From the Garden...Home Canned Three Bean Salad

I love Three Bean Salad, but the purchased stuff is pretty expensive.  When I saw this recipe in the “Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving” I had to try it.  I like the wax beans in the mixture – they are pretty, but hard to buy, even at Farmer’s Markets, so I asked my brother-in-law, Don, if he would plant some for me in his garden if I bought the seed and picked them.  Well, he did me one better, he brought a big bag of picked green and wax beans and left them on my patio table! 
We quickly snapped and cleaned them, and I made one batch of this salad and canned the rest plain in the pressure canner.  Next year, if I can get the beans, I’ll make at least 2 batches – I really, really like this recipe.  I think it’s better than any I’ve purchased, and really pretty too.
Pickled Three Bean Salad
  1 ½     Pounds  Fresh Green Beans -- 4 1/2 cups
  1 ½     Pounds  Fresh Wax Beans -- 4 1/2 cups
  1         Pound  Canned Kidney Beans -- or Shelled Lima Beans, rinsed and drained
  2         Cups  Celery -- sliced
  1         Large  Onion -- peeled and sliced
  1         Cup  Sweet Pepper -- diced
  2 ½     Cups  Sugar
  3         Cups  White Vinegar
  1         Tablespoon  Mustard Seed
  1         Teaspoon  Celery Seed
  4         Teaspoons  Pickling Salt
  1 ¼     Cups  Water
Rinse beans, trim ends and cut into 1 1/2" pieces.  Mix in large pot with celery, onion and pepper.  Cover with boiling water and simmer 10-12 minutes (the recipe calls for 8 minutes, but that wasn’t enough).  Drain.
Bring sugar, vinegar, spices, and water to a boil.  Simmer, covered, 15 minutes.    (The amounts are just right, only a little brine left over.  Don't boil the brine away!)   Add drained vegetables and kidney beans.  Return to a boil.
Pack hot vegetables into hot jars, leaving 1/2" headspace.  Ladle hot spiced vinegar over vegetables, leaving 1/2" headspace.
Remove air bubbles.  Wipe rim of jar clean; place hot, previously simmered lid on jar and screw down ring firmly tight.
Process 15 minutes in a boiling water bath canner.
Yield:  "7 Pint Jars"
Do not change the ratio of vinegar, water and vegetables.  This is a tested recipe for water bath canning.

These cost me almost nothing to make...I had the green and wax beans from Don's garden and the sweet pepper from our garden.  The remaining ingredients cost $2.93, or 42¢ per jar.


  1. I love 3 bean salad. This recipe looks like a keeper. Very pretty visually and looks yummy. I'm near you in Omaha 😄

    1. Hi, Annie...nice hearing from an "almost Iowan".
      This is a very tasty recipe and handy to have already made on the shelf.


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