How to Use a Double Stacker Pressure Canner
A double-stack pressure canner allows you to can two layers of pint jars at a time. These canners operate in the same way as a traditional single-layer pressure but include two racks for safe placement of jars. Reading the manual that accompanies your double stacker pressure canner is the best way to learn about safe operation, though a double canner can be used in a few simple steps.
Prepare the canner for pressurization. Insert the canning rack inside the canner and place prepared, filled jars in a single layer on top of the rack. Add two to three inches of water to the canner and then place the second rack on top of the first layer of jars. Add the second layer of jars to the top rack.
Close the pressure canner lid tightly. Place the canner on the largest heating element on your stove top and turn the heat to high. Allow the water to boil inside the canner and watch for steam to vent through the petcock. Time the canner for 10 minutes once you see steam exhaust from the petcock.
Close the petcock if using a pressure canner with a dial gauge, or place the weighted gauge over the petcock for canners without a dial gauge. Watch for pressurization to reach the required level for the food you are processing by reading the dial, or listening for the weighted gauge to rock, if applicable.
Maintain correct pressurization by adjusting heat on the burner as needed. Process jars for the required amount of time for the foods you are canning.
Remove the canner from the heat element once processing time has been reached. Allow the canner to cool and depressurize for 45 minutes. Remove the weighted gauge, or open the petcock, once depressurization is complete. Open the canner by lifting the canner lid away from you. Remove jars using a jar lifter.
- It is fine to allow jars to touch each other during double stacking. Be sure a rack separates the top layer from the bottom.
- Some double stack pressure canners allow one layer of quart jars on the bottom and a second layer of pint jars. Consult your manual to see specific features for your model.
Elizabeth Otto has been writing professionally since 2003. She is a licensed emergency medical technician-intermediate with over 10 years of experience in the field. She has worked as a clinical assistant in family health and emergency medicine since 1995. Otto is a freelance writer for various websites and holds an Associate of Science in medical assisting from Commonwealth College.
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