Easy Canned Meat Recipes

With a supply of canned meat on hand, you can prepare a home-cooked meal in no time.
By Linda L. Vance
September/October 1983
Add to My MSN

Try making an easy fried rice recipe with your home-canned meat.

Content Tools

Related Content

HOMEGROWN Life: The Return of Christmas Spirit

HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Pennsylvania homesteading mama Michelle reflects on how she lost the Chri...

Turning an Afternoon of Cooking into Weeks of Healthy Eating

Follow these five easy steps to create several weeks worth of meals in one afternoon.

Are Old Canning Recipes Safe to Use?

When it comes to safe methods for canning foods, this is one instance in which modern advice is bett...

How Do You Make Home Cooking Cheaper and Easier Without Sacrificing Quality?

Readers share tips and recipes for cheaper, easier and healthier home cooking.

Here's the situation: Our freezer was stuffed to overflowing, not only with such staples as strawberries, corn, cider, and beans, but also with some family specialties, including freezer jam, pumpkin pie, carrot cake, and zucchini bread. And, since our eyes had been focused on filling every nook and cranny with produce from our bountiful garden, our vision became shortsighted. Therefore, we were ill-prepared when we received a windfall of two quarters of beef and 17 two-year-old chickens.

In fact, we nearly passed up this bonanza, but that savory protein was just too valuable to let go. So, as we gave thanks for the meat, we also pondered the pleasant predicament of finding ourselves with too much food for the freezer. Then the obvious solution occurred to us, and we got out the mason jars and canned the beef and chicken.

Of course, a shortage of freezer space isn't the only reason to can meat. As a child, it always intrigued me that our family could arrive home late after a Sunday outing, and Mom could still have homemade vegetable soup on the table in a flash. She'd simply open a can of beef, one of beef broth, and another of vegetables, empty their contents into one big pot, and within half an hour, we'd be eating the kind of fresh-smelling brew that usually has to be simmered all day long!

Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to have grown up in a house where canned meat was an important part of the family diet. Therefore, I’d like to present two of my mother's other recipes—both of which take only minutes to prepare—to help any novice meat canners get off to a good start.

Skillet Stew

To make this one-dish meal, cook your choice of meat in a frying pan until it begins to brown. Then put in the jellied broth and let it all simmer for at least 15 minutes. Add home-canned vegetables, half a bay leaf, salt and pepper, and continue to simmer the mixture until the ingredients are heated thoroughly. The bay leaf—which should be removed after cooking—gives a special tang to the dish, but you may want to use some of your other favorite seasonings as well. Naturally, the stew can be made with fresh vegetables, rather than canned. (We like it with cubes of potatoes, carrots, and a little onion.) This variation, however, requires that the mix be simmered until the vegetables are cooked, which increases the preparation time and may require adding a small amount of water.

I always sprinkle fresh parsley over the top of the stew to "dress up" the meal, and set the large iron skillet right in the middle of the table. With, say, a fruit salad and hot rolls, this is the kind of mouth-watering repast that you can't buy at a restaurant!

American-Style Chinese Fried Rice

Using a wok or a large skillet, fry (after giving it the 15-minute boiling test) canned pork, chicken or beef. If you're using beef, add 1/2 teaspoon of ginger, or try hot, red, dried pepper with the chicken. We prefer no extra seasoning with pork. While the meat is browning, scramble 1 egg for every three people to be served. Prepare boiled rice according to the quantity needed. Then, when the meat is ready, combine the rice and scrambled eggs with it, seasoning the mixture with soy sauce, salt, and pepper. Finally, put in bean sprouts, peas, water chestnuts, and scallions, and stir-fry until they're all hot.

Now, are you brave enough to try using chopsticks?

To learn how to can meat yourself, see Canning Meat the Right Way.


Previous | 1 | 2 | Next

Post a comment below.


10/27/2014 8:45:01 PM
What is the "15 minuet boil test?" I just started canning in January of 2014, but I have not came across this term or method per-say could you elaborate... thanks in advance

Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 66% Off the Cover Price

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Lighten the Strain on the Earth and Your Budget

MOTHER EARTH NEWS is the guide to living — as one reader stated — “with little money and abundant happiness.” Every issue is an invaluable guide to leading a more sustainable life, covering ideas from fighting rising energy costs and protecting the environment to avoiding unnecessary spending on processed food. You’ll find tips for slashing heating bills; growing fresh, natural produce at home; and more. MOTHER EARTH NEWS helps you cut costs without sacrificing modern luxuries.

At MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet’s natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. That’s why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.00 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.00 for 6 issues.