Getting Started

What is Canning?

Simply put, canning is one step beyond cooking. It’s a method that applies heat to food in a closed-glass, home canning jar to stop the natural spoilage by removing air from the jar to create a seal. There are two home canning methods: water bath canning and pressure canning.

Getting Started: Canning Methods

Understanding the components and difference of water bath and pressure canning will help you choose which method will work best for you and the foods you choose to preserve.

Technique 1: Water Bath Canning

Water bath canning is a shorter, lower-temperature canning process that is ideal for high-acid foods. The high acidity of the foods kills bacteria, allowing for the water bath method. Types of fruits and vegetables ideal for water bath preserving, include:

  • Fruits and fruit juices
  • Jams and jellies
  • Salsas
  • Tomatoes with added acid
  • Pickles and relishes
  • Chutneys
  • Vinegars
  • Condiments

For step-by-step instructions, check our Water Bath Canning Guide.

Technique 2: Pressure Canning

When preserving low-acid foods like many vegetables, meats, poultry and seafood, you’ll use pressure canning to keep your foods fresh and safe to eat. Pressure canning heats contents to 240° F, eliminating the risk of foodborne bacteria. Even when you’re mixing high-acid foods with low-acid foods, you must use the pressure canning method to safely preserve contents.

For step-by-step instructions, check our Pressure Canning Guide.

Let’s Make Something Yummy - Tutorials

Check out these helpful tutorials to find the answers to some of canning’s most frequently asked questions.

Canning with A Glass-Top Stove


Canning Guides

Stepping into canning can seem overwhelming, but with the right help, you’ll find success in no time. Our guides walk you through each step of the canning process, assist you in choosing the right methods and help you solve problems along the way.

3 Simple Steps

No matter what you want to make, start with these three simple steps to keep your creations fresh and flavorful.

Prep your supplies 1

Wash your jars and lids, and heat your water.

Pick a recipe 2

Select your recipe, and prepare it. Visit our recipes page.

Start preserving 3

Submerge jars in boiling water.

Choosing the Right Jars

Not sure which jars are right for which foods? Check out our helpful selection chart to help you choose!

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Canning Lids 101

Everything you need to know about canning lids to get started preserving today.

Learn more


Canning Beginner's Kit

Check out our Ball® Canning Beginner's Kit to find all the products you need to get started in one convenient set.

See Beginner's Kit


Need Jars?

Whether you’re canning mounds of homemade applesauce or small batches of jam, we’ve got the jar for you.

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