9 Best Pressure Canners: Your Easy Buying Guide

pressure canner

123RF (Maya23K)

It’s that time of year when you’re probably dreaming of your verdant garden that will soon be overloaded. Since everyone is more conscious than ever about self-sufficiency and needless food waste food these days, a pressure canner is a perfect tool to help you preserve your garden’s bounty.

Whether you’re growing in raised beds or have a large garden plot, every preserving project comes with special instructions to make sure your canned goods are safe to eat throughout the year. Those requirements are even more important when it comes to canning meats, fish, and non-acidic vegetables like green beans.

If you want to be able to preserve things that require pressurization to kill dangerous bacteria, from simple garden fresh green beans to elegant beef bourguignon (because we do love to channel our inner Julia Child,) a pressure canner is a must. We’ve found the best options, large and small, you can use for canning, fast pressure cooking, and even sterilization.

What Are the Best Pressure Canners?

8.5 quart stainless steel pressure cooker Amazon Customer Reviews
  • High quality stainless steel
  • Superthermic base
  • Easy sealing
Price: $338.03 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
10 quart pressure cooker and canner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Versatile
  • Easy pre-sets
  • Cleanup is easy
Price: $159.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
12.7 quart pressure canner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Pressure cooks and cans
  • Easy to seal
  • Stainless steel
Price: $179.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
10 quart pressure cooker and canner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Small batch canner
  • Easy to use
  • Two PSI settings
Price: $149.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
16 quart aluminum pressure canner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Affordable
  • Includes cooking rack
  • Three pressure settings
Price: $213.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
automatic home canning system Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Pre-heats jars
  • Automatic canning
  • Small batch worthy
Price: $499.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
9.5 quart pressure canner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Simple programs
  • Many safety features
  • Preserves low acid foods
Price: $129.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
25 quart pressure canner an sterilizer Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Heavy duty
  • Can use as a sterilizer
  • Metal to metal seals
Price: $439.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
6.3 quart pressure cooker Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Stainless steel
  • Fast cooking time
  • Retains essential nutrients
Price: $198.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Fissler Vitaquick 8.5 Quart Pressure Cooker

    Pros:
    • Easy to see when the pot is up to pressure
    • High quality stainless steel construction
    • Superthermic base ensures even heating and pressure
    • Easy to seal and features a steam release that keeps burns at bay
    Cons:
    • Expensive for a smaller canner
    • Very heavy when full
    • Some poor customer service issues reported

    If you are one who likes to believe the experts, this Fissler 8.5 quart pressure cooker is the best you can buy per the folks at America’s Test Kitchen. Because I’m a believer in their expert reviews, I actually bought this pressure cooker and canner and I can’t say enough about how great it is. First, it’s made in Germany of high-quality 18/10 stainless steel that’s long-lasting, easy to clean, and heat-resistant.

    Because it has a simple positioning aid on the handle, it’s very easy to align and seal the lid, which is a big deal if you’ve ever struggled with other pressure cookers and canners. In fact, it even has a red/green indicator to let you know you’ve sealed it properly. It’s easy to see when the pot is up to pressure as a blue indicator knob rises up and it has markings to let you know whether you’re working at low or high pressure, depending on what you’re up to in the kitchen.

    An easy steam release button allows you to safely release pressure without burning yourself. What I particularly love is the heavy flat bottom that stays in flat to the cooking surface without ever warping.  The high-grade superthermic base assures even absorption, distribution, and retention of heat, meaning your canning and cooking efforts will be consistent and flawless.

    This pressure cooker can only handle pint jars or smaller, which is one small downside that doesn’t outweigh its attributes. It’s perfect if you’re a small batch canner.

  2. 2. Power 10-Quart Pressure Cooker, Steamer & Canner

    Pros:
    • Extremely versatile kitchen tool
    • Simple to use pre-set functions
    • Comes with a canning cookbook
    • Especially effective for pressure cooking
    Cons:
    • More suited for cooking than canning
    • Waffle surface on pan bottom difficult to get clean
    • Small capacity for a canner
    • Reported customer service issues

    When you want delicious meals cooked fast, you need a kitchen tool that’s quick under pressure. The 10-quart Power Pressure Cooker XL can replace six different kitchen tools with one machine. It can step up as your pressure canner, slow cooker, soup maker, steamer, rice cooker, and can also replace other traditional cookware taking up cupboard space in your kitchen.

    Preserve berries and vegetables from the garden with this unit’s canning capabilities. Or slow-cook your family’s favorite chili, when you’re in no rush to eat. Stack the two cooking racks to prepare multiple dishes at once – steam your fish and vegetables together for even faster meal prep. The digital controls and pre-set buttons make it easy to operate. An added bonus, the removable inner pot is safe for the dishwasher, making cleanup quick and easy too.

    VideoVideo related to power 10-quart pressure cooker, steamer & canner2020-06-24T18:19:48-04:00

  3. 3. Zavor EZLock 12.7 Quart Stove-top Pressure Cooker & Canner

    Pros:
    • Two pressure settings and a pressure release knob to allow steam to vent
    • Heavy gauge stainless steel
    • Works on any domestic cooktop including ceramic
    • Pressure cooks three times faster than traditional cooking methods
    Cons:
    • Pot bottom can scorch
    • No pressure gauge
    • can be hard to unseal after use

    While not all stove top pressure canners are suitable for ceramic cooktops, the Zavor EZLock pressure cooker and canner works on all kinds of domestic cooking surfaces. This 12.7 quart canner features two pressure settings  –  8 and 15 PSI – letting you can and cook even the most delicate foods. A universal locking mechanism means the lid easily locks into place with the simple turn of a knob.

    Constructed of 18/10 stainless steel, this canner is built to last and comes with a ten year warranty. A convenient pressure indicator on the lid lets you know when the pot is up to your desired pressure and the pressure regulator knob allows you to safely release steam when your canning time is through. It also has a safety vent on the side to release excess pressure keeping you safe while it’s in use. This canner can handle four quart jars at once.

    If you’re using it as a pressure cooker, you’ll be able to prepare foods up to three times faster than traditional cooking methods while preserving all the rich flavors and vital nutrients in your food. The deep pot has an 11 inch base, making it preparing meals for up to ten people. It comes with a user’s manual, recipe book, and a stainless steel steamer basket too.

    This pressure canner comes in five different sizes – the smallest at six quarts which would only be suitable for pint and half pint jars.

  4. 4. Fagor 10-Quart Pressure Cooker & Canner

    Pros:
    • Heavy duty stainless steel construction
    • Easy to monitor pressure gauge
    • Perfect for small batch canning
    • Triple safety system
    Cons:
    • High price for a small unit
    • Ten year warranty only covers the metal pan
    • Reports of handle breakage
    • Frequent customer service complaints

    This Fagor Professional Duo 10-quart pressure cooker and canner saves you up to 70 percent of cooking time over other traditional cooking methods. It features a triple-safety system that prevents opening before all the pressure is released. This cooker and canner has two separate pressure settings – 8 and 15 PSI – with an automatic pressure release.

    It also features a simple to use dial format to regulate and release pressure. Made of stainless steel with an encapsulated bottom, it offers even heat distribution which is crucial to both pressure cooking and canning. This nifty little unit is perfect for a couple who wants to do a smaller volume of canning at a time. It can hold up to four quart jars.

    The pot is also excellent for cooking fast under pressure or used as a traditional heavy-duty stovetop pot as it also comes with a glass lid in addition to its pressure lid.

  5. 5. Mirro Polished Aluminum 16-Quart Pressure Cooker & Canner

    Pros:
    • Super reasonably priced
    • Weighted toggle preferred over pressure gauge by some home canners
    • Not as heavy to lift as some
    • Large enough to accommodate good sized batches
    Cons:
    • Vague instruction manual
    • Difficult to find replacement gaskets
    • Reports of poor customer service from Mirro/Wearever
    • Some reported difficulty getting canner up to pressure

    This shiny Mirro 16 quart pressure canner is constructed from rustproof heavy-gauge aluminum. It can process 16 pint jars or 7 quart jars at a time so you can put up a lot of fruit, veggies, and meats all in a single day. It maintains steady pressure with three cooking-pressure options – 5, 10, and 15psi. The reusable over-pressure plug, sure-locking lid system, and side gasket pressure release make this pressure canner and cooker a safe and easy option to use.

    The simple weighted toggle system is preferred by some home canners for its unique sound that lets you know when your canner is up to and at optimum pressure. This cooker and canner is also the key to making great tasting meals at home in 70% less time than it takes with other cooking methods so in case you start dinner later than normal, you can still have a fabulous meal served on time.

    It comes with a cooking rack to keep canning jars or foods from direct exposure to the pan bottom. You’ll also get a handy recipe guide. You’ll also appreciate the affordable price point. This canner is also available in a 22 quart size, but we’re waiting to see when it’s back in stock. 

     

  6. 6. Ball FreshTECH Automatic Home Canning System

    Pros:
    • Super simple to use
    • Great for small batch canners
    • Easy, push button programs for most canning needs
    • Set it and forget it
    Cons:
    • Super spendy
    • Does not work for meat or low acid fruits and veggies
    • Not enough flexibility in using recipes outside those that have been pre-programmed
    • Options too limited for most

    Take the guesswork out of canning with the innovative Ball FreshTech automatic canner. Featuring SmartPRESERVE technology, the auto canner precisely controls the exact time and temperature required to safely preserve most canning recipes without any additional input from the user. Ball’s most popular canning recipes come pre-programmed for perfect results every time.

    All you have to do is simply place your filled jars into the auto canner, press the corresponding recipe number and wait. The auto canner signals when the jars are perfectly preserved and shelf-stable. This countertop unit uses up to 85 percent less water than traditional water-bath canning and preserves recipes up to 30 percent faster.

    This canner holds three quart jars, four pint jars, or six half-pint jars at a time, making it a simple choice for singles and couples. The machine’s temperature, altitude, and time sensors ensure perfect preservation every time. Seven built-in safety features encourage correct operation and help prevent mistakes. This pressure canner also preheats jars for faster canning.

  7. 7. Carey 9.5-Quart Smart Pressure Canner & Cooker

    Pros:
    • Great for canning both high and low acid foods
    • Good for small batch canners
    • Insulated unit keeps your kitchen cooler
    • Simple and fast to use
    Cons:
    • Directions are somewhat vague
    • Has to cool overnight
    • Takes up a lot of counter space
    • A bit expensive compared to other small units

    The Carey Pressure Canner and Cooker has a removable 9.5 quart non-stick cooking chamber that cooks and serves large meals and cleans up easily. With more than 20 built in safety features, this canner and cooker also offers separate programs for various cooking types at the push of a button. Pressure cook, slow cook, bake, brown meat, steam, and cook rice or risotto.

    It also has a separate water bath and steam functions for canning. It easily cans four quarts, six pints, eight jelly jars, or ten half-pint jars in a single batch. Perfect for gardeners and farmers’ market fanatics who want to preserve the freshest produce, this little pressure canner is just right for small-batch canning any time of the year.

    It comes with a jar stand plus a bottom plate to keep things off the bottom surface.

  8. 8. All American 25-Quart Pressure Canner & Sterilizer

    Pros:
    • Likely to last more than one generation
    • Weighted pressure gauge makes operation almost foolproof
    • No gasket required, alleviating replacement issues
    • Comes with easy to understand instructions
    Cons:
    • Very heavy to lift when filled with water
    • Weight makes it not suitable for glass or ceramic cooktops
    • Takes longer to heat up and cool down
    • Fairly expensive

    The All American 25 quart pressure canner and sterilizer is a wicked wonder in the kitchen. It holds 19 pint jars or seven quart jars at once. Made of durable, hand-cast aluminum with an attractive satin finish. Its exclusive “metal-to-metal” sealing system makes for a steam-tight seal with no gaskets that need replacing.

    The geared steam gauge has an automatic over-pressure release to reduce your fears over pressure canning with series of settings of 5, 10, and 15 PSI. While this is an awesome pressure canner, and its high heat means you can preserve less acidic produce and meats safely, it is versatile enough for many other large kitchen cooking tasks.

    Another advantage is that it offers dependable sterilization of household items, which is a plus when killing viruses and germs is top of mind.

  9. 9. Kuhn Rikon DUROMATIC Pressure Cooker

    Pros:
    • Durable 18/10 steel construction
    • Integrated lid locking system
    • Visual pressure indicator pin
    Cons:
    • Pricey
    • Not dishwasher-safe
    • Heat conducting plate is a bit small

    Kuhn Rikon is a Switzerland-based manufacturer with an emphasis on quality and durability. Aside from a durable stainless steel body, this pressure cooker and canner also has an aluminum core for fast and even heat distribution. While it’s on the smaller size, this could easily be used to pressure can small pint and half pint jars.

    Other features include a stainless steel steaming plate and an integrated locking system that holds the lid in place while you’re cooking. A spring-loaded safety valve complete with a visual pressure indicator pin adds an element of safety. The Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker comes with a cookbook and a 10-year warranty.

    This model has a 6-quart capacity. Available sizes range from 5 to 8 quarts.

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Why Should I Consider a Pressure Canner?

I remember my first canning efforts, as well as those for many years to come, relying on a traditional water bath canner. When you're first getting started, there are so many things to think about, from buying canning jars, jar lifters, lids, and rings to thinking about things like sugar and pectin and how to recreate the great jams and jellies your mom or grandma made. 

If you're considering taking on more complex projects that require a pressure canner, it's probably not your first canning rodeo. Whatever your canning challenge, the beauty of pressure canners is that they allow you to use both the traditional water bath canning method, as well as the pressure canning method, so you've got all your bases covered.

Canning under pressure ensures food safety, especially with food items that are prone to bacterial growth. No one wants a case of botulism or other food poisoning threats. It's also faster than a giant water bath canner, coming up to pressure rapidly because you use less water.

Are Stovetop Pressure Canners the Best Option?

There are an interesting variety of stovetop pressure canners on the market, some with the traditional rocker knobs that make noise when the pressure is right, or wrong. Several of those most highly rated models have more high-tech pressure gauges.

Both styles allow you to can at a variety of pressures, from 5psi to 15psi, depending on what you're preserving. You'll want to note, however, that many of the really large models that are larger than 15 quarts are literally so heavy, they aren't recommended for use on glass or ceramic cooktops.

What About Electric Pressure Canners?

Since I, and many of you, likely have a glass cooktop, another alternative is to consider is an electric pressure canner. You'll love the fact that they're total kitchen multi-taskers. You can use them one day to rapid roast a chicken, and the next day to can up quite a few pints of jam.

Because they are insulated, they tend to heat up your house a bit less, but they take a while to cool down before you can put them away, and in the meantime, they take up a lot of space on your counter.

The National Center for Home Food Preservation doesn't recommend using electric pressure cookers for canning unless they are specifically designed to do so. That may mean you can't rely on your off-brand instant cooker to do the job.

No matter which pressure canner you choose, you'll be making an investment in your family's homegrown, healthy meals, and let's be honest, knowing where your food comes from offers some pretty sweet peace of mind. You'll want to snag one before your next harvest.

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