So what CAN you carry in a canning jar?

Designing this bag has been an interesting adventure for me.  I was just looking for a good way to send my husband to work with leftover chili, spaghetti or casserole for lunch.  Little did I know that so many other people were trying the same thing, and had come up with such clever ideas!

Here are a few links to get you started:

A good post on Mason Jar Salads;

More salad recipes;

Many wonderful jar lunch ideas;

Adorable little pies in half-pints!

And here are some labels for printing so you know what’s in your jars.  Maybe put your name on it, so no one steals your jar out of the fridge at work?  Or write the cooking method and time?  There are many other fine label designs out there, but these would take less ink than many I saw.  I’d print them on paper, and just insert them between the lid and the ring.

Here’s a really cool thing I discovered:  Did you know that most blenders are designed with the correct size and threading to accept canning jars?  I had no idea!  Imagine the possibilities!  (Smoothies, here we come!)

And another thing I hadn’t considered is regulating portion sizes – the measurements are marked right on the side of many brands of jars.  Very convenient if you’re watching your diet.

 So here’s my contribution:

Once in a while, you might run across a “disposable” plastic container that EXACTLY fits the mouth of a canning jar.  So I thought – perfect way to bring raw veggies with dip!  Here it is all put together:

Here it is with the lid off – see how the lip of the container covers the top of the jar:

And here, all taken apart and ready to enjoy:

I’m sure it’s very obvious how it works, but just pack some veggies into the jar.  Put your dip into the plastic container and pop it into the top of the jar.  Place the lid and ring on, and tighten down as much as you can.  (It won’t go all the way down, because of the lip of the plastic container.)  Once assembled, I tipped it over to check, and saw no signs of leakage.  In case you’re wondering, this plastic container is from a 4-pack of whole kernel corn at Wal-Mart.    I would not recommend washing the plastic in the dishwasher, microwaving, or heating in any way; but I’d be willing to use it for a cold dip.

9 thoughts on “So what CAN you carry in a canning jar?

  1. Wow! I didn’t know I could attach them directly to the blender either; that does open up a whole world of possibilities! I like the salad in a jar ideas, especially for homeschool field trips. 😀

    • I’ve sent the salads to work with Chad, and he says it’s great. You just shake it, and it distributes the dressing all through.

      And I was excited beyond reason that a canning jar would fit my blender. I like to find out that things I already own will work together!

  2. I found your blog via your etsy shop via Marisa’s Food in Jars! I am so impressed with your clever, sensible ideas. I’ve just been talking on my blog about how to pack kids’ lunches, as my kids start school next week and I’d like to avoid plastic. I’ve thought of using the littlest canning jars in their lunches, but I don’t know – they’re still glass. But in any case, I’m enjoying your creative ways with a canning jar.

    • Thanks, Margo! Like you, I would be wary of sending a child to school with a glass container. That said, though, canning jars are made to withstand some pretty extreme conditions, so it might be okay. I have no problem with my kids using them around the house, to be sure.

  3. One thing about using canning jars to blend in is DO NOT USE HOT LIQUIDS! Hot liquids expand and can break the jar and at the very least, the contents explode out when you take the blade contraption off.

    Be Safe!

    • Thanks for the info, Kathy! So far we’ve only used this method for single-serving smoothies (which is awesome!) but I will beware of the hot liquids!

  4. There are cups of fruit that also fit. I just tried it, and I’m so excited to know this trick! My youngest grandson loves all kinds of veggies and dip, and this setup can go to school in a lunchbag! Thank you!

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