But, when the package arrived, I realized how much space it was going to take up in my freezer. I turned to an alternative food preservation method that would last in my pantry with no refrigeration: pressure canning.
- Sterilize quart or pint canning jars, rings and lids (I sterilize in the dishwasher, but you could use boiling water instead.)
- Cut chicken breasts into 1-2 inch cubes.
- Fill jars with chicken cubes, pushing them down to remove air pockets and stuff the jars full! (Contents will shrink in the canner, so don't be shy about stuffing aggressively.)
- Add a dash of salt, garlic, or chicken bouillon, to taste. I personally don't add anything at all.
- Close the jars and place them in the canner. Fill the canner with water, covering the top of the jars by 1 inch.
- Follow your pressure canner's directions to process the jars at the correct pressure setting. At sea level, process at 11 pounds of pressure for dial gauge canners, or 15 pounds of pressure for weighted canners. Process for 75 minutes (pints) or 90 minutes (quarts.)
- Allow the canner to cool and release pressure naturally. Remove the jars and tap the lids to test the seals. Jars will last on the shelf for up to 1 year.
For ease and safety, I purchased the Power Pressure Cooker XL. I love the convenience of placing my jars in the canner, pressing the canning button, setting the time and walking away! No noise, no heating up the kitchen, and no complications!
The trade-off is that I can only process pint-size jars, but it's worth it to me for the ease that it affords on busy canning days.
BTW- The canner came with a lovely entree cookbook and a separate book with canning recipes. Get yours for around $99 here.