Food Preservation-2021

  • Date: March 24, 2021 - Dec. 16, 2021
This self-paced course provides research based information needed to safely and successfully preserve food at home. Participants of all levels of food preservation experience are welcome, including individuals with little or no previous food preservation experience. Anyone with an interest in food preservation and food safety may enroll. This course covers pressure canning, boiling water bath canning, steam canning, dehydration, and freezing. Highlights of the course include preserving salsas, pie fillings, pickling, sweet spreads, and harvesting and storage of produce.

Meet your instructor

Susan Mills-Gray is the University of Missouri Extension State Nutrition Specialist, as well as the state leader of for our food preservation programming. She has over 38 years of experience with the university and can answer any questions you may have about your food preservation journey. She is available for any questions or concerns about this course at [email protected], or you can post on the Course Questions discussion board.


What is this course about, anyway?

Quality for Keeps: Home Food Preservation evolved from a growing interest in home food preservation, access to local food and home gardening. Here is a full list of authors and contributors. This self-paced online course is designed to serve as a resource to anyone interested in home food preservation techniques. This course is comprised of research-based information to help consumers safely and effectively preserve food at home. If the research-based recommendations are followed correctly, users will have a safe product. Each module includes processes and techniques, best practices, tips, as well as handouts. Once the first three modules are completed (Welcome, Before You Start to Can, Learn the Basics, and Steps to Successful Home Canning) the rest of the modules will be unlocked and you may pick and choose which topics you wish to learn more about. 

The course is broken into the following 10 modules:

  1. Welcome
  2. Before You Start to Can, Learn the Basics
  3. Steps to Successful Home Canning
  4. Salsa and Fruit
  5. Sweet Spreads
  6. Pickling
  7. Dehydration
  8. Freezing
  9. Harvesting and Storing
  10. Wrapping up

What will I learn from this course?

Participants who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  • Understand the importance of safety as it relates to food preservation
  • List the various research-based safe methods of food preservation
  • Identify the three research-based safe methods of home canning foods based on the food's acidity level
  • Engage in an optional 'hands-on' food preservation workshop

How much time will this course take me, really?

We understand you're busy. Therefore, this course was designed as a self-paced course. If we were to quantify the entire course in hours, expect to spend between 4 to 5 hours. Each module should take about 30-45 minutes to read, review and complete. It is recommended that participants complete the modules in sequential order. Please feel free to refer to any modules that interest you.

Completion Criteria

Technically, there isn’t one. But if you complete all eight modules and the discussions within them, you will have successfully met the course outcomes. 

Following the completion of the last module you can click on a link to subscribe to a free bi-monthly food preservation newsletter for updates, tips and approved recipes. 

Participants may also choose to register for a hands-on food preservation workshop taught by a University of Missouri Extension faculty member. These workshops are available locally throughout the state following the end of this course timeframe.  In the workshop you will pressure can a low-acid vegetable, boiling water bath can a salsa or quick pack pickle, and steam can a cooked sweet spread. The workshop is a time for you to practice what you've learned in the online course with the support and guidance of a professional with experience in home food preservation.  You will take all three products home for you to enjoy!