This post contains affiliate links. If you buy through these links, I may earn a small commission.
Looking for Canning Tips that will streamline your process and make your life easier? Keep reading to find out some of the best ways to improve your canning process!
Canning is a lot of work and can be quite exhausting and hot, especially if you are doing multiple batches. Sometimes, almost the whole day is spent in the kitchen, putting up mason jars of fresh vegetables, fruits and jams.
The good news is that there are a few things you can do to make canning easier and more enjoyable so you can fill your pantry with healthy home-canned food. These simple canning tips to make canning easier will help with everything from prep time to managing the summer heat so you can preserve more food this summer.
The 7 Best Canning Tips
1. Clean Your Kitchen Before Canning
It is so important to have a clean space to work in. Not only should you have maximum use of all your counter tops, your sinks should be free of any dishes or utensils.
Wipe down all your counter tops well before you start canning. You will be reducing the number of bacteria present in the kitchen that could contaminate the canning project.
The most useful part of cleaning your kitchen before you begin canning, is that you can freely move around and grab anything you need. You don’t want to be dealing with a sink full of dishes or odds and ends on the counter.
2. Gather Everything You Need Before You Start
Taking the time to gather everything from your canning tools to the ingredients of your recipes before you start canning will definitely make the entire process easier and flowing properly.
I find it is always helpful to have extra large slotted spoons right on the counter in case I quickly need another clean one. Same thing with clean tea towels.
It’s much easier to be able to just grab it off the counter without having to go into the drawer. Especially because you may find you have sticky fingers from dealing with filling jars!
It is much easier to get the canning done without having to deal with looking for things over and over. Canning can be much more enjoyable when you can work smoothly.
3. Keep an Extra Pot of Water Boiling on the Stove
Whether you are water bath canning or pressure canning you can benefit from a large stockpot of boiling water on the stovetop while you work. A large pot of boiling water can easily sterilize tools or soften the seals on lids. Keep in mind to never put a cold glass jar into a pot of boiling water.
If you are water bath canning, a pot of boiling water on the stove can help to keep your canner running at the proper water level for as long as you need to without risk.
Simply use that boiling pot of water to keep the water level up in your canner without cooling the water and stopping the boiling process.
I like to have a large soup ladle on hand in case I need to add water to the canner. When I use my really large canner, I use a clean empty saucepan to dip into the extra pot of water.
4. Have the Right Canning Tools
You may be looking at ways to save money when you first start canning. But it is always a good idea to invest in the right canning tools to get started. This should include a canning pot with rack.
The canning rack goes on the bottom of the canner, then the full jars placed on it. Canning jars should never be placed right onto the bottom of your canner.
If you do not have a canning rack, many people have success with using a clean kitchen towel to keep jars off the direct heat at the bottom of the canner.
Look for a canning tool kit like this one. It has the everyday tools like a jar lifter, bubble popper, lid lifter, and funnel you need to ensure that you can easily fill and move jars and lids around without burning yourself on the hot jars.
Norpro makes a good quality kit, and you can get the Norpro Canning Essentials Kit here on Amazon.
A ladle and a strong pair of tongs can help, and are a necessity in my canning kitchen.
You can find a more complete list of the canning tools we use all the time
here at Canning Supplies
5. Always Choose the Freshest Ingredients
While you can make jam and other home-canned foods using less-than-perfect product, you need to take the time to clean and trim away any bruises and damaged parts that would lower the quality of the overall product when it is done.
Sometimes you can find great deals on slightly bruised fruits and if you can take the time to properly trim them, you can save a lot of money.
Whether you are canning fresh produce directly from your garden or you’ve found a great deal at the grocery store, make sure your ingredients are fresh, clean and any bruised areas are removed.
6. Enlist Some Help with Canning Projects
While small-batch canning projects are easy to do on your own, if you are planning on making a large batch of anything to preserve for your family, it can be a great idea to enlist the help of your family.
Even kids can help wash and trim produce or stir a simmering pot of jam while you work your way through the process.
Canning goes much faster when it is a team effort. No one in the family able to help? Try splitting the work with a friend to help fill both of your pantries while you work together.
It makes for a great afternoon of canning and visiting that can’t be beat!
7. Take Your Canning Outside
The peak of the canning season takes place in the hot summer months. This means it can be incredibly difficult to can without heating your home up and making everyone inside miserable.
The good news is that you can easily can outside over a gas burner allowing you to keep your home cooler and even giving you more space to work on a hot summer day.
If you do not have central air or do not want to raise your power bill this is one of the best things you can do to make home canning easier.
We just hook the burner up to the 5 gallon propane bottle we use for our barbecue.
Canning outdoors works very well for us, keeping all that extra heat out of the house during the warm summer months. It also ensures that no mess from the process makes it inside.
Even More Canning Tips
Looking for specifics on how to can certain foods? Try one of these handy posts that includes more canning tips and info on materials and supplies!
- Best Canning Supplies for Preserving Food
- Canning Salmon at Home
- How to Can Fresh Cherries
- How to Preserve Garlic in Oil
- Canning Homemade Sauerkraut
- 43 Must-Try Home Canning Recipes
Want to find out which are The 5 Easiest Vegetables to Grow?
Get it here – available only to subscribers!