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
- Tomatoes with added acid
- Pickles and relishes
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
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.