Tis the season for canning all sorts of goodies! If you have a garden or visit your local farmer’s market, you should have access to quite a bit of veggies, herbs and maybe even some fall fruit (like apples!). I’ve been working on tomatoes and finishing up two variety of pickles. There have been a few more zucchini here and there that I’ve been shredding, measuring into freezer safe bags and stashing away in the chest freezer. As I line up the jars in preparation, I’ve been noticing the number of empty, available jars quickly dwindling. It dawned on me the other day, what if I run out of jars and I have more stuff to can? Not a good thing. . .
A few years ago I inherited some canning supplies (and jars) from a family member. I have enjoyed using these old jars. Each time I fill them, screw on the lids and set to process I’ve thought about how many years these jars have seen and have been used before me. If you are running low on jars, there are a few places you can look before buying new. I’ve found garage sales and estate sales great places to look for canning supplies. One time I even found an old applesauce-making-sieve for $1 at a garage sale.
Going into thrift stores is also a great place to look for canning jars. Be sure to check the rim for any chips in the glass if you are going to use for canning (you will need to be sure the lid will adequately seal). In the jars that I received from family, there were a few that have chips out of the rim. These jars I use for dry storage such as dried herbs, dried beans or even rice. I can just screw on the top and not have to worry about an air-tight seal.
If you make homemade gifts for the holidays, now is a great time to start stocking up on old canning jars. The possibilities are endless from soup/dessert mixes, bath salts, potpourri, facial scrubs and canning jar candles.
What different ways do you use canning jars? Do you have too many or are you always looking for more?