ALSO THIS BLOG IS ABOUT OUR EXPERIENCES. IT IS NOT FDA OR USDA APPROVED! THERE IS NO SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION ABOUT RETORT CANNING AND HOME CANNERS. THE FDA INFORMATION AVAILABLE IS FOR COMMERCIAL USE AND AUTOCLAVES NOT HOME CANNING.
This summer has been a different canning experience. We have been using retort pouches to can our summer fish, meats and other food products. Retort pouches are flexible cans and contain no BPA. The loaded retort bag first must be vacuum packed with an industrial vacuum sealer equipped with a heat bar upgrade to seal the bags. Most industrial vacuum sealers do not have the proper heat bar to give the correct seal to the retort bag. Ask here(1-800-227-3769)
Then the product is placed in a pressure cooker. We usually run meats at 10 lbs of pressure for 75 to 90 minutes depending on the amount of product in each bag. Ready cooked meals, such as soups, stews, pastas, are canned at 10 lbs pressure for 60-90 minutes depending on the ingredients, such as vegetables only or meats included. Meat products run longer and higher pressure than just fruits or vegetables only. We have followed our canning instructions found in the Ball Canning books or our pressure canning instructions manual, they are very specific for each type food and quantity for time and pressure.
The finished product is a flexible can, shelf stable, easy to open and non breakable. They are lite weight, wonderful for back packing and hiking. We put them in our RV and some in the boat, in the cabin and in the trunk of the car for emergency times. These wonderful homemade meals can stay in these locations with out worry of spoilage. Protect them from rodents in a bucket or container if needed. Although rodents can not smell the product they can chew threw the flexible can.
We have found that we can fit 24 of the 4oz packs in our small #7 caner. They stand on their sides with plenty of air space between bags. They fit into a small box after canning and take up 1/4 the space the glass jars take up in our storage room. We may still use some glass jars just because we have them, but the retort pouches are very easy and fast becoming the item to grab for a quick lunch or travel companion.
We found video information about how to do this at
Here are some home pictures of our canning experience.
As they say, "Re-Heat before you Eat" on any home canned product in glass, cans or retort for best safety practices.
All home canning is AT YOUR OWN RISK!