A Gift Guide for Canners

December 9, 2009(updated on March 20, 2022)

This timeless gift guide for canners contains some of my most used and beloved canning books, tools, and helpers.

canning gift guide

Here are a few of my favorite canning helpers, from cookbooks, to the best floursack towels, to my very favorite 2-quart measuring cup. Send a link to this post to a generous spouse, parent or best friend with a note that says, “I’d like number 2, please!”

Starting from the top left corner…

1. Putting Up: A Seasonal Guide to Canning in the Southern Tradition This is one of the best canning books out there and is great for beginners, as it contains all the instruction you need to get started canning.

2. A Stainless Steel Jar Funnel. I like the metal ones better than plastic. Looks better and is sturdier in the long run.

3. Weck Canning Jars. These European jars are beautiful and functional. Extra thoughtful gift givers will also pick up a set of plastic snap-on lids, which turns these into the best leftover vessels I know.

4. A Set of Graduated Measuring Scoops. I prefer using a 1-cup measure like the one pictured when filling jars with hot jam. It gives greater control than a ladle does, and is the exact right amount for a half pint jar. The rest of the measuring cups are useful too.

5. Floursack Towels. Canning can be messy business so it’s always good to have a stack of clean towels on hand. I like these white floursack towels, as they are absorbent, fairly lintless and can be bleached clean when you’re all done cooking.

6. Ball Canning Starter Kit. This is an easy way to get a new canner started, or to help an experienced preserver refresh their collection of tools (that jar lifter takes a beating after years of use).

7. My Beloved 2-Quart Measuring Cup. Perfect for measuring fruit for jam. The lid just makes it.

8. A Good, Sharp Knife. I’m a big fan of my Global, but any sturdy, sharp knife will do. When you’re processing a bushel or two of fruit, you want to use the best tool for the job.

9. A Roomy Stock Pot. Instead of buying a pot designed expressly for canning, invest in a good stock pot. That way, it can also work as your pasta or soup pot. But slip a rack in the bottom and voila, it’s a canning pot.

10. Wide Mouth Half-Pint Jars. I adore these squat, easy to fill jars. For some reason, they’ve become impossible to find in stores (I often order a couple dozen and keep them stashed under my couch, for when they’re the only jar that will do).

You can also give the gift of one of my cookbooks!

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

129 thoughts on "A Gift Guide for Canners"

  • Very nice selection.

    I highly recommend: Ball’s plastic screw on lids (for once you pop the top), the metal funnel you mentioned, Ball’s Complete Book of Preserving (or something to that effect), a magnetic lid lifter (I was doing it by hand). And every kitchen needs a good knife. I am so much happier for having our set.

    I’ve put the KitchenAid mixer attachment for purees/applesauce/tomato sauce on my list for Santa. We’ll see if he comes through. If not, I’ll probably just get it for myself.

  • Those are some super gift ideas…I shall certainly pass them on to my special peeps – especially the book – Thanks for all the posts this year – been loving them!

  • I came late to canning, learning as an adult, but it is a really important part of my kitchen life nowadays. I’d be hard put to choose my favorite canning tool, but my vintage jar lifter would probably be it. If I could choose just one canning gift it would be a good selection of Weck jars.

  • I love my old Mouli food mill for removing skins and seeds from tomatoes. I basically have it out all August and September to help me process my garden tomato harvest.

    This is a great canner’s wish list!

  • I definitely need to get myself one of those large measuring glasses… I can already think of many reasons it would be handy, even outside of canning.

  • Just finished my canning for Christmas. Now I am bracing for the post-office bill when I send everything out! I definitely could have used such a great measuring cup.

  • I loooove those little widemouth half pint jars. I wish they sold them in stores! It annoys me to have to pay shipping for jars.

  • Fantastic list. I wish my grandmother had email so I could just send her this link as my holiday wishlist. Well done!

  • The plastic lids are nice for when you pop the top off a canning jar. I agree that you can’t find the wide mouth half pints very well in the store. I think they are pretty. I go back and forth which half pints are prettier though when food is actually in them. I guess it depends on my mood that day. Everyone enjoy your holiday season.

  • ohh, i’d love the book because i haven’t actually canned anything before and it’d be perfect to help me out 🙂

    (as would the 2 qt cup..ahem.)

  • What a great list you’ve assembled! That batter bowl looks really useful, and I wish I had gotten a stock pot instead of buying a canning pot.

  • I am so in love with the weck jars, but have been too cheap to buy any yet. Maybe I can convince someone to give them to me for christmas.

  • I’ve been canning for about 3 years, but I’ve only found your blog in the past 2 months. Thank you! I love it! I just wish I’d been reading during this past summer. I’ll be passing this list along to some folks…

  • I just started really jarring this year. I am in love and put up everything now, but I tend to be short on equipment, so a 2 qt measuring cup would be awesome

  • I just recently bought two boxes of wide mouth half-pint jars. Apparently the company wanted to update their look or do something special for the holidays, as the lids are silver and have a decorative swirl/flourish printed on them. They’re quite cute.

  • I’m game for a chance at free goodies! I have been laxing on my canning lately, and I am down to bare-bones supplies now after moving… oh well.

  • My favorite canning tool is an awful looking ladle that I got just after highschool… Plastic, the brittle kind, and mercilessly stained a strange yellow from turmeric. For some reason, I just can not get a new one. I also love a bent and beat up jar funnel that my Mom used forever. She gave it to me in my very early 20’s when I first had a go at canning tomatoes, along with a burlap Ball apron that said “Yes I Can!”.

    You are the queen of giveaways- and always fun to read! Thank you for inspiring me to be a devoted canner for life!

  • While the give-away is tempting, what I really want to know is if that 12 qt stockpot is big enough to fit a rack that holds (wide mouth) quart jars? I wasn’t able to can quarts this year due to my pot not being tall enough for the needed water level.

  • I would love the ‘Well Preserved’ book from Eugenia Bone, or an actual ‘real’ canner as opposed to the enamel pot I use.

  • I’m such a fool for weck jars, but I’m thinking a food mill might find itself under my tree. Thx for the list and the great posts that keep me coming back and canning more.

  • oh wow, i could give any of those a good home! i’m especially fond of a good, sharp knife, and the wreck jars are beautiful!

  • I’m messy so my funnel is a critical piece of my canning equipment. Also, I love the weck jars as well, but so does everyone else and they disappear. 🙂

  • That measuring cup looks amazing! I don’t currently have a liquids measuring cup (I’m a broke college student who is finally living on her own — roommates always had one), & this one seems awesome! I can see how it would be so helpful with preserving!

  • Oh the Weck Canning Jars for sure are now on my list. Ever since I saw them on Tigress’ blog I wondered how to track them down!

  • Thanks for doing the giveaway! I just started canning (literally, this past Sunday) and made your apple-cranberry jam. I’m super excited and now having to fight the urge to can everything I can get my hands on.

  • Oooh, fun! I have that stock pot, and I do 95% of my waterbath canning in it. I need to get a second one before next canning seasons.

  • Mom, if you are reading this, I already have a funnel and jar lifter and measuring cups and stuff, but I would love the 2-quart measuring cup! Also, towels are always handy and floursack towels would be lovely.

    Marisa, thanks for the list!

  • What a nice give away! One thing I would love to find under my tress is another stove top! Okay I know it’s not going to happen. But it’s always a dream.

  • I already have the 2qt. measuring cup so this isn’t an entry, but I just wanted to say thank-you for this post (and your blog:)

    I was looking for a replacement canning pot as well as a bigger stock pot and never thought of using the same pot for both jobs. Now I can simplify things and buy a better pot for both applications …..yippee!

  • The Weck jars are so pretty, I’ve been wanting them a long time!

    I love using the half pint squats too, and usually can find them at my neighborhood Ace Hardware Store (it has a surprisingly nice selection of canning stuff).

    And what I’m searching for is a place to buy culinary cheesecloth in larger pieces than those tiny plastic bags in the regular stores. Maybe 10 yard pieces? 20 yard?

  • Ooh ooh ooh stock pot please! Ours seems to have vanished and since our kitchen is about the size of my closet, well… it’s a goner. So a stock pot is definitely on my Christmas list.

  • Love the site! I am making the rosemary salt and the tangerine dust for my sister for Christmas. I would love either the “Putting Up” book (?from the Univ of GA?) or the stockpot.

  • I have looked at that measuring cup many times. One of these days I will get one 🙂 My BEST Christmas present this year has been people donating money to the vet for my service dog to get better. Zeke the service dog always watches me can…just in case I drop something yummy or he is needed for pre-wash 🙂

  • I see a cookbook I am going to add to my want list! Thank you for being such a great resource. When I feel like it is too much work, I browse your blog and am invigorated!

  • My next house will hopefully have enough space for me to really get into canning. For the time being, I’d be sooo happy with that measuring cup.

  • my favorite canning tool is probably my set of ball utensils, similar to those you posted above. i just love using the tongs and the little magnetic wand thingy! 🙂

    thanks for your blog! i really enjoy it.

  • I laughed when I saw this post. I sort of need all of it 😛 I haven’t canned in years (since I lived with my parents), but I’ve been inspired recently to take it up again, not the least of the reasons being that canned goods make great gifts.

    So my plan is to go buy the basics as soon as I wrap up my classes next week. Of the stuff you have pictured above, though, I was especially impressed by the Weck canning jars. I’ve never seen them before–they’re so pretty!

  • My mom got me the Ball utensil kit for my bithday this year and it is so handy! I am picking up in my mother’s footsteps of growing and stowing as much as possible, even more so now that the rat race is behind me and I am a new(er) stay at home mom. Enjoying my first look at your blog and have just added you to my blog reader list. Thanks!

  • I just started canning this year and love your site. Thanks for the gift round up – now I have some shopping ideas!

  • I can never have too many Flour sack towels for the messes i make in the kitchen. Also grand for strining things like stock.

  • oooooh one with a cover! perfect for my lifestyle, that way I can put it right in the fridge to rest.
    Thanks for running a giveaway

  • I love this list! I’m not a canner by any means, but I’d love to have the tools to start. Maybe the confidence will come later?

  • I could not live with out my jar funnel.I have even used it to fill freezer bags,you need an extra set of hands to help but it dose make liquids less messy.
    I have also been eying the Weck jars for gift giving.
    I recently found your blog and am enjoying it.

  • I could really use the funnel; it would make filling the jars much easier, but I have most of the other things, although my measuring cup is way smaller than 2 quarts. I’m thinking of buying the Weck canning jars as a gift for someone else…maybe they’ll take the hint and buy some for me? It’s about time to make apple butter–the apples were only 47 cents a pound today.

  • Great collection! All are must-haves and I’ll add these to my Wishlist on Amazon.
    Thanks for your inspirational blog.

  • Oh man, that 2 qt. Measuring cup with a lid looks fantastic! My biggest canning splurge was a nice rack, one that won’t let little jars slip through, doesn’t rust, and is sturdy. I love your blog and find it immensly inspiring.

  • I think it’s so cool that 99 people responded to this so far. Make that 100! (Unless someone else is beating me to it!) I love all my tools, but my funnel is def the best. Weck jars look so pretty; maybe one day I’ll have some. Great post, as usual, thanks!