Waterbath Canning? The Two Keys to Safety

Yesterday we talked a bit about safety and the relatively low risk of serious illness from canning when it’s done properly.  We shared the statistics and reinforced why we can’t reliably determine the safety of someone else’s jars.

Tonight I wanted to emphasize two key behaviours.  The two things that, if you do them, will virtually ensure your safety when canning.

Waterbath Canning? The Two Keys to Safety

When water bath canning (that’s things like jams and pickles), there are two key things to keep in mind:

  1. Work clean.  Keep your hands, product (ingredients), jars and everything clean.  Clean, clean.
  2. Use safe, tested recipes.

I use the US National Center for Home Food Preservation as my go-to for preservation safety.  There are many books and blogs that I also trust (if I’m ever in doubt, I reconcile back to the National Center) including some of my favorites:

A disclaimer: each of the sites above belong to people I consider friends (although I don’t know them all personally).  I don’t think it’s a conflict to Reccomend them though – the trust I have is based on many conversations with each of them and knowing the care they take/ shared vision of safety that each has.  That’s not to say others aren’t safe; I just don’t know them as well.

What sites/books do you trust and love?


  1. Thank you for this. I see so many people posting unsafe recipes on blogs and it makes me see red. I just took a blogger to task for promoting a canned recipe with noodles that said to reduce the processing time by half!

  2. Please tell me your position on oven sterilization for jars, lids and processing. Also the upside down jar method of sealing jars. I don’t do any if that, but I’m curious what others think of it because I knOw someone who thinks some of these methods are ok and I truly don’t trust them.

  3. whats the safest way to can veggies and fruits? Water baths or pressure cookers?


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