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!

 

Wishing you homemade, homegrown, homestead happiness 🙂


CATEGORIES
HOMESTEADING
REAL FOOD
NATURAL LIVING

71 Comments

  1. 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.

    Reply
    • 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!

      Reply
  2. 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. 🙁

    Reply
  3. 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.

    Reply
    • 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. (https://ask2.extension.org/kb/faq.php?id=331404) 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!

      Reply
  4. 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!

    Reply
    • 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.
      Enjoy!!

      Reply
      • Olivia Bejaran

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

        Reply
        • Olivia Bejaran

          Oops! Just saw it, nvm!

          Reply
  5. Deena

    How many quarts does this make?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
      • 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!

        Reply
        • 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. 😉

          Reply
  6. Sona

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

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
      • 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?

        Reply
        • 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: https://thehouseandhomestead.com/spiced-plum-jelly/

          I hope that helps. 🙂

          Reply
        • 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).

          Reply
          • 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.

  7. Janet Rogers

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

    Reply
    • 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?

      Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
      • 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

        Reply
      • Corrie Norman

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

        Reply
  8. Jin

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

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
      • Jin

        Great, thank you!

        Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  9. 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!

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
      • 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.

        Reply
      • 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

        Reply
        • 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:)

          Reply
  10. Cissy

    Thank you for this recipe!!!

    Reply
  11. 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 filling.so 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 !

    Reply
    • 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:)

      Reply
  12. linda

    Can you use stevia for part of the sugar.

    Reply
  13. 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.

    Reply
  14. 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

    Reply
    • 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

      Reply
      • 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

        Reply
        • 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?

          Reply
          • 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:)

  15. Holly

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

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  16. 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.

    Reply
    • Ken Smith

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

      Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
  17. Lori

    How many quarts does this recipe make ?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Lori!

      This recipe makes about 4 quarts or 8 pints.

      Reply
  18. Theresa

    Can I use frozen blueberries in this recipe

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      Yes you can!

      Reply
  19. Maribeth

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

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  20. Ter

    Does one quart make 2 pies?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
  21. Annette Williams

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

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

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

      Reply
  22. 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

    Reply
    • 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: https://thehouseandhomestead.com/easy-pie-purpose-pie-crust/). 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!

      Reply
  23. Erin

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

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  24. 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!

    Reply
    • 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;)

      Reply
  25. 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.

    Reply
    • 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!

      Reply
    • Anna

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

      Reply
  26. Anna Sakawsky

    Thanks for the link! Awesome post by the way!

    Reply

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  1. How to Start Homesteading Wherever You Are - Little House Living - […] there’s nothing like opening up a jar of home-canned green beans, peaches or blueberry pie filling in the dead of…
  2. Beginner’s Guide: Canned Blueberry Pie Filling – p.s. bonjour - […] seemed like they could work, like this one on Waterbath Canning and this one more specifically for Blueberry Pie…
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ABOUT ANNA
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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Did you know you can now buy pumpkin spice ramen noodles, pumpkin spice Pringles, pumpkin spice macaroni and cheese, pumpkin spice sausages and even pumpkin spice dog treats?

It’s not exactly a stretch to say that we’ve taken the whole pumpkin spice craze a little bit too far.

But our obsession with pumpkin spice speaks to something much deeper than the flavour itself. (Let’s be honest, pumpkin spice ramen noodles sound gag-worthy).

The reason we tend to love pumpkin spice so much is because it triggers feelings of comfort and nostalgia; Memories of days spent with family at the pumpkin patch or around the Thanksgiving table. In short, pumpkin spice triggers our emotions as much as it tantalizes our taste buds.

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It’s super easy to make and will put pumpkin spice macaroni squarely in its place (and keep it there!)

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to grab the recipe or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/homemade-pumpkin-spice-syrup/

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...

I’ve been feeling pulled to slow down and retreat into my home lately; To turn off the news and social media and focus on the tangible things like lighting the wood stove, preserving the mountains of food still coming out of the garden, and slowly stirring a pot of soup as it cooks on the stovetop.

With everything that’s going on in the world right now, I know I’m not the only one feeling pulled toward hearth and home. This is a heavy time for all of us. No one person is meant to bear the weight of the world on their shoulders, but I've heard from so many people lately who say that's exactly how they've been feeling.

If you read my post from a few days ago, you know I’ve been feeling like that too, but luckily, I've learned how to soothe my soul in difficult times.

And so that's what I've been doing lately...

I've been focusing on the tangible things that I can control, like cooking meals and preserving food.

I've been lingering a little longer in the morning, taking time to sit by the river or sip my coffee in front of the wood stove before hurrying on with my day.

And I've been making a conscious effort to turn off the noise of the outside world and give my family and my own emotional health my full attention.

If you've also been feeling that pull to turn off all of the noise and immerse yourself in more nourishing, productive activities, I want to tell you about a collection of resources that will help you do just that.

The Simple Living Collective’s Autumn Issue includes seasonal guides, tutorials, e-books, recipes and more to help you slow down and reconnect with what matters this season.

* Learn how to forage for healing herbs and how to make your own natural medicine

* Find new ways to celebrate old traditions, and create new seasonal traditions with your family

* Discover new seasonal recipes and crafts to do on your own or with your kids

And much more.

If this sounds like it’s exactly what you're in need of right now, check out the Simple Living Collective and get the Autumn Issue for just $25. But this issue is only available until tomorrow, so don't wait…

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to grab it now before it disappears 🍁
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I laid in bed the other night and couldn’t sleep.

I know that probably doesn’t sound out of the ordinary, especially considering the collective stress we’ve all been through over the past year and a half. But if I’m being totally honest, I’ve done a pretty good job of not letting it get to me.

I used to have really bad anxiety, and I made a conscious effort to learn how to manage it in (mostly) healthy, natural ways. I practice a lot of gratitude every day, and overall I’ve learned to deal with stress, anxiety and negative thoughts pretty well.

Lately though, I’ve been feeling the weight of it all. Aside from dealing with personal issues like our ongoing infertility/pregnancy loss journey and the every day stresses we all face, the bigger things have been feeling bigger and heavier lately; The mandates, the politics, the pushback, the arguments and attacks online, the divisiveness, and the seemingly never-ending pandemic that every single one of us is still dealing with in some capacity.

I’ve been seeing more and more calls to “choose a side.” I’ve witnessed my own close friends on both sides of the debate hurling insults at each other, defending their ground, and refusing to listen to each other’s valid points and concerns.

I’ve even witnessed a widening crack in the homesteading community, despite the fact that so many of our core values and beliefs align and are unique to us.

Despite the division, I would still argue that ALL of us have much more in common than not, and to see the divide continuing to deepen has started to get under my skin lately.

(Continued in comments…)
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I’ve been keeping a secret…

For the past two years I’ve worked hard to bring you monthly issues of Modern Homesteading Magazine.

Over the course of the past 24 issues, we’ve covered everything from gardening to canning, sourdough bread to backyard chickens, home dairy to herbal medicine, permaculture to fermentation and EVERYTHING in between.

But it’s time for the magazine to step into some bigger shoes, which means we’re transitioning from a monthly publication focused on one specific topic per issue to a seasonal publication which will focus on multiple seasonally-themed topics per issue.

This also means that each issue will be packed with even more great content tailored for homesteaders from all walks of life.

Since the August issue was a week late due to some personal and family issues, and since this next issue is packed with even more great content, it will be coming to you in a few days from now.

That being said, it will also be the last issue you’ll be able to read free of charge. So, if you STILL haven’t subscribed, head on over and click the link in my bio or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/magazine to subscribe for free and you’ll still get to read the August issue (all about fermentation) as well as the Fall 2021 issue (when it comes out) ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Membership prices to access our entire library of issues will also be increasing soon so now’s a great time to lock in at the super low introductory price of just $7.99/year. That gets you full access to every single issue, past, present and future, including the ability to download, save and print each one.

Big, exciting changes are coming this fall! Be sure to subscribe and/or become a member now and be the first to know when the brand new Fall 2021 issue drops in just a few days!

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to subscribe or become a member now :)
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Fall is just around the corner, and that means so is cold and flu season.

This is the time of year when I like to mix up a big batch of elderberry syrup to help support our immunity and keep us healthy throughout the fall and winter.

If you've never made your own elderberry syrup, it's SUPER easy. All you need are some dried elderberries (or fresh if you've got 'em), honey, and a few other herbs and spices.

OR you can make things even easier on yourself and grab a dump-and-go Elderberry Syrup Mix kit from @farmhouseteas!

Whether you opt for plain ol' dried elderberries or the Elderberry Syrup Mix, right now you can buy one and get one for 20% off, plus get free shipping over $59 anywhere in the U.S.

Stock up on elderberries now and use code IMMUNE821 at checkout to get your discount!

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to order your dried elderberries and get your discount, and/or to get my full recipe for homemade elderberry syrup (or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/homemade-elderberry-syrup-recipe)

Happy fall y’all 🍁
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Not a bad start to our carrot harvest if you ask me!

One of the things I love about growing food at home is that we get to try all sorts of varieties that we would never find in a grocery store, like these deep purple carrots from @westcoastseeds.

There are so many interesting heirlooms (and hybrids!) out there that just aren’t grown for commercial sale.

What’s your favourite vegetable that you’ve grown that you can’t find anywhere else?
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Got plums???

This plum jelly is a super easy way to use up any plums you have WITHOUT having to pit them.

(This is obviously especially useful if you have a clingstone variety, because let me tell you from experience, it is NOT worth your time to try to pit those babies!)

But since all you need for this jelly is to extract the juice from your plums, you don’t need to worry about removing the pits. Just toss ‘em in the pot whole!

This plum jelly is also spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Perfect for fall -it basically tastes like what cozy feels like!

Not to mention, it also makes the perfect Christmas gift. (Yup. I said Christmas! But if you wanna give away homemade preserve for Christmas, you’ve gotta start planning that now!)

If you've got plums and are looking for a delicious way to use and preserve them, click the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/spiced-plum-jelly/ to get my full recipe and preserving instructions!
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Happy anniversary to the love of my life @thehumblehandyman

Over our 7 years of marriage and 10 years together, we’ve experienced the highest highs and the lowest lows.

We’ve travelled the world together. We’ve accomplished countless goals together. We’ve learned to grow food and live a more sustainable life, not because we have to, but because it feels right in every fiber of our being.

We’ve created a beautiful baby girl together, and said goodbye to 4 angel babies. We’ve yet to meet our rainbow baby, but I feel in my heart that there’s a soul out there who’s meant to live his earthly life with us. I’m not ready to stop trying.

We’ve built a beautiful home (if not from scratch, pretty close!), and while we’re so, SO grateful for our current home and situation, we both still love to dream about the day we drive up on that 5 or 10 acre farm, keys in hand.

I know we’re only 7 years in, but I can already picture us 20, 30, 40 years from now, giving the younger kids some simple life advice on how to make a marriage work:

#1: Communicate. About everything. Share your wildest dreams and your darkest secrets. Share a bank account! A strong marriage is based on absolute trust. Communication is necessary for trust to exist.

#2: Work toward common goals. Get on the same page about what you want out of life, and if you disagree on some things, find middle ground. Marriage is about compromise, but we also only get one chance to do this life and I don’t know about you, but I’ve got lots I wanna do and I wanna do it next to the person I love most.

#3: Laugh. Cry. Comfort each other. Share all of the raw human emotions with each other. Celebrate what it means to be spiritual beings having a human experience, together.

This is what’s worked for us so far anyway, and I can say for a fact that we’re stronger together and as individuals for it.

Thank you for being the best husband and father Evelyn and I could ask for. And thanks for knowing how to build and fix just about everything. Many of our projects would never get off the ground or our bills would be much higher if I wasn’t married to @thehumblehandyman, and for that I’m eternally grateful 😘
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When you grow your own food at home, you tend to end up with the very GOOD problem of having too much fresh food ready all at once.

This is definitely the case in our house right now, which means our canner has taken up permanent residence on our stovetop and I've been admittedly pulling some late nights trying to get everything preserved.

Tomato sauce is a top priority for us when it comes to canning because it's such a staple on our pantry shelves. From pizza and pasta sauce to soups, stews and casseroles, we use tomato sauce for so much of our home cooking, and for this reason, having a good, basic tomato sauce on hand is an absolute MUST!

The recipe I'm sharing with you today includes instructions on how to can homemade tomato sauce with a water bath canner or a pressure canner (because tomatoes go both ways;) so you always have the makings of a delicious meal on hand!

Click the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/how-to-can-homemade-tomato-sauce/ to get the full recipe and canning instructions:)

What's your favourite way to use tomato sauce at home??
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