Food Canning Equipment

High-Acid Foods Heat Requirements Difficulty Level
(jams, jellies, pickles, relishes, chutneys) 212° F, 100° C Glass Jar - easy
(water bath canner) Metal Can - more difficult (requires can sealer)
Low-Acid Foods Heat Requirements Difficulty Level
(meat, poultry, fish, seafood, vegetables) 240-250° F, 116-121° C Glass Jar - easy
(pressure canner) Metal Can - more difficult (requires can sealer)

Food canning equipment for making high-acid foods such as jams, jellies, pickles, relishes or chutneys is very simple as the heat requirements are only 212° F, 100° C. Any suitable size pot with a rack and cover becomes the water bath canner. Glass jars, jar lifter, thermometer, timer, wide mouth funnel, all those little items can be readily found in the kitchen. But, when metal cans are involved, the canning becomes more difficult as one needs to obtain can sealer and acquire new knowledge about the seaming process. There is not much danger involved in processing jams or pickles.

However, processing low-acid foods such as meat, poultry, fish and vegetables elevates the art of canning to a much higher level, especially when cans are employed. Low-acid foods must be processed at 240-150° F, 116-121° C and that requires the pressure canner. A good understanding of can sealer, basic adjustments and knowledge of canning defects is necessary. The rules must be strictly observed as improperly canned low-acid food can become dangerous.

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