When canning grapefruit, peel clean grapefruits, separate the segments, and remove the pith and seeds. Pack the fruit segments into hot jars and cover them with hot syrup, leaving ½-inch headspace. Bring the canning water to a boil and process the jars for 10 minutes, adjusting for elevation.
Should Grapefruits Be Water Bath Canned or Pressure Canned?
Like other citrus fruits, grapefruits are acidic enough to be canned using either a pressure canner or a boiling water bath canner. The National Center for Home Food Preservation has a recipe for canning equal parts of grapefruit and oranges using both types of canners.Print
Is it Safe to Can Grapefruits?
Yes – it’s perfectly safe to can grapefruits in a boiling-water canner or pressure canner because they are high-acid fruits. All citrus fruits are acidic enough and safe to can using the same devices. You may can citrus fruits like mandarin oranges, oranges, lemons, and limes.
The juices of these fruits are also safe for canning. Try canning recipes like grapefruit, lime, orange, mandarin, and lemon juice. Additionally, if you love citrus marmalade and curd, try canning lemon curd for its bright flavor.
What is the Best Way to Preserve Grapefruit?
The best way to preserve grapefruit at home is to dehydrate it for a shelf life of up to one year. Although freeze-drying is much better than dehydrating, most homesteading families do not have freeze-dryers because they are costly.
Fermenting is another ideal way to preserve citrus fruits like grapefruit, oranges, and lemons. For example, the salty and acidic brine produced during fermentation helps keep lemons for 6-12 months in the pantry or refrigerator.
Avoid freezing grapefruit for extended periods because the water inside their cells expands and crystallizes, causing discoloration and a soft, slimy texture to develop.
How Do You Prepare Grapefruit for Canning?
Preparing grapefruits for canning can be tricky, especially peeling and removing the pith.
- First, wash the fruits in lukewarm water to remove dirt, bugs, and pesticides.
- Hand-peeling grapefruits becomes easier if you blanch them. Dip the whole fruits in boiling water for a minute, and right after, dunk them in an ice bath to end the cooking process and make them comfortable to handle.
- Make four shallow cuts from the tip to the bottom of each fruit to make peeling the skin easier. Blanching also loosens the white membrane and makes it easier to remove alongside the skin. Any leftover whites can be removed by hand.
- Use your fingers to pull the segments apart. Alternatively, cut the fruit in halves along the membrane with a sharp knife.
- Use kitchen scissors to pinch off the bitter, white part in the center.
- De-seeding grapefruits is optional. If preferred, use a pointed knife to ease the seeds out while minimizing damage to the flesh.
Hot Pack vs. Raw Pack for Canning Grapefruit
The raw pack method is better when canning grapefruit using a hot water bath canner.
You can use either the hot or raw pack method if you are canning grapefruits with a pressure canner. The hot pack method prevents floating after the segments shrink and become buoyant. The segments shrink when cooking with the syrup.
What Are the Benefits of Canning Grapefruit?
As with other citrus fruits, canning grapefruits offers several benefits:
- Antioxidant lycopene has anti-cancer properties
- Beta-carotene found in grapefruit converts into vitamin A and helps reduce macular degeneration.
- Canned grapefruits last longer and keep better than their fresh and frozen counterparts.
- Canned grapefruits require less storage space.
- Citrus peels can be saved and dehydrated to make citrus zest or powder for baked goods, spicing oatmeal cereal, or garnishing ice cream.
- Grapefruits are rich in potassium, fiber, flavonoids, and antioxidants.
- Grapefruits may help control blood sugar content and improve insulin resistance.
- Grapefruits may improve cholesterol levels in people who have atherosclerosis.
How to Store Canned Grapefruit
Canned grapefruit should be kept in a cool, dry, dark place away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Keep the temperature in the storage area set between 50-70°F. Store canned jars of grapefruit off of the ground to prevent corrosion of metal lids.
What is the Shelf Life of Canned Grapefruit?
Canning grapefruit makes it shelf stable for up to 12 months at room temperature. For optimum nutritional value and flavor, use the fruit within six months.