Again today, I heard of someone who’d bought the Ball Home Canning Discovery Kit, aka: Ball Small Batch Canning Kit. It made me cringe when she said it, because–in my personal opinion–that’s one of the biggest wastes of money in the world of home canning ……
…… unless, of course, you’re canning your first three pints of jam/jelly … and you never plan to can more than three jars of jam/jelly at a time from here on.
If you’d ever like to can anything beyond that … then don’t buy the Canning Discovery Kit … because it’s a waste of money.
Here’s the straight story. If you’re looking to buy an inexpensive starter kit that will cover you for ANYTHING you want to can (from the allowed foods list, that is) for the rest of your life … then buy:
- one 16-quart pressure canner: your choice of dial or weight gauge … one that can double as a BWB canner … $65 at WalMart.
- one jar lifter: $5.03 at Amazon … but I’ve bought them for a LOT less, including $.69 at thrift stores.
- “Mason” type jars (that fit the two-part canning lids) with two-piece canning lids: a case will cost you $8-15/depending on size and where you buy them.
Voila! In addition to ‘food’ and ‘time’ …. that’s all you need to can pretty much ANYTHING you’d like to learn how to can
If I had an extra few dollars in my pocket, I’d also add:
- one canning jar funnel: the metal ones are more expensive. I’ve bought plastic ones for $3.00 or less.
… because funnels like that can help you keep the lips of your jars cleaner as you fill them … and cleaner lips mean less to clean before you put your lids on.