Preserving Pears

Canning Pears

4 pears yield 1 lb

2 to 2 ½ lbs yields 1 quart

40 lbs (one box) yields 16 quarts

If not too soft, pears can be fed through an automated peeler/corer (found in most stores featuring jars and other canning supplies). To beat the summer heat in the kitchen, a high BTU outdoor propane burner will work very well on calm days.

If one were to ask 30 different people how to can pears, they would get at least 30 different responses. We suggest our clients check the instructions in each box of new jars or with their local university extension service. You can also do a Google search for "canning pears".

Consider a little experiment   Do not peel your pears prior to canning.  Many agree the intact skins add to the flavor.  If not wanted, the canned peelings come off easily at the dinner table.  

NOTE: Rogue Valley (Medford) pears have a higher natural sugar content than other areas of harvest.  For that reason we suggest our canning clients reduce the amount of sugar they normally use by 20% - 30%.  

Dehydrating Pears

Dehydrated pears make a wonderful, healthy snack. Great for around the game table with family and friends; or just lounging with a good book; or in front of the TV.

The simplest and healthiest handling of pears for dehydration is to place peeled and sliced pears in a solution of 1 part lemon juice to 20 parts water. Add Allspice and/or cinnamon to the solution for extra flavor.

For optimum shelf life, be sure to dehydrate until crisp, followed by a vacuum sealing,  Before sealing, be sure the dehydrated pears have cooled off to avoid sticking to each other.   

Pear Butter

Wash the pears. Do not peel. Slice fairly thin. Add a small amount of water to start cooking. Cook until very soft. When sufficiently cooled, press the pulp through a sieve or food mill. To each cup of pulp add ½ cup of sugar. For each 6 cups of pulp, add ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon of Allspice and ¼ cup of nutmeg. Cook until thick, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Pour into sterilized canning jars to within 1/2 inch of the rim of the jar. Place lid and tighten firmly. Process in boiling water for 10 minutes. (Again, check with the jar manufacturer's instructions for safe canning procedures.)