Canning Taco Soup & Enjoying Life


Why should we need extra time in which to enjoy ourselves?
If we expect to enjoy our life, we will have to learn to be joyful in all of it,
not just at stated intervals when we can get time or when we have nothing else to do.

Laura Ingalls Wilder
After visiting on the front porch for a while and enjoy a lunch after Sunday church, my friend sipped her cool water and asked me what my plans were for the rest of the summer. At the time, it was still August. I laughed quietly and said, “The garden and canning….”
I suppose she expected me to say “go to the beach”, “visit the zoo” … etc. but no, tending to the garden and canning and preserving takes up a lot of our summer time. And do we mind? No, I don’t think so. The girls know this is part of our life and I don’t think they know to expect anything else. We still have fun days, we still find ways to enjoy summer, but this life, canning, preparing vegetables, weeding the garden, watering the garden, sitting together in our outdoor kitchen, working side by side, this is enjoyable.



We have an *abundance* of tomatoes from our garden. Praise God! One never know what you will harvest when you first hopefully tend to your barren vegetable garden in the springtime. You can only hope and pray and do your due diligence and see what comes of it.


Last year, our harvest did not include many squash – why? I do not know. They just did not grow. This year, however, we have a beautiful amount of squash promised for our winter eating. Again, God be praised! I am determined to save the seeds of this beautiful squash this year, as it was a gift from a fellow gardener.  The seeds cannot be purchased at the store.


But back to the tomatoes … the girls and I picked four more bushels last night. And there’s more , although we are nearing the end.

I am giving a bushel to my mom for canning and have offered some to friends. One thing I have learned, as well, that God requires us to give and bless others with our gifts from Him! These tomatoes are a gift to be shared!


We have made plenty of spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, ketchup, tomato soup and salsa. I will make another batch of sauce with these two bushels of tomatoes that are waiting on my outdoor kitchen table. I have also made and canned taco soup with our tomatoes. I find having our homemade canned soup on hand for after church meals, busy homeschool days or last minute ideas for dinner is an amazing help in the kitchen.

Yes, you will need a pressure canner – but they are worth every penny. I have this pressure canner and absolutely love it. I ordered it from WalMart and it was delivered right to my doorstep. Wonderful! It fits so many more jars than my old pressure canner.

Process in a pressure canner at 10 pounds of pressure; 90 minutes for one litre jars. Be sure to adjust pressure if living in a higher altitude.


It is best to serve this Taco Soup with tortilla chips or homemade tortillas … a lovely dollup of sour cream and a covering of shredded cheese. So delicious!


Important Post Script:  The topic of canning tomatoes safely has come up from one of my friends. Here is a useful trip from – they have a great website full of lovely recipes and instructions for canning. I use lemon juice instead of citric acid.

“Tomatoes and Acidification: To ensure safe acidity in whole, crushed, or juiced tomatoes, add two tablespoons of bottled lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid per quart of tomatoes. For pints, use one tablespoon bottled lemon juice or 1/4 teaspoon citric acid. Acid can be added directly to the jars before filling with product. Add sugar to offset acid taste, if desired. Four tablespoons of a 5 percent acidity vinegar per quart may be used instead of lemon juice or citric acid. However, vinegar may cause undesirable flavor changes.”


September 13, 2018 - 8:51 am

Gigi Thank you, Sue. That is encouraging. ((hugs))

September 11, 2018 - 1:07 pm

sue Growing up, we also didn’t do family vacations. Funds were limited for such things and also, years ago, it just wasn’t what folks did for enjoyment like they do today. We raised our children in the same manner. We took very few “trips” away from home and our children seemed to enjoy them but when you ask them today what they remember most and base their own principals for raising their families upon, they will tell you it was the dinners at home around the table, games played at the table swatting at fireflies and just being together doing the simple things. Youre doing great Gigi, making memories with you family that they will draw on should Jesus tarry

September 7, 2018 - 7:04 pm

Gigi Shirley, that is encouraging! Even this week, we attempted a family getaway that did not work out. We will look at day trips instead. Thank you for your encouragement!

September 7, 2018 - 6:13 pm

Gigi We had some tonight (one jar did not seal) – super yummy! Needed a bit more salt but great and lovely! All the children loved it. 🙂

September 7, 2018 - 4:46 pm

Monica What beautiful tomatoes, friend! Towards the end of the garden season my tomatoes are always spotted and not really edible. Yours are still so beautiful! So do you dream about tomatoes in your sleep? 🙂

We love taco soup! Your recipe looks divine. How wonderful it will be this winter to pop open a couple of cans and heat for a few minutes and SERVE! I love it!

September 7, 2018 - 4:06 pm

Shirley We seldom left home for vacation while homeschooling.Home is best. Very rarely involved ourselves with outside activities, it really helped us stay on track and eliminated stress. You are doing a wonderful job. The results will be worth it all. We can say that following the Lord’s will has led to peace and kept us from falling into a lot of unhappiness.
God bless you and your family

September 7, 2018 - 3:59 pm

Gigi Hi Bobbie, we don’t have a big need to get to the store too often – usually once a week we do a quick run in for things forgotten. I cannot order groceries online or I would! We do the bulk foods but that is dry goods only. So things like fresh fruits (seasonal) are bought weekly. Grocery shopping does not happen that often, compared to what you think it would for a large family. We buy our butter/cheese in bulk so it lasts at least a month long. Our grocery store needs are low, thankfully, and it rarely fills one of those small express carts. This is the payoff of the garden and canning, not to mention bulk goods and baking/cooking from scratch.

September 7, 2018 - 7:33 am

Our Home of Many Blessings And you guys just eat this as soup?That sounds amazingly delicious!!I’m gonna try this!…and yea,homemade taco seasoning!!I’m curious…do you guys do like grocery pickup and online ordering and such things,or do you guys head to the store every week or two and get groceries?