In a previous article we covered the essential canning supplies, so today we will talk about non-essential canning supplies. Many tools make canning a little bit easier. These are tools that are not necessary to complete the canning process but certainly help. Most often these particular items are meant to be used with specific foods.
Non-Essential canning supplies make your canning experience much easier!
As we talk about each item, think about the types of food you preserve. Do you preserve mostly fruit? Do you make applesauce or bone broth? Knowing all of this ahead of time will guide you to which of these canning supplies you might need. Prioritize a list based on need and then get to it!
- Scale: This item we think should be essential. You’ll find most canning recipes state needing a certain number of pounds of fruits or vegetables. Very few recipes require 6 apples, it simply says, 4 lbs of apples. A scale comes in handy for measure produce, so you know how many jars you can fill with what you have.
- Food Processor/Food Mill: If you plan to can food that is highly textured you might find this tool handy. Applesauce, for instance, will be a much smoother texture if you put it in a food processor before filling your jars. Some people use a food mill to grind their own flour from corn, rice or almonds.
- Food Juicer: We aren’t one for making our own juice, but if you are this is something to keep your eye on. In a matter of minutes, you could make your own V-8 juice and can it for soup bases. You’ll be getting all the nutrients of the raw plants and veggies and save time in the kitchen.
- Jelly Thermometer: If you are planning to can jams and jellies you’ll want this tool by your side. When jelly gels it doesn’t always look as thick as you think it should be. A jelly thermometer is a perfect item for making your sure your jelly isn’t overcooked and turned to candy!
- Timer: Canning without a timer is like trying to slice cheese without a knife. You can do it, but it goes much more smoothly if you have it. We use the one on our microwave or you can use your phone. Often times we have two timers going at the same time!
- Cheesecloth/Tea Towel: These two come in handy when making bone broth or soups with added flavor. Often times you’ll season your dish with herbs and spices, but not want them floating in the broth or soup. A Cheesecloth is perfect for keeping the herbs gathered while allowing your dish to be flavored. We also use this for straining our bone broth. It brings such a smooth consistency.
- Glass Bowls/Stoneware: This one is helpful to have no matter what you’re canning. We often have many bowls littering the counter-top. One for scraps, one for whole fruit, one for cut fruit, etc. We have found most people have these in their homes already, so it’s not really an added expense.
As you begin your canning journey don’t feel like you have to run out and buy all of these canning supplies. Think about what you are canning and only purchase helpful items. If you don’t have the funds to purchase them, check with a friend. They may have just what you need to borrow!
~Until Next Time,
Question: Which of these canning supplies do you find to be most useful?
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