5 Ways to Preserve the Harvest

carrying harvest in crate

Here in Ohio, we’re knee-deep in yellow squash, cucumbers, green beans and all the deliciousness of a summer garden. My family’s sugar peas were some of the best we’ve ever grown, so good it’s tempting to eat them right off the vine (though, we recommend a good washing first). But we did get a little carried away with some of our planting. We have more cucumber plants then family members. And somehow, we always overestimate how many tomatoes we will eat. (Spaghetti sauce, anyone?)

The wonderful part is that there are many ways to preserve the harvest for later enjoyment, long after the warm summer season has disappeared.

Keep reading below to discover five ways to preserve your harvest now. (We even included some helpful resources to get you started.)

#1 – Canning

Besides being economical, canning your own fruits, vegetables and meats is also just plain fun. It’s a great way to stock up on supplies for the winter or have a food cache ready for emergencies.

Check out our canning videos to get you started. (Remember, always follow USDA recommendations when canning.)

Click here to shop all canning products.

#2 – Freezing

Freezing is one of the easiest ways to preserve fruits, vegetables and meats. It’s not hard to do, and you’ll appreciate it later when you can just pull out fresh flavors right from your freezer. (The tastes are worth it!)

Check out this DIY freezing post to get you started.

freezer containers

Looking for dependable freezing supplies? Our heavy-duty BPA-free freezer storage containers are made of durable plastic to lock in flavor and freshness and prevent damaging freezer burn at very low temperatures. Find them at Lehmans.com or in our retail store in Kidron, Ohio.

Click here to shop all freezing products.

#3 – Fermenting and Pickling

Preserve delicious, gut-healthy foods with this age-old method. From sauerkraut and kimchi to classic pickles, there are many yummy creations you can make with fermenting and pickling.

Check out this DIY fermenting post to get you started.

fermenting crock

Make sauerkraut, pickled vegetables, kimchi, kombucha, vinegar and wine with the Hausgemacht Fermenting Crock. Find it at Lehmans.com or in our retail store in Kidron, Ohio.

Click here to shop all fermenting and pickling products.

#4 – Drying (Dehydrating)

Drying food is easy to do, natural and so delicious, too. You just need the right tools to begin.

Check out this DIY dehydrating post to get started.

oven sun drying rack

Our Oven/Sun Drying Rack is a great environmentally friendly option. We carry electric dryers, too. Find them at Lehmans.com or in our retail store in Kidron, Ohio.

Click here to shop all drying products.

#5 – Storing in a Root Cellar

Looking for an easy way to store some of your harvest for the winter? Storing vegetables and fruits in a root cellar has been a method used for generations. Root crops like potatoes, beets, carrots and turnips work well with root cellar storage. There is some preparation and planning involved, so we recommend doing your research first to make sure you’re choosing the right food and the ideal conditions for your root cellar.

Check out this DIY root cellar post to get started.

root cellar book

We also highly recommend reading the Root Cellaring book to help with your planning. Available at Lehmans.com or in our retail store in Kidron, Ohio.

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JennyJenny Smith is the editor of the Country Life Blog and the Digital Content Specialist for Lehman’s. It’s not unusual to find oil lamps, canning jars and freeze-dried food on her desk. She is an avid reader, card maker and dog lover. In fact, she is currently teaching her Golden Retriever to not take her shoes. It’s an ongoing battle.