If you didn’t already know, I really got into canning this year. In 2019 I found a pre-loved pressure canner at Goodwill and used it sporadically for the first couple years after I purchased it. But between gardening this year with a container garden on my balcony, and walking to the farmers market most Saturdays, I’m now a dedicated canner.
From making jam, pickles, salsa, and relish in the water bath canner, and pressure canning homemade broth, green beans, and carrots, I’m head over heels for the canning process!
Since gardening and canning has seen a boom since 2020, there have been periods of time where it’s been harder to find canning supplies like jars and lids. Thankfully, this year supplies seem to be back to pre-2020 levels and I’m grateful because no matter what I’m canning there’s one area where I simply won’t compromise, and that’s the brand I use for canning.
If I’m going to put aside my time for a day, or even a weekend, I want to ensure that all my hard work (and money) isn’t going down the drain. One way I ensure my hard work isn’t wasted is by using jars and lids by Ball Corporation. From my experience, the Ball lids always seal every time and the jars hold up well with repeated use in the canner.
For my household, the pint size jars work the best for things like pickles, jalapenos, relish, broth, and most vegetables, but I like to use half pint size for jam.
Since there are so many gardening newbies, you’re probably starting to see your harvest come in right about now and are wondering what you’ll do with all those peppers or tomatoes. How about canning them?
What’s great about pickling peppers, cucumbers, or making salsa is that these recipes don’t require a pressure canner. You can water bath can these items, (just ensure you use an approved canning recipe). Water bath canning means you don’t need much special equipment, just a large stock pot and something you can place in the bottom of the pot to use as a rack (the jars can’t sit directly on the bottom of the pot or else they can crack).
You can find a silicone canning rack online or in the canning aisle (I use this one). I have also heard of people tying canning rings together with bread ties to forge a makeshift rack (necessity is the mother of invention after all!).
I want to know, are you a home canner or are you interested in learning? If so, start with the basics, available on the Ball website, also check out the website Food in Jars, which has a wealth of knowledge.
Disclaimer: I received the 8-pack of Ball pint jars in the photo above to use and include in this blog post. I’ve used Ball canning jars, lids, and canning supplies for years, and I believe they’re the best and most trusted canning products on the market.