Oven Canning Method

I have always canned every year using the old fashioned way of using the hot bath canning method. This year I read of a new way of canning. I fill my clean jars with whatever I am canning and put them all in my oven. Turn the oven on to 250 degrees. When the oven is preheated I turn the oven off. I let the jars sit in the oven for at least 1 hour. When I take the jars out of the hot oven they all seal so easily. Or I can leave them sit in the oven until it cools. I can so much faster using this method. It is wonderful. But now I am reading so much on the internet saying this is not a good way to can and it is not safe. I have never had any problems canning this way and enjoy is so much. Are there any other readers out there that have heard of any problems using this method? I plan to continue using this method.



Inside you’ll find over 40 canning recipes to get you started, along with simple to understand explanations about what to can, how to can, and even why to consider canning at all!

The Homemaker’s Hutch Magazine

Homemaker's Hutch February IssueHomemaker's Hutch Magazine

With Summer just around the corner you’ll find plenty of travel and summer fun ideas in this issue.

Of course there are also some fresh new recipes to try as well as creating family memories, being lazy and more fun stuff. If you haven’t already done so, please stop by the Facebook Page and say Hi.

Click on here to subscribe today!

Homemaker's Hutch Magazine


  1. Anna says

    DANGER—do not use this method. The center of the food does not get hot enough with this method to kill bacteria. Botulism can kill; if you are going to can your own products, please take the time to do it right. The USDA produces a guidelines for canning at home and they are free, please take the time to download, read them, and refer back to the site for updates.


    • Rosa says

      Anna ~ While I think its fine for everyone to have their own opinion based on your comfort level. I do not believe in shoving what your understanding of things down others throats or discrediting someone or discounting hundreds of years of proven success based on what our government has decided to interfere in at the moment.

      I had our local university extension office do a pressure canning class at our local and regional food market that celebrates our local farming and ranching traditions; we had an Elder come in the day before class and mention a much loved pickled corn recipe of her mothers. When I asked the instructor about adapting family heirloom recipes her comment was “do you know what we recommend people do with those old recipe books, card boxes, recipes in general?’ “Put them on a shelf, they are nice to look at.” “we only recommend using the recipes in the books we publish, as they have been tested and deemed safe.” While I’m sure that’s a great money making prospect for them…

      If the 7 generations our family recipes have been through, up to par with their “testing standards”, I don’t know what is. Her question to that was ” Well have their been any unexplained deaths?” WHAT???? Actually, no the deaths have been verified by the doctors (professionals in their own right) and even if there were, what are the chances of it being from improper canning methods?

      Well I’m telling you that is outrageous. That’s like your the code enforcement knocking on your door saying “the university just did a study, and based on their findings it is not recommended and you are no longer allowed to put your pants on one leg at a time.” And he’s a instructional manual for $29.95.

      Again, if you are comfortable with being treated like a moron, that’s your choice.

      Hillbilly Housewife ~ Thank you for sharing lost art.

      • Patricia Lavatai says

        Anna’s reply was not confrontational, nor was she shoving her opinion down anyone’s throat – you are welcome to take her advice (and mine) or not. However, her reply is backed up with solid science. The only foods safe to dry can must have 10% or less moisture content. And yes, the acid content of our vegetables and fruits has changed since Grandma’s time. Actually, food poisoning was one of the 10 top causes of death in the 1940 and 50’s and before, so Grandma was not always right. Where I live people would often drive with their babies on their laps, stating :”No one has died yet.” Guess what ? Someone died. No one has told you you can’t can however you would like, they have simply done the studies and published safety standards that are not going to kill anyone to follow. If you want to take the chance of botulism for you, your family, or your friends that is entirely up to you, but in my mind it is not worth the risk.

      • Gabrielle says

        You made me laugh so hard! Thank you! My Mom has canned this way most of her life. Jams, chickens stock, salasa, if you can can it she did it in her oven. AND WE NEVER DIED OR GOT SICK!

        • cindy says

          I have oven canned for years…fruits and tomaotes…high acid produce…love the method and will continue it!
          I would pressure can meats or veggies

          • cindy says

            There are recommended times for tomatos and fruits and pickles..
            If anyone wants the times I can look them up…my mom taught me this 40 years ago

          • Virginia says

            I would like to have your times and temps on oven cannig. I would really appreciate them. I really enjoy canning, but if something is easier in anything, I’m for it. Thank you so much.


      • Betty says

        I like this ,I was scalded with a water bath after I was told my way was not right and tried it their way ..Not using that again .its dangerous I have been canning for 60 years and never lost or ever had any thing spoil or mold ,Never saw any moldy thing on my canned fruit .I do not use pressuer cooking ,simply because its cooks my vegetables to death , I freeze egetables I Set my jars in 1 inch of boiling water beside my dishpan of fruit which I have added the sugar to my taste and bring the fruit to a rolling boil for about 2 mins Fill my jars and tighten the lids gently ,I have never lost any fruit or tomatoe this way ,And now I.m going to do the oven canning and if you bring the oven to 220 and trun it off how can that be wasteful ,Even though I have a different idea of working with this ,Its seems a lot safer ,I look at my scars every day

      • Kerry says

        For best, most safe canning of foods with water or fat content, pressure cooker canning is the best way. For high acid foods, a hot water bath is a good way to do it, if recommendations are properly followed. For anyone refusing this method of canning because of a burn injury, I think they brought that5 situation on themselves by not being safe. A gallon of water weighs 8.33 pounds. Add in the weight of jars, and the weight of the cooker goes up even further. If a person loses control of the pot and spills hot water on themselves, they set themselves up for it, and got hurt. It is not the fault of the safer method, that the Federal government suggested, it is the users fault.
        Dry goods, oven canning is great. Vegetables and meats, pressure cooker, or as recommended by the USDA hot water bath for high acid foods. All the others who have used what should be considered less thyan safe methods have been lucky, in my opinion. For myself, being safe is far better than doing it the way grandma did it.

      • Cindi says

        Since reading your method, I have done ALL my salsa this way except I heat my oven to 300…(remembered it wrong) Turn it off and leave my jars in until the oven cools…I have not lost a single jar nor has anyone gotten sick. We eat about 50-75 jars a year. I think people should do what makes them comfortable, but should be open to new ideas. Love your blog!! I can any and everything I can get my hands on and none of my family has EVER gotten sick.. Some say there is always a first time and that’s true, but you drive every day and there could be a bad accident and you could die… Should we not drive anymore because we could die? Not trying to be confrontational, just know there are more than one way to skin a cat and if a method isn’t for you .. It doesn’t mean it’s wrong, it just means it’s not for you :)

      • ruth says

        I too have canned in oven. I canned venison, beef, and my own home grown chickens with bone on for years. I just canned dry beans am going to do pumpkin/squash. The most important thing is to reach 250 degrees. With meat I canned for 2 1/2 hours. My dried beans for 2 hours then I let the oven cool on it’s own which continues even longer. Seriously! Do you think anything will live after that? I know the women in the past used a conservo for meat!

        • james tryon says

          do you cook the meat befor you put the meat in jars and put in oven or dose the meat cook wile in the oven itself?

      • james tryon says

        do you put the lids on befor you put the jars in the oven or after takeing the jars out of oven? this is my first time canning.

      • Denise Kellogg says

        LOVE YOUR REPLY!!! I just opened some green beans my grandmother canned in a hot water bath. She added vinegar for acidity. She canned them over 18 years ago. The green beans were good!!! I wonder how many years pressure canning has been tested??? I’m sure not over 18 years!!!!

        • Denise Kellogg says

          And also, my great grandparents and grandparents lived to be in their 70’s, 80’s and 90’s!!! My dad is 73 in November and he still plants a huge garden!! No one in my family died from botulism!!!

    • Marie says

      Unless you have some sort of evidence of the number of deaths or have been poison using this method, I suggest we do not make our self sound “scientific” because some of us who are actually in science find it insulting. There hasn’t been ONE CASE of botulism or death in modern times of people who use the oven method. Second, the moder ovens are far more efficient than the older models. As LONG AS one follows the direction (get an oven thermometer) then using the oven method shouldn’t be a problem in sterilizing/canning. I mean good grief! What DO YOU think we use in hospitals to sterilized things? I mean really.

    • Lisa says

      How could it not be hot enough in the middle when it’s scalding hot when it goes into the jars and then into the oven?

      • ruth says

        You will see it boiling in the jars. Do you think it is boiling only on the outside of the jars? It will not reach a boil till the entire jar is at the correct temp.

    • Terri says

      I used this oven method for years and never had a problem(even baked them on the gas bbque), in fact lost my recipe and just googling to see if I can find one. Going to do it again
      Thanks so much hillbillyhousewife..

    • Debbie Grant says

      Why would this be dangerous? The hear if the product should be accomplished BEFORE it is placed into the jars. The oven simply sterilizes and seals the jars.

  2. Vicki says

    I understand it is perfectly safe for canning dry goods with little or no fats, example crackers (will keep as long as 10 years easily) cereals rice beans etc.. the method acts like the food saver in that it creates a vacuum to seal the jar.. l have used this method for long term storage items I want to keep the moisture away from , it doesn’t work well for some things like powdered milk the heat melts it or dehydrated foods..
    Good luck, and I love your website.. :o)

    • kathy says

      for powdered milk–use the jar attatchment for the seal a meal vacuum sealer–my daughter did this and she sealed rice, beans, powdered milk–all sorts of dried foods—you can get regular mouth and wide mouth attatchements to vacuum seal all sorts of dried foods.

    • Janet says

      That is a brilliant suggestion, to can dried goods. I know I’ve seen images of that but thanks to reading your comment I can see how I can store dried goods by oven canning them. Thank you.

  3. amy says

    I must say I use this method every year for all my tomatoes. My grandmother did it this way as all my aunts. the only difference is I bake the empty jars in 9×13 pan with a little water in the bottom then take each one out, fill it, cover with lid and ring then just set on a counter and cover with towels. I have never had a problem with any not sealing and have never had any go bad. Like I said this is how my family has canned for generations.

    • cary mullinnix says

      i have also done it this way for years with very good results> I have read the warnings but as long as you get the temperature to 250 degrees, it is the same as pressure canning. Get a grill thermometer to verify the temperature if that causes concern

      • carolyn says

        I can this way for pickling and preserves only and have had much success. I still use the pressure cooker for all my summer veggies. I had a dear friend who used the oven for all her canning and she never lost and thing, never got sick, and she is now 95 years old. I am enjoying the website

      • Gabrielle says

        This is a big key! You must have a thermometer in oven to verify the temp. Most ovens are off by a significant amount. My 1 is 25 degrees off and my other is exact but this can change so my oven thermometer is always on rack.

  4. carol says

    I have never did the oven method, pressure canner or water bath. I just don’t have the money to buy the pots that are large enough. I clean my jars and rings. I set the rings lids etc. In a small,pot of low boiling water and i put my clean jars in the oven to keep hot while i prepare my jam vegie tomatoes etc. I then take one can out at a time fill seal and leave on the table for 24 hours to seal. A couple of times i have had cloudy water or a slight white growth on my jam but that’s usually more then 9 months after making them. I throw those away

    • Sandy says

      I don’t get cloudy water, but have had mold get on the top of the jam. It is harmless, I just remove the top 1/2″ or so of jam and refrigerate the rest until it is eaten. There is no bad taste, and have been doing this for 50 years and no one has been sick yet. I’m only speaking of jelly or jam, not other produce.
      Hope this saves you throwing out perfectly good food in the future.

  5. Larkspur says

    I have canned using all of the above methods and only once have I had bad results, with potatoes. If someone has a fool proof way to can them I would love to know how! We can, freeze, or dehydrate about 80% of those items we use. I love looking at all those jars of food for our cold weather. I am trying to add enough fruit trees and berries to cut back on purchasing them. I prefer local to some foreign grown food that was picked green and shipped half way around the world. It just doesn’t taste the same.

    • Robin says

      I canned potatoes a few years ago using a pressure canner. 11 lbs. Of pressure for 1 hour 15 minutes for quarts or 1 hour for pints . I did find that leaving them whe or in bigger chunks worked better than dicing them. The diced potatoes turned to mush. These tasted very good and kept well. I believe I also added 1 tsp. salt per quart for taste.

      • carolyn says

        My pressure cooker recommends 10 lbs of pressure for only 40 minutes for pint and quart jars!! I only do the oven canning for jams, preserves, and pickles as well and have never lost anything!!

    • Becky says

      I’ve canned potatoes for years and they have to be done in a pressure cooker. Oven canning and/or hot bathing don’t get the potatoes hot enough to kill the bacteria in the potatoes. Canning potatoes is a long process but worth every minute you spend doing them!

    • Lee says

      My friend and I can potatoes every year. We use a pressure canner. We peel and cube them and then pack into jars like any other veggie, add a bit of salt if desired and water as with other veggies. Then can in pressure canner as usual. We have also canned with 1/4 jar of potatoes and 3/4 butternut squash together. The two combined make it easy to make a squash soup.

  6. Carla says

    I am still learning about canning and the only thing I have ever done is jelly. I heated up the jars and lids in the oven at 250 and made the jelly. While the Jelly was still hot I filled the jars while they were hot too. I then placed them on the table and they all made the pinning sealing sound. I wonder if you can do this with soup. I would love to can my soup so the kids could take it to school for lunch. Do you think if I cooked the soup and filled the heated jars with the hot soup it would stay without spoiling?

  7. Sandy says

    I would recommend using waterbath directions just to be on the safe side. You can can soups and stews easily, but because of the combination of foods and their cooking requirements, I would look up waterbath instructions and do it that way. You can can just about anything safely, just observe the cautions and recommended canning suggestions.

  8. Cindy says

    I think your suppose to leave them in the oven on 250 for 2 1/2 hours then turn oven off leave them in the oven to cool down to room temperature!!! Don’ t think anything will cook in just a preheated oven then turn it off.

    • Wendy says

      If you leave them in the oven for 2 1/2 hours you will have a mess. It will boil over and you will have overcooked and 1/2 full jam jars. It won’t taste that good either. I will never leave jam in the oven for 30 minutes again. Remember you aren’t cooking it. You are filling hot jars with boiling jam.

  9. Loyda says

    I too was wondering how to do this. I am wanting to seal some dried fruits. I live in the south where the humidity is higher and don’t want anything to end up moldy. I will be trying this for my dried fruit. Hoping it extends the life of the food !

  10. Jerry says

    I have used an oven to can for 40 years, it is safe if done correctly. Getting the temperature of the food hot enough to kill germs either by oven, hot water or voodo does not matter. Bacteria can’t tell and will die when brought up to the proper temperature. Preheat oven to 250, place your properly filled jars in and leave in the oven for 2.5 hours. Turn your oven off and let jars set in the oven until cool to the touch. Remove, test seal and store.

  11. TDI says

    I have oven processed my cukes into pickles for many years and they have always turned out and is so much less messier than the hot tub water baths. I was checking if peaches can be canned this way — in the oven hot water bath?? Anyone know??

  12. Karen says

    I just started using the oven method. Here are a couple hints I can offer. Heat your oven to 350 then turn it to 275. Your jars should have been pre heated and only put in cooked items seal jars and process the time called for (or until the bubble). Do not over cook or use cold jars they will break. It seems to be very tricky way of doing it. Make sure there are 2 inches or more between the jars for air circulation. Not approved by the FDA.

  13. Mel says

    I’ve been using the oven method this summer (after a few years of using the boiling water and pressure canner methods) and this is so much easier and I’ve had good results. I did peaches and zucchini relish in the oven and they turned out great, sealed fine, etc. My grandmother has also used this method for many years and she will be 102 in November.

  14. Heather says

    I’m wondering about this method as well, canning with water is a pain and I don’t have room for all the equipment but I certainly don’t want to poison my family. regarding this method possibly not killing bacteria in the food, I’ve only been canning applesauce and apple butter and can while they are still extremely hot, the heat from them alone makes the lids seal and I just sterilize the cans in the oven. The seal seems to be fine but I will admit it’s not as hard to get the lid off as it is with other jars. I’m just feeling frustrated as I have all this applesauce and butter that I’ve worked hard on and not sure now if it’s safe to eat.

    • Kay says

      I learned this method from my brother in law Marvin, who is 90 years old. He said that is the only way his mother canned. He said to set the oven for 200 degrees and cook for about 3 hours. He said he puts the jars on a shallow cooking pan so if it breaks it will not mess up the oven. I have an oven you can program to turn off so I just set it and go to bed. It has time to cool before morning. I can hear the lids pop just like when you use boiling water and let them sit to cool. It is not nearly so messy. My only concern was not being able to write the date on the hot lid with a crayon but have changed to using a felt tipped marker which works well. I am just getting ready to fill jars hot from the dishwasher with salsa and put it in the oven to seal just as I would tomatoes. ( The recipie said to cold process 25 minutes so I will bake at 200 for 3 hours.) I always test to be sure if it is sealed. If Not sealed Marvin said to Process Again or put in Frig and use.
      September 27, 2013

      • james tryon says

        do you put hot food in room tepicher jars then put them in the oven at 200 or how this is my fist time pleas tell me step by step cold food cold jars hot food hot jars step by step how you do it?

        • Betsy says

          I wash my jars. I also heat jars and lids and rings in boiling water. I like wide mouth jars so I can get my fist down in the jar and pack the beans down to fill them. I use a baking sheet with sides on it. I put 1 teaspoon salt on top of beans in the jar. Pour 1/3 cup of water over the salt in the jar. Put lids on and set jars on cookie sheet in a cold oven. Turn oven to 250* and set timer for 4 hours. After 4 hours turn the oven off. Next morning remove from oven. They have sealed overnight in the oven. I write on the lid using a sharp permanet marker to date them.

    • Lee says

      As with any type of canning, you can usually tell if something has gone bad when you open it up. You will know right away if the seal is broken.

  15. Rosey says

    Why would you go through all the old fashioned questionable methods, when you can just use a pressure canner and be assured that it is safe to eat six months down the road? It’s not a question of ego or how grandma did it, or “no one’s died yet”, it’s a question of do you want to be that one? I know of twins who died of botulism from eating water bathed canned fish snacks.

    I loved my grandma’s and have many fond memories. But there are better, safer methods now and my smart grandmas would be proud to know I use them. I simply won’t take the chance with myself, my loved ones or friends I gift my home canned foods to, by giving them home products canned with questionable outdated methods. I can’t imagine how anyone might feel that gifted that one jar that carried botulism spores not destroyed during processing. It’s just not worth it.

    I too, jarred up jellies with wax years ago and scooped out the mold. Now, I process them in a hot water bath. It’s just safer as well as not messing with hot wax and it looks better. I also feel better about gifting it for the holidays.

    Health and safety first. Happy canning. :)

    • Natalie says

      Botulism can happen in pressure canning as well. You have to make sure your cabs are sealed that is what protects the food and just because a method is old doesn’t mean its unsafe and not as good. One way isn’t better than the other.

  16. NEO says

    I was just wondering…..if I bring my veggies or whatever up to boiling temp. bring the jars up to temp. fill those jars with the boiled soups, vegetables, meats…etc. and then put them in the oven set at 275 degrees for an hour would that kill all those nasty things everyone is so worried about?

    I feel after reading everything I have that as long as the food is at boiling temp when I can it and then put it in the oven that it would kill off those spores…..any thoughts anyone?

    • Gabi says

      Just a thought to all this ‘bacterial’ discussion: My mom used to say: “If it smells okay, looks okay, but you’re in doubt anyway, just cook it for 15 minutes, then enjoy it! I’ve followed this rule all my life (I’m a senior citizen) with great success and a lot less waste.
      I know this probably sounds gross, and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it: Even rotten food won’t kill you if you cook it long enough before you eat it!

  17. George says

    I’m fairly certain that my grandmother used the boiling water on the stove method to put up her preserves, store veg’s, and even mincemeat. To my knowledge, she didn’t have many problems.
    This is how it was done, and it was the best way to do it at the time. We now know that botulism spores can survive up to 240 F. Water that is boiling in the open air can not exceed 212 deg. F. This is true for either the stovetop or oven. Most foods are water based. The only way that boiling water can exceed 212 deg. F is under pressure, hence the use of a pressure canner. Why chance it if you do not have to.

  18. kat says

    To be safe, if you are cooking meat it has to be hat enough long enough to cook through out, and kill any bacteria, it also must be hot enough to seal the jars, my mother inlaw used this method but at 350degrees and for 2 hours with water in a roaster, the meat was also cooked before hand, packed in jars and liquid added to 1in from top. It is very foolish to can something that will spoil, or make you sick, be sure you are safe with your food

  19. Elizabeth says

    Reading through all of the comments, I am personally concerned about the safety of oven canning, regardless of the fact that some have it done it for quite some time without, apparently, poisoning anyone – yet. How many times do you need to get food poisoning? Once did it for me. I survived it, but a small child or frail elderly adult may not. And, just being honest, while in the throes of food poisoning, I didn’t really want to survive it.

    As much as I dislike the powers that be telling me what I can and can not do, I think we must acknowledge that there is SCIENCE behind the methods suggested for preserving food, and those not recommended. Oven canning is NOT recommended. Do your homework and understand the science behind proper methods of food preservation before you decide how you want to handle this very important matter. There is no point in gathering and trying to preserve food only to have it fail. You’ll starve to death like that.

    There is much more to safe home canning than just treating all foods in exactly the same way; high acid vs. low acid; does it contain meat? Even a little? If so, it must be processed as meat IF YOU WANT SAFE CANNING PRACTICE (the least possible risk of botulism). At what altitude will be canning? It matters. How do I adjust for higher or lower altitudes?

    The oven canning methods I read here suggests that one size fits all, and I don’t believe that is true.

    My grandmother was a wonderful self-sustaining farm woman; I thought she was “Superwoman”, and she might very well have been. But, there were some things Grandma did because she simply had no choice. They were not necessarily the best way, and I do not repeat some of Grandma’s ways (though I hold her in the highest esteem).

    Pressure canners do not have to be expensive. I have a nice collection of vintage units, mostly from the 1970’s; they use gaskets and have to be replaced, but you can still get those. My very favorite of all, however, is my 1936 GASKETLESS Kook-Kwik, which still works perfectly. I just pressure canned 28 quarts of beef using it. You can buy them from ebay; just know what you are doing before you buy, or find someone who does. You don’t want one that needs parts for which no parts are to be found. Did that once.

    New units are nice if you can afford a good one; Presto is now made in China and they’re not worth much, IMHO. I have two, and I rarely use them.

    My little vintage Guardian Ware 12-quart is my “go to” for just a few pints or quarts of leftovers after dinner; always a few “quick” meals at the ready.

    SCIENCE tells us that anything less than 12 quarts does not hold temperature properly for a safe canning product.

    Everyone who has an All-American swears by them, if you can afford one. Personally, they’re a lot more work with all those knobs than my 1936 Kook Kwik, which merely has a metal band that fits around the lid/pot seam and one device to lock it down or release it. Sweet.

    A pressure cooker (just a weight but no pressure selection choices) is not acceptable for home canning, though you see them sold for this on ebay all the time. You have to know when your canner reaches proper pressure and how long it has been there. Another reason I am not in favor of oven canning. You can not KNOW this. Of course, 2 1/2 hours of oven time should cover it, but, have you considered how much fossil fuel it takes to run an oven for 2 1/2 hours? Vs. 90 min or less, depending on what you are canning and in what size jar?

    Anyway, not interested in arguing about it with anyone; just hope this helps someone.

  20. Jean says

    I just watched a video for the Survival Summit (29 speakers) and one was on food preservation.
    The oven canning method was only used for dry foods, such as oats, corn meal, flour etc.
    The jars were put into the oven without lids for 1 hour.
    Removed – then dampen the rubber part of the lid slightly and screw on the rings and put back in the oven for another 30 min’s. Remove and cool.
    I bought a Pump N’ Seal which does the same thing but it is expensive.

  21. Malina says

    I think the old traditions are fantastic and good to know and practice. I also know that the germs and bugs are much more aggressive these days. I am thinking of doing the oven canning but adding iodine and citric acid/vit C to my foods (tasting it so I know if the taste changes). Both the Vit C and iodine kills germs and is healthy for the body (don’t believe the too much iodine myth). Has anyone tried this?

  22. Malina says

    Yes having the oven on for 300 degrees for 3 hours defeats the purpose of saving energy. I am waiting on my pressure cooker to arrive to do the meats and veggies. I will start on fruit now.

  23. Dave says

    I have a metal can crimper, I can fill a can then crimp it put It in the oven at 250-275 for a couple hours, the inside of the can will build pressure and heat just as a pressure cooker would, that’s how it’s done in the factory,

    Peaches come from a can, they were put there by a man in the factory downtown,

    As to having an insulated oven on for 2-3 hours using more energy then an uninsulated pressure cooker on the stovetop?

  24. Crystal Parker says

    All the posts have been informative … In my oppinion however I would not trust too heavely in the FDA as they are paid by our government and seriously we got along just fine before they were here…

  25. eddie spagheddy says

    the fruit preserves do not spoil due to the high sugar content binding up any available water (bacteria need available water to do their thing). jelly / jams do not have the same needs for preservation as other things such as tomatoes, veggies, meats. don’t can everything like you would a jelly unless you are an inveterate gambler!

  26. Janet Hatter says

    I gave up my pressure cooker and large water kettles years ago. Oven cooking is so much easier for a senior citizen or a handicapped person. It is safer because it doesn’t blow up or run over on you. So far,(60 years of oven canning) I haven’t poisoned or killed anyone. Small amounts can be canned with large amounts and putting them in the oven, setting a timer to turn the oven off, and going to bed, is easier than sitting by a pressure cooker. My oven is full of quart jars of home grown green beans as I type. They are cooling until morning. When I touch them again, they will be sealed, safe to handle, and ready to take their place on the basement shelf. Try it just once and you will never go through the pressure cooker or water bath method again!

    • Betty Huneycutt says

      What is the step by step way to can green beans in the oven? Do I have to dry them after I wash them? Should I put in any salt or water. Do I put the fresh green beans in a hot jar and do I tighten the lids? Thanks.

  27. Louise says

    I have ben canning for 30 years and no jars never exploded on me. You can on 175 F overnight and leave them in till they are cool. Why would you take jars out or even open doors while they are hot, how silly ?

  28. Lisa says

    I started canning this way last year and everything turned out great. you can make large batches with great ease and let your oven do the tedious work! One can easily tell if the inside got hot enough as the colour of the food changes with heat. I just pickles 9 jars of cukes last night and woke up to perfectly sealed pickles! My recipe doesn’t even include making a stovetop brine. Just add your ingredients, stuff jar, add purified water and into the oven! I am very careful with my sterilization of jars and lids of course but this is by far a better way to make large batches!

  29. Kris T says

    I have used this method for a few years now to can tomatoes. My husband is Italian so I go through tomatoes the only difference is I cook the tomatoes down to sauce consistency so I don’t have to cook down when I use them. This also saves on jars and space in the storage area. But i would think that if anyone was concerned with safety this would heat enough to kill bacteria.

  30. Peg says

    Here’s what bothers me about the method you described-
    ” I fill my clean jars with whatever I am canning and put them all in my oven. Turn the oven on to 250 degrees. When the oven is preheated I turn the oven off. I let the jars sit in the oven for at least 1 hour.”
    This is WRONG! Not nearly the heat and time needed to be safe!

    The proper oven method requires that you place the canned goods in a cold oven, then turn it on to 250 degrees. When the pre-heat beeper goes off…set your timer for an hour and bake those cans well!
    After an hour at 250, turn off the oven…but DO NOT open the door. Leave the cans in the hot over to cool.

    • Jennifer says

      I like the whole idea of canning in the oven. Specially when I have a 13, 9 and 1 year old running around the house. I am wanting to can my deer meat, I have canned with hot pack and pressure cooker. I don’t like using the pressure cooker because I have an anxiety over if will ever blow up on me. Hot packing, well I leave that up to the mother-in-law, too many kids and I am afraid one of them will get burnt. I will do this oven canning starting tonight, question though. Do I put salt in with my meat, and does it have to be plain salt or can I use sea salt or regular table salt?

    • Joy says

      As in all things…use a lick of common sense. Woah is me, all my years I water bath canned, i never covered the jars with water most of the time. I usually had water half way up the jars.[OMG…I even reused a few decent looking jar lids, if the rubber plumped up nice in boiling water] I used hand towels under the jars, and have canned in everything from pasta pots to electric roasters. If you are using hot food, in sterilized jars and lids, your process time might not take as long
      Common sense speaking…if I used cool foods, in only clean , not sterilized jars, I’d bake for at least an hour. This would be fruits, acid based, or vinegar type foods. Meats, metinks the longer 2+ hours would make more sense.

      Just like you would when you open canned food from the store, look at it, smell it, taste test it, before using. The couple jars that ever ‘didn’t make it…were due to imperfections in the jar, which prevented a good seal’ Those I would mark and use for other things.

      Lol..I grew up with my mom using paraffin over jellies. I thought myself Very Modern to actually water bath my jellies, though we never had any issues with the paraffin.

      As a senior now, in a tiny apt, with no room to store big pots….I for one will be trying out the oven method. Wish I knew about it long ago.

  31. says

    Lots of great advice here. Thank you all, I am at my first attempt of oven canning tonight. I think it’s a no-brainer, if they seal, store them. When opened months later, as Mom always said, “if in doubt, throw it out”. Other wise, let food come to a full boil to make sure it’s safe. Items canned with acid/vinegar or high sugar content are safe anyway.

  32. Nancy says

    I also do a lot of canning, much like my Mom and Grandma did; Timeless practices do prove themselves over time. But I feel even more confident with my produce and canning process because my equipment is better. I don’t put paraffin on my jelly anymore, don’t use rubber rings or zinc lids. I have vintage recipes that say to bake in a “slow oven” or a “fast oven”, which translates to me “one log or two”? I am grateful that all I have to do turn a knob to get a burner going, or push a button to preheat my oven to a precise temp. Granted, I still use my antique granite canner and an older pressure cooker that still works fine, but when the stove is full of those and the porch is still full of baskets of produce to work up, I can do an additional batch in the oven. They all come out fine. The FDA and Extension offices give good sound advice, but they endorse sound practice for fear of liability, pure and simple. If something has always worked for you, it probably will continue to work for your children.
    On the other hand, the thing that has me riled up the most is that the canning product manufactures are getting cheap on us. How many of you have had lids buckle or crinkle on you this year? They are thinning the metal they make the flats out of, cutting cost for their process, and possibly endangering ours. I bought a lot of new jars this year; our garden is bigger and no drought, so we are drowning in produce. I had to get more jars, in all sizes from 1/2 pints, regular and wide mouth pint, up to quarts, and bought the traditional name brands, not store brands. Both wide mouth and small mouth flats puckered after processing, some over 50%; they did snap down and sound like they have a good seal, but I don’t know how they will hold up over storage time. Everyone I’ve talked to has had the same thing happen. I taught my daughter-in-law to can this year, passing on a wonderful tradition, but was disappointed in the results; I told her that it was not her fault, it’s the materials. Our new young cooks are anxious to learn this tradition, and so many more people are starting to embrace sustainable living practices; this is a very poor time for manufacturers to cheapen up on us.

    • Doris cook says

      I also noticed the Kerr jar lid rubber seal is not a thick as it used to be! In my area hey are hard to find so I use mostly Ball 2 part lids and bands..

    • Mom to 6 Ls says


      The manufacturers have changed their recommendations for lids. Don’t boil them before hand as you used to do. This is what is making them buckle. The new instructions are to put them in “almost boiling water” for 5 minutes before using them. This will prepare them, but they won’t buckle as you are describing. You are probably right – it is probably cheaper to make them thinner. And they are MORE expensive now than ever! So frustrating.

      I LOVE this website!! I googled canning in the oven and came straight here. I am also a person of science (nurse) and I find the FDA insulting. They use “research” to make it more difficult for us to take care of ourselves. They also twist and use single statistics out of context to scare people to death.

      I am going to try the oven canning method! I am also doing applesauce and apple butter. I know they are heavy/thick. Can anyone give me any tips besides making sure the applesauce is hot enough when it is put in the jars? I had one jar that didn’t fit in the water bath, so I stuck it in the oven to keep it hot. I came down to find out how much time it needed in the oven. (I instinctively turned the oven up to 250 degrees before coming down to see what I could find.) I’m thinking an hour on 250 will do it, since it was ready for the water bath. (jars in an oven at 200, and applesauce bubbling on the stove). I am going to start checking the temp of the applesauce with a candy thermometer and checking the temp of the oven as well. THANKS for all the input on this site!! You folks are amazing!!

    • Rusty says

      In response to Nancy’s comments abut the lids. I have been canning for just a couple of years, so I tend to be by the book method, just to be safe. I have mostly used the water bath method for tomatoes, tomato juice, pickles and peppers. I have also pressure cooked Salmon and Venison.

      I have has the same problem this year with my lids buckling or crimping along the edges. They still seal fine, however they look bad. I pulled one out last week that I had canned in July for a tomato juice libation and my friend said “I am not drinking that, it looks like the jar is going to explode”. I assured him, it was sealed fine and came out of the water bath like that.

      I would estimate 40-50% of my lids did this. I thought maybe I didn’t leave enough head space in the jar. I even followed directions by only pre-heating the lids to 180 degrees for 5 minutes before using. Even used a thermometer for this!

      These name brand manufacturers really need to get with it and quit use cost cutting materials!

  33. Bonnie says

    the method I was told to use is to place sealers in the oven, turn it on to 300 (well above the 212 for boiling) leave in oven for 20 mins. at this temp and then turn off oven and leave sit until cooled

  34. JJ says

    My Grandma showed me this summer how she (just recently) started canning tomatoes in the oven – cover peeled tomatoes in tomato juice, add 1tsp pickling salt and 2tsp sugar, then into the 275 degree oven for 45 minutes and they stay there until cool to the touch! I really like this method since it’s easier to do in a small kitchen. And after reading most of the comments above, I think this method is OK as long as the individual is meticulous with sterilizing the jars/seals and washing the tomatoes well. And, since tomatoes are highly acidic, I’m quite comfortable to continue using this method for my own personal use! :)

  35. Bonnie Senior says

    How can you can in oven, let the jars cool? Then fill jars. How does the lids seal and get the ping sound? Is there a book anyone can suggest for oven canning? I never canned and I want to learn. No one around me cans. Also, can I can dehydrated foods? I have questions and no one to turn too. I would love to learn oven canning and water bath. I looked up on one site and it was too confusing to understand, reading it. I am a hands on gal. I am intelligent, but do need help on some questions. If I can dried foods, they not hot to put in jars and get ping to seal. What about some people that jars flour? I would think the heat from jars would ruin the flour?

  36. Connie says

    Well I tried an experiment that went wrong. Instead of toasting and a water bath to can my pecans, I put a cold jar full in the cold oven with a thermometer inside and the lid firmly screwed on. It took 10 minutes for the temp to rise to 85 degrees, then 20 more minutes to get it up to 240 degrees inside the jar.Then I kept it there an additional 10 minutes. By then the pecans were smelling burnt and I took the jar out of the oven to cool. It didn’t seal and the thermometer face had melted (was supposed to be a meat thermometer, I thot it was a glass face.) Anyway, it didn’t work. I pitched the top half inch of pecans just in case any of the plastic got on them and the rest are still edible. I put them in the freezer. Additionally, the rubberish material in the canning jar lid squeezed out the sides and down the lip of the jar is one reason it didn’t seal. The second problem was that there was a film of oil from the pecans on the inside and a tiny pool at the bottom. That alone would cause problems later on with mold or fungus. Anyway, I will not try again with nuts. (I will go back to the prior method that worked using the water bath after toasting the nuts). Then later I will buy a better thermometer, and if possible, better, thicker, sealing lids before experimenting with some kind of vegetable.

  37. Big Bob says

    I have been oven canning for the past 2 years and have had no problems: been canning cereal powdered milk, flour, etc at 205 degrees for 1 hour.

  38. Ilse says


    I’ve bought a new oven recently and the guide had specific recipes for oven canning (different temperatures and times for different kind of fruits and vegetables), though it was only for fruit and vegetables. I’d like to know if it’s possible to can meat and soup and alike to in the oven. Has anyone even canned something like that in the oven?

    Thanks for your help!

  39. GT says

    I don’t grasp how one would think this method less capable of doing the job than a water bath. Processing a jar in a boiling water bath has it sitting in 212* water for around 10 minutes. Theoretically if you put it in a 212* oven for the same time, you should get the same result. Thermal transfer is the only real veriable which is why hot air takes a little longer (usually) and there is absolutely no reason why proper compensation, i.e. longer time or higher temperature, wouldn’t overcome this. If you are at all concerned for the safety of this method there is a very simple means by which to alleviate them. Can a jar of whatever you enjoy canning, process it in a hot water bath, but when you remove it, open the jar and test the temperature in the center, at the same time, copy the process with a different jar from the batch but use the oven. You will find that with just a little more time (or none, assuming you are adding your food to the jars at or near boiling temperatures) the result will be the same.

    To sum it up in simple terms, there is no magic power in a pot of boiling water, it is just a self-measuring means of accomplishing high temperature (because it boils at a set temperature). Heat is heat.

  40. J king says

    If you google UK jam recipes you will get many recipes for oven canning as that is the most common method used there. The blue chair jam book uses oven canning. They are a popular sf based company. I took a jam making class at Sqirl in Los Angeles and they also taught oven canning. I think as long as you are canning high sugar/acid foods you are fine. Botulism can’t grow in an acidic environment. I would not mess with low acid veggies, meats or anything with eggs or dairy such as curds etc.

    • Ilse says

      Thanks for your reactions! I got an interesting point of view on Botulism from someone whom I met only a few days ago and who only uses the oven for canning:
      When you use the oven, you can use higher temperatures. At 130 Celcius, the botulism can’t survive and thus will be killed. This is a temperature you can’t reach in a water bath, apparently, only with pressure canning. And in the oven obviously.
      So perhaps the oven is kinda equal to pressure canning as far as meat and things alike are concerned?

      Thanks again!

  41. Lisa says

    I don’t have a degree in science, nor did I study at any university to learn the ‘scientific’ facts about various canning methods (which are dangerous, which are not), but dry canning is THE oldest canning method there is and unless something fails (which can happen with any method of preservation), it is safe. My grandmother dry canned, which she passed down to my mother; my mother dry canned, which she passed down to me; I dry can, which I’ve now taught my two adult children ages 21 and 28. That’s 4 generations of a family following the dry canning method and more importantly, EATING foods that were dry canned without any deaths, or food related illness. My ‘facts’ come from the best college in the world – The School of Life – more of us should take faith in what we learn there. Again, I cant and wont say that 100% of jars canned by heat throughout time have been safe – there is always room for failure which is usually user error, not a method failure. I’ll continue to do what works until it doesn’t and for me, that’s dry canning. Thanks for the awesome blog.

  42. Don says

    I just went thru a university / usda course on canning and am astonished at everything they say you
    MUST do to be safe and yea how you should not deviate from their one proceedure. It seems they
    have brainwashed everyone into being afraid to can any other way, especially meat.

    HOWEVER after thinking on this for a bit I can see their point when I see how stupid the average
    person is. NO? They are saying follow these foolproof steps because they realise alot of people are

    The simple thing is if you see how canning works you see oven canning is very acceptible and so is
    alot of other innovative methods. Pressure cookers whole purpose is not the PRESSURE but the
    fact that water under pressure boils at higher temp which is the only way boiling water will get hot
    enough to kill meat germs. ITS THE TEMPRATURE / time THATS IMPORTANT. With pressure cooker its
    no brainer. Ovens vary but being carefull can still be safe if you understand and are not one of these
    fools we talked about earlier. Also you must contend with heating and cooling so jars dont break and
    to make sure they seal just like pressure canning. One more caution about ovens is you dont want to
    fry the lids which is why its off but there are pots slow cookers and……

    Bottom line is UNDERSTAND WHY THINGS WORK and then you will be open to new ideas like out of
    date caned goods and cutting off mold on cheese rather than tossing it and…..


  43. Judy says

    My mom oven canned peaches and tomatoes in the 40s and 50s. I was taught oven canning in jr. high home economics. I have been oven canning for years with no problems at all. After not canning for a while, I came to this site to be reminded of oven temperature and time. Thanks. Got it!

  44. Judy says

    I just finished making seven pints of watermelon rine pickles this AM, using the oven canning method. As usual, there were no problems. Even before I got them out of the oven to tighten the bands I heard “ping, ping, ping . . . .” They all sealed before a minute was up. So much fun! Don’t be afraid to oven can. I learned it in the 50s and have been doing it ever since. I would not do it if I had to do the water bath method. Ugh! You know, what I think, all this fear of oven canning is part of the “war on women” that is going on in our society. They want us to think we are too dumb to do it right. Ha!

  45. says

    I have been oven canning for 40+ years and it is very safe. I have done it for several years because I didn’t can period. Now I am getting back into it and I was wondering if I have to adjust the time and temp because I now have a convection oven. I think I did it at 250 before. I am doing peaches today, and did some the other day. They were great, but a little juice came out. Maybe I should lower the temp to 225.

    Any answers?

  46. says

    A couple of other comment. I make sure my jars are hot, and the lids. Put the peaches in jars add 1/4 t. ascorbic acid (vit c) and of course your syrup, which ever sweetness you like. I make sure the rims of the jars are very clean, and then put on centers and rims. Put them in a cold over, and set the temp to 250. When the temp is reached start timing for time depending on what you are doing. I have typically done 1 hour for peaches, but with a convention oven I am going to lower the time to about 50 minutes to see what happens. Tomatoes are more. I have also done pickled beets, and if I remember right green beans. My mother-in -law canned this way before me, and I have been doing it for 40+ years. It has always been safe for me. After the time is up, do not open the oven, but put a knife or something on it crack the door a little. When my boys were young I would put a sign on the door, do not open! They should be in the oven after it is turned off for about 8 hours. Now I just try to do them before I go to bed at night, and voila- in the morning they are beautiful.

    As a refresher, has anyone done green beans?

  47. Leanne says

    Does anyone know how food smells/tastes if it has gone bad? In my opinion, use whatever method you are comfortable with and then when you open the jar and if you notice it has gone bad (which, if it’s gone bad, you WILL notice! TRUST ME! 😉 ) Then try another method next time. It’s really quite simple! I use both methods for different things and have come to trust oven canning with some and water bath for others. acidic foods don’t go bad as easily as non acidic foods (like canning chicken or corn, for example), and for things like jams, you will see a bit of mold develop on top if it does start to go bad in the jar, which almost never happens for me if i have used either canning method. Happy canning!

    • Lori says

      I just read through every post here and although I respect every opinion on here – I don’t agree. Oven canning, water bath, or pressure cooking put aside… I wonder why anyone would trust any information that makes its way through the FDA, period. Have you not heard about the chemicals/additives/preservatives they authorize to be put into the foods we eat – and then argue the point of them not being bad for us (carcinogens). Please don’t be scared into cooking the nutrients out of your food for the sake of “safety”.

      Now on to my oven canning question –

      Ruth says she has done dry beans in the oven. Could you [Ruth] or someone else tell me how this process is done?!?! Ratios of water, beans, salt…. timing. I would greatly appreciate any help I could get in regards to this.
      And please don’t reply that I’m going to die from doing this. If it’s my time to go and the good Lord uses a pinto bean to get the job done – then so be it! LOL!

Leave a Reply

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