My father's favorite salad dressing is only available through a large restaurant supply house. It can only be purchased in gallon containers, I fill up a couple of squeeze bottles for him and put them in the refrigerator but the remainder of the dressing is still in the gallon container. Can I put it in canning jars and process it in a water bath canner and put it in my pantry? The ingredients are as follows: Water,soybean oil, high fructose corn syrup,vinegar, lemon juice,salt,minced garlic and onion spices,onion,garlic,xanthan gum and calcium disodium,EDTA to preserve freshness

  • Either stick with refrigeration or fill up a few (or many) squeeze bottles and toss the rest if you can only get it in gallon containers and don't want to store it all under refrigeration, with the amount tossed just factored in to the overall cost of not killing anyone while using a dressing that only comes in gallon containers. Alternatively, reverse-engineer the recipe to make it in smaller batches.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jul 6, 2022 at 0:26

1 Answer 1


As the salad dressing is an emulsion of water and (soybean) oil I think that the emulsion might separate into its oil and water contents when heated.

The dressing you buy is most likely produced in a sterile environment from sterilized ingredients with the acidity adjusted to prevent the growth of bacteria and of course calcium disodium and EDTA added as additional preservatives to prevent oxidation.

So, what can you do to preserve the dressing? As you already mentioned you can freeze it. If this works and you dont have enough bottles maybe the easiest way would be to get more squeeze bottles.

Regarding canning the dressing: Maybe just give it a try. If you already have the dressing you might as well just take a canning jar, process it in the canner and see if it works. Best case is that it works and that you have a perfectly canned glass of dressing. Worst case is that you lose a glass of dressing and a bit of time.

Depending on how much dressing your father eats you could also put it in sterilized containers using a sterilized funnel, close the containers carefully without heating the content, and store the containers in the back of the fridge where it is the coldest. It will go bad after some time but this will delay that process for some time. You will of course still have to check from time to time.

  • 1
    The "worst case" in "invent your own canning" is considerably worse than "you lose a glass of dressing" - "it appears fine but everyone who eats it dies unpleasantly" is more like it.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jul 6, 2022 at 0:23
  • If the canned jar is heat-treated properly - where should a toxine come from? The dressing consists of nothing that goes bad when heated. It may not taste good but where should anything harmful come from? Nothing new is invented here.
    – Matze
    Commented Jul 6, 2022 at 13:47
  • The question refers to "water bath canner" - 100 °C/212 °F (or less at high altitude) which is only suitable for recipes that are sufficiently acid to prevent botulism growth (since that temperature won't kill botulism spores, and botulism spores are well-distributed in the environment to the point that you have to assume they are likely to be present, and likely to be very happy to reproduce in your anaerobic low-acid room temperature jars. cdc.gov/foodsafety/communication/home-canning-and-botulism.html
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jul 6, 2022 at 13:54
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    Commented Jul 16, 2022 at 15:52

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