12 Canning Supplies You Should Be Stocking Up On All Year Round

12 Canning Supplies You Should Be Stocking Up On All Year Round

Food shortages (or the threat thereof) have driven more people to grow and preserve their own food. This trend has caused shortages of many canning supplies and ingredients that we have always had good luck finding in the stores. If this year has proven anything, it has proven that people who stockpile goods are not crazy. 

While things seem to be in short supply now, you can still find these items if you are creative. Thrift stores, garage sales, Amish stores, small-town grocery stores, and some online retailers could still have supplies. If not, all is not lost. These supplies should be coming back into stock in the next year. If you keep a good eye out and be diligent in buying them, you won’t be caught in a pinch next canning season.

Your list may look a little different, but I know I’m not the only person who uses these items. This list is things I find myself commonly using every canning season. While I have not had trouble finding lemon juice, sugar, and vinegar, I have noticed that these other items have been a little thin or nonexistent on the shelves. While you may not be able to find them now, they will be back in stock, and you should be buying them then.

12 Canning Supplies You Should Stocking Up On All Year Round

1. Jars – While I would always have a good supply of all sizes, pint-size canning jars are the most popular, with good reason. They are the perfect size for many of the food you preserve and you should be stocking up on them, especially when you find them. I also find thrift stores can be excellent places to find canning jars of any size.

2. Lids and Rings – These can be in short supply during a regular canning season, so most experienced canners already stock up on them. Add in food shortages, aluminum shortages, and more demand; canning lids and rings have been hard to find. If you do find them, buy them. I always grab 3-4 packages a month anyway, but I will continue to do so once I see them on the shelves again.

3. Canning/Pickling Salt – While a box of this salt goes a long way, this can be used for more than pickling and canning. However, I keep a few boxes of this salt on hand, just in case. Canning/pickling salt is preferred for canning because regular salt can cause cloudiness in your jars after being processed.

4. Lemon Juice – This item doesn’t seem to be in short supply right now, but since it has multiple uses besides canning, I keep a healthy stock of lemon juice on hand. I use this a lot when canning tomato products since it helps boost the acidity levels in the final product. 

5. White Vinegar/Apple Cider Vinegar – This is another item that doesn’t seem to be in short supply at this time, but vinegar has so many uses besides canning and cooking. Vinegar is something you need to have on hand in good quantity to use when you need it. 

6. Sugar and Honey – These things you should already have a good stockpile because they have a long shelf life and are used for many cooking/baking/canning recipes. As we saw earlier this year, sugar, along with flour and yeast, got a little hard to find on the store shelves. It would be best to keep these on hand for your future needs. 

7. Pickling Spices – Whether you buy the pickling spices already prepackaged or if you use the individual ingredients, this is also an item that can be in short supply during the canning season. I remember one year, I had to order celery and mustard seeds online because our local grocery stores were out for a few weeks. I was in the middle of pickling cucumbers and zucchini and needed them sooner than later. 

8. Mrs. Wages or Ball Canning Packets for pie filling, pickles, salsa, and sauces – Some people use these and others don’t. I use some of them because I like their pizza sauce packets. I have also used salsa and pasta sauce packets. I can usually find them year-round, but they fly right off the shelves in my area during the canning season. 

9. Fermentation lids and weights – These come in handy, especially for small-batch fermentations. They sit nicely on top of the jars. While I don’t think there will ever be a shortage, you never know what is coming, and having an easy way to preserve food from spoiling is good. 

10. Pectin – While some people do not need to use pectin to make their jams and jellies set up, I have found I need to use it. Whether you use Sure-Jell, Ball brand, or Ponoma Pectin, you also should have a good supply of this in your cabinets. Again, this can be harder to find during the canning season since everyone is using it simultaneously. 

11. Pickling Lime – This is used for making pickles, especially from scratch. I also use this for water-glassing eggs, so I always have a bag or two at home. Food grade lime (or hydrated lime) will be good for a minimum of six months and longer if stored in cool, dry conditions. 

12. Cheesecloth – This is good for straining liquids like jellies before you add the pectin. I also use this to line my strainers for fine straining. I have also used it for tying up spices because I want the flavor but don’t want to fish out the little seeds and whatnot. Cheesecloth can also be reused if you want to wash it. 

Check out this article if you are wondering what canning equipment you should have to efficiently and safely preserve your food. 

In addition to these items, if you use vacuum sealing bags or even freezer resealable bags, you should also be stocking up on those. I am also a fan of the Ball Freezer Cups for jams, broth, and garden produce I want to freeze in an exact quantity. I also like to use Clear Jel when canning pie filling since it doesn’t make the final product look cloudy. 

I realize that you don’t need vast quantities of some of these items, but you do want large amounts of other items. This year may be an indicator of what could happen again in the future and it’s better to stock up over a year than to be worried when you are canning again.

Thanks for reading,

Check out these books to help you be more prepared for the future! 

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One thought on “12 Canning Supplies You Should Be Stocking Up On All Year Round

  1. Hi Erica! Over here in NW PA we are short on a lot of things. Apple cider vinegar, caps and bands, jars of any size, any Mrs. Wages pickling packs and I am hearing now the tattler supplies are depleting. I can say first hand that the Amish are competing for supplies. They have none in their stores here. The last place left to find anything is garage sales, sale barns where they sell livestock and produce and maybe your great aunts basement. I have had more friends and family contact me asking where can I find (fill in the blank). My brother went as far as to say "You don't look so crazy now, do you?". I just laughed and said No I don't!
    Here's what I am hearing is next. We've had the appliance shortage. We've had the lumber and hardware shortage. From a reliable source, we are told plumbing fixtures are next. Anything pvc. We stored a few sizes of line and extra elbows and connectors and cleaner and glue in case of a break. Hope this helps someone in the community!

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