Green beans are a prolific garden vegetable that often produces an excess in harvest that you can process in jars. Green beans have a low acid level and require the addition of vinegar to prevent the growth of bacteria during the canning process. Preserving the green bean as pickles is a safe method of canning the vegetable, and creates a tasty treat that you can eat cold or warm. Experiment with adding herbs and spices to create new flavors for the beans after mastering the basic recipe.
Inspect the fresh, firm green beans and discard any that are soft, spotted or limp. Wash the beans in cool water and let them drip-dry in a colander.
Sanitize eight pint-sized canning jars by placing them on the “sanitize” cycle in your dishwasher or boiling for 10 minutes.
Fill the canner two-thirds with water and place on the stove to begin boiling while preparing the green beans.
Trim the ends off the green beans and discard. Cut the beans into 2-inch long pieces or leave whole, if desired.
Place one head of dill in the bottom of the jars and pack the beans to leave a 1/2-inch space from the top of the beans to the jar rim.
Add water, vinegar and pickling salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir to dissolve the salt and pour into the jars with a ladle. Leave the 1/2-inch space at the top of the jar.
Boil the jar lids in water to soften the rubber and place one lid on each jar. Secure the lid with a jar ring and place all jars into the canner. Use a canning rack to secure the jars in the canner, if available.
Process the jars with boiling water for five minutes for altitudes under 1,000 feet. Increase the time to 10 minutes for altitudes over 1,000 feet.
Remove the jars from the canner and set them on a clean towel to cool. Verify each jar sealed by pressing on the lid to make sure they are sucked in and do not pop. Refrigerate jars that did not seal properly.