Looking for How to Make Homemade Canned Figs - Easily! With Step-by-step Photos, Recipe, Directions, Ingredients and Costs in 2023? Scroll down this page and follow the links. And if you bring home some fruit or vegetables and want to can, freeze, make jam, salsa or pickles, see this page for simple, reliable, illustrated canning, freezing or preserving directions. There are plenty of other related resources, click on the resources dropdown above. If you are having a hard time finding canning lids, I've used these, and they're a great price & ship in 2 days.
For more information about figs, see Fig Picking Tips. See How to Make Homemade Fig Preserves and Fig Jam and Making Candied figs and Other fig recipes. Also this page for Blueberry Jam directions, and for strawberry, blackberry, raspberry, peach, etc., and other types of jam, see this jam-making page!
This example shows you how to make canned (or bottled) jam; regular or with added seasoning. The yield from this recipe is about 7 pint jars.
It's fun to go pick your own and you can obviously get better quality ones!
At right is a picture I took of figs from my own tree - these are a variety called Celeste - see this page for more information on various types of figs, how to select the variety and how to pick them!
To pick your own, here is a list and links to the pick your own farms. just select your area!
FYI, Figs are REALLY easy to grow and also make an attractive landscaping tree!
It depends upon how much you want to make. I generally use pint jars for canned figs. An average of 11 pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints. That's about 4 dozen medium to large figs.
If you are using quart jars, an average of 16 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; An average of 2-1/2 pounds yields 1 quart of canned figs.
Now's a good time to get the jars ready, so you won't be rushed later. The dishwasher is fine for the jars; especially if it has a "sanitize" cycle, the water bath processing will sanitize them as well as the contents! If you don't have a dishwasher with a sanitize cycle, you can wash the containers in hot, soapy water and rinse, then sanitize the jars by boiling them 10 minutes, and keep the jars in hot water until they are used.
NOTE: If a canning recipe calls for 10 minutes or more of process time in the canner, then the jars do not need to be "sanitized" before filling them. But really, sanitizing them first is just good hygeine and common sense! See this page for more detail about cleaning and sanitizing jars and lids.
Put the lids into a pan of hot, but not quite boiling water (that's what the manufacturer's recommend) for 10 minutes, and use the magnetic "lid lifter wand" to pull them out.
Leave the jars in the dishwasher on "heated dry" until you are ready to use them. Keeping them hot will prevent the jars from breaking when you fill them with the hot jam. Some newer dishwashers even have a "sanitize" setting.
Lids: put the very hot (but not quite boiling; around 180 F, steaming
water is fine)
water (or on the stove in a pot of water on low heat) for at least several minutes; to soften up the gummed surface and clean and sanitize the lids.
I'm sure you can figure out how to gently wash the fruit in plain cold water.
You should not cut off the stems or the bottom of the fig, nor peel them. You want them intact! Also, don't use overripe or nasty looking ones (example photo below)
At left, sample figs with unappealing peels (skins).
At right is a sample slice of a perfectly ripe but not over-ripe fig. It depends on the variety, but generally, they should be pink/yellowish and not brown inside....
Depending upon which type of sweetener you want to use (sugar, no-sugar, Stevia (but you will have to experiment with amount, each brand of Stevia is a different concentration), or Splenda, or a mix of sugar and Stevia (or Splenda) or fruit juice) you will need to use a different syrup from below. Adding syrup to canned fruit helps to retain its flavor, color, and shape. It does not prevent spoilage of these foods. Heat the syrup to near boiling in a pot. Most people prefer the very light syrup!
Sugar syrup proportions for 7 to 9-pint jars of figs (double it for 9 quart jars)
|Type of syrup
Stevia (in a prepared form like Truvia, it measures same as sugar; if you use another form, you will need do your own conversion) - or Splenda, if you prefer it
|2||no calorie sweetener||7||0||0||1/4 cup|
|3||Fruit juice (white grape or peach juice works well)||0||7||0|
|4||Reduce calorie / fruit juice||4||3||0|
|5||Fruit juice and Stevia (in a prepared form like Truvia, it measures same as sugar; if you use another form, you will need do your own conversion) - or Splenda, if you prefer,||0||7||0||1/2 cup|
|6||very low calorie||7||0||1/4||1/4 cup|
|7||very light (10% sugar)||7||0||1||0|
|8||light (20% sugar)||6||0||2||0|
|9||medium (30% sugar)||6||0||3||0|
Put the figs in a large pot of already boiling water (so all the figs are covered with water) and boil 2 minutes. Quickly but gently remove the figs at 2 minutes and drain.
Gently boil the figs in sugar or fruit juice or other syrup for 5 minutes. Light syrup is generally preferred for taste!
Add 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice per quart jar or 1 tablespoon per pint jar to each of the jars. Alternatively, you may add 1/2 teaspoon citric acid (also goes under the brand name "fruit fresh") per quart or 1/4 teaspoon per pint to the jars. This is to increase the acidity and help prevent discoloration and spoilage.
Fill jars with hot figs, gently tapping the bottom of the jar on the countertop to help pack the figs down gently (tapping does it without breaking the figs)
Add the hot syrup (in which you heated the figs in step 8), leaving 1/4 to 1/2-inch headspace. Wipe any spilled jam off the top,
Seat the lid and tighten the ring around them. This is where the jar tongs and lid lifter come in really handy! Place them into the canner
Keep the jars covered with at least 2 inches of water. Keep the water boiling. In general, boil them for 45 minutes at sea level. I say "in general" because you have to process (boil) them longer at higher altitudes than sea level, or if you use larger jars, or if you did not sanitize the jars and lids right before using them.
To adjust, process according to the recommendations in the table below:
|Table 1. Recommended process time for Figs in a boiling-water canner.|
|Process Time at Altitudes of|
|Jar Size||0 - 1,000 ft||1,001 - 3,000 ft||3,001 - 6,000 ft||Above 6,000 ft|
Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight) You can then remove the rings if you like, but if you leave them on, at least loosen them quite a bit, so they don't rust in place due to trapped moisture. Once the jars are cool, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sucked down. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. If you put the jar in the refrigerator right away, you can still use it. Some people replace the lid and reprocess the jar, then that's a bit iffy. If you heat the contents back up, re-jar them (with a new lid) and the full time in the canner, it's usually ok.
Once cooled, they're ready to store. I find they last about 18 months. After that, the get darker in color and start to get runny. They still seem safe to eat, but the flavor is bland. So eat them in the first 12 to 18 months after you prepare them!
From left to right:
You can get all of the tools in a kit here:
Summary - Cost of Making Home Canned Figs - makes 7 pint jars, 16 oz each**
|Item||Quantity||Cost in 2023||Source||Subtotal|
|Figs||11 lbs (about 2 gallon, or 4 dozen large figs)||$10.00/gallon||Pick your own||$10.00|
|Canning jars (8 oz size), includes lids and rings||7 jars||$11/dozen 8 oz jars
|Grocery stores, like Public, Kroger, Safeway and sometimes, Big Lots, local hardware stores and big box stores||$7.50|
|Sugar||1 cup||$0.50||Grocery stores, like Public, Kroger, Safeway and sometimes, Big Lots, local hardware stores and big box stores||$0.50|
or about $2.55 per pint jar
* - This assumes you already have the pots, pans, ladles,, and reusable equipment. Note that you can reuse the jars! If you already have jars or reuse them, just buy new lids (the rings are reusable, but the flat lids are not)!
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