Last year was a difficult year for trying to find canning supplies. Because of 2020 and the canning chaos, I decided to take matters into my own hands for the coming year. If you have ever wondered which reusable canning lids work the best I now have results to share with you before you make your purchase.
The 3 Brands I’m Testing and Why
When it comes to reusable canning lids, options are honestly pretty darn limited. This was disappointing for me. However, it also means that those on the market are doing a good job since the consumer is not demanding a new/updated version.
The three brands that I decided to start with for my review are probably the best known brands throughout the US right now.
Tattler is the most well known brand out there. They are basically the first company that created reusable canning lids. Harvest Guard comes in as a very popular second option and is said to be owned by the son of the Tattler business creator, although I cannot find confirmation of this anywhere.
I also decided to give Weck Jars a chance to make their debut here on the blog. These are primarily a European jar but they are beautiful and versatile. I have lots of good things to say about this brand.
Tattler lids, as mentioned above, are the original and most well known reusable canning lids dating back to 1976. These lids are BPA free which is awesome since we are always looking to keep our preserves as wholesome as possible. If you are interested in learning all the specific health details about Tattler lids you can find that right here.
One of the unique things that sets the Tattler lids apart from the other options is the indentation on their lids on one side. You can see it in the above picture on the top of the image area. I have not been able to find out why this design was created this way. No information on this indentation is provided on the directions for use slip, that is included with your order, or on their website.
Tattler does have a nice durable lid and the gaskets are orange in color. The gaskets fit well around their lid edges.
Harvest Guard is a pretty impressive reusable lid option. This company is said to be founded by the son of the previously mentioned brand. Because of this the products are extremely similar. But let’s be honest, how much can you really change about the way a canning lid looks and works?
When it comes to this product you will find that the lids are very comparable to other brands. They do lack the indentation that you find on the Tattler and I’m ok with that. I also love that they have an option to purchase these lids in red.
I found that many people who have used reusable lids for years say their lids are stained by tomato based items so a red lid would be handy for this.
The gasket of the Harvest Guard brand is very impressive. I like the red color and have found that it fits most securely around any lid brand available.
These jars are GORGEOUS!!!
When it comes to canning jars there really isn’t too much of a difference. I was in awe after a friend told me about Weck Jars. These European based jars are built to last generations.
A friend of mine grew up in Croatia and she assured me that this is what her grandmother used when she was growing up. She also warned me that no matter how hard you tug on that lid ‘unless you pull it’s ears, you will not get in.” This was pretty cute since she was talking about the grand kids stealing grandmas amazing jams and she’s now over the age of 40. What a great childhood memory.
The glass on these jars is thick and durable. Unfortunately their website does not provide additional information about the glass which was something I had hoped to find. I have never found glass as thick and strong feeling as these jars.
An interesting note. According to their website only those products that have the WECK strawberry and word WECK printed on them are true WECK products. There must be a knock off out there trying to get into the business so be cautious when you purchase and go to a trusted source.
I also found this statement on their website which was very interesting to me.
“Only canning jars that are sealed by natural air pressure, that is, in accordance with the time-tested WECK method, provide an adequate warning signal in the form of the loose-lying lid. Jars with mechanical closures (screw-type, thread-type, or wire-bail type) do not have this warning signal.” – From the Weck Jar website.
This really got me thinking about the potential sealing method that we have been using here in the US, the same method that I grew up using. I think it warrants looking into in the future but I’m also not going to give up canning since it has been working for many people for many years following the screw-type method.
My Review Results
For my review I determined that it would be best to do one batch of the same item using all the different jars. I did single jars of both the Tattler and Harvest Guard lids as well as a Weck jar. However, since I really wanted to test the gaskets to see if they are interchangeable I mixed and matched a Tattler lid and gasket with that of a Harvest Guard.
Below I have labeled a clear winner, or winners, in each of these main areas for my review. Yes, I’m sorry in some areas I did have to award more than one winner.
Ease of Use
When it came to the ease of use, I took into consideration the ability to get all the items on the jar easily without too much clumsiness. Reusable lids feel like a lot more work just by adding that one extra item.
Honestly all three brands tested very high in this area. Everyone had a gasket that fit easily around the lid and closed with minimal effort.
I was most concerned about the Weck jar clamps since I had heard others say there was a learning curve. I found the clamps to be super easy to use and get into place. I also found that you have to convert everything. These jars are labeled in liters so recipe conversion may be necessary. They are much larger than a pint size jar but it was fairly easy. I also struggled with getting them out of the pressure canner using my standard jar lifter.
Overall all three jars are equal winners in this area.
When it comes to the cost of investing in each type of reusable option there are some BIG differences.
Tattler and Harvest Guard had comparable prices with Tattler costing a few cents more per lid/gasket set. However, the biggest difference I found was in the price of the replacement gaskets. To learn more about how often you will need to replace your gaskets you can read my other post.
Since gaskets are something you will need to replace after several years, and for the lifetime use of your lids, this is a good thing to know. When it came to comparing the two Harvest Guard won hands down with a different ranging over $10 cheaper per 100 count. That is a substantial difference.
Weck Jars are very hard to compare price wise to the other two brands as they are a totally different product. You cannot purchase just the lid for these jars since they do not fit on a standard mason jar. When purchasing Weck Jars it is an all or nothing deal. To get a dozen jars (6 asparagus and 6 mold jars) it cost me a little over $55 with shipping costs added in. So 12 jars at $55 is not the best of deals. I was also unable to find any type of coupon code or large order discount. This would be a pricey option for a starting canner.
Our winner for the cost comparison section is Harvest Guard! Tattler came in at a close second being very comparable but the cost of the replacement gaskets is very high compared to our winner. Weck Jars came in third but as mentioned it’s really not a fair comparison (apples and oranges or since this is canning should I say jams and jellies).
If you would like to see my spreadsheet price comparison for Tattler vs Harvest Guard please feel free to request it at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The results in this area are truly polar opposites sadly.
Let me start with the best lids and end with the one that is the poorest, or poorest in my experience. I say in my experience since I have heard good things about this brand but did not experience those same results myself.
Weck Jars sealed perfectly when I used them. I was surprised to find how easily the clamps were to put on these jars. Honestly, they were a fear of mine since they are so different than what I normally use. The jars that I used for this canning process, the mold size, worked great. Testing the seal on these lids was super easy as well since they have such a large lid to grasp.
Harvest Guard was also a 1st prize winner. Every single jar that I used a Harvest Guard gasket with sealed. This includes both those that had the Harvest Guard lid and those with a a Tattler lid. I was super impressed by these jars. Their seal seems to be thicker and you can even see how it expands farther out than that of the Tattler.
My least favorite brand by far was the Tattler. I know many people have had great experiences with this brand but I did not.
The vast majority of the jars that I did with Tattler, under the same canning conditions as the other jars, did not seal. This was very disappointing. I have video that you can see of the review coming soon.
The winners in this seal quality are Weck Jars and Harvest Guard.
Here is the running total of seal results (this will be updated as I can more):
Weck Jars: 1 for 1 – 100 percent success
Harvest Guard: 2 for 2 – 100 percent success
Harvest Guard Gasket and Tattler Lid: 3 of 3 – 100 percent success
Tattler: 2 of 6 – 33 percent success
Tattler Lid gasket and Harvest Guard Lid: 1 of 3 – 33 percent success
Which Reusable Canning Lids I’m Going to Keep Using (and get more of)
Hands down in our household we are going to keep using and get more of the Harvest Guard lids. I currently have about 150 lids but I know from a recent pantry inventory that I have over 300 jars. Now that I know how much I love this product, I will be purchasing more of them prior to this years gardening season beginning.
Luckily for all of you I have a great COUPON CODE from Harvest Guard. Use the code ‘canning15’ to save on your reusable canning lids purchase today. Thank you Harvest Guard for providing this great savings on your amazing product.
I will also be continuing to use my Weck Jars. I don’t know that I will be purchasing many more simply because the cost is so high.
If you haven’t had a chance yet to see why I think it’s so important to switch to reusable lids you can check that out first. For our household these were the three main reasons that we found for making the switch for our family.
Thanks for reading my review on reusable canning lids. I would love to hear what your experience has been. Comment below.