We recently featured an article on the top five foods to store in the event of economic collapse, and right there leading the way was canned meat. Protein is an essential part of every person’s diet, and meat is the most efficient way for humans to get protein. Humans are omnivorous; we are meant to eat and digest meat. Some people, however, want to can their own meat. Here, we answer the question of which is the best pressure cooker for canning meat.
Why Can Your Own Meat?
When you can your own meat, you have the opportunity to get more information about where the meat is coming from. Perhaps you prefer beef from a local ranch or pork from a local farm. Maybe you raise your own chickens. Whatever the reason, using the pressure cooker to can your own meat allows you to know exactly what ingredients are going into the can.
What Is the Shelf Life of Canned Meat?
The big question when canning anything is how long it will last. If you are preparing for a possible economic collapse, or a natural disaster, you want to write “canned on” dates on each of your products so you can use them up before they go bad. Then you can go through the canning process again with fresh food.
The nice thing is, the canning meat shelf life is long. While many say canned meat is good for 2 to 5 years, others say some canned meat can last up to 15 years. In fact, a recent study released on NPR shows that expiration dates and shelf life, is really just a matter of smelling the food. Canned food can last for decades without losing its nutritional value or its flavor and smell.
5 Best Pressure Cookers For Canning Meat
Presto 8 Quart Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker
This pressure cooker is perfect for a single person or a couple. It holds 8 quarts of meat and liquid and can be separated into about 3 or 4 mason jars. This cooker is stainless steel, so easy to clean and maintain, and it can sit on a stove, which is ideal if you lose power and have a lot of meat in your refrigerator or freezer that you want to save.
Presto 23 Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker
For the last decade, the US Department of Agriculture has deemed it unsafe to can inside a pressure cooker unless the cooker is specifically designed for it. This 23 Quart Presto is designed specifically for that. This design means you take a lot of the guesswork out of canning. You can just place your mason jars inside the “canner” and cook the meat inside the jars. This cooker is also stainless steel, and, as you can see, much larger. You can can for the whole family in this one.
Cosori Mini 7 in 1 Multifunctional Programmable Cooker
This is the baby of all the electronic pressure cookers. If you are a single persona and plan on canning small amounts of meat at a time, perhaps you want single servings to preserve and ration, this is the cooker for you. The bonus to this cooker is that it also functions as a rice cooker and a slow cooker, among other things.
Cosori 7 in 1 6 Quart Multifunctional Programmable Cooker
This Cosori is slightly bigger than the mini, but has all the same functions. Essentially, if you have a small family, or you want to can your meat in larger serving sizes, this is your cooker. You will still need electricity, and it is multifunctional like the mini, so it will serve other purposes beyond disaster food prep.
Power Pressure Cooker XL 10 Quart
This extra large pressure cooker is the largest electric pressure cooker you’ll find. It holds 10 quarts of meat and liquid and will also serve as a slow cooker, among other things. The Power Pressure Cooker is perfect for you if you don’t want to hassle with the stovetop, and you have a big family or you want to make really large portions of canned meat.
At this point, you may be wondering how to use a pressure cooker for canning meat. Presto provides a step by step guide for pressure cooking meat for canning. The main points to remember are to cook your meat following the pressure cooker instructions, then cut off fat and gristle and remove bones and skin before canning. Then you can add broth. You want to leave one inch of space between the top of your meat and liquid and the top of the jar.
There is a process that will allow you to pressure cook meat for canning by putting the mason jars directly into the cooker, but the cookers made specifically for that are much harder to find; we only have the one listed here, number 2.