Is it possible to have too much fun canning? Because if so, I’m in that territory. I have been canning like a mad woman, and just yesterday had my pressure canner and water bath canner going at the same time as fresh green beans and peach butter were put up (I’ll bring you the peach butter recipe on Thursday!). Today it is all about Strawberry Lemonade Concentrate!
Today, I’m sharing a fun recipe with you that a lot of folks don’t think to can: a juice concentrate. Now, in the old days folks thought to can everything but nowadays we tend to think canning is just for pickles and jams. So I’m going to change all of that by showing you how to make this delicious strawberry lemonade concentrate that you can store in your pantry and mix up this winter when you find yourself longing for warmer days 🙂
Or you can drink it all next week. The option is there 🙂
The ingredients are simple: Strawberries, lemon juice, and sugar.
You can use fresh squeezed lemon juice if you have the notion. My notion was to go for the easiest option 🙂
Start by filling your water bath canner or a very tall pot with water. Place this over medium to medium high heat to bring the water to a simmer. Place jars and lids in pot.
If using a big pot, you need to make sure it is tall enough to cover your jars by at least an inch of water and it must have a lid. Place a dish towel in the bottom of it. This will prevent the jars from sitting directly on the heat source and lessen the clanking around once they start processing at the end of this recipe.
Rinse your strawberries under cold water and cut the tops off. Place them, in batches, in a blender or food processor and process until smooth.
If you fill your blender all the way to the top like I do, add half of your lemon juice to help get things going in there. Just remember that when you go to add the rest and don’t double the amount!
Place pureed strawberries in a large stock pot. Add lemon juice and sugar.
Cook this over medium high heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved.
Continue cooking until it almost comes to a boil, but not quite boiling.
Remove from heat. Skim the foam off the top as best you can.
See that picture? I call this “good enough”.
Remove jars from canner, carefully draining as you do so, and place on a dish towel lined counter. Fill jars with hot mixture.
Wipe rims with a damp paper towel and then place lids and rings on jars. Tighten lightly. Place jars back into canner, cover, and bring to a full rolling boil.
When it starts boiling, your process time of 15 minutes begins.
After 15 minutes, carefully remove jars and place them on dish towel lined counter to cool. 24 hours later, check to make sure all jars are sealed. If they aren’t, you can add a new lid and re-process them or just place that jar in the fridge to use.
To serve, dilute concentrate with 2-3 cups of water for every 1 cup of concentrate.
I dilute mine with 3 cups to every 1 but if you prefer it sweeter, you can just use 2. Another fun thing to do is dilute it with club soda, sprite, or ginger ale!
We LOVE this stuff. Hope you do, too!
- 6 cups strawberries washed and tops removed
- 4 cups bottled or freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 6 cups granulated sugar
- 7 Ball® 16 oz pint jars
- Fill boiling water canner with hot water and place jars and lids inside.
- Puree fresh strawberries in a blender or food processor (I usually use a blender), working in batches if need be, until they are smooth.
- Place strawberries, lemon juice, and sugar in a large stockpot over medium high heat. Stir constantly until sugar is dissolved, not bringing them to a boil but just getting them right up to where they are almost boiling. Remove from heat and skim off foam or stir until foam is incorporated back into mixture. .
- Ladle hot concentrate into hot jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe rim with a damp paper towel or dish cloth. Place lids and rings on jars and tighten lightly.
- Place jars in a boiling water canner, cover, and bring to a boil. One it reaches a full rolling boil, process for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours.
- To reconstitute, mix two parts water, ginger ale, or club soda to one part concentrate. Can mix three parts if you prefer.
Join me this Saturday for National Can It Forward Day! I’ll be canning live from Ball Headquarters in Indiana. To get details on how to watch the webcast this weekend, click here.
Also, follow me on Instagram to see photos from my tour of the Ball Canning Factory by clicking here!
Disclaimer: this post was graciously sponsored by Ball Canning but all opinions contained herein are my own. In other disclaimer news: I like pretzels, farm fresh eggs, and walks in the woods but I still won’t eat seafood. Have a great day!
You might also enjoy this recipe! Fresh Strawberry Pie