Water Bath Canning for Beginners


* This article contains affiliate links. For more information, please read my Affiliate Disclosure.

 

 

Water bath canning is an easy way to preserve food at home. Learn the basics with this beginner's guide to water bath canning and start canning jams, jellies, fruits, pickles, salsa and so much more! #waterbathcanningforbeginners #waterbathcanningWater bath canning is one of the easiest and most popular ways to preserve many types of food. An easy skill to master that requires no real special equipment, water bath canning is the first form of food preservation that most modern homesteaders and sustainable foodies master, and it tends to quickly lead to an interest in learning other forms of food preservation too.

Still, if you’ve never canned any food at home before, even water bath canning can seem intimidating. I was certainly intimidated by it when first I started canning just a few years ago. But after four years of canning jams, jellies, sauces, syrups, fruit, pickles and more with nary a spoiled jar to show for it, I’m now more than confident in my water bath canning skills, and that’s prompted me to start pressure canning too, as well as fermenting and dehydrating food at home.

I remember being so nervous when I canned my very first batch of applesauce (the first thing I ever canned at home). I was sure I was going to get botulism and die if I ate it, or worse, that I would feed it to my 6-month old daughter and she would get botulism and die and my life would be over. 

This might sound a little crazy for a seasoned canner who knows what they’re doing, but it’s a legitimate fear for new home canners who don’t yet understand the process. So if you can relate at all to the intimidation and trepidation I once felt about canning, then this is the post that will ease all your worries and help you gain the confidence and knowledge you need to break out the Mason jars and fill your pantry with home-canned goodness:)

 

What is water bath canning?

So, what exactly is water bath canning?

Well, it’s pretty much what it sounds like: Canning food in a hot water “bath,” (ie. a pot of boiling water). 

Basically you put your food into hot, sterilized Mason jars and pop them into a pot of boiling hot water for a specified amount of time. The boiling water kills off any bacteria that could allow your food to spoil, sucks the air out from inside the jar and helps the lid to suction onto the jar and seal tightly, all of which helps to preserve the food inside the jar and make it shelf stable for months and even years to come.

 

Water bath canning equipment list

Water bath canning is really as simple as it sounds and requires little to no special equipment. While you could purchase a water bath canner specifically for this task, you can also use a large stockpot with a rack in the bottom or even a pressure canner with the lid placed gently (not sealed) on top. 

I’ve been using my great aunt’s old pressure canner as a water bath canner for years! I just rest the lid on top so the steam can escape, since there’s no need to bring the pressure up or raise the temperature past boiling when it comes to water bath canning. 

Water bath canning is an easy way to preserve food at home. Learn the basics with this beginner's guide to water bath canning and start canning jams, jellies, fruits, pickles, salsa and so much more! #waterbathcanningforbeginners #waterbathcanning

I use a hand-me-down old pressure canner for my water bath canning. I just rest the lid on top to allow the steam to escape.

Just make sure that there’s a rack in the bottom of whatever pot you’re using as you should never place jars directly on the bottom of a boiling water pot since they could break.

Aside from the pot or canner itself, you’ll of course need Mason jars and lids (size will depend on what you’re canning), and a few basic canning tools. I use and recommend jar lifters, a canning funnel and a canning scoop.

 

Water bath canning vs. pressure canning

While water bath canning simply requires a pot of boiling water, pressure canning requires the use of a pressure canner to bring the water temperature up much higher than boiling point, which is necessary for canning certain vegetables, as well as meat and combination recipes like soups.

Pressure canning is what many people think of when they think about canning, and thoughts of blowing up your kitchen with a pressure canner or poisoning your family with botulism from improperly canned foods can be enough to scare many potential home canners off from ever even trying.

But the good news is that, even though pressure canning isn’t nearly as scary as most people think, water bath canning is even less scary. In fact, it’s downright safe and easy as long as you follow some very basic rules.

To learn more about pressure canning, check out this post on how to use a pressure canner safely.

 

A word about botulism

Just in case you’re unfamiliar with botulism, I’m going to touch on it quickly here since it’s probably the biggest safety concern when it comes to home canning.

In short, botulism is a severe form of food poisoning caused by a bacteria called Clostridium botulinum (C. botulinum) that affects the nervous system, and can cause severe disability, including paralysis and even death.

The bacteria that causes botulism actually lives in the soil and can be found on the surface of pretty much all fresh fruits and vegetables, however botulism can only survive in anaerobic environments (where there is no air), which is exactly the kind of environment inside a sealed canning jar!

However, botulism cannot survive on high-acid foods, so any food with a PH of 4.6 or lower is safe from botulism. The addition of vinegar (and in some cases, lemon juice) also keeps food safe from botulism, so even though cucumbers have a PH level of about 5.1 to 5.7, when they’re pickled in vinegar their PH level lowers to about 3.5, which automatically makes them safe from botulism.

Botulism spores can also be killed with very very high heat (greater than 240ºF/116ºC), but only pressure canning can achieve the temperatures needed to kill off the bacteria. Since water bath canning can only reach boiling temperature (212ºF/100ºC), it is not safe for canning low-acid foods.

This being said, as long as you follow a tested water bath canning recipe, it will always be made with ingredients that are high-acid and can safely be water bath canned without any fear of botulism. So water bath canning is actually very safe since you won’t be canning anything that could allow botulism to grow in the first place. Just always follow a tested recipe and follow the specified processing times (more on that below).

–> Read more about botulism here.

Water bath canning is an easy way to preserve food at home. Learn the basics with this beginner's guide to water bath canning and start canning jams, jellies, fruits, pickles, salsa and so much more! #waterbathcanningforbeginners #waterbathcanning

 

Rules to follow when water bath canning

 

Rule #1: Only water bath can high acid foods

Water bath canning is only safe for high-acid foods, such as most fruits (apples, berries, cherries, peaches, pears, etc.) as well as tomatoes* and any pickled foods (because “pickling” -either with vinegar or with the naturally-occurring lactic acid that’s created when foods are fermented- raises the acidity of the food in question).

The reason acidity matters is because botulism can’t grow in acidic environments where the PH level is 4.6 or lower, and the foods mentioned above are all below 4.6 on the PH scale. 

* The one exception is tomatoes, which used to be highly acidic, but years of engineering and hybridization has caused the PH level to rise in some tomatoes, so to be safe, most tomato recipes call for the addition of lemon juice in order to bring the acidity up enough to make it safe for water bath canning. 

Low-acid foods, including most vegetables (potatoes, carrots, green beans, pumpkin, etc.), red meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, stock, soups, etc. MUST be pressure canned in order to be shelf stable and safe to eat.

 

Rule #2: Follow a tested recipe

While you might enjoy getting creative with your standard kitchen recipes, canning is definitely more of a science than an art. While it is possible to add or omit certain ingredients like sugar, spices, etc., you should always start with a safe, tested recipe from a source you trust.

I wouldn’t recommend tampering with the ingredients in any recipes until you are comfortable with canning and understand the science behind it, since tampering with certain ingredients can change the PH level and potentially affect the safety of the food in question.

I highly recommend investing in a good canning cookbook. My absolute favourite is the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. I use it all the time and most of the recipes on this blog are adapted from this book as Ball pretty much sets the standard when it comes to canning.

Other books I recommend include the Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving and the Amish Canning Cookbook.

You can also check out the National Center for Home Food Preservation’s website for up-to-date recipes and safety information.

 

Rule #3: Always use new lids (and remove bands after processing)

When it comes to canning anything, glass Mason jars can be used over and over again, although you should always check the jars for nicks and cracks, and you always need to clean them with hot soapy water and sterilize them in hot water before filling them.

Bands can also be reused as long as you wash them first (bands are the metal rings that secure the lid onto the jar). 

But you always ALWAYS need to use new lids when canning. This is because once a lid has sealed onto a jar, that seal will never be as strong again, which means your jars of food may not seal completely or correctly, which can lead to food spoilage. 

Once you’ve built up your Mason jar collection, however, a few boxes of lids are a small investment to make each season. If, however, you’re willing to invest a little more up front, you can purchase reusable tattler lids for your home canning projects.

Also, it’s best practice to remove the bands before you store your home-canned food. This helps to ensure that you spot any potential issues, like jars that didn’t seal or food spoilage and bacteria growth at the top of a jar that didn’t seal correctly. I’ll be honest, I usually leave the bands on, and I’ve never had a problem, however the safety standard is to remove the bands, so it’s what I recommend for you (and for me) this canning season!

 

Rule #4: Practice safe food storage and rotation

This last rule really applies to all of your food storage, but it’s extra important when it comes to canning: Once you’ve canned your food and the lids have sealed and the jars have cooled and you’ve removed your bands (I typically recommend waiting for at least 12 to 24 hours before moving jars from the spot where you’ve left them to cool), then it’s time to put them away.

To ensure the quality and safety of your home-canned food, always label and date jars and store them in a cool, dark place such as a pantry cupboard, basement or cold storage. Keep them out of direct sunlight and try to keep them somewhere where the temperature will remain fairly constant, and won’t freeze or get hotter than 75ºF (23ºC).

If you can, store jars in a single layer and do not stack them on top of one another as this can potentially cause jars of the bottom layer to break their seal. If you need the space and must stack jars, only stack rows two layers deep and try to stack equally weighted or lighter jars on top of heavier ones.

And finally, make sure you rotate your food! Put the newest canned goods at the back and move your older canned goods to the front so you’ll use them first.

You should try to use up home-canned goods within a year, although most canned goods will last longer than that. Still, nobody wants to be eating canned food that’s from another era! (I’m reminded of cleaning out my great aunt’s cold storage when we moved her to a home a couple months ago and found apple sauce dated 1994! Yuck!)

If you’re ever concerned that any of your jars of home-canned food have spoiled or are unsafe to eat, toss them out. It’s just not worth the risk.

 

Water bath canning instructions

While every canning recipe is different and obviously calls for different ingredients and processing methods, certain procedures stay the same. Here’s what you always need to do before, during and after a water bath canning session…

  1. Prepare your jars: Wash jars and bands with hot, soapy water and rinse. Place jars in the canner or pot and simmer them on medium high heat to keep them hot (you don’t need to boil them).
  2. Prepare your ingredients as per the recipe you’re following. 
  3. Remove jars from water right before you fill them. The trick is to never let the jars or the food going in the jars to cool down (unless you’re following a cold pack recipe like pickles).
  4. Leave the correct amount of headspace in your jars. Head space is the amount of room you need to leave between the food and the lid at the top of the jar. Your canning recipe will tell you how much headspace to leave (usually ¼-inch to ½-inch headspace for most water bath canning recipes). Headspace is important so that your jars seal properly and allow for any food expansion that can happen when the jars are heated and processed.
  5. Release any trapped air bubbles by sliding a non-metallic utensil around the food and the outside of the jar. Air bubbles can affect the seal and quality of home canned food. (I use a knife for this purpose, but the official guidelines say not to use metal as some metals can cause off-flavouring of foods that they react with. A plastic or wooden utensil works well.
  6. Wipe the rim of the jar with a clean, wet cloth to ensure there’s nothing standing in between the jar and the seal.
  7. Place new lids on top and screw bands on “fingertip tight,” meaning just as tight as your fingers can tighten them without straining too hard. (You don’t want the lids to be too tight as they need to be able to loosen slightly while in the canner in order to expel air and create an airtight seal.
  8. Place filled jars upright in the canner and ensure they’re covered by at least 1 inch of water.  
  9. Bring water to a full boil and then start the timer for the specified processing time in the recipe.
  10. Leave jars in the canner for an extra 5 minutes after processing time has finished. This allows the pressure inside the jars to stabilize and reduces the chance of liquid loss.
  11. Remove jars with jar lifters and place them on a tea towel on the countertop somewhere where they can sit undisturbed for at least 12 to 24 hours. Never place hot jars directly on a cold countertop as this could shock the jars and cause them to break. And 24 hours is the recommended time to allow jars to cool, but in most cases I find 12 hours is enough. I leave jelly to set for a full 24 hours in order allow the pectin time to cool and set.
  12. Store in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight.

 

How to get started water bath canning

If you’re ready to dive in and start canning, my advice is to start with one simple recipe and go from there. Here are a few straightforward water bath canning recipes to get you started:

Oh, and don’t overwhelm yourself if it’s your first go (as in, don’t go pick 50 lbs. of strawberries for strawberry jam. 5 or 10 pounds is enough to get you started on a batch or two!)

And practice! The more you do it, the easier it will become. 

Back when I first started canning, I read over the recipes for hours before I even worked up the courage to actually get started because I was afraid that I would mess it up and kill my family. During the process I made a huge disaster of my kitchen and struggled to keep organized and get all of my timing right. 

Nowadays I barely need to check my recipes for certain items. I know the process well and I always make sure I have everything I need prepped and ready to go so I’m not scrambling. And I’m relaxed and organized enough during each canning session that I can actually clean as I go while the jars are processing, so by the time they’re ready, I have a clean kitchen and a sparkling countertop to line my new jars of home-canned food on. This makes it all the more enjoyable when I stand back to admire my jars (I’m pretty sure literally every home canner does this!) And so they should. And you should too.

Home canning isn’t just a skill every aspiring modern homesteader should master, it’s something to be proud of. Because for anyone with a pioneering spirit and a homesteader heart, having a pantry full of glistening jars of home-canned food is more valuable than gold, and you’d certainly be forgiven for stopping to stare;)

Ready to take your canning game to the next level?

Whether you’ve never canned anything before or you’ve done a little canning and you’re ready to take the next step, my Yes, You CAN! complete home canning course will walk you through everything you need to know to get started canning food SAFELY at home.

Over the course of 12 easy-to-follow lessons, we cover both water bath canning and pressure canning, and I show you step-by-step how to can your own jams, jellies, pickles, pie fillings, fruits, vegetables, tomato sauce and chicken stock at home. And of course we’ll go over canning safety, equipment and over all best practices in more depth so that you always feel confident both during the canning process and while enjoying your home-canned food afterwards.

You’ll also get a collection of bonuses including:

  • Printable checklists and cheatsheets to help you stay safe and never miss a step while canning food at home
  • My bonus Jam and Jelly Making Mini-Course to help you make and can your own jams and jellies with store-bought pectin, no pectin and even low-sugar
  • A copy of my Home Canning Handbook, complete with 30 of my favourite home canning recipes for canning everything from fruits and vegetables to jams and jellies to sauces and salsa to stocks, soups, meats, combination meals and more!

But the best part is that, I’m currently offering my Yes, You CAN! home canning course for 25% off the regular price, but only for a limited time! 

So if you’re ready to get started canning (or canning more food than ever before this year!) enroll now to take advantage of this special offer and get started stocking your pantry right away!

I hope to see you in class!

Wishing you health, wealth & homestead happiness:)

 

 

 


CATEGORIES
HOMESTEADING
REAL FOOD
NATURAL LIVING

20 Comments

  1. Joyce

    When I put my jars in the canning pot and get it to boiling, do I cover the pot or leave it open?

    Reply
    • Ashley Constance

      Technically you can do either as long as the water maintains a rolling boil. You’ll use more energy keeping the lid off, but if you have the lid on and the pot is very full, you risk boiling over. For me, personally, I’ve found leaving the lid mostly on with a little bit of a space for steam to escape the most efficient option. -Ashley (assistant)

      Reply
  2. Theresa

    Hi, Anna
    Thanks for the advice! I have a couple of screwy questions that I didn’t see answered anywhere I looked. I’m using an electric stove and my mom’s old canning kettle: the water won’t come to a boil and it’s on the highest setting. I see what looks like soda fizz on the bottom of the pot. Is that enough to put the jars in? Second question: is there a specific way that I have to fold the handles?

    Reply
    • Ashley Constance

      Hi Theresa – I’m Ashley, Anna’s assistant. Unfortunately you do need a full “rolling boil” (big bubbles throughout the water) before you put the jars in. I recently bought a new induction stove and I’ve had issues getting my largest canner up to a rolling boil as well – I had to purchase a smaller canning pot and I keep the lid on while the water heats to a boil.

      As for your second question – which handles are you talking about? Are you working with a wire rack in the canner?

      Reply
  3. BELYNDA RYAN

    Love the info. What if I want to can My own homemade salsa? How do I know acid levels?

    Reply
    • Ashley Constance

      In order to ensure safety with acid levels, it’s best practice to follow “tested” recipes. Check out the National Center for Home Food Preservation website for more info – it’s a great place to start!

      https://nchfp.uga.edu/index.html#gsc.tab=0

      Reply
  4. Allie

    So helpful! Thank you! I’ve made jam and applesauce before but it’s been a hot second and I needed a refresher. Going to use your recipe for tomato sauce and get her done!

    Reply
  5. LeiLanie Snell

    Thanks so much for your information. lol i was worried i might poison my family. I feel better now and i’m going to give water canning a try. i’ll holler your name if i did something wrong. God Bless

    Reply
  6. Hailee

    When your sterilizing jars in the canner are the jars fully submerged? When you take a jar out to fill with jam do you need to dry the inside?

    Reply
    • Tish Painter

      Hi Hailee,
      The guidelines for sterilizing jars has changed over the years. Now, for processing in a water bath canner, the jars only need to be clean as long as you are processing them at least 10 minutes or more. So, those few recipes I have seen that say process 5 min, I do the 10 minutes to safe.
      However, I do keep the jars warm in the canner with water so they don’t break or crack when adding hot foods to be canned. When you take them out to fill, I just pour out the water using my jar lifter (either into the sink or back in the canner- depending on how much water I started with) and fill. I do not dry them out as that jar is hot and I need it to say hot as I fill it with hot jam/jelly. The moisture has never caused any problem with my jams or jellies.
      I hope that helps! 🙂

      Reply
  7. Mamat88

    I made Apple butter on Saturday and refrigerated it. Can I safely can it now using the hot water bath?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      You can, however you would need to heat it back up to a boil first. Since it’s already cooked down, it might be quite thick. But as long as you bring it back up to a boil and pour into hot, sterilized jars you should be fine:)

      Reply
  8. Linda

    When you say, make sure jars are covered by at least one inch of water, is that 1″ above the tops, or just 1″ of water in the bottom of the canner?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      Hi Linda,

      Yes, make sure your jars are fully submerged and that the tops of your jars are covered by at least one inch of water.

      Reply
    • Kelly

      I misunderstood this process and only had 1 inch coverage from the bottom. The jar has no give when I push from the top. Should I reprocess or is it still possible to can without being fully submerged?

      Reply
      • Anna Sakawsky

        I would reprocess to be safe.

        Reply
        • Sue

          I made strawberry jam and it’s runny is it safe to open the Jared and cook it more and add more jell and re can it?

          Reply
          • Anna Sakawsky

            Hi Sue,
            Yes, you can safely reprocess it. However it may have set now that it’s been canned and had time to cool, etc. I often find that my jams and jellies seem a lot more runny when I’m canning them than they do after they’ve had a chance to cool and sit on the shelves for a few days.

  9. Stephanie Cox

    Thanks so much for this article! This is my first year to have a garden and it has been producing fantastically so I’m definitely gonna have to try canning but I’m afraid I’m gonna kill my family with botulism ???. This definitely made me feel better about the whole canning process!

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      No problem! I’m actually launching a canning course in about a month! I’ll be covering both water bath canning and some pressure canning too. If you’d like to learn more or join the waitlist you can do so right here🙂

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

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. 
You Might Also Like
25 Frugal Pantry Meals Using What You’ve Got

25 Frugal Pantry Meals Using What You’ve Got

Food is expensive these days, and it’s only continuing to get more expensive. Even though we’re constantly being told that inflation is going down overall, you may have noticed that this doesn’t mean that  food costs are going down. In fact, it...

read more

Easy Homemade Chai Tea Mix

Easy Homemade Chai Tea Mix

* This article contains affiliate links. For more information, please read my Affiliate Disclosure.   Made with black tea and an aromatic mix of warming spices, this homemade chai tea mix makes it easy to stay cozy on cold days so you can skip the expensive...

read more

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! ***
...

36 10

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
...

27 5

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…)
...

117 42

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
...

22 5

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 modernhomesteadingmagazine.com 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
...

25 3

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 thehouseandhomestead.com/society

#homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homesteadingskills #preparedness
...

203 5

There are so many reasons to grow your own food at home:

💰 Saves you money at the grocery store
🍴 Healthier than conventionally grown food
🔑 increases your overall food security
🫙 Gives you an abundance to preserve and share

But perhaps the number one reason is because it just tastes better!

Not only does food taste better when it’s freshly picked or allowed to ripen on the vine, there’s something about putting in the work to grow something from a tiny seed and then getting to see it on your dinner plate that just makes it so much more satisfying than anything you’ll ever buy from the store.

Plus, having to wait all year for fresh tomatoes or strawberries or zucchinis to be in season makes that short period when they’re available just that much more exciting!

With the world spinning out of control and food prices continuing to rise, it’s no wonder more people are taking an interest in learning to grow their own food at home. But that also means changing our relationship with food and learning to appreciate the work that goes into producing it and the natural seasonality of organically grown fruits and vegetables.

(It also means learning to preserve it so you can make the most of it and enjoy homegrown food all year long).

In my online membership program, The Society of Self-Reliance, you’ll learn how to grow your own food, from seed to harvest, as well as how to preserve it so you can enjoy the fruits (and vegetables) of your labor all year long!

You’ll also learn how to grow and craft your own herbal medicine, detox your home, become your own handyman, and so much more (because self-reliance is about more than just the food that we eat… But that’s a pretty good place to start!)

The doors to the Society are now open for a limited time only. Click the link in my profile or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

#foodsecurity #homegrownfood #homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homegrownfoodjusttastesbetter
...

90 0

If you’ve been watching events unfold over the past few years and you’re feeling called to start “cutting ties” with the system and begin reclaiming your independence, The Society of Self-Reliance was made for you!

When I first launched this online membership program last year, my goal was to create a one-stop resource where members could go to learn and practice every aspect of self-reliance, as well as a space to connect with other like-minded people pursuing the same goal. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when you join!

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn inside the Society:

🌱 Food Security and Self-Sufficiency: Learn the art of growing and preserving your own food, ensuring you and your loved ones have access to nutritious meals year-round.

🌿 Natural Living and Herbal Medicine Mastery: Discover the secrets to creating a low-tox home and and to growing, making and using herbal remedies to support your family’s health, naturally.

🔨 Essential Life Skills: Learn essential life skills like time management, effective goal setting and practical DIY skills to become more self-sufficient.

As a member, you’ll enjoy:

📚 Monthly Video Lessons: Gain access to our ever-growing library of video lessons, with fresh content added each month.

📞 Live Group Coaching Calls: Participate in our monthly live group coaching calls, where we deep dive into a different self-reliance topic every month, and do live demonstrations and Q&A’s.

🏡 Private Community: Join our private community forum where you can ask questions, share your progress, and connect with like-minded individuals.

I only open the doors to The Society once or twice each year, but right now, for one week only, you can become a member for just $20/month (or $200/year).

In today’s world, self-reliance is no longer a luxury, a “cute hobby,” it’s a necessity. Join us inside The Society of Self-Reliance and empower yourself with the skills you need to thrive in the new world!

Link in profile or visit thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

#selfreliance #selfreliant #selfsufficiency #selfsufficientliving #sustainableliving #modernhomesteading #homesteadingskills #preparedness
...

32 0

Got out for an early morning harvest today. Been up since 3am, contemplating life, the future and the past, the order of things…

There is a rumbling right now, not just in North America, but around the world. Many of us can feel it, and know we are on the precipice of something big.

I’d been hearing about this new song that’s become an overnight viral sensation, written by an (until now) unknown singer named Oliver Anthony. His new song Rich Men North of Richmond has had 14 million views on YouTube in the past week alone, so I decided to check it out.

I also saw a clip of him playing a Farmers Market last week, and anything that has to do with Farmers Markets always has my attention;)

I can’t tell you how many tears I’ve already cried listening to that song. If you’ve heard it already, you probably know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, I highly recommend giving it a listen. All I can say is it’s been a while since a song resonated so deeply with me, and in this strange new world, I know I’m not the only one.

One of the lines in Anthony’s song is “Livin’ in the new world, with an old soul,” and that’s something I think so many of us in the homesteading community can relate to.

Trying to cling to better days; To a simpler time; To the old ways, all while doing our best to get by in the new world.

The world has changed drastically in the last few years especially, and it’s set to change in immense ways over the next few years. Today I’m feeling thankful for people like @oliver_anthony_music_ who give a voice to what so many are feeling right now.

Know that if you’re feeling it too, you’re far from alone. And while the future may feel uncertain and even a little scary, remember that if we stand united, we the people are a force to be reckoned with.

(Continued in comments…)
...

114 18

Another garlic harvest in the books!

Garlic is easily one of my favourite crops to grow. It’s pretty much a “set if and forget it” crop. We plant in the fall and leave it to overwinter, fertilize a couple times in the spring, start watering only once the ground starts to dry out, and then harvest in the summer. We can even plant a fall succession crop after our garlic if we want so it really makes great use of garden space all year round.

Over the years we’ve managed to become completely self-sufficient with garlic. We now grow enough to eat all year (and then some!), plus we save our own seed garlic and usually have extra to sell or give away. And around here fresh, organic garlic ain’t cheap, so it’s a good cash crop for anyone who’s serious about selling it.

It took me a few years to really get the hang of garlic, but it’s one crop I’m now very confident with (knock on wood, because it’s always when we make statements like this that next year’s crop fails! Lol.)

A while back I compiled a comprehensive guide to growing, harvesting and using garlic both as an edible and medicinal crop. This is usually only available as part of a paid bundle (or in the fall 2022 issue of Modern Homesteading Magazine if you’re a subscriber;), but for a limited time I’m offering it for free, no strings attached!

Plus you’ll also get access to my step-by-step video lesson on planting garlic so you can set yourself up for success with your garlic crop this year.

Comment “Garlic” below or head to thehouseandhomestead.com/garlic-guide to get your free copy!
.
.
.
#garlic #garlicharvest #homesteading #selfsufficient #selfsufficiency #selfsufficientliving #selfreliance #homegrown #groworganic #growfoodnotlawns #gardenersofinstagram #homesteadersofinstagram
...

75 25

Going through photos and videos from our trip to the @modernhomesteadingconference and the vast majority are of our daughter having the time of her life!

Even if I personally got nothing else out of this gathering (which I most certainly did), watching her discover her own love of this lifestyle outside of what we do at home made my heart grow three sizes!

Homesteading is about so much more than homegrown food and self-reliance. It’s about passing on invaluable skills and an understanding of and respect for our connection to the land that provides for us to the next generation.

Being around so many other kids and families who are also pursuing a homesteading lifestyle helped show our little one that this is a movement that is so much bigger and greater than what our own family does on our little plot of land. This is a lifestyle worth pursuing, with a community unlike any other.

Glad to be back home and more excited than ever to involve my kids in everything we’re doing. But also, I think I speak for my whole family when I say we can’t wait to go back someday!
.
.
.
#homesteading #modernhomesteading #raisinglittles
...

48 7

If you’re simply looking for ways to save a little extra cash this summer and live well for less, here are 12 tried and tested frugal living tips for summer that you can use to save money this season without sacrificing a thing.
Head over using the link in my bio!
https://thehouseandhomestead.com/12-frugal-living-tips-summer/
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#houseandhomestead
#momentsofcalm
#pursuejoy
#simplepleasuresoflife
#thatauthenticfeeling
#findhappiness
#artofslowliving
#simplelifepleasures
#lifesimplepleasure
#simplepleasuresinlife
#thatauthenticlife
#authenticlifestyle
#liveanauthenticlife
#livinginspired
#savouringhappiness
#livemoment
#localgoodness
#simplelive
#lifeouthere
#enjoywhatyouhave
#frugallifestyle
#homesteadingmama
#offgridhomestead
#modernfarmhousekitchen
#crunchymama
#rusticfarmhouse
#farmhouseinspo
#farmhouselife
#modernhomesteading
#backyardfarmer
...

22 3

© The House & Homestead | All Rights Reserved | Legal