Sunday, February 6, 2011

Using Tattler Lids.....

Last Fall, I attended the Self-Reliance Fair held in SLC.  I was pleased to see a booth sponsored by Tattler Lids.  These are reusable Canning lids.  I had read about them and looked at them on-line, but hadn't purchased any because I wanted to 'touch' them first.  I realize that may sound a bit silly, but I just didn't want to take a gamble.

The gentlemen at the booth were very humble men from the Midwest.  I asked them a number of questions about their product, including "Why don't you sell these through major retailers?".  What was their answer?  They were a bit "afraid" to do so as they were not sure they could keep up with the demand.  However, they were considering talking with local retail grocery stores at the time.    I purchased a box of Regular and  Wide Mouth lids.  It wasn't until now that I actually tried them.

This is the contents of one box.  These are regular sized lids. They are plastic lids  (BPA free) with separate rubber seals.  As I mentioned previously, they are reusable. The gentleman said that he is aware of folks using them up to 20 times. 

I decided to can some beans so that they were available when I decided to make a chili etc.  (For directions on how to can beans, please go here). 

The directions say to scald the lids.

You also scaled the rings.

Pack your food as you traditionally do, wipe off the rims of the jars and inspect for any chips or imperfections along the bottle's edge.

This is a lesson I had to learn twice.  Put the rubber seals in the indented edge before you put the lid on the jar.

Put you combination lid-seal on the top of the jar. Place your ring on the lid/jar.

Although I couldn't do this and hold the camera at the same time, put one finger on the middle of the lid and tighten the lid with your other hand. Then TURN BACK THE RING 1/4 OF AN INCH. This allows the 'product' to vent during the processing.

Place your jars into the canner and process the food according to the directions.

Here is one quart of beans that I had just taken out of the canner.  One site that I read suggested that you tighten the lids at this time.  I would highly recommend that you do this.  Even though it is hot, use hot pads and tighten the rings.

After the food is cooled, remove the metal band and determine by feel if the lids are securely sealed.  You will not hear a 'pop' sound with these lidsJust for your entertainment, after I determined that the seal was tight, I turned the jar upside down to show you that it is sealed without a ring.

Here I am testing the wide mouth lids.  The first time I tried them, I put the seal and the lids on separately....and they did not seal. The second time, when I put the seal on the lid before I applied it to the jar, it did seal.  For me, after checking to see if you have a seal with the wide-mouth, then put the rings back on tightly and check the next day to be sure.  That seemed to work best for me.

Can you see the ridges on the seal? That was the side that was on the jar. Flip them over to the other side for the next use.

To remove the lid, insert a butter knife between the rubber ring and the jar lid. This will not cut the rubber ring.

To purchase them, the smallest size that they come in are 3 dozen lots.  The Regular Mouth lids cost (as of this writing) $20.95 and the Wide Mouth cost $23.95. Before you decide that this is too expensive. the cost is actually just under $7.00 per dozen for Regular and $8.00 per dozen for the Wide Mouth.  If you recall, they can be used over again.  After 3-4 uses, they will have paid for themselves and you still will have many more canning sessions that they can be used for.

A few of things to take into consideration:
  • You will want to use pieces of masking tape or a grease pencil to mark the contents of your jars as the lids are reusable.  I have always used a Sharpie, but is a permanent ink.  Use something that can be temporary...even labels would work well.  Just apply them after the jar has been processed. 
  • You will need to train your family not to throw these away and have a container to store them in.
  • If you are canning things to be given as gifts, you will want to use disposable lids.
  • You do not need to store large amounts of canning lids to be prepared, you will have them on hand.
  • They can be used for Hot Water Bath Canning and with Pressure Cooker Canning. I specifically chose to try the Pressure Canning to see how they stood up, and they did not warp or change.  I was pleased with that.
There is not a supplier in Utah right now, although I am working with a local store to see if they would be willing to stock them.  So, for now, go to their website for more information.


Mom's Cafe said...

Waving hi from Canning2 :) I too have been using the Tattler lids. While they don't ping, there is just a slight indent in the centre when sealed. When I first started using them I had a couple of seal failures. These were quite apparent as the lid was very loose, sliding around when the ring was removed. I find with the Tattlers they are either sealed or they aren't with no worries of false seals.

The Little Red Hen said...

Thank you for your comment. I hope to get more comfortable with these as I use them.

Darlene said...

This is a great and much needed post. I have been reading a lot about the Tattler Lids but have not found any instructions on how to use them or how to tell if they actually sealed. Now I know, thanks to you. Because so many canners are in the same boat as myself I posted a link to this post on my blog.

The Little Red Hen said...

Thank you Darlene.

Sharon said...

Hi there, I think I was at that Expo! :) Anyhow when I came across your review I just had to say that. I'm sharon from

So glad the tattler lids are working for you. I really like them.

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