Canning Jam Part 5: Flipping the Jar Over to Seal the Jam Method

Canning Jam Part 5: Flipping the Jar Over to Seal the Jam Method is used by many, but a disclaimer shows, this “bottled” method may not always be safe!

Disclaimer: New studies have shown this “bottled” method is not safe. Visit the canning experts for any questions you may have on inversion canning. To be safe, if you use this method, refridgerate and eat it right away!

BUT … this is my FAVORITE method of canning jams and jellys, and I’ve done it for years.

Last post, I shared our family’s favorite jam combination and recipe, using both strawberries and raspberries right from our garden.

How to ensure a good seal

This post I’m sharing how the method of “Flipping the Jar Over to Seal the Jam Method” works beautifully, effectively and quickly.*

Flipping the Jar Over to Seal the Jam Method

When you’ve completed the recipe and the jam is boiling for the last time, you’re now ready to fill the jars.

  1. The jars are steralized and kept hot in an oven at 170 – 175 degrees.
  2. The lids are kept in hot almost boiling water until I put them on the full jar.
  3. The product is poured into the jars while boiling hot. (I USED A FUNNEL)
  4. Very quickly the jar rims are wiped down with a hot cloth and the hot lids are put on along with the bands.
  5. Invert  and allow the jars to sit in this position for 30-40 minutes.
  6. When the lid does not pop, or move up and down, then the jar is sealed.

The product is softer and easy to spread where as if it is processed it tends to set firmer. I also think the fruit tastes fresher–so good!


I have never had a jar not seal and they are just as tight as if I water bath them. The key is to have hot jars, hot lids, and hot product. In 25  plus years of doing this I have never had a jar go bad or fruit spoil.

*Here’s a disclaimer: canning websites and books don’t recommend this method; they recommend you use a full hot-water bath for canning jam. I prefer this “bottled”method for jams and jellies only, to be eaten right away, exactly the way my Mother and Grandmother taught me.

Ball recommends against it for seal quality reasons. They say, “Do not invert, move or store jars while cooling, as this may cause seal failure.”

For any other type of canning (besides jams and jellies)–vegetables, pickles, tomato sauces, fruit, etc.–process exactly according to current food safety recommendations for canning.

Sealing tip

When I can (bottle) jams and jellies, if the lid doesn’t seal, refrigerate and eat as soon as possible. There will be nothing wrong with the food, so don’t throw it out, but it must be refrigerated and used soon.

Here’s our jam on a yummy breakfast treat … Hootenanny (recipe in my book.)

Thank you for joining me this week in my 5-Part Canning Jam series. It’s been really fun reading your comments. So many of you have very similar stories of learning to make jam the way I did!

If you missed …
Canning Jam Part 1: How to find you passion and get started
Canning Jam Part 2: Supplies you will need for canning
Canning Jam Part 3: Getting your family involved in canning
Canning Jam Part 4: Strawberry Raspberry Jam Recipe
Canning Jam Part 5: Using the “Flip-Over” Method to Seal the Jar

31 comments on “Canning Jam Part 5: Flipping the Jar Over to Seal the Jam Method”

  1. We did this too when mom canned jams and jelly but we left our jars in a canner kettle (or any deep pot) in boiling water (it had a good roil to it). The lids would be in a slow boil pan and the jam like you said was boiling hot.

  2. My wife used this method and I still do but only on jelly and jam. It works great. By the way, I’m a slow jelly eater and I have jelly as old as 7 years and it is still good.

  3. We canned some Christmas jam and flipped ours not realizing we had to flip them back over 30-40min afterwards. We got up this morning and flipped them over and they won’t slide down to the bottom of the jar. What can we do to get them to slide down before Christmas Eve morning? These are gifts for family and we need to know what we can do to have these look nice for everyone 

  4. How long would this last outside of the fridge because i did a big batch and want it to last a whole winter!

    • I’ve used this inversion method several times making batches of raspberry jam. I usually get 6-8 average Ball jars, and store them in the pantry until I open them. Sometimes it takes a year to use them all, and I’ve never had any go bad.

  5. My grandmother did the jar inversion method and never had an issue. She taught me and my jellies and seals were perfect.

  6. I kind of read this after the fact. I don’t know if what I did worked or not but I had boiled Jam poured directly into the jars while it was piping hot and put the lids on really tight. I did not flip them upside down though. I wasn’t exactly prepared for making jam it was a last-minute decision. They did seal themselves though. I heard them popping and the lids are really tight and don’t move now. None of the jars are all that big. Do you think they sealed okay? Or is it messed up because I did not turn them upside down? It is a blueberry jam and it has sufficient lemon juice and sugar in it. How long do you think they will last?

  7. Nice information. What a great opportunity to try out something you have been wondering about and can really use!!

  8. I need some help, I to use this method and all my jam is atuck to the top. I wouldn’t care usually but these are my wedding favors. Should I do like a 5 min water bath & see if that helps? I Really don’t want to re can them.

  9. Great article! I remember growing up and my grandparents made it a tradition to can everything from the garden that year. I remember them flipping the jars upside down too . I love canning !

  10. This blog entry promotes an unsafe and outdated method of preserving. That’s great that it worked for your mom and your grandma, but we are armed with better information now.

    People will read this and think they can use the ‘flip’ method with other foods. It’s frustrating to stubble across blogs like yours that give people the wrong idea about food safety.

    • I’ve been canning jams using the flip method for over 30 years! It works great! I flip for 5 minutes and back. 

  11. Hello, I seem to have a problem in that three of my jam jars solidified on the top of the jar befor being flipped and the jam did not come down. The jars are sealed but I put them in the fridge just in case. Is this normal? Are the jars really sealed or just seem to be? It should be safe to eat still right?

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  13. Does this work for other things? Say BBQ Sauce, Pesto, Balsamic Vinegarette


  14. Can this method work for apple butter too?

  15. I have been wanting to try canning for some time but did not have some one to show me how and I have been a little intimidated by it all. I took my girls berry picking this week and was inspired by your flip method to go for it! I want my kids to go up with a sweet memory and think fondly of times spent with mom canning and making jam together, something I wasn’t able to experience on my own. My girls love to see the beautiful cans cooling on the counter, knowing thoes are their berries in there! Thanks

  16. I was canning some strawberry jam today, and I ran out of room in my canner for the last jar. I remembered this post, and flipped the jar over. So far, so good! Just wanted to say I thought of this technique and it saved a jar of jam!

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  18. Hi there,

    Your jam sounds delish! We just finished canning our own raspberry jam and do not waterbath can it either (for the same reasons you listed) but we find that you do not have to turn it upside down or push on it, and that some cans do seem to take longer then others. We tightly (but not too tightly) close the lid and wait!

    I’m new to your blog and really enjoying it :)


  19. Very useful – thank you for the tip

  20. I really wanted to make jam this summer but can’t find rhubarb anywhere! Sveta had seed to plant at her dacha, but they didn’t take. I may give your recipe a whirl!! :)

  21. Hi! Love your site. But I’m confused. You said:

    8. …..If it pops, the jar is not sealed…
    9. If the lid does not pop………then the jar is NOT sealed.

    So which is it? I really want to know because I want to do it this weekend!

    Thanks so much!

  22. It’s been great reading your canning post….reminds me of my childhood. There’s nothing like seeing a row of canned fruits linned up on the counter in the kitchen….When I “can”, I like to leave them on the counter for a few days….just so I can look at them =)
    Thanks for sharing-
    Happy day

  23. I must admit, I skimmed over your last canning post, because I’ve been depressed and missing canning all summer long. We’ve moved into a house with a ceramic stove, which I’ve been told it’s a big no-no to can on it. I’m going to have to try this method and get my canning fix before the summer is over!

  24. That method seems so easy. It inspires me to at least try making jam. Thanks for passing on the knowledge you gained from some obviously wonderful women.
    Have a great day Sandy!

  25. I have loved reading your canning posts. I just recently learned to can my first thing – salsa! A wonderful friend taught me and we are enjoying the fruits of our labor. It has definitely gotten me interested in canning.

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