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PracticalBushcraft1 asked me to do a canning equipment requirements and costs video. Here it is! 🙂
I’m no canning expert so if I’ve left anything out please add it, or if you have any questions feel free to ask.
Equipment varies slightly depending on whether you’re preserving low acid or high acid foods.
Pressure canners are required for low acid foods. Standard size for a pressure canner is something that can hold at least seven quart jars, anything smaller is considered a pressure cooker.
A weighted gauge doesn’t require babysitting as much, if the weight is jiggling the proper pressure is being maintained. Refer to the owner’s manual for your specific canner for proper jiggle.
For high altitude areas a dial gauge may be the best option, as pressures higher than what a weighted gauge will offer may be required. Dial gauges allow for precise pressures as well, so they may prevent over-processing food.
Price range is 25 to whatever you want to spend. 🙂 This will be your biggest expense so shop wisely.
Hot water bath or boiling water bath canners are used for high acid foods. Any food that is high acid can be canned in a hot water bath canner.
HWB canners are simply stainless steel or enamelware pots capable of holding whatever size jars you are canning. The requirement is that 1 or 2″ of water must be able to cover the jars when loaded, and that the jars be held off the bottom of the pot by some means..
Price of 0 to 55 new in box.
Jars can be re-used as long as there are no chips or cracks, especially on the rim of the jar where sealing takes place. Rings can be re-used as long as they are not rusty or bent. According to USDA safety guidelines, lids should never be re-used as the sealing compound becomes defective upon reaching boiling temps.
8 or 10 bucks per dozen jars with lids and 1.50 to 3 bucks for lids.
A jar lifter, magnetic lid wand, and air bubble remover/ headspace checker is needed to. these can be purchased as canning kit for 10 or 15 bucks. A ladle to remove food and a big wooden spoon are nice to have as well.
The item used to remove air bubbles can be anything but metal as metal can scratch the glass jar and ruin it causing it to burst or fail to seal. Some folks use a bamboo chopstick or the handle of a wooden spoon to remove air bubbles, a plastic spatula can be used as well. the jar lifter and wand are a requirement.
There is quite a bit of measuring equipment that is required for canning foods; 4 cup measuring cup, 8 cup, 1/4 cup, and also spoons ranging from 1/8 tsp up to 1 TBSP. A scale is required to weigh the food, as many recipes are based on weight not volume.
A nice thing to have is a measuring stick or ruler which will allow cutting of vegetables like pickles and beans to the right length for the size jar being used, not a requirement, but it will speed the process of canning along and make filling jars easier.
An assortment of bowls, and smaller pots and pans to cook or otherwise prepare the food prior to canning. A strainer or two, food mill, food slicer, food processor / chopper, jelly bag, spice bag, are all nice things to have, but you can find ways around those items by using cheesecloth and a knife. I’m not including costs on these items.
Be prepared to buy lots of sugar, salt, vinegar, herbs and spices. The price on these items adds up quick, so buy bulk if you plan on doing lots of preserving. soft water and canning, pickling, or Kosher salt are recommended. Table salt and hard water shoudn’t be used, for appearance reasons.
If you are frugal and know how to pinch pennies and stretch dollars this all can be had for under 100 dollars. If not, the price can skyrocket upwards of 300 dollars or more if you are starting from scratch. Check out garage sales, thrift shops, and even antique stores for the best deals.
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