- These run in price from $80 to $160. This is an item you cannot be without in order to have good success with Home Canning. Two very good brands I have used are Mirro and Presto. I use a pressure canner that has a weighted pressure gauge on it. Some of the newer models have a pressure gauge that is a dial with no weight used. The choice is completely up to you. Instructions for using the canner will be included with each individual canner so I will not go into that area here.
At least 3 large pans - These must be heavy enough to withstand high temperatures. One pan is for heating lids and rings. One pan is for heating glass jars. The other pans are for heating your foods.
A Jar Lifter - This is absolutely necessary. Find one in a hardware store or store like Walmart. You will save yourself some nasty burns and messes if you will get on of these.
A Collar Funnel - This little contraption is a wide mouth funnel that keeps food from running all over the place when you try to put it in a jar. It helps direct the food into the jar and helps keep the jar neck clean. They are very inexpensive, get one.
Large Spoons - Chances are you already have a few of these. They need to be big enough to scoop up large quantities of food to put in hot jars.
Clean Dish Cloths - Canning is messy.
A Stove - Big enough that you can run three burners with large pans at the same time.
Glass Jars - These come in quart, half gallon, pint, half pint, wide mouth and regular mouth sizes. Buy new jars when you can afford them. Particular recipes and experience will tell you which type of jar to buy. If you buy jars at yardsales, don't pay too much. They have probably already been used a time or two, and this cuts down on their life. If you buy old mayonnaise jars to use in canning, remember that they will probably break in the pressure canner and are best saved for a water bath recipe. I do this sometimes and use a sealing lid inside the regular mayo lid. This however is not recommended by Home Economists.
Check the necks of the jars and look for cracks, chips and severe discolorations, discard those jars or use for other things.
Lids and Rings
- These can be purchased most anywhere. Just remember to get regular lids and rings for regular jars and wide mouth lids and rings for wide mouth jars! You MUST use a new lid for every new jar of food you preserve. However, you may use the rings over and over again until they are out of shape, too bad to re-use or rusted.
- Many recipes call for salt. You should not use regular iodized salt for canning. Use salt made for canning. Purchase it at stores that cater to canners, like grocery stores and variety stores.