How Does A Pressure Canner Work?

A pressure canner is a modified form of a pressure cooker that does a lot of work besides cooking. It is used for a lot of purposes like cooking, sterilization, cleaning and sealing of light acidic foods to prevent their deterioration. Using a pressure canner might sound delightful and advantageous in many ways, but the main question arises: how does a pressure canner work?

How Does A Pressure Canner Work

Pressure canners are preferably used for sterilizing and pressure packing the foods that are needed to be preserved and canned. It limits the growth of bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms that can alter the taste of food or can damage the consumer’s health. So let’s dig into this article and see how a pressure canner works so it could become easier for you to understand. Also read 6 Best Pressure Canners For Glass Top

The science behind how a pressure canner works:

Tight sealing:

A pressure canner is made above aluminum or stainless steel. It has a lid that locks without leaving any space. You can see that it is a more advanced form for a pressure cooker in structure. This lid has locks, and rubber sealers let’s that Maintains the vacuum inside the scanner. There is a pressure regulator with the help of which we see the pressure being formed inside the scanner. Weights are also present on the steam outlet to adjust the pressure according to your needs.

Basic science:

The science behind how does a pressure canner works is that the pressure canner has elevated temperatures ranges compared to a pressure cooker. It can range up to 240 degrees Fahrenheit, which is optimum to kill all the bacteria and their sports present in it.

When low acidic foods on containers and jars are placed under pressure, can bet any gadget starts to work. With the help of elevated temperature and vacuum environment, the pots are disinfected and reported from being pickles or damaged in the future.

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Pressure is the key to canning:

To build the pressure inside the pressure canner, you must let the steam vent out for at least ten minutes. We do it because the extra air present in the canner can lower the pressure canner’s internal temperature, which results in that you canner might never reach the elevated temperature of 240°F or more required for stabilization canning.

After letting out the excessive steam for ten minutes, we add manual weights to close the vent as well as to increase the pressure inside the canner. These weights help you regulate the pressure inside the canner. You can see the pressure generated inside through the pressure meter situated in the pressure canner.

Heat distribution:

The vacuum pressure canner is tightly packed and vacuum from the steam outlet. The heat starts to generate in the camera through the burner. Warmth spreads through both conduction and convection with the help of steam particles exchanging heat with the moisture droplets in the canner.

The time-efficient heat distribution helps the canner heat up to a temperature sufficient to kill all the bacteria and their tough spores. This, along with a high-temperature range, seals tight the jars to preserve them for several years.


These are the simple points elaborating how does a pressure canner work? We tried to elaborate it in as simply as we could.

Why you need to use a pressure canner:

So we all know that cooking food results in enhanced flavor and kills bacteria and certain microorganisms that can be harmful to the human body. When it comes to preserving food for a longer time, edibles’ having low acid content gets prone to pickling and becomes a site of bacterial growth. One of these dangerous bacteria is C. Botulinum.

This bacteria is foremost responsible for food poisoning, and can its toxin is lethal in several ways. Its spore is highly resistant to heat and hence, is not destroyed by pressure cooking or any other means except pressure canning. We know you might say that you have never experienced some toxicity and items with canned food, and we are happy that you didn’t, but what is wrong to go for extra steps of sterilization and protection for your loved ones?

So if you are willing for long-term preservation of food, it is an excellent time to use your pressure canner to stave off and extra and dangerous health issues of the future.

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Precautions for using a pressure canner:

Although pressure canner is pretty easy to use and is highly effective for food preservation, there are certain things that you want to keep in mind while handling it. Old users of a pressure canner might know its precautions, but if you are a newbie and want to run it safely without any damages. After knowing that how does a pressure canner work, follow these essential safeguards while operating it.

  1. Three inches of water depth is enough in the canner. You don’t need to drown your container on it. Also, do not let your pressure canner get dry by adding less water. Water should be enough to generate steam without taking extra time to heat up.


  1. Please do not open your pressure canner till the pressure inside it is zero after all the procedure. If you open it too early, there are total chances that your jars will burst due to the pressure difference. Let them cool and stay in there for a while to release all the pressure for a safe opening.


Summarizing this entire article, we came to know the physics behind how does a pressure canner works. Its working is a combination of its build material, body, pressure generation, steam heating and regulation. It helps to seal you food for a long time while performing other function like cooking.

Along with that, we came to realize that how pressure canning helps to kill bacteria and other microorganisms that are harmful to our health. While Using a pressure canner, there are also some precautions that one wants to take while handling it that we mentioned for safe usage.

We hope that this article has brought up a ton of insights and will help you understand this kitchen machinery very well. Thank you for reading this article. We hope to see you with a new one pretty soon.