Can You Reuse Store-Bought Jars For Canning Considering Canning With Store-Bought Jars? Here’s Why You Shouldn’t

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As tempting as it may be, it is not safe to reuse grocery store jars for home canning. While you may think you’re saving money, you may actually be setting yourself up for a big mess or even an injury.

Why Store-Bought Jars Are Unsafe

Grocery store jars that once held spaghetti sauce, pickles and other foods should not be reused for home canning. The glass is usually not as thick and this makes them more likely to shatter or explode when heated. 

If your canning jars explode you will:

  • Waste the food you are trying to preserve, which completely defeats the purpose of trying to save money.
  • Risk cutting yourself on broken glass while trying to clean up the mess.
  • An explosion during the canning process is scary and may cause mild or serious injury if you’re in the wrong place when it happens.

Additionally, the necks of jars you buy at the store are often too short to allow for a proper seal. Canning jars have a specific design: a two-part lid with deep grooves and a wide mouth—this is meant to give consistent results when preserving food.

Grocery store jars, on the other hand, come in every shape and size imaginable. The lids are often very thin and just one piece. They are designed to be sealed by industrial equipment, not your home canning set up.

For Proper Canning

The good news is that canning jars are fairly inexpensive and can be reused for years and years. Keep your jars clean and store them in a safe place where they will not be damaged in between canning sessions.

The only piece that you will need to buy for the next round of preserves is the inner lid. These have a seal that is for one-time use, but these are also very cheap.

“Mason” Jars

It has become fashionable for jars containing sauces, jams, and other foods to be inscribed with the word “Mason.” Don’t be fooled by these at the grocery store!

These are often used to give the product a “down home” feel and should not be considered an indicator of the jar’s quality.

Tips for Reuse

Instead of trying to can food with empty jars, use them around the house in other ways. They are perfect for storing many small things and allow you to see exactly what’s inside.

  • Store herbs and spices in the kitchen.
  • Short-term storage for leftover food like extra sauce or for homemade condiments.
  • Store DIY home remedies, cleaners or personal care items.
  • Store nuts and bolts in the garage or small craft supplies in the house.

If you find that you have too many glass jars, simply recycle those you can’t use.

Video about Can You Reuse Store-Bought Jars For Canning

You CAN reuse lids from store bought jars for CANNING your food! _ Tomato Jam Water Bath and Recipe!

In this video I’ll show you my experience with reusing lids from salsa jars/jelly jars/spaghetti jars/juice bottles to preserve fresh garden fruits and vegetables. This video is from the fall of 2020 when everyone and their uncle needed canning supplies, specifically lids and when they could not find brand new ones they simply sat and let their harvest go to waste out of stubbornness and loyalty to the ball canning guide. I chose to consult other people and found plenty of evidence online that we could be more recycle friendly than originally told. I also will show you real quick how to water bath can using old Smuckers jars. Then at the end I hope you enjoy a glimpse into our homestead.

Tomato Jam Recipe:

3lbs diced tomatoes
1C sugar
2 (sm) lemons
1T ginger
1t cinnamon
1t cloves
1t cumin
1t salt
1/2C vinegar

Medium heat in saucepan. Bring to light bubble then turn down and keep stirring until it gets to a thicker consistency. Use an immersion blender to break up bigger chunks of tomatoes if they’re still sticking around by the end. Water Bath extra jars for 10 minutes or just freeze extra jam if you do not want to water bath jars.

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We have a flock of chickens, a herd of goats, cats, dogs and a family serving Jesus here in Emmett, Idaho. I hope these videos help you on your own homestead journey or encourage you in your dreams of owning animals someday. God bless you!

—–

I had some help from friends to get this video out.

Eric from Eric Tackett Productions for guidance and advice from a fellow homeschooler. His wholesome channel here:

https://youtube.com/c/BeGoodAtLifeByEricTackettByFollowingJesusChrist


Parker from Parker and the Proof for making music and allowing me to use some as an outro tune. Check out his music here:

https://youtube.com/channel/UC5e_mQBRwAh9Fp_fBBc-H4Q

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