How to Keep Food Canning Sanitary

Once you have made the decision to try canning and preserving, it is important to be aware of how to keep canning sanitary.

There are several methods for sterilizing so that canning is done properly, safely, and effectively.

Boiling Water:

When using the boiling water method, it is important to research the types of foods you are canning or preserving first.

Foods such as fruit, tomato sauce, or jams are typically those that will use the boiling water method.

Some of these food choices such as fruit or tomatoes need to have lemon juice added to them in order to use the boiling water bath method.

Most high acid foods will use this method.

Foods that have an acid count of 4.6 or lower will use this method as these will be considered high-acid foods.

It is imperative to check the ph of the foods you will decide to can.


A water bath canner with a secure lid and a rack inside is the best type of water bath canner to use.

Of course, you can use your own pot and lid, but if canning is something you will be doing permanently, it makes sense to buy the proper equipment from the onset.

The rack inserted into the water bath canner will help you to avoid glass jars banging into one another and cracking.

Boiling removes the air from the jar, forming a tight seal between the rim and lid, which kills certain types of bacteria.

Jars and lids that are mason-style are best for canning.

Jars that are specifically made to be heat-resistant for canning purposes are recommended.

Lids for these mason-style jars come with a screw top rim and a lid.

The lids need to be replaced for every canning session, but the screw top jars do not need to be replaced unless damaged or dented.

Prior to using the mason-style jars, boiling the jars, rims, and rings is recommended.

Some individuals even use their dishwasher to sterilize the jars, rims, and rings prior to using them.

Typically, jars, rims, and rings should be sterilized for 10 minutes in boiling water before use and kept in hot water until ready to use.


There are several factors that are essential to proper sanitary canning.

One of those is the fact that the proper space should be left between the top of the jar and the rim.

Checking your recipes for the proper amount of top space is essential to sanitary canning.

Another important factor is to remove as many air bubbles as possible by stirring up your food choice prior to sealing.

Once you have stirred and filled your jar leaving the proper amount of top space, wiping the jars rim with a clean cloth is a good idea as well.

Processing time is essential to the proper sanitization of canning.

Make sure to discover what the correct processing time is before you attempt to can foods.

Reliable sources for home food preservation must be checked for processing time for your particular recipe beforehand.

If using a pressure canner for different verities of canning, make sure the pressure valve is open to allow the release of steam.

These are just a few tips on how to keep canning sanitary.

Before beginning, it is important to research the proper processing times, ph levels of food, and amount of space needed to create the proper seal for the most sanitary canning process.

Every year, a lot of people can and freeze foods to ensure they have the foods they love on hand when winter rolls around and they are out of season.

To learn more about how you can start preserving foods visit the section here about how to preserve foods by canning and freezing them.

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