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Canning supplies are a necessary part of preserving food – here’s what canning equipment you need to get started!
This food preservation/canning essentials equipment guide is designed to save you money. Straight up, pure and simple. After all, if you’ve been reading my blog for any time now, you know how much I love to save money!
Preserving food through canning, pickling, and fermentation saves you a lot of money. But only if you don’t spend more on equipment than you would at the grocery store. And it’s easy to do just that!
There are always new products out there and new ways of doing the same old thing. If you aren’t completely sure about what you are wanting to buy, it is easy to get overwhelmed. Which products do you actually need? And which ones are just going to collect dust in a cupboard.
If you are new to canning, you need this canning guide full of home canning supplies. Even if you’ve been at it a while, you might find it helpful.
(I hope you’ll also check out my post on Preserving Food for all kinds of great tips and recipes for freezing, canning, and pickling food.)
The Ultimate Food Preservation and Canning Guide
Here are a few of the items that I prefer to have in my “canning arsenal” because they make my life easier. And since they are all Amazon canning supplies, it’s super easy to order these canning supplies online!
Basic Canning Supplies and Canning Equipment
Whether you are just getting started with canning – or are a seasoned pro – this Norpro Canning Essentials Set is a pretty great setup. This handy canning kit offers 6 of the most essential canning tools you need when canning or dehydrating food. You get:
- long-handled tongs – which help keep everything sanitary during the canning process
- a vinyl-coated jar lifter – for removing canning jars safely from boiling water
- an extra-wide funnel – which helps you fill your canning jars with less spilling
- a jar wrench with vinyl coating – to help you tighten your jar lids to keep them well-sealed
- a magnetic lid lifter – for lifting lids out of boiling water while keeping them sanitary
- a bubble popper/measurer – serves the dual purpose of making sure no air bubbles are left in the food you are canning and that you aren’t overfilling your jars
When canning fruit, jams, jellies, and home made salsas, you want a good water bath canner! I have used one just like in the photo for over 20 years now. These canners are still widely available. The only disadvantage is that I really can’t cook a big batch of soup in it. It’s made for canning, period.
So, if I was to buy a new canner, I really like this McSunley Stainless Steel pot. At 21.5 quarts, this pot is plenty large enough to hold up to 7-quart jars, 9-pint jars, or 12 half-pint jars. Comes with an inner rack to help you safely raise and lower your jars during the canning process.
This heavy-duty pot is meant to be tough enough to resist dents and it even comes with a 10-year warranty in case something goes wrong with it.
And when you aren’t canning, you have a huge pot you can use to cook up an extra-large batch of soup or stew or chili! (Which you can always pressure can jars of leftover soup or chili!)
Pickling or fermenting food is a wonderful way to preserve it. Pickled foods are good for you, too. They taste delicious and put a smile on your face while providing you with great nutrition. They are a wonderful source of probiotics, too.
One of the best tools for pickling or fermenting is a good-sized crock like this one – along with the cover and a weight for the top.
Note: Try to find a crock with a lid! You can always buy the crock lid separately but it’s nice if you can get a crock that comes with the lid.
When not being used for pickling, this attractive crock simply looks good sitting beside our dining hutch. This crock makes pickling so easy, you may never buy store-bought pickles or sauerkraut again!
Here’s my recipe for Home Made Sauerkraut – I make this every year in this crock.
Every canner needs the Ball Blue Book of Preserving. Put out by the same people who make those wonderful Ball canning jars and lids, this helpful book teaches you all about preserving food. There are over 500 recipes in this book – and it is complete, too.
If a type of food can be preserved or canned, you’ll find it here – along with ideas of how to utilize your canned food when you pull it out of storage.
With this book, you’ll have one more tool to make sure your family has all the delicious and nutritious food they need to thrive. And with so many tasty recipes, this canning guide product also makes a great gift!
Unless you’re making something acidic like jam or jelly, the safest form of canning is with the use of a pressure canner like this Presto. If you have vegetables, meat, chicken, or fish to can, this is exactly the tool you need to do the job.
This large pressure canner is 23 quarts – the right size to handle the biggest jobs. The deluxe pressure dial gauge helps you make sure that whatever you are canning gets processed at the right amount of pressure to do the job correctly and safely.
But this flexible canner can also work as a water bath canner, too. This Presto canner wants to be the only canner you need!
Do you dream of going a step beyond just canning the basics like cut vegetables, meat, and fruit? If you need a tool to help you with jellies, creamy soups, broths, mashed berries, apple sauce, and so on, this 3-piece Stainless Steel Strainer is just what you need.
Be sure the strainer you buy comes with a pestle, like this set has!
This strainer lets you take your food preservation to the whole next level, allowing you to fill your storage with tasty and convenient canned treats to make your life a little easier.
For really large jobs processing fresh produce, this Johnny Apple Sauce Food Strainer is a dream. It makes processing applesauce or tomato sauce a snap.
You can use the hand crank for smaller jobs, or replace it with the optional Electric Motor when you have a lot of work to complete.
This sturdy grinder/strainer can handle the toughest jobs, but if anything goes wrong, it also has a full 1-year warranty!
The price of canning jars has climbed quite a bit in recent years. However, one place you can just about always count on getting a great price on canning jars is at Amazon, and they have any size you could be looking for.
They also have replacement canning lids, if that’s all you need. Be sure to grab all the jars you might be needing before the prices go up again!
HINT: The very best time to stock up is in the off season!
A versatile rack is a canning guide game-changer when you slip it into your canner. It elevates your jars, which allows for proper water circulation all around.
It’s necessary to use a canning rack like this one if you have more than one layer of jars in your canner! Jars should not be touching each other.
Heavy enough to handle the biggest jars, it is also a wonderful place to set your hot jars after you remove them from your canner. You’ll definitely want to consider having a few of these racks around once you see how handy they are.
For certain foods, you really need wide-mouth jars. The trouble is, it can be tough to find a replacement for the lids (which you really should only use once) and the bands. But I found these for you and wanted to share them here.
It’s a pretty great price and you get 12 lids in each box! Personally, if you like wide-mouth jars, I would stock up on several boxes of these canning lids and bands so you don’t run out before you find them at a great price again!
Whether you have ever heard of these or not, no Canning Guide would be complete without mentioning Dissolvable Food Labels. Gone are the days of proudly sticking a pretty paper label to your jar of canned beans only to be cursing that very same label months later when you try to remove it from your jar again.
These labels literally dissolve in water. It doesn’t even matter what temperature the water is – they just go away. And they don’t leave behind any of that sticky stuff.
Best of all, you get 500 of these wonderful stickers per roll, so you don’t have to worry about buying them constantly. And just like that, life got a little easier!
Venting is an important part of the fermentation process, and this awesome Fermentation Kit makes it easier. You get 4 complete sets that are made to fit wide-mouth jars, so you can easily have four different foods fermenting on your counter at once.
(If you have the counter space, why not?) Fermented foods (kimchi, anyone?) are delicious and so good for you. And this kit gives you one more reason to try it for yourself!
Canning supplies make preserving food much safer and easier!
I hope that reading about some of these basic canning supplies has been helpful and inspiring. I would love to hear about some of your favorite products for canning and preservation, too, if you care to leave a comment. I’m always on the lookout for a great new idea!
Check out my post on Preserving Food for all kinds of great tips and recipes for freezing, canning, and pickling food.
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