Canning Butternut Squash

By Charlotte King

Butternut squash contains tons of vitamins and antioxidants while remaining low in calories, making it the perfect choice to can for longer shelf life. In fact, canned butternut squash provides the same nutrients as its fresh counterpart and can last for months, if not years. Canning butternut squash is straightforward, and once you try it, you will be canning it for years to come!

To start canning butternut squash, you should find fresh squash and prepare it by washing, peeling, and cutting it. Next, give the butternut squash a quick blanch. Finally, process it in a pressure canner while following pressure recommendations for your elevation.

Butternut squash contains tons of vitamins and antioxidants while remaining low in calories, making it the perfect choice to can for longer shelf life. In fact, canned butternut squash provides the same nutrients as its fresh counterpart and can last for months, if not years. Canning butternut squash is straightforward, and once you try it, you will be canning it for years to come!
sliced butternut squash

Preparing to Can Butternut Squash

Supplies You Need

butternut squash on wooden cutting board

Butternut Squash

You will need about 1 kg or 2¼ lbs of butternut squash to get a quart or 2 pints of canned butternut squash. Our recipe uses 16 pounds of butternut squash, giving you 7 quarts or 14 pints.

Canning Jars

You must use jars that are safe for canning and can withstand high temperatures and pressure. For our recipe, you will need 7 quart-sized jars or 14 pints.

Prepare your jars for canning by washing them in hot, soapy water. Once cleaned, leave them in the oven or dishwasher so that they stay warm until you are ready to fill them. You should also prepare the canning lids and rings by soaking them in hot water.

Canning Liquid

You will need some canning liquid to can butternut squash. The canning liquid we will use is hot water. Place a kettle of water on the stove and let it come to a boil. Keep the water hot until you are ready to use it.

How to Pick Fresh Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is available throughout the year. However, you will find the best winter squash supply between early fall to winter. Here are a few tips to help you look for the best butternut squash.

Tip #1: Look for butternut squash that feels heavy for its size.

Tip #2: A butternut squash with a fat neck and a small bulb likely has a small seed cavity, which yields a lot of flesh.

Tip #3: The butternut squash should be firm with hard skin free of any bruises.

Preparing to Blanch the Butternut Squash

  1. Rinse the squash with water.
  2. Peel the butternut squash using a vegetable peeler. It is best to peel before chopping to avoid using a vegetable scrubber. 
  3. Place the butternut squash on a cutting board and chop off both ends by taking off ¼ inch. Next, use the bottom end as its base and cut down through the middle using a heavy chef’s knife. You should have a squash cut entirely in half.
  4. Scoop out the seeds and the stringy flesh from both halves of the squash. 
  5. Once you remove all the seeds, cut the butternut squash into 1-inch cubes.

Your cut butternut squash is now ready to be blanched in hot water for 2-3 minutes. Once blanched, drain the squash into a colander, and you are ready to start canning!

How to Can Butternut Squash

knife and cut butternut squash on cutting board
  1. Fill each jar with the blanched butternut squash, leaving 1 inch of headspace. Pack the squash tightly into the jars.
  2. Next, fill your jars with hot water from your kettle while maintaining the 1-inch headspace. If any air-pockets form, you can use a debubbler to remove them. Top off your jars with a few pieces of butternut squash or water if needed.
  3. Once you fill the jars, wipe the jar rim with a damp paper towel to remove any traces of food. This will also help keep a seal on the jars.
  4. Place the lid on the canning jar using a magnetic lid lifter and close the ring to a “finger-tip” tightness.
  5. Add a few inches of water and a trivet at the bottom of your pressure canner so that the canning jars do not come in direct contact with the canner. Load the jars into the canner once you have filled all your jars.
  6. Close the lid to your canner and turn on the burner. Let the canner vent for 10 minutes before adding the weight according to your elevation. Once you place the weight, process the butternut squash for 55 minutes for pints and 90 minutes for quarts. Do not forget to adjust the pressure to your elevation. The tables below show the time required as recommended by the National Center for Home Food Preservation.
  7. Once the butternut squash jars have finished processing, turn off the burner and let the pressure come down naturally. Open the lid to your canner only when the canner has released the pressure entirely.
  8. Next, open the lid to your canner and carefully lift out the jars onto a wire rack using a pair of jar tongs. Wait for them to cool down to room temperature and hear the signature “pop” of the jars sealing shut.
  9. When the jars have cooled to room temperature, you can remove the rings and wipe off the jars before labeling and dating them with the canning date.
Jar SizeProcess TimeCanner Pressure (PSI) at 0-2000 ftCanner Pressure (PSI) at 2001-4000 ftCanner Pressure (PSI) at 4001-6000 ftCanner Pressure (PSI) at 6001-8000 ft
Pints55 min11 lb12 lb13 lb14 lb
Quarts90 min11 lb12 lb13 lb14 lb
Table 1. Recommended process time for butternut squash in a dial-gauge pressure canner.
Jar SizeProcess TimeCanner Pressure (PSI) at 1000 ftCanner Pressure (PSI) at 1000+ ft
Pints55 mins10 lb15 lb
Quarts90 mins10 lb15 lb
Table 2. Recommended process time for butternut squash in a weighted-gauge pressure canner.

How to Use Canned Butternut Squash

butternut squash soup

You can use canned butternut squash in all the recipes where you would otherwise use fresh butternut squash, such as different kinds of pasta, curries, casseroles, and soups.

Butternut Squash Soup

Here is a simple and delicious butternut squash soup recipe you can try out.

Ingredients

  • 1 quart of canned butternut squash
  • ½ cup of vegetable or chicken stalk
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Steps

  1. In a saucepan, empty the contents of a one-quart jar of the canned butternut squash along with the canning liquid.
  2. Using a hand blender, blend the butternut squash to get a consistency of your liking.
  3. If needed, use a vegetable or chicken stalk to adjust the thickness of the soup.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve hot!

Frequently Asked Questions

raw butternut squash on cloth

How Long Will Canned Squash Last? 

Canned butternut squash will easily last for 12-18 months in your pantry. Once opened, store the jar in the refrigerator and use it within 3-4 days.

Can You Water Bath Butternut Squash? 

You cannot water bath butternut squash because it is a low acid vegetable. The only safe method of canning is by pressure canning. Only acidic foods, such as citrus fruits, can be canned in a water bath canner.

Can Butternut Squash Puree Be Canned? 

Although it was previously recommended to can butternut squash puree, it is not anymore, especially if you are home canning it. A more effective way of preserving butternut squash puree is to freeze it. You can read more about this recommendation here.

Is It Better to Can or Freeze Butternut Squash? 

Butternut squash can be preserved both ways and is delicious when canned or frozen. However, you must only can butternut squash when cubed into small pieces. If you have butternut squash puree you want to preserve, it is best to freeze it for longer shelf life.

Conclusion

raw butternut squash at farmer market

Canning butternut squash is an excellent way to preserve extra produce on your shelf, ready for use throughout the year. Butternut squash is delicious and versatile to use, so whether you are an avid canner or a complete novice, canning it will be a worthwhile experience! If you want to learn how to can all kinds of food, check out our ultimate canning guide.

sliced butternut squash

Canning Butternut Squash

Butternut squash contains tons of vitamins and antioxidants while remaining low in calories, making it the perfect choice to can for longer shelf life. In fact, canned butternut squash provides the same nutrients as its fresh counterpart and can last for months, if not years. Canning butternut squash is straightforward, and once you try it, you will be canning it for years to come!
No ratings yet
Prep Time 20 mins
Total Time 1 hr 50 mins
Course Preparation
Servings 7
Calories 3266 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 16 lbs butternut squash

Instructions
 

  • Fill your canning jars by packing in the butternut squash pieces into the jars, leaving about 1 inch of headspace.
  • Pour the hot water into the jars (our canning liquid), and maintain the 1-inch headspace.
  • Wipe off the rims to your jars with a damp paper towel before placing the lids and twisting on the canning jar rings.
  • Once the canning jars are filled and closed, load them in your pressure canner and process them for 55 minutes for pints and 90 minutes for quarts at the pressure adjusted to your elevation.
    Altitude – Dial Gauge
    0-2,000 ft – 11 pounds
    2,001-4,000 ft – 12 pounds
    4,001-6,000 ft – 13 pounds
    6,001-8,000 ft – 14 pounds
    Altitude – Weighted Gauge
    0-1000 ft – 10 pounds
    >1000 ft – 15 pounds
  • Once your jars have been processed, let the pressure in the canner come down naturally before opening the lid and removing the canned jars.
  • Let the jars cool completely for 24 hours and then remove their rings and wipe them off.
  • Label and date each jar, and your canned butternut squash is ready!

Nutrition

Sodium: 290mgCalcium: 3484mgVitamin C: 1524mgVitamin A: 771470IUSugar: 160gFiber: 145gPotassium: 25546mgCalories: 3266kcalMonounsaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gFat: 7gProtein: 73gCarbohydrates: 848gIron: 51mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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