How To Use a Water Bath Canner

Canning Instructions

Supplies needed:

– Jar grabber (to pick up the hot jars)
– Lid lifter (has a magnet to pick the lids out of the boiling water where you sterilize them. ($2 at WalMart, Target, and sometimes at grocery stores)
– Jar funnel ($2 at WalMart, Target, and sometimes at grocery stores)
– Large spoons and ladles
– 1 Canner (a huge pot to sterilize the jars of apple butter after filling (about $30 to $35 at mall kitchen stores, sometimes at WalMart (seasonal item))
– Ball jars (WalMart carry then – about $8 per dozen quart jars including the lids and rings), either jelly jar size, pints or quarts

The dishwasher is fine for washing the jars, the water bath processing will sterilize them as well as the contents! If you don’t have a dishwasher, you can wash the containers in hot, soapy water and rinse, then sterilize the jars by boiling them 10 minutes, and keep the jars in hot water until they are used.

Leave the jars in the dishwasher on “heated dry” until you are ready to use them. Keeping them hot will prevent the jars from breaking when you fill them with the hot ingredients.

Put the lids into a pan of hot, but not quite boiling water (that’s what the manufacturer’s recommend) for 5 minutes, and use the magnetic “lid lifter wand” to pull them out (or use tonges).

Fill them to within 1/4 inch of the top, wipe any spilled apple butter of the top, seat the lid and tighten the ring around them.

Process means put them in the canner and keep them covered with at least 1 inch of water and boiling. if you are at sea level (up to 1,000 ft) boil pint jars for 5 minutes and quart jars for 10 min. If you are at an altitude of 1,000 feet or more, see the chart below.

Recommended process time for Apple Butter in a boiling-water canner:

Jar Size0-1000 ft1001-6000 ftAbove 6000 ft
1/2 pt or pint5 min10 min15 min
Quarts10 min15 min20 min

Recommended process time for applesauce in a boiling-water canner:

Jar size0-1000 ft1001-3000 ft3001-6000 ftabove 6000 ft
Pints15 min20 min20 min25 min
Quarts20 min25 min30 min35 min

Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight) You can then remove the rings if you like. The lids will “pop” (vacuum seal) as they cool. If any do not seal by morning, use those immediately and keep in fridge. They have not sealed properly and must be refrigerated and used within 1 week.

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