How to Open Jars

Safely, Without Hurting Your Hand, or Breaking the Jar

How many times have you started making something, only to get stymied by the jar of salsa or other ingredient refusing to open?

How to Open Jars

Don't fight with it, making it worse and hurting  your hand.  Here's my tip on opening reluctant jars.  These are the kind of one piece lid, with a rubber gasket, such as those that hold salsa or spaghetti sauce.  The trick is easy!

Run the hot tap over the jar lid.  Do this for a minute or two.

How to Open Jars - run it under hot waterHow to Open Jars - Step 1; run it under hot water...

Then, dry off the jar.

Hold it upside down, and bring it down firmly onto a folded towel on the counter. 

Do not tilt it, hitting only one side.  Make sure it's upright. 

Then, it will open without the need of cursing, sore hands, or broken jars.

How to Open JarsHow to Open Jars - turn the jar upside down and firmly thump onto a padded surface...

How This Works;

These lids have a rubber gasket on the inside of the lid, sealing out air.  When you run it under hot water, the gasket will soften.

How to Open Jars - the lids have a rubber gasketHow to Open Jars - the lids have a rubber gasket to seal our air - see the arrows? Those are pointing at the gaskets...

Firmly hitting the counter (cushioned by the folded towel) breaks the seal, making it possible to turn the lid.  Even those of us with small hands will have no problem with it after it gets this treatment.

Make sure you don't just hit one side of the jar - get it perpendicular to the counter top first, then do a controlled fall, by using the weight of the jar.

Hitting on one side may cause the glass to break.  If this happens, discard the whole thing, you can't risk having broken glass in your food.

Alternatively, use the hot water method, then tap all the way around the lid with a heavy spoon to break the seal.

Tip: if you're putting jarred foods in the fridge, break the seal on the lid by turning it until it pops open prior to refridgerating.  If you don't want to put it in the fridge, don't disturb the lid, and store it in the cupboard.

If the lid still won't come off, use a Theraband to grip it more firmly.  Your hand won't slip with it, like it does with a tea towel or other cloth.

These jars and lids can be used again, but not for any kind of food that could spoil. 

I use them once or twice for leftovers, or more permanently for dried staples.  The lids will never seal properly again, so don't use these for canning or preserving.

Please recycle responsibly!

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