I will specify that I mean the canning lid. Thanks for the comment!

  18. Lori

    How many quarts does this recipe make ?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Lori!

      This recipe makes about 4 quarts or 8 pints.

  19. Theresa

    Can I use frozen blueberries in this recipe

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Yes you can!

  20. Maribeth

    Can a pressure cooker be used instead of a water bath? If so, at what pressure and for how long?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Maribeth,
      First off I’m assuming you mean a pressure canner, as you should never can in a pressure cooker. While you should be able to pressure can this recipe in theory, I haven’t been able to find a tested pressure canning recipe for pie filling so I would recommend sticking to water bath canning just to be on the safe side.

  21. Ter

    Does one quart make 2 pies?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      In my experience, one quart will make one pie in a 9” pie plate.

  22. Annette Williams

    Hi, did you use food coloring in your blueberry pie filling or did it turn out that color naturally.

    • Anna Sakawsky

      No food colouring:) That is the natural colour. Blueberries can actually be used as a natural dye!

  23. Judith Chimento

    I bought from an Amish farmer in Lancaster pa. A quart jar of his canned blueberries. My question is; To make the blueberry pie. Do I drain any of the blueberry liquids . Or do I incorporate all in the pie. Canning the fruit is understanding. But do you use a regular recipe to make the pie. Is anything different. Is 4 tsp. Or 4 tablespoons used to make this pie. I would appreciate you telling me. Want to make this pie but, I don’t want to run it. I would appreciate you text me back. Thank you Judy

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Judy!

      If you’re using canned pie filling you do not need to drain any liquid out. Just dump it right in your pie crust and you’re good to go! You can use a regular pie crust recipe (this is the one I use: Just make your pie crust and dump the filling in and bake as normal! I’m not sure I understand what you mean when you ask about 4 tsp. vs. 4 Tbsp. Could you be more specific? I hope this helps. Let me know how it turns out!

  24. Erin

    What exactly is clear Helsinki and can I use anything else at all?

    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Erin,

      Clear Jel is a modified corn starch that is commonly used as a thickener in home canning recipes. It is the number one recommended thickening product for things like home-canned pie filling because it gels evenly, while flour and regular cornstarch tend to clump up and leave you with a lower quality final product. You can safely omit it and then add a thickener at the time of baking. I normally wouldn’t recommend a modified food product but it is the most highly recommended product in home canning today and it’s what I use in all of my pie fillings.

  25. Emily S.

    Thanks for sharing this fantastic recipe! I made a batch and had about 1/2 quart “leftover” that I made into a crumble. Delicious! I can’t wait to taste that fresh blueberry taste again this winter. Canning instructions worked perfectly for me! Now I plan to try some of your other canning recipes. Thanks so much!

    • Anna Sakawsky

      That’s so awesome Emily! I’m glad you enjoyed it:) I often find I have “leftovers” from canning recipes, but I honestly never mind. I like having some to eat right away;)

  26. iluvs2fish

    We’ve been growing 12 varieties of organic fruits, berries, grapes etc for 33 years on an acre on edge of town as well as raising chickens for meat & eggs. I was a county fair & state fair competitor in home preservation then became a state fair judge & teach home preservation to new brides etc. I found new products about 15 yrs ago from the Amish community called ThermoFlo & PermaFlo. Superior consistency and best part they’re about half cost of Clear Jel. I’m not sure if you made differentiation between Clear Jel instant and Clear Jel cook in your post above but they’re different products. We use the cook variety in pie fillings. People new to canning aren’t always aware of the difference.
    I’ve picked 36 gallons of blueberries so far this summer and 14gallons of raspberries and now our blackberries are coming on. Before the berries I put up our sour pie cherries & a gazillion red currants. I made jelly with the currants but also steamed a bunch and canned the juice to use in making red currant cordial which I’m doing today along with red raspberry cordial. I”ll use it in drinks like raspberry shrub this winter. Enjoy yourself.

    • Anna Sakawsky

      I didn’t know about Clear Jel Instant. Thanks for clarifying! I will also look into ThermoFlo/PermaFlo. I hadn’t heard of these products either!

      You’re a total inspiration! We are actually just moving to a new house and there is a huge red currant bush out front. I’ve never worked with them and don’t really need new jelly so I was thinking about either drying them to use in tea or juicing them. I love the idea of a red currant cordial! I think I’ll try that. Our raspberries are also coming on so I will keep the cordial idea in the back of my mind for sure. I made a juice concentrate with rhubarb this year that was amazing so I like that idea. Thanks for sharing!

    • Anna

      Your gardening and canning are my goals! Are you in a gardening group where I can find you to ask questions?! Thank you!

  27. Anna Sakawsky

    Thanks for the link! Awesome post by the way!



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Hi! I’m Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader who’s passionate about growing, cooking and preserving real food at home, creating my own herbal medicine and all-natural home and body care products, and working toward a simpler, more sustainable and self-sufficient life each and every day. 
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Hot cross buns are an Easter tradition in our house, so naturally I wanted to learn how to make them at home.⁣

They're surprisingly easy to make with just a few basic ingredients, including flour, dry active yeast, milk, eggs, sugar and spices, plus raisins or, more traditionally, dried currants and/or candied citrus peels. ⁣

Click the link in my bio to learn how to make your own and enjoy hot cross buns fresh out of the oven this Easter!

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I’m not always so good at sharing all of the awesome stuff I’ve got going on in life and business here on social media. When you’re a full time homesteader, business owner, editor, mom and wife, sometimes IG falls by the wayside 😬

But I just had to pop in this morning to let you know that I’m doing something I’ve never done before, and offering anyone who would like to try out my online membership program—The Society Of Self-Reliance—the opportunity to join for just $1.

Yup, you read that right: Right now, you can get unlimited access to The Society Of Self-Reliance for an entire month for just $1!

Here’s what you get access to:

🌱 Over 150 video lessons to help you build your skills in the kitchen, garden, workshop and home.

👨‍🌾 A private community of amazing people sharing their on journeys and supporting you in yours.

🫙 Our monthly live group coaching call, where you can ask questions and where I offer personalized help and guidance on your homesteading journey.

🌿 Exclusive bonuses: Get downloadable digital copies of my Home Canning Handbook and the annual edition of Modern Homesteading Magazine for free (regular $40 for both), as well as access to other bonuses, like my gardening and preserving masterclasses and bonus interviews with other top homesteaders.

I’m only offering this deal for a limited time, and after it’s over, the membership cost will be going up. But if you join now for $1 and decide you love it, you’ll still be able to continue with your membership for the introductory price of just $20/month (or $200/year).

However, if you decide The Society Of Self-Reliance just isn’t for you right now, you can cancel any time.

All you have to lose is $1, but what you have to gain is priceless:

—> Independence and self-reliance in all areas of life.
—> Security and confidence in your ability to provide for yourself and your loved ones in good times and bad.
—> Freedom from complete and total dependency on “the system”
—> Skills and knowledge you can pass down to the next generation.
—> Fellowship and community with other likeminded folks.

And so much more!

Comment “Society” below and I’ll send you the deets!

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Me shopping for Easter candy for my kids, and walking out empty handed because it’s all full of absolute garbage!

I don’t mind my kids having sugar now and again, but I draw the line at food dies, seed oils and artificial ingredients. (Or at least, I try!)

Hey, we’re not perfect, and yes, our kids will get Easter candy on Sunday morning. Ryan has already bought some and I’m sure he didn’t check all the ingredients like I do! I’m fine with the 80/20 rule most of the time. But the meta question here, is why are these types of ingredients allowed in foods to begin with? Especially food marketed toward kids!

Yes, it’s “junk food.” I don’t expect it to be HEALTHY. But it could be made better by omitting the known carcinogenic ingredients that have been linked to everything from ADHD to hormone imbalances to cancer!

Folks, we must demand better. We DESERVE better, and so do our kids.

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We said goodbye to a family pet yesterday. My mom has had Zoe since I was a teenager, and Evelyn has grown to love her during her visits with nanny.

It’s never easy to say goodbye to a family member, human or furry. But we don’t shelter our kids from death either. Evelyn was with us when we found our rabbits dead. She went with my mom to say goodbye to her other cat a year ago. And she knows where the chickens go when it’s their time.

Having a healthy relationship to death is important. It is, after all, the only certainty in life.

Today Ryan is heading down to clean out his dad’s place after he passed last week. They had a strained relationship, so our kids never knew him as their grandpa. But still, it’s never easy.

It does, however, teach us to be grateful for every day we’re alive, and to appreciate the ones we love while we’re still together, because you never know how much time you have left.

RIP Zozo ❤️ See you over the rainbow bridge 🌈 🐾

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When I first started homesteading, gardening, and trying to be more self-sufficient, I had no idea what I was doing. Everything was new to me, and I had no one in my life to teach me the ropes.

I’m not a second or third or fifth generation homesteader. I’m a born-and-raised city girl who had to figure it out on my own, using books from the library and resources from the internet, and advice from random strangers on social media.

While these free resources have taught me a lot, I’ve also come across lots of bad (or just wrong) advice online, and sadly, I’ve dealt with a jerk or two in the comments section of public Facebook groups.

Eventually I did invest in online mentorship and my success from there was exponential. Now, less than a decade after leaving the city in pursuit of our new life as homesteaders, I’ve not only learned how to grow an abundance of food and troubleshoot all kinds of plant issues to ensure a healthy crop and successful harvest, but I’ve learned how to be more self-sufficient in just about every area of life.

I’ve learned how to
🌱 grow my own groceries
🫙 can and preserve my own food
🌿 make herbal medicine and natural products
💵 create multiple income streams
🆘 prepare for a wide range of emergencies
and more.

Plus, with my husband’s help, he can also
🛠 fix or build most things
so together we’ve got a wide range of skills that allow us to live a more empowered, self-reliant life.

Now I want to help you do the same…

I recently reopened the doors to The Society of Self-Reliance—my private membership program where I teach you the skills and mindset you need to become more self-reliant in every area of your life.

Not only do you get access to nearly 150 step-by-step video tutorials (and counting), you also get monthly live group coaching calls with me, and access to a private, SUPPORTIVE and knowledgeable online community of likeminded folks on the same journey.

For a limited time, you can join The Society for just $20/month (or get two months FREE with an annual membership!).

Come, join a community of people who will lift you up and ensure you DON’T starve 😉

Comment “Society” below to learn more!

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Never before have we had access to so much information at our fingertips. Whether you have a question you need answered, are looking for a tutorial to walk you through a specific task or are searching for a recipe to help you figure out what to make for dinner, all you have to do is Google it.⁣

But the problem is that there's no real way to be sure whether the information you find on line is genuine. Is the person who wrote or shared it actually sharing their own experience, or are they too simply regurgitating answers that they Googled?⁣

As we barrel full speed ahead into the era of AI and deep fakes, it will be even more difficult to know whether the information you're getting is even from a real human!⁣

While it's definitely an exciting time to be alive, so many people are feeling overwhelmed, and are craving a return to the analog world; To a world where information was shared in the pages of trusted books and publications, or was passed on from human to human, from someone who held that knowledge not because they Googled it, but because they lived it, experienced it, even mastered it.⁣

That what sets Homestead Living magazine apart from much of the information you'll find online: We don't have staff writers, we have experienced homesteaders sharing their hard-won wisdom in each issue. And while we do offer a digital version, we're also now offering monthly PRINT issues for U.S. subscribers (Canada and elsewhere hopefully coming soon!)⁣

Plus, until the end. of January, you can get your first 12 issues of Homesteading Monthly for just $1.00!⁣

No matter where you are on your homesteading journey, if you've been feeling overwhelmed with the sheer volume of information and the noise of the online world and have been craving a return to the real, the tangible and, quite frankly, the human, Homesteading Monthly was made for you. ⁣

For homesteaders, by homesteaders.⁣

*** Comment "Homestead" below and I'll send you the link to subscribe! ***

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When I graduated from university with a degree in journalism many years ago, I remember thinking that while I knew how to write, edit, interview, shoot, and handle just about every part of creating a publication from the editorial standpoint, I really had no clue how to actually get published, let alone how the printing process works.

Over the years I’ve followed my passion for writing, editing and creating content, figuring much of it out on my own. From creating my blog to “self-publishing” my own digital/print magazine for the last 4 years, I’ve taught myself most of the practical skills necessary for turning an idea into a publication and getting said publication in the hands and in front of the eyes of many hundreds of readers.

But now that I’ve joined forces with the team at @homesteadlivingmagazine and @freeportpress, we’re all able to level up and reach many THOUSANDS of print and digital readers together.

People are HUNGRY for tried and tested advice on homesteading and self-reliant living. There’s a huge movement happening right now as more people wake up to all of the corruption in the world and realize that many of the systems we have come to depend on are fragile and on the brink of collapse. People are ready to take matters into their own hands by growing their own food, preparing their own meals, becoming producers instead of merely consumers and taking control of their health, freedom, security and lives.

I’m so proud to not only be a part of this movement, but to be at the forefront of it with some of the most passionate, talented and driven individuals I could ask to work with.

Getting to meet and brainstorm with some of the team in person and tour the printing facilities over the last few days has opened up a whole new world of possibilities, not just for me, but for everyone who considers themselves part of the modern homesteading movement. We are growing faster than I could have ever imagined. We’re creating a system outside of the system! We’re charging full steam ahead and we invite you to climb aboard and join us for the ride:)

#homesteading #modernhomesteading #homesteadliving #selfsufficiency #selfreliance

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It’s been a minute since I popped into IG to say hi. (Hi! 👋) But before I share what’s been going on behind the scenes, I thought it would be a good time to (re)introduce myself, because I’ve never actually done that before!

My name’s Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader living in the beautiful Comox Valley on Vancouver Island. I live with my family (human, furry and feathered) on 1/4 acre property where we grow and preserve hundreds of pounds of our own food every year, and strive to live a more self-reliant lifestyle in all that we do.

I grew up in Vancouver and had pretty much zero experience homesteading before my husband, Ryan and I decided we wanted to escape the rat race, become less dependent on the modern industrial food system (and all modern industrialized systems), and dove head first into this lifestyle around a decade ago.

We packed up and moved to Vancouver Island where we live now, started our first garden, and the rest is pretty much history.

(Well, actually that’s not true… There have been A LOT of ups and downs, successes and failures, wins and losses, struggles, challenges and pivotal moments along the way, but those are stories for another day).

Over the past few years, our decision to follow a less conventional path that aims to break free (at least in some part) from “the system” has been affirmed over and over again. We all know for a fact now that our food system, healthcare system, financial system, transportation system and so much more are all really just a house of cards built on shaky ground. We’ve been lucky so far, but sooner or later it’s all liable to collapse.

But preparedness and security isn’t the only thing that drives us… The peace of mind I get knowing that everything we grow is 100% organic, and that the ingredients in our food, medicine, personal and household products are safe and natural is worth more than anything I could buy at the grocery store.

(I’m not perfect though. Not by a long shot. I still rely on the grocery store, on modern medicine, and on many modern conveniences to get by, but I balance it as much as I can:)

(Continued in comments…)

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I’m all about practical gifts; Gifts that will truly make life easier and contribute to my and my family’s wellbeing. And our family includes our animals!

One of the ways we make sure our chickens are taken care of is by letting them free range during the day, but making sure they’re locked up and safe from predators at night. But who wants to be up at the crack of dawn to open the coop, or wake up to a bloodbath because you forgot to close the coop the night before?

(The answer is obviously no one… No one wants that).

Automating our homesteading tasks as much as possible allows us to worry about other things and saves us a ton of time. Plus, it makes sure that things get taken care of, whether we remember or not.

Using an automatic chicken door has been a GAME CHANGER for us. It’s one of those lesser known homestead tools that can make all the difference, and I’m always recommending one to anyone who keeps chickens!

This chicken door from @chickcozy_ is so easy to install and use too, and right now you can get one for a steal during their Black Friday sale!

Save over $40 off an automatic chicken door, plus use my coupon code for an ADDITIONAL DISCOUNT!

Don’t forget to check out their chicken coop heaters too, which are also on sale right now:)

Whether you’re shopping for yourself or looking for the perfect gift for the chicken lover who has everything (which might also be yourself;) the @chickcozy_ automatic chicken door is one Christmas gift that won’t soon be forgotten!

Comment “Chicken” below for more info and to get my exclusive coupon code! 🐓

#chicken #chickens #chickendoor #chickcozyautodoor #chickcozy #chickensofinstagram #chickensofig #chickenlover #homesteadlife

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Yes, you read that right…

Modern Homesteading Magazine is coming to an end.

This decision has not come easily, but there’s a season for everything, and more and more I’m feeling called to transition out of this season and into the next in both life and business.

And so this final farewell issue is bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s the first ever annual issue, with 100 pages packed with brand new content that celebrates the best of the past 32 issues!

And it’s the first issue I’ve ever offered in PRINT!

But on the other hand, it marks the end of an era, and of this publication that I’ve absolutely had the pleasure of creating and sharing with you.

If you’re a digital subscriber, you will not be charged a renewal fee going forward, and will continue to have access to the digital library until your subscription runs out. As part of your subscription, you’re able to download and/or print each issue of you like, so that you never lose access to the hundreds of articles and vast amount of information in each issue.

Rather than subscribing, you can now purchase an all-access pass for a one-time fee of just $20, which gives you access to our entire digital library of issues.

Plus, for a limited time, when you purchase an all-access pass you’ll also get a gift certificate for a second all-access pass to gift to someone else.

I’m also still taking preorders for the print version of this special edition issue, but only for a few more weeks!

When you preorder the print issue, you’ll also get a digital copy of the special edition issue (this issue only), and will receive a print copy in the mail later this year (hopefully by Christmas so long as there are no shipping delays!)

Click the link in my profile or visit to check out the latest issue, purchase an all-access pass to the digital library and/or preorder the print issue today!

Thanks to everyone who has read the magazine over the past 4 years. I’m humbled and grateful for your support, and can’t wait to share whatever comes next:)

#modernhomesteading #homesteading #homesteadersofinstagram

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It’s easy to romanticize homesteading, but the truth is that those homegrown vegetables, those freshly laid eggs, that loaf of bread rising on the counter, and that pantry full of home-canned food takes time, effort and dedication. It doesn’t “just happen” overnight!

But if you work on learning one new skill at a time and gain confidence in it before moving onto the next, one day you’ll be looking back and marvelling at how far you’ve come.

That’s where I’m at now. Life today looks a lot different than it did 10 years ago, when our homesteading and self-reliance journey was just beginning.

Back then we still lived in our city condo and were just beginning to dabble in all of this stuff. But my husband Ryan and I felt a sense urgency to start pursuing a more self-reliant lifestyle, and we committed to taking small steps, one day at a time to make that vision a reality.

Over the years we’ve continued to put one foot in front of the other, adding new skills and tackling new projects along the way that have helped us get to where we are today.

While there’s always more we want to learn and do, as I look around me right now, I’m so grateful that we took those first steps, especially considering what’s happened in the world over the past few years!

If you’re also feeling the urgency to take the first (or next) steps toward a more self-reliant life, this is your final reminder that today is the last day to join The Society of Self-Reliance and start levelling up your homesteading and self-sufficiency skills so that you’ve got what it takes to:

• Grow your own groceries
• Stock your pantry
• Create a natural home
• Get prepared
• Learn other important life skills like time management for homesteaders, goal setting and how to become your own handyman

And more!

If you’ve been feeling called to level up your self-reliance skills (because let’s be honest, we’re in for a wild ride these next few years with everything going on in the world), now is the time to heed that call.

Link in profile to enroll before midnight tonight, or go to

#homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homesteadingskills #preparedness

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