I canned tomato sauce, just a combination of store canned products with green pepper and onion and spices. With the last batch, I noticed after cooling that some sauce had come out, a slight streak down the side or some around the band when removed. I had a 1/4 head room and canned in a water bath for 25 minutes. All lids popped, I would think this is sealed. The lid will not remove without force.

Is this common when canning, or did I do something wrong? Is the canned sauce safe to use?

1 Answer 1


First off, the entire process sounds suspect; commercially canned tomatoes may not be sufficiently acidic to water bath can safely, particularly with added peppers and onions (diluting whatever acidity they do have.) Freezing or refrigerating would be far safer than canning that. The canonical advice to stick with tested recipes is built around those recipes leading to a sufficiently acidic product to be safe when water-bath canned if it's a water-bath recipe.

Second, that was not adequate head space, which is why some of the jars leaked.

Third, despite making an initial seal, food product between the rubber and the glass may lead to eventual seal failure. Which would be noticeable when opening the jar, if paying attention. But the big food safety concern is under "First" and exists for jars with perfect seals.

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