How to Choose the Right Type of Canning Jars

It’s good that a lot of people are recognizing the benefits of home canning. This is why the interest is at an all time high, and people are scouring the Internet for all the information that they can find. They also are buying a lot of canning jars online or offline. This shows that people are ready to start home canning so they can preserve their foods for later consumption.

There’s One Problem

Unfortunately, a lot of people make the mistake of just buying canning jars in bulk without really taking the time to consider if the jars are really the ones that they need. Yes, people have different needs when it comes to canning jars, and you will waste a lot of money if you buy jars that you won’t be able to use. In addition, having the wrong kinds of canning jars will render your efforts useless and you won’t be able to benefit from your home canning efforts.

Things That You Have to Take into Consideration

Before you buy canning jars, here are the things that you must consider:

The size of your family.

It doesn’t make sense to use 4-ounce jars if you are part of a family of eight. While a 4-ounce jar is perfect for gift-giving, it wouldn’t help a medium to large-sized family. On the other hand, a two-person family would find 4- or 8-ounce jars to be perfect.

Type of Canning Jars

Your purpose for canning.

People do home canning for many reasons. Here are some of them:

  1. They want to lengthen the shelf life of their foods. This is perfect if you want to buy in bulk which can save you a lot of money. Instead of doing weekly grocery trips, you can do your grocery shopping once a month or even once every two months.
  2. They consider themselves to be “preppers”. They want to prepare for a situation in the future wherein food will be scarce. For example, they want to have foods that they can eat during a massive flood.
  3. They treat it as a hobby. Home canning is fun. It’s hard to believe at first, but you’ll soon find out how fun it is once you’ve tried it.
  4. They want to save money. By prolonging the shelf life of their foods, they prevent wastage.
  5. They’re the perfect gifts. Are you looking for something unique to give as gifts? This is the answer.

Obviously, you would need bigger jars for reason number 2. A medium-sized jar would be adequate for reasons number 1 and 4. On the other hand, the smaller jars would be enough for reason number 3.

The foods that you will be canning.

Here are some guidelines to follow:

[amazon_image id=”B00CJBA6QG” target=”_blank” size=”Small” link=”true” container=”” container_class=”” ]Kerr 12-oz. Mason Jars[/amazon_image]A 12-ounce jar is perfect for fruit preserves, jams and jellies. A little goes a long way with these foods so you don’t need huge jars for them. Also, it is the perfect size to scoop them out using a spoon. Additionally, it’s a good size for gift-giving. You wouldn’t want something too big or too small when giving it out as a gift. If you’re still in the process of testing your canning recipes for these foods, you can also use an 8-ounce jar.

[amazon_image id=”B0000BYE26″ target=”_blank” size=”Small” link=”true” container=”” container_class=”” ]Half Gallon Wide Mouth Canning Jars[/amazon_image]

A half-gallon jar works fine for canning huge amounts of pasta and cereals. These are carbohydrates that are consumed in large amounts so you must store them in huge quantities. You also can use this size to can liquids like apple juice.


[amazon_image id=”B0000BYD33″ target=”_blank” size=”Small” link=”true” container=”” container_class=”” ]Kerr 1 Qt. (32 oz) Regular Mouth Canning Jar[/amazon_image]A one-quart jar is a good choice for just about any food. It’s very versatile to store anything from pickles to huge chunks of vegetables. You  have  two  options  for  this  size – a regular mouthed jar and a wide mouthed jar. You can use the regular mouthed jars for pickles and small cuts of vegetables and fruits. On the other hand, you can use the wide mouthed jars for foods with bigger cuts. You also can use the wide mouthed jars to can Sauerkraut.

The amount of foods that you’ll be canning.

This is simple. Use bigger jars if you are going to can and store a large amount of different foods. For example, there’s no point in canning pasta in 8-ounce jars. You’ll be canning a lot of it so instead of storing pasta in a lot of smaller jars, just store it in a few half-gallon jars. On the other hand, there’s no point in storing pickles in half-gallon jars. The same thing applies for jams and jellies. Can you imagine using a spoon to scoop jam out of a half-gallon jar?

Hopefully, this guide helped you to determine the size and type of canning jars that you need. Take these things into consideration so you will buy canning jars that are perfect for your needs.

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