Everyone who cans has their tried-and-true method for saving money on canning jars.
And with fall quickly approaching, I thought I’d share mine!
Here are a few rules I follow when it comes to buying canning jars.
1. Buy new jars at Walmart or WinCo.
I get that not every state has a WinCo — you’re missing out if you’re one of the unlucky ones! WinCo’s regular price on canning jars is awesome.
Walmart is a solid runner-up though for you non-WinCoers.
Even if you use your REDcard at Target and score an extra 5% off, Target prices can’t touch Walmart or WinCo.
- Lids: $0.18/each
- Pint jars: $0.63/each
- Quart jars: $0.75/each
- Lids: $0.11/each
- Pint jars: $0.71/each
- Quart jars: $0.86/each
- Lids: $0.48/each
- Pint jars: $0.72/each
- Quart jars: $0.92/each
TIP: Last year during Black Friday, Walmart offered pint-size Kerr jars 12 for $5. That’s $0.42 each!
2. Buy Ball — not Kerr — if you’re paying full price.
Generally speaking, Kerr is a bit more expensive than Ball across the board. The exception to this would be if Kerr is on sale and Ball isn’t, obviously.
3. Aim to spend $0.50-$0.75 each (or less) on jars with lids.
Put another way, never pay more than $0.75 for pint-size jars and never, ever go over $1.00 per quart-size jar since you can get these prices any day at Walmart.
But if you find a deal that puts these more in the $0.50-$0.75 range (new, with lids), stock up!
4. Stack coupons at Bed Bath & Beyond to buy jars in a pinch.
Everyone knows about Bed Bath & Beyond’s glorious 20% off coupon. But not everyone knows you can usually stack it with a $5 off coupon too.
An easy way to get a 20% off coupon right now is to sign up for emails. Then read the golden rules for saving money at Bed Bath & Beyond to learn how to stack coupons.
5. Look for Kerr and Ball newspaper coupons in the fall.
It’s rare, but we’ve seen $2 for a 12-jar case of Kerr or Ball pint-size jars in the newspaper around November.
If you’re on the hunt to save money buying canning jars, I recommend you check the Sunday newspaper from here on out. If there’s a coupon for canning jars, buy enough newspapers that you can stock up on jars.
6. Use price matching at Target if inventory is low at Walmart.
Target doesn’t have the cheapest prices on canning jars. But if your Walmart or WinCo is low on inventory, request a price match from Target on identical items.
Note that if Walmart is totally out of stock, Target won’t honor a price match. There has to be some inventory left.
7. Get money back from Walmart or Target if jars go on sale after you buy.
A quick no-brainer: Download Paribus and they’ll take advantage of Walmart and Target’s price adjustment policy on your behalf.
In fact, you’ll make purchases and not even realize the items you bought went on sale afterward, but Paribus is on the job and they’ll request the difference for you. Totally free.
Note: Paribus can only work its magic when you buy online.
8. Don’t even bother with Amazon — jars are double Walmart’s price!
Count this as one of the few times Amazon doesn’t beat out the competition on price.
There’s no Amazon Prime shipping on Ball brand jars (there is on Kerr), and quart-size jars are $1.92 each! Ouch!
9. Don’t assume you’ll get a good deal at thrift stores.
In fact, most of the time, you’ll walk away paying more for second-hand jars than you would for brand new ones. Plus, you’ll still need to buy new lids and rims.
Always double-check for cracks, chips or glass thinness, and pass on any jars that aren’t perfect.
10. Look for clearance deals at local grocery stores after fall is over.
Especially grocery stores with limited space or local grocery stores. They’ll be eager to get rid of any “out of season” inventory.
In fact, some grocery stores will offer canning jars for up to 50% off!
11. Get a $5 off coupon when you sign up for emails from Fillmore Container.
While Fillmore Container isn’t the cheapest option for canning jars and lids, you’ll get $5 off when you sign up for emails, and if you can in the off-season, it’s a good place to get jars when stores don’t carry them.
12. Only buy generics for mason jar craft projects — not for actual canning.
Your local dollar store might sell canning jars, but don’t bother with them if you’ve got loads of food to can.
Experience says they don’t handle pressure canning and warp after processing. So, you’ll end up replacing them with Ball or Kerr brand anyway.
On the other hand, they can be a great buy if you only need them for craft projects or as drinking glasses.
13. Decode your used jar’s logo to find out if it’s vintage.
I’ve noticed people don’t always give my jars back to me after they use the jam. Even if I offer to refill it for them.
So, if you have jars you care a lot about — maybe vintage jars — don’t give them out. Here’s how to tell when your Ball mason jar was made.
Ironically, you’ll learn to ignore any dates printed on the jar and instead decode the style of the logo to find out how old your jar is.
14. Repurpose old jars to use them to freshen the scent in your car.
Use a hammer and large nail to punch holes into the lid of your mason jar. Add wax to the jar and replace the lid.
When the temperature in your car rises, the wax will melt, filling your car with fragrance.