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Afraid of Pressure Canning? Don’t Be!

When I talk about pressure canning, some people look at me as if I’m crazy for even thinking about using this method to preserve food. This reaction is just proof that pressure canning, or more specifically pressure canners, have a bad reputation. Yes, in order for a pressure canner to work it requires building up a lot of pressure inside the canner. However, as long as you keep your canner in good condition and follow the directions, it is a perfectly safe canning method. It allows you to broaden the scope of what you can can!

Can a Wider Variety of Food

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Pressure canners are a great way to expand your preserving capabilities. Pressure canners allow you to preserve vegetables, meats, soups, and other lower acidity foods. Pressure canning works for these foods because, due to the pressure, the temperature in the canner increases to 240 degrees, thirty more degrees than a water bath canner. This increase in temperature is high enough to kill the bacteria present in meats and low acidity vegetables.

Can More Food Jars per Batch


I think of pressure canning as a bit more of a commitment than water bath canning. You have to have a different pot and it takes more time for the water to rise to the right pressure and usually has to remain at this point longer. However, there are definitely some positives: You can preserve more food at one time, and you have a wider variety of options that you are able to preserve. “How do you preserve more?”  Well, I’m glad you asked.  With a pressure canner, you can stack jars—with a rack in between. If you have seven jars on the bottom of the canner, you can stack seven more on top of them! It may take a bit more time than in the water bath, but you can get twice as much done while they are in the pressure canner. **


Pressure canning is a great way to broaden the variety of foods that you can preserve. Don’t be scared of it—have fun!  And if you’re still not convinced, you can see how easy pressure canning is for yourself by watching our sweet potato demonstration video:

Have you tried pressure canning? If so, what is your favorite item to pressure can? If not, what else would you like to know about this canning method?

**Stacking does not work for quart jars.