The All American Pressure Canner is a a top of the line canner. You can't go wrong buying any of the models available.
I own both the Presto Pressure Canner and an All American 921 Pressure Canner.... and I have to say both are good canners.
I used to always tell people if you can afford it, go with the All American. however, after having both brands for a couple of years, I find I use my Presto just as much (if not more) as I use my All American Canner. So it really is just a matter of personal preference.
The All American comes in several model sizes. The smallest holds 4 quart jars. This is the smallest size recommended for pressure canning. The largest is a giant! It will hold 19 quart jars! This would be for the serious canner.
They are a bit different from other canners in the way they work. Other brands of pressure canners use a rubber gasket in the lid to form the air tight seal.
The All American Canner however does not have such a seal. It uses a screw down clamping system that fits the lid to the body of the pot metal to metal. This forms the seal that allows the canner to come to pressure.
These canners have same features as other canners as far as safety features. they have an overpressure plug and vents to release pressure
A dial on this canner allows you to monitor the pressure reached during processing but it is considered a weighted gauge canner. So... you'll rely on the movement of the weight to determine when you are at pressure.
I have read a lot of reviews of the All American Pressure Canner. They are overwhelmingly positive.
The only complaint that I have noticed mentioned on more than one occasion is that the lid is sometimes hard to remove after processing. Almost always if someone mentions this problem there are several responses stating that they have had no problems and suggest lubricating the lid with oil. This prevents the lid from sticking.
I've never had my lid stick. Ever.
The only time I've ever had issues with my All American Pressure Canner is one time when I had the lid screwed down crooked. The lid started steaming out the side which alerted me to the problem (which is a good thing!) I had not reached pressure yet, I was still in the venting time so I simply turned off the heat, realigned my lid and started over. No problem.
If you are not sure what I mean by the 'venting time' Check out this page. It goes through the process of using a pressure canner step by step.
When you are thinking about what size All American Pressure Canner to get you need to remember that the models 930 and 941 are BIG. Very Tall. So if you think you want that capacity to do large batch canning and get 14 jars done at a time they are the way to go.
However... be sure your stove can handle the size. It is the height that causes issues at times. Measure the distance between your stove top and hood (assuming you have a hood) there needs to be some space between there so steam can vent and you have room to get jars in and out of the canner.
My hood is not high enough to allow that room. My canner is the 921 model which can double stack pints, but not quarts. I love it. It is perfect for my needs. My family is shrinking and I find myself doing more pints lately anyway.
Consider also the weight of the pot itself. You won't be moving it when full, but the canner itself is large and heavy.
But if you have the large family and you have the room on your stove consider the larger canners. You don't have to run it double up with 14 quarts. You can run it with just 7 quarts, but that capacity is there if you need it.
The All American is surely a good canner and I don't think you'll regret the investment.
(Port St Lucie, FL)
"I purchased an All American 921 pressure canner last year (2009) after deciding to expand my canning abilities. I had been water bath canning for approximately 1 year before that. I did a lot of research on the internet as none of my family or friends can and there weren't any stores in my area that sell canning supplies (other than jars, lids, and that kind of stuff.
I found the 921 on Amazon.com at a really good price. I like the canner a lot, it is fairly easy to use. It came with a nice booklet full of instructions, tips, and recipes.
They do recommend lubricating the seal edge with Vaseline before the first use and occasionally after that. I did have trouble removing the lid on the first use but haven't had that problem since.
I like that it is nice solid piece of equipment, it's made here in the United States of America, and should last a lifetime if properly taken care of.
I do admit that the first time I used it I was little scared (the whole idea of the pressure and did I seal it correctly), but it has gotten so much easier every time I use it.
So, overall I would say shop around on the net, check out Amazon, and go for it.... it's worth the investment."
"I LOVE the All American Canner 921. Bought one last year when I decided to can more than tomatoes and fruit in a waterbath canner. I like the fact that it doesn't use a rubber gasket (less parts to degrade or get lost).
In the instruction book it tells you to use a little petroleum jelly (Vaseline for us) around the rim. It will create a very tight seal if you don't pay attention and open the canner when the pressure dial gets to zero...the longer you let it go, the tighter the seal. You can easily pop it open with a screwdriver.
So far I haven't found anything I didn't like about it. Best of all, I really like processing 19 pints at one time. What a time saver!
After the garden canning season is finished, I will be using my All American 921 to can stew meat and chicken breasts.
I would definitely buy it again. It is expensive but I would rather buy something once than get a cheaper or poor performing canner and then wind up buying this anyway.
I think canning is the most time saving method of perserving food for a working person like myself. No defrosting time, just open a jar or two and you can have a meal ready in no time. Plus it is a great satisfaction that you did it yourself."
(Lincoln Univ, PA)
"I have been an organic gardener for 30 years and been canning almost as long. About 15 years ago, I needed a new pressure canner and bought Model915. I considered going larger but I am in my 60's and wasn't sure I could handle anything heavier.
Not having a rubber gasket is really nice - no worries about it stretching, drying out or failing. And the way the All American Canner is made, you have confidence that the top will make a solid seal with the bottom.
Well-made and well-designed, I know this pressure canner will outlive me and I actually added it to my bequests in my will so someone who will use it when I'm gone can go on enjoying this wonderful tool."
"When my husband and I were married 26 years ago, one of my first purchases was a 921 All American Canner.
My mom had always canned with a Presto, always checked the rubber gasket every year, etc, and so, when I saw a canner that did not require that, I was excited.
It was a more expensive canner then, but worth every penny. I can remember having to help my mom untwist her canner top, and was so delighted to only have to unbolt the little screw bolts and do a little turn, and the top would lift off easily.
I have used the canner on gas stoves and currently use it on a Wolf electric cooktop with great results. It is very responsive to the stove when I am expelling the steam, when I am raising the pressure and then when I get to the correct pressure, it is easy to hold the temp (kudos to both the stove and the canner).
I love this canner. My mom actually likes to join me when I use it--she likes it too. I have not had any problems with the lid sticking. I do keep the surfaces clean and am careful to tighten the lid evenly as the instructions describe.
The canner gives good instructions on how to can and to actually cook in the canner, but I use it exclusively as a canner."
"I love my All American Canner. I bought it new 37 years ago. I had to figure that out as my baby sister just purchased one, and when we can together you can definitely tell mine has been well used next to her shiny new one.
I still can with it on a fairly regular basis. I have purchased new gauges from the company, which are easy to order and get here quickly.
I have recommended the All American Canner to many friends over the years. It is heavy duty and very trustworthy. I have certainly gotten my money's worth.
I plan to continue using it for several more years myself, and then will pass it on to my daughters who will no doubt do the same.
A very superior product."
"A few months ago I stumbled upon a heavy duty pressure canner at a thrift store. It was $20, and at the time I thought it to be a bit pricey. I have a well producing grape vine that came with the old house we bought about a year ago, so I figured it would be a good investment for my jam and preserves. We have a well stocked garden this summer, so I can already see the pressure canner will be used quite a bit in the next few weeks. I've been doing some research on this model, but haven't figured out how old it is. There isn't a month and year stamp that the newer models have. I'm very curious to know about how old it is. I have tested it and discovered that the gauge does not work. I've decided to replace the petcock with a new value stem and weighted regulator, seems the word on the web is that is the preferred method for pressure accuracy. So after my $25 part investment, I'm $45 all in. Not bad at all! I'm very excited to use it! Does anyone know how old it is? Thanks!"
"A number of years ago, when my kids were little and I wasn't working, I wanted a canner really bad. Money was tight, and they were expensive so I resorted to freezing and drying most of our garden produce.
Then I saw an ad in our local paper for a garage sale and a canner was listed as one of the items. We went to look and it was still there. The lady wanted $25.00 for it and assured me that the book, a pan, and 2 racks were all stored inside. It looked huge! (a 16 pt capacity).
When we got home, sure enough everything was there like she said. I got out my Lehman's catalog to compare and to my delight, it was an All American just the same as sold in the catalog for $299.00!!
Imagine my surprise at my good deal and......with the gasketless seal it works like a charm even after all these years! Just finished a ton of salsa with the last of the peppers and tomatoes before our first freeze.
Love my All American."
by Lynette Sullivan
"I own the 915 and 930 All American canner/cookers. I use the larger canner for big canning jobs and for making ribs for my cafe.
Baby back ribs made this way are amazing. I bring them to 15 lbs just for 5 minutes then finish them off in a hickory smoke charcoal grill to brown and add my favorite sauce.
The smaller canner I use when I just have a few jars to process or if I'm making making a pot of chili verde. Clean up on the smaller pot is so much easier.
The canners require oil on the seal and threads the first few uses or after a good scrubbing. I love the fact that I will never have to find a seal and the construction is heavy duty. I know I will never have to replace these canners. They are about twice the cost of most other canners but because they are once in a lifetime purchase they are well worth the investment.
Another thing I should mention is that the lid fits only a certain way, marked by an arrow on the lid and a mark on the pot. The arrow on the lid and the mark on the pot need to be lined up when the lid is on correctly. Also the screw system needs to be tightened in a pattern so they are all about even.
Most bad reviews I read are from people who aren't following the directions."
by Tom Reese
"I bought an Model 930 Pressure Cooker/Canner this year, and couldn't be happier.
First of all, processing 14 quarts at a time, or 16 pints is great with the longer times needed with pressure.
Second, I remember my Mom having to occasionally replace the gasket on her canner when I was a kid, that made me go for the metal to metal option.
The other consideration was size. I wanted to be able to do big loads, so I bought the 14 quart size.
The first time I used it, it leaked a little steam. The book had said it might, so I thought that was okay at the time. I never got it above 9 pounds, and gave up after about 90 minutes. Good thing, since I was down to one inch of water inside.
The next day, I called All American and got a great gal on the phone. She said it shouldn't leak enough to really see it, and I probably didn't have the lid on level. I later realized, that was the problem. With two different bevel angles on the lid and pot, it needs to be close to level in order to seal.
If I would have continued to where it went dry, I would have ruined it.
The next batch, I carefully put the lid on and lightly adjusted the six clamps to where the lid was about level with roughly 1/4 inch gap all the way around. Then I gradually tightened the clamps alternating side to side until they were not much tighter than you would do jar lids. Using that method, I've had zero problems or leaking steam and no water loss in a dozen more loads.
I would also like to say, regarding sticking canner lids, the lady I talked with had great advice. I had seen suggested on another web site, using paraffin to lubricate the metal seal. This lady said to NEVER use paraffin. When the canner cools, it becomes a solid and (a) it won't come apart, the lid sticks, and (b) it won't wash or clean off easily.
That made great sense to me. They recommend using a very lightly wiped coat of olive oil only, and that has worked great, no sticking lid and easy to clean.
If I had to buy another pressure canner today, I would buy the very same one. In my 60+ years, I've bought 'economy' and 'quality'. I've never regretted buying quality, even though it is rarely cheap. This time again, I feel it was well worth it.
Tom, The Happy Canner"
"Dear Sharon and Fellow Canners,
I purchased the All American 930 two canning seasons ago and I love mine. Model 930 Pressure Cooker/Canner will hold 30 quarts of liquid and up to 14 quart jars.
The initial investment is substantially more than other brands but, once your canner is delivered to your home and you open the box, you know the All American is a serious piece of canning equipment -- one quite different from the others.
The precision-made fit between the canner and its lid make replacing seals a thing of the past. I love that I get a great seal every time and the pressure gauge is easy to read.
The lid does form a suction during the processing which makes it a bit difficult to open once your processing time has ended. I have tried oils but when that does not work, I have had to resort to a very large screwdriver, APPLIED VERY GENTLY, in two or three places to pop the seal. This is NOT RECOMMENDED so it must be done very carefully and only as a last resort when you have trouble breaking the seal.
The seal notwithstanding, I love the size and the quality of my 930. I am able to process 14 quarts or 30 pints at once which makes big canning days much shorter than in the past.
These workhorses are quite heavy due to the quality and density of the metal used to make them. Thankfully, God provides husbands, older children and friends to help lift these when an injury or age hinders us.
Overall, I love my 930 and the quality is such that, in years to come, my children and grandchildren will likely love using it as well.
All is Grace,
by Mrs. J
"I grew up watching my mom can, and after I got married she gave me and ancient, yellow Presto canner.
Last year I put up 100's and 100's of quarts. I told my husband it felt like I was trying to use "hobbiest" equipment! I went on the search for something bigger and better ....
I found the All-American 930. It's not the biggest, but it will can 14 quarts or 16 pints!
After I unpacked it, I was intimidated by how complicated it seemed compared to my old canner. I really had to push myself to use it - Old, Reliable Yellow Presto canner seemed to call loudly from the other room! But it was so $$$ I knew I had to break it in. ;)
I finally used it, to can chicken and chicken broth and I AM SO GLAD I DID! :) The bottom layer was all pints, the top layer was pints and quarts, which is possible because it's such a tall canner. I've never been able to do that - it is one AWESOME canner!!!
(Sharon's note for those new to canning different size jars together - Be cautious when canning quarts and pints together. You can do it as long as you are aware if the quarts need a different processing time than the pints. Be sure to process for the larger/longer time.)
I am excited for this summer. I plan to pressure can all my tomato sauce and salsa, I am so excited. I can do basically two loads at once - that's a big deal when you have as much canning to do as I do!
I've been told to simply use two dialed canners, but I think I will like the weighted gauge better. With my old dial canner, the pressure just kept building if I happened to step out of the room. I need to can at 15# pressure, and that is only 5# away from the "caution/danger" zone. With the rocking weight, it exhausts more steam to keep it at the right pressure. Of course, *ideally* no one should ever have to leave a canner, but when you absolutely MUST I do think it's a much, much safer canner.
It also seemed to reach 15# faster than I expected and even "depressurized" fast enough to impress me. I'm very, very glad I upgraded!!! :)
Happy canning, ya'll! :)"
"We love our 30 quart pressure canner. We do a lot of canning and we also do a lot of cooking like large roast, cook whole chickens and ribs.
We use a food grade lubricant spray on our lid and it seems to work pretty well and never had any troubles getting the lid off and doesn't leak steam either.
We use LubriQuik food grade silicon spray, this can be purchased at www.webstaurantstore.com it is only $3.89 for a 11 oz can and it goe's a long way. We had our pressure cooker for 7 years now and love it and woudn't give it up for nothing."
"I bought my 921 canner at 5% above whole sale in 1979 for $75.91 and I love it, except now I love my friend's new 921 canner better. Well sort of.
All American has improved the 921 and now it has a pressure regulator weight or rocker on it instead of a steam release valve and it works better at maintaining pressure.
Then again with the new canner you are limited to the three rocker settings of 5, 10, and 15 pressures. Whereas my canner uses heat only to regulate the dial (both canners have the dial) once the steam release valve is closed.
My friend bought a 921 after using my canner last year when we made chili, and she loves the 921 too!
Both the older and newer 921 have no rubber seal which is great. One less thing to worry about. My sister has a Presto canner and it has only a rocker without a dial, and she has to check the gasket before every batch.
My friend and I canned ground venison chili and venison meat sauce yesterday, 7 quarts and 36 pints, in three batches in her new canner.
Next week, I will bring my canner to her house and we will be able to can a little faster. We will be able to start the next batch while a batch is cooling in the canner.
We sure will be busy with pears for chutney and butter, chicken soup and chicken thighs, and beef stew!
We both work day jobs and the soups are a great time-saver for us on work nights plus the savings are great. Tomato soup for .96 cent per pint -we had to buy our tomatoes and there are not many farmers around Oklahoma City (unlike Portland, Oregon!). The venison chili was .82 per pint since we got
the meat free.
Any who the 921 canner ROCKS!"
"All the canning I had done so far has been just with the hot water bath method. Since everything I have canned was high acid, I did not need a pressure canner and I have never lost a jar of goods to either spoilage or breakage. I wanted to start canning foods with meat in them and so bought a All American 921.
After canning my first batch of chicken, I could not remove the lid. It was stuck tight. Even after it had cooled I could not remove the lid. I didn't want to do it but I finally had to pry the lid off. It came off with a POP! Of the seven quarts in the canner, three had broken. I thought perhaps I had over packed the jars.
The next day I canned four more quarts of chicken. Again, the lid stuck. I decided to out wait it and after six hours the lid was still stuck and, again, I had to pry it off. Two of the jars were broken.
I put the lid back on the canner and it did not seem to seat squarely. It rocked as though the canner was out of round or perhaps that was a bulge in the lid.
I don't know if I have a defective product or if I am doing something grossly wrong but this situation is totally unsatisfactory. The next step will be to return the canner to the vendor unless I can get this situation resolved.
Anyone have any suggestions?"
Asimov, that sounds completely frustrating! I feel for you. You are right. Something must be wrong because you really should not experience these problems.
If you will run a small amount of oil (I use olive oil) around the rim of the canner, I think that will solve the issue of your canner lid sticking. Put some oil on a paper towel and lightly grease the canner edge where the lid sits.
As far as your jars breaking, my only thought is, are you trying to can frozen chicken? Usually jars break when the food and jar is cold then placed directly into the hot canner. Glass canning jars are sturdier than regular glass, but they are still susceptible to breakage with extreme temperature changes.
Try letting your chicken warm up a bit. Don't leave it out at room temperature so long that you risk it spoiling, but definitely don't put it in the jars frozen.
Also be sure to process for the correct time and at the correct pressure. My canning chicken directions are here. And there are probably directions in your canner instruction booklet.
I hope this helps. Please let me know if I can help further. I hate to see you give up. Canning meat really does work!
"All American 921 Pressure canner.
I have had the lid stick on occasion and it seems to only happen if let the last load cool until morning. I will try to oil the seal again. Oiling is recommended on the new canner anyway.
I really love my 921. I have noticed that although it holds 19 pints, it will only hold 18 1/2 liter jars."
Model 921 Pressure Cooker/Canner holds 21 1/2 quarts of liquid. The canner is tall enough that pint jars can be double stacked. Thus it will hold 19 pint jars, or seven quart jars.
"I have a model 921 All American, and the petroleum jelly solution doesn't work very well.
If you put too much on it, then it leaks steam, and you can't get it up to pressure. Without the pj, you have to use a rubber mallet to get the lid off, and that's right after the pressure is reduced to zero.
When it works right, it's wonderful. When it's not working right, it's a pain in the neck."
"We have a 921, and one of the first things we noticed was the "sticking" lid after processing. We never tried PJ or a mallet, but a simple screw driver or similar used as a lever on one of the tabs pops it loose with minimal effort. This tight fit is necessary to eliminate the gasket.
We also use a Presto model, but do not want to be a slave to replaceable gaskets if things get bad. The 921 is built like a tank, and has performed flawlessly for us, and should last years. Our goal is to have a second one when we can afford it.
A recent purchase was 1,000 Tattler canning jar lids, which have not been used yet, but have very good reviews.
Combining those with our jar collection, a 921, and a little garden work and we should be all set."