Canning 101: Preserving with Tattler’s Reusable Lids

Tattler lids

One of the primary truths of canning has always been that while the jars and rings are reusable, the lids are not. When I teach canning classes, I’m careful to emphasis that those flat metal lids only have one trip through the canner in them and that they lose their mojo once through a boiling water bath.

However, a brand of canning lids called Tattler recently returned to the market and they come sporting a pair of dual virtues that make them nearly irresistible for home canners. First is the fact that they are nearly endlessly reusable. That’s right, these are lids that you don’t have to toss into the trash after emptying the jar.

Second is that they are free of Bisphenol A (known in shorthand as BPA). Lots of people have turned to canning in recent days to get away from the BPA that lines so many commercially canned foods, only to find out that the lids for canning jars are also lined with the stuff. Typically, I try not to worry about them, comforting myself with the fact that properly canned foods shouldn’t actually be in contact with those lids after processing. Still, it’s a concern.

I bought several dozen Tattler lids at the beginning of the summer, but didn’t end up using them until my marathon tomato canning period that started over Labor Day weekend. I spent two full months passing them up, each time reaching for the disposable lids in my cabinet. I was a little bit wary of them, uncertain whether they’d work. Additionally, since I typically squeeze my canning into the hours after dinner and before bed, there’s often an element of frenzy to my putting up. I always felt like I didn’t have time to teach myself the steps necessary to make the Tattler lids work.

However, when I was canning all those tomatoes, I reached into the cabinet and realized I was completely out of regular mouth lids. I had to use the Tattler lids. It was trial by fire, particularly since I was canning in both a boiling water canner and a pressure canner that night. I had a moment of panic after the processing was complete but before the jars had fully sealed, when I realized I hadn’t left the rings as loose as was necessary for proper venting, and yet still, it all worked. All the jars sealed and sealed strong. They pass my standard seal test (grasp edges of lid and lift jar holding nothing but the lid) with flying colors.

What to Know

There are a couple additional steps to ensuring a good seal. When you apply the lids and screw on the bands, you MUST then unscrew the band a quarter turn. This ensures that there’s enough space for the hot air to escape from the jar during processing. Then, when the jars have finished processing and you’ve removed them to the counter, quickly give all the bands a good, quick tighten. This brings the rubber seal into firm contact with the rim of the jar and allows the air tight seal to form.

Thoughts?

So far, I’m pretty thrilled with the Tattler lids. Despite my minor user errors the first time out, they still sealed well. They worked equally well in the boiling water canner and in the pressure canner. I have just two issues with them. The first is their cost. They are pretty pricey, ringing up at approximately $.80 per regular mouth lid (not including shipping).  Because of this, I can’t make an immediate and complete switch. However, I plan to add more to my collection every few months until I’ve got a more critical mass.

The second issue is that they make it harder for me to pass my canned goods along to friends and family, because I don’t know if I’ll get them back. Like so many new Tattler users, I think that I’ll continue to keep some of the disposable lids in my arsenal for those items that I plan to gift.

For those of you looking for a step by step guide on how to use these lids, take a peek at this post at Homestead Revival. It is amazingly detailed and accurate.

For those of you who’ve used the Tattler lids, I’d love to hear what your experience has been like.

Related Posts:

, ,

66 Responses to Canning 101: Preserving with Tattler’s Reusable Lids

  1. 51
    Kristina says:

    Thanks for the post Marisa! I’ve been using Tattler lids for two seasons now and love them, but I’m still not keen on having plastic in every area of my kitchen. What can you do? I’ve recently discovered Weck jars, and wondered if you had any experience with them?

    On the subject of tightening and getting a good seal on Tattler lids, be sure to check the website on the company’s new instructions. About 8 months ago I got an email directly from Tattler saying that they’ve changed the instructions for canning with their lids, and instead of tightening and unscrewing 1/4 of an inch (not a 1/4 turn), they recommend a “fingertip tight” band before going into the canner. Upon removal from the canner, the lids should be tightened firmly. I know others have said something similar, but it’s interesting to note that this change in instructions came directly from the Tattler company.

    Marisa, I look forward to your update! Any experience you have and would be willing to share on the Weck jars would be great too!

  2. 52

    [...] Preserving with reusable lids  [...]

  3. 53
    Laura says:

    Have you opened any of your jars of tomatoes yet? I recently opened one of my jars of tomato sauce that I used a tattler lid on and the lid is now stained. I have soaked it in baking soda, but the stain is not coming off. Just wondering what others are experiencing.

    • 53.1
      Marisa says:

      Laura, tomatoes will stain the Tattler lids. I just keep a stash that I use exclusively on tomatoes. The stain doesn’t impact their utility.

      • Sydney says:

        Just leave the lids in a sunny area for a few hours and the stain will disappear! It works on tomato based stains on clothes too.

  4. 54

    [...] concerned about the conventional Ball jar lids, which I recycle when I’m finished with them. Food in Jars also has an informative post on canning with Tattler [...]

  5. 55
    Jennifer G says:

    Just read comment #54 by West of the Loop, which appears to say that she recycles the conventional Ball jar lids. I understand that they are not recyclable (most recyclers need the various materials from a product separated or separatable, and the jar lids have metal, the rubbery ring, and the white film on the inside). So I went to the blog and read her full article, which appears to have since been edited and doesn’t call the Ball lids recyclable anywhere in the blog post. Though I LOVE the ease of use and price of the conventional lids, I would prefer something that isn’t single use (“throw away” isn’t really ever “away”; it’s in a landfill). So I’ve been switching over to Weck with each major holiday in which I can justify asking for some as a gift. Still negotiating in my head how to gift jams this summer without gifting the jars…

  6. 56
    Bonnie says:

    I have been using Tattler for three years and I would not recommend using them on potatoes. I canned multiple loads, using various kinds of potatoes, and nearly all of the jars with a Tattler lid became unsealed during storage. All of the jars with a metal lid are fine. Never again! Tattler are too expensive and have too high of a failure rate to ever be my sole source for a canning lid.

  7. 57
    Liz says:

    I’m on Tattler’s website and I see they’re marketing their lids as redesigned “E-Z seal” lids – do you know anything about this? Is this just new branding or a different lid?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. BPA Free Canning Lids Now Available From Tattler : TreeHugger - September 22, 2010

    [...] Food in Jars [...]

  2. GreenHubs.com » BPA Free Canning Lids Now Available From Tattler - September 22, 2010

    [...] BPA Free Canning Lids Now Available From Tattler Food in Jars [...]

  3. BPA Free Canning Lids Now Available From Tattler - September 22, 2010

    [...] Lids Now Available From Tattler On September 22, 2010, in Treehugger, by TreeHugger 0 Food in Jars Last summer we broke the story about BPA epoxy finish on the lids used in home canning. We [...]

  4. Everyone Loves Autumn! « The Apartment Farm - September 24, 2010

    [...] Food in Jars has discovered reuseable canning lids. [...]

  5. Savvy Selections: 09.25.10. — Savvy Eats - September 25, 2010

    [...] there are now REUSABLE canning lids, and they got great reviews from Food in Jars. I totally want to try [...]

  6. Strawberries in Syrup Saved for Winter « EatLocal365 - June 23, 2011

    [...] gift. The process for these is just a little bit different than the metal lids. Food in Jars did a great post on them, if you’re interested. Canning/Preserving   Canning, how to eat locally, [...]

  7. Can['t] fight this feeling anymore | Get Cooking - October 21, 2012

    [...] Preserving with reusable lids  [...]

  8. All About Jars - West of the Loop - April 18, 2013

    [...] concerned about the conventional Ball jar lids, which I recycle when I’m finished with them. Food in Jars also has an informative post on canning with Tattler [...]

Leave a Reply