In today’s review, we will thoroughly assess the best pressure canners available on the market today. Preserving low acid foods can be a challenge, especially if you do not have the right preservation equipment.
Pressure canner is one such appliance that could help you preserve food effectively. It keeps the food fresh while keeping bacteria at bay. Every model is designed to help you preserve different kind of food but there are a lot of other considerations to ponder upon before making the final choice.
Let’s have a look at our brief but honest reviews of the top pressure canners you can buy in 2020!
Best Pressure Canners Overview
- Granite Ware 20 Quart – Overall Best Pressure Canner
- All American 41-⅕ Quart – Best Large Pressure Canner
- Mirro 92122A – Best Budget-friendly Pressure Canner
- All American 910 – Best Gasket Free Pressure Canner + Best for Beginners
- Presto 01781 – Best Pressure Canner for Canning Meat
- Presto 01784 – Best Pressure Canner for Glass Top Stove + Induction Cook top
- Instant Pot Max – Best Electric Pressure Canner
- Zavor ZPot 10 – Best Stainless Steel Pressure Canner
Best Pressure Canner Reviews
If you love to can and preserve your food all year long, then Granite Ware could be a very viable option. It has a stream of features which improve efficiency and enhance the quality of food.
The anodized construction allows better heat distribution due to which the food is very evenly cooked and there are no chances of it being raw. Anodized steel is abrasion resistant, making it twice as strong in comparison to other appliances.
Granite Ware elevates the food temperature to 240-degree Fahrenheit which allows easy sterilization of low acid food by killing bacteria. This could help you avoid a lot of stomach related diseases and ensure that the food is healthy.
Granite Ware 20 Quart gives you three options i.e. 5, 10 and 15 pounds of pressure. A steamer insert could also be added to make more vegetables and increase food options for your family. For people who prefer fresh meals over canned ones, the steamer is an excellent utility.
The All American 41-⅕ Quart pressure canner has a much higher capacity than other canners. The increased capacity of the canner can help you cook larger quantity of meals, making it a good fit for someone who cooks on occasions like Christmas and Thanksgiving.
The canner is made of hard cast aluminium with a fine satin finishing and is fairly durable. It has a metal to metal sealing system which gives you a steam tight seal. This does not allow the steam to leave the canner doesn’t need a separate gasket either.
The metal to metal seal does help in confining the steam, but it is also important that the steam is released timely, especially when excess pressure is built up. Otherwise there is a risk of explosion. The All American Canner has a system installed which will automatically release the pressure once it reaches its threshold.
The Mirro 92122A is a high-volume canner and offers three different levels of pressure for easy cooking. The best feature of Mirro 92122A is that it has a rubber gasket that fits onto the side of the lid and helps in building up pressure when it is low and can even release excess pressure when required.
The lid is also tightly locked therefore there are minimal chances of the lid bursting in the air in case the pressure is not released at the right time.
The body is made of aluminium and is relatively heavier. Although it has a small holding capacity and isn’t very fancy in comparison to other canners. However, price-wise it is quite affordable. For anyone who is not very fond of cooking and wants to invest less, Mirro 92122A would be an excellent choice.
The All American 910 canner offers a safe method of home pressure canning. It lets you transform inexpensive, raw meat into juicy and tender delight.
The canner has two automatic venting features, making it extra safe. It has a safety control valve and over-pressure plug as well. Additionally, it has a geared steam gauge and double thick edges for extra protection. It does not have a gasket and has a stay cool Bakelite handles attached too therefore it is convenient to use for any beginner.
The diameter of the canners is larger than most of the normal burners as a result of which heat could transfer outside and damage stoves or may cause fire.
Sounds amazing for all those who don’t like going into the kitchen again and again. Presto 01781 also has a warp proof, heavy gauge aluminium surface which escalates even distribution of heat and allows one to prepare food faster. You can use this canner to cook low acid foods, jams, preserved fruits, jellies, pickles and a lot of other tasty food items.
The Presto 01784 pressure canner works with gas, electric, smooth top and induction ranges making it highly suitable for different kitchen stations. The base of the canner is made of stainless steel which is induction compatible. The surface is made of heavy gauge aluminium. This Presto canner can serve as a boiling water canner for fruits, jams, jellies and salsa while also possessing the capacity to cook meat, seafood and vegetables.
The dishes mentioned above will give you a fair idea of the fact that the canner has the capacity to cook a variety of dishes and is durable as well. It fulfils your preservation needs and cooking needs at the same time. The functionality and safety of the cooker are also much better therefore one can easily use it without any worries.
If you are a kitchen enthusiast, love making different dishes, love trying out latest appliances and absolutely love experimenting then Instant Pot Max could be a very good option for your next purchase. It was introduced in the market with nutriboost technology which helps unlocking the real taste and nutrients of raw ingredients.
Another attractive feature of the pot for any buyer is its aesthetic look! The stainless-steel exterior with a touchscreen displays and dial at the bottom make the pot look higher tech. The best part is, it doesn’t just look good but is actually a sophisticated kitchen appliance. Altitude, temperature preferences, pressure, time, everything could be set with a single touch.
The Max has eight primary button programs which are part of the display. These include pressure, rice cooking, sauté, sous vide, slow cook, canning, making yogurt and soup broth option. Depending on the dish you can choose from a variety of options.
It has a steam release option, one doesn’t need to set a valve or monitor the canner throughout. Instead one can simply push a button on the touch screen which indicates quick release, natural release or pulse release. Maintaining accurate pressures could be quite risky in case of pots but with Instant Pot Max this risk is reduced to minimal.
A lot of canners might not work well on domestic stoves due to which people have to buy other expensive appliances. There are hardly any canners which can work well on gas, electric, induction and ceramic stove but Zavor ZPot 10 is one such pressure canner that can perform well on nearly all surfaces. Having a rust free, stainless steel exterior, the Zavor ZPot 10 can surely compliment your kitchen with its sleek look.
Zavor ZPot 10 offers quick and efficient cooking and helps preserve important nutrients as well. This pressure canner does not require cooking fats therefore the eating options are much healthier. At the same time, the canner ensures great safety standards.
It has an auto locking handle that tightly seals the lid after it is closed. An intuitive rubber knob is also present which cooks the food 70% faster and once the dish is fully cooked it releases excessive pressure to prevent over cooking.
Due to the above-mentioned features, cooking time is also considerably reduced. Risotto can be cooked in 7 minutes, vegetables in 3 minutes and chicken in less than 12 minutes. All you must do is just load the ingredients, mix it and lock it, Zavor will take care of the rest!
Pressure Canner Buyer’s Guide
What is a Pressure Canner?
A pressure canner is primarily a heavy kitchen appliance with a vent and pressure gauge. In a pressure canner you can heat food at a temperature higher than that of boiling water. One important fact to remember here is that all low acid foods i.e. alkaline foods must be processed in a pressure canner. Whether it’s unpickled vegetables or any animal product, it must be cooked in a pressure canner. The reason behind this is that pressure canners can easily kill bacteria present in these foods and prevent botulism.
How Does a Pressure Canner Work?
The mechanism of a pressure canner is quite simple and easy to understand. Firstly, heat is applied to the canner, it starts boiling water at 212-degree Fahrenheit forming steam. The steam drives out any air through the vent present in the canner. Once the air is completely exhausted heat penetrates to the jar. The vent is closed after 10 minutes after which no additional steam can be released, and pressure starts building up.
Using the principle of conduction and convection, heat is evenly distributed throughout the canner which quickens up the process of cooking. Food, steam and air will expand once heat increases thus the pressure in the jar will further increase. Now you don’t need to worry because this pressure is manageable as there is ½ inch headspace in the jar which can easily cater the growing pressure.
Once the cooking time is completed, the heat source is removed, and things start cooling up. Now the important thing to remember here is that the pressure might quickly fall to zero once heat source is removed thus canners can explode. It is crucial to allow slow cooling in order to maintain pressure.
Difference between Pressure Canner and Pressure Cooker
A pressure cooker and a pressure canner have completely different cooking purposes. A pressure cooker is used to cook food faster, whereas a pressure canner is made to cook vegetables and fruits safely. While cooking in a pressure cooker, one can simply pour the ingredients all at once and there is no need to monitor the pressure all the time. Whereas in a canner you must constantly monitor the pressure inside the container, the pressure must be kept constant to avoid accidents.
Pressure canners are meant to cook low acid foods such as fruits and vegetables, one can even make pickles in it but if you want to cook a variety of dishes then one should always go with pressure cookers, they definitely offer greater range.
What to look for when buying a pressure canner?
Buying a good pressure canner can be a pretty daunting task especially if you do not understand the technicalities. Here we are listing down some key features which must be remembered before you head out to buy a brand-new canner for yourself!
Capacity of the Canner
Capacity is dependent on the quantity of food; most beginner level canners have adequate capacity and can have 6 to 7-pint jars. Additionally, half pint jars can be placed on top of them as well, so it really enhances the overall capacity of the canner. 16 to 23 quarts capacity is the most common amongst canners and holds seven-quart jars for canning.
Overall Size of the Canner
The size of the canner mostly depends on how much you want to cook and for how long you want to cook. If you want to preserve and cook larger quantity of food then we would obviously recommend buying a larger canner, something like the All American 41.5 Quart.
Material of the Canner
Make sure your canners are made of durable and rust-free material. Since canning involves a lot of heat thus material needs to be good. It is also preferred that the canner material shouldn’t be too heavy because it can increase the weight of the canner. Increased weight means that your glass top surfaces can get damaged. For example, stainless steel cookware has its own perks but is a bit heavy. Keep in mind that weight of jars water and food is also there so the canner should be able to withhold that but also be not very heavy itself.
A pressure canner must be used for a very long duration of time, therefore even though the initial investment might be high, but overtime one can easily get the return. Our advice is that don’t get intimidated by high price because it is a long-term investment. Price can vary from $80 to $500 for most of the designs.
Before using the canner, make sure to wash it with hot, soapy water. One should never use strong alkalis like sodium hydroxide or baking soda for cleaning because they stain the aluminium and darken the overall service.
Once the food is cooked, empty it immediately and do not leave any food or water inside otherwise it will give bad odour after some time.
An important fact to remember here is that do not put water on the lid of the canner because it has a dial gauge. Water can make it rust or corrode affecting overall functioning of the canner.
There are two special pressure indicators inside the pressure canners. One is the dial pressure gauge and the second is the weighted gauge regulator. A dial pressure gauge adjusts the heat source to maintain optimum pressure inside the canner. A weighted gauge regulator releases small bursts of steam from inside the kettle as the gauge revolves during canning process. This is an automatic process and as long as you hear the gauge jiggling, it means the canner is working properly.
Lid Locking Mechanism
The locking lid mechanism is a safety mechanism that prevents the lid from opening until the pressure within the canner is removed. The lid plug also helps in releasing excessive steam in case the vent pipe becomes blocked. Since the air temperature inside the pot is very high therefore pressure is quickly escalated thus in such cases lid locking system is very beneficial.
Pressure canners come in a lot of different shapes, sizes and materials. Usually heavy weight canners are not preferred for glass top surfaces. Pressure canners with concave bottoms can’t be used on flat stoves because heat won’t transfer effectively. Both Presto and Mirro pressure canner are not designed to be used an outdoor liquid burner or gas range. Similarly, if you have an aluminium canner then it won’t work on an induction stove.
Who Should Buy a Pressure Canner?
If you are a health-conscious person who does not prefer adding artificial preservatives to their food, then pressure canner is definitely a viable option for you. Canners might test your patience a bit because the cooking time is relatively long, but one does get a healthy outcome. Whether you are just someone who likes to put food away for some time or you consider yourself a prepper, canning is something which will prove to be helpful for you.
Picking a high-quality canner which ensures proper functioning is not an easy decision but we’re hopeful that after reading the above information, the decision might become easier. There are several factors to consider including quality, capacity, price, pressure and material. A good pressure canner should offer ample space and maintain pressure effectively in order to reduce any risk of explosion. The All-American canner is a good option in this regard; similarly, Granite Ware 20 quart also has great capacity.
The final decision will always rest with the buyer, but we hope our recommendations can make the decision-making process easier for you. Think well before making your next purchase because this is an important decision! Happy Shopping!