Pressure Cooking/Canning is a Food Preparation Method for Preparedness Professionals

You’ve all heard of the mighty pressure cooker, but here is why preparedness professionals such as yourself should own one.

First, let me give you a brief U.S. history of the pressure cooker, because post-SHTF scenarios will look a lot like the days of old. Americans embraced Victory Garden efforts during WWII and to preserve all of this backyard food, American families bought 315,000 pressure cookers in 1943, up from 66,000 in 1942. Demand was so high there was not enough to go around. By 1945 there were waiting lists to buy pressure cookers, so the government advised people to form “canning circles” where several families could share one cooker.

That demand meant numerous companies began producing pressure cookers at reduced quality, and the cookers began to take on a poor reputation as inferior construction resulted in pressure cookers blowing their tops and sending food all over the kitchen. Combined poor reputation and the advent of the microwave oven, frozen meals and pre-packaged foods, use of the pressure cooker waned; but today pressure cookers are gaining in popularity again and have multiple safety features with improved vent systems, reducing the risk of unintended stove top explosions.

Why are pressure cookers great for survivalists and preppers? 3 reasons:

Preservation – the pressure canner is required to safely can low-acid vegetables (just about everything but tomatoes) and meat. The problem with not using a pressure canner for these is clostridium botulinum, the bacteria that causes botulism (food poisoning). The bacteria are harmless until it’s in a moist, low-acid, vacuumed environment – like a sealed jar.

Less Water – it only takes a little water in the bottom of the cooker to produce the hot steam needed to cook your grub. Less water for cooking means more water for other things. The sterilizing abilities of the pressure cooker are also used as a way to sterilize water; so if you find yourself need to turn crap water into potable water, the pressure cooker is your friend. The save water and make water!

Less Energy – cook time is reduced by about 70% … let me say that again – cook time is reduced by about 70%. In countries where natural gas, propane and electricity are very high, everyone has a pressure cooker. Canned food also doesn’t require refrigeration; a canner saves energy all around! Need I say more? Okay, I will.

The short cook time means you have just that, more time. Dinner doesn’t take as long to make. Also, because the food doesn’t need to be immersed in water, the food’s vitamins and minerals are not leached away into the water – it’s healthier!

– Ranger Man

BTW: I used the terms pressure cooker and pressure canner. A “pressure canner” is a large “pressure cooker” used for sterilizing jars and cooking very large meals. A pressure cooker is generally too small for sterilizing canning jars, but is more convenient for most cooking purposes.

The top image is courtesy of Phil801 at Utah Preppers.

7 comments… add one
  • Bigus Macus July 24, 2010, 6:29 am

    Another item that’s a must for your Pressure Cooker are spare parts like gaskets, seals, gauge, regulator.

  • TFF July 24, 2010, 8:21 pm

    I like the All-American pressure canners. They don’t use gaskets and have a metal to metal seal. This things are built like tanks and will last many generations. I have the All-American model 930 30 quart canner. I got the larger model so I can use the quart and larger canning jars. In my opinion it is a very well built and great quality canner built to last a very long time.

    If you shop around you can find them for around $265 give or take.

    • Ranger Man July 24, 2010, 11:44 pm

      Funny, we just bought an All-American; will post about it.

  • anonymous6.8 January 12, 2011, 3:23 pm

    Reading your article I was wondering if pressure cookers/canners had a 4th benefit … as an improvised autoclave if post-SHTF someone with professional skills needed to sterilize surgical instruments. If someone who lacks the skills has some of the necessary “tools” and someone with the necessary skills bugged out lacking the tools … serendipity.

  • razr June 30, 2011, 10:17 pm

    not sure if my next big purchase will be a pressure canner or a good generator……Now to the good stuff…..This usually does not work@ a Dr’s office……but most Hospitals are so very wastful……they usually have premade sets of cutting,scissors,staple pullers etc…….Just say, hey can I have those to add to my med kit…..most of…. the time they will give them to you as they throw them away…..I steam mine then put into Sun Oven…Now use sterile gloves…..wrap in sterilel gauze…..then use food saver if you have one……if not I guess freezer bags would work…..I have hundreds of dollars in med equipment from my last hospital stay…….Just ask…..what could it hurt!

  • razr June 30, 2011, 10:19 pm

    must say sorry for mis spells….I type before I think…..and my spell check is out…..sorry

  • hermes Bombay July 27, 2011, 9:00 am

    Once I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the identical comment. Is there any approach you’ll be able to remove me from that service? Thanks!


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