You'll want to buy the jars with the two-part lid made by Ball. The idea behind the two-part lid is that in a water canner, the air in your jars evaporates and creates a vacuum when the jars are cooled.
The correct canning procedure is to make your tomato sauce, and keep it very hot. Wash all the jars to assure cleanliness. Choose a large stock pot big enough to hold your jars. Place a round cake rack in the bottom of the pot so the jars don't get direct heat from the bottom of the pan. Sanitize the jars in the boiling water until you are ready to fill them. Place the flat part of the lid (not the threaded band) in hot water to soften the rubber ring. Then, fill your jars, leaving an inch of head-space at the top for air to escape. Stir the sauce in the jar with a chopstick or non-metalic item to get as much air out as possible. Wipe the rim, inspecting for any chips or cracks in the jar, then place the two-part lid on tip, and hand-tighten.
Simmer the jars in your boiling water canner for about 20 minutes. When you remove them to a rack to cool, you should hear the jar lids "pop" as the vacuum is created. Any jars that have "play" in the lid after cooling should be refrigerated.
Tomato sauce is an excellent product to home-can because of the high acid content. Highly acidic foods inhibit bacterial growth.
I make an award-winning barbeque sauce, and can it. It's a great way to preserve your creation.
Chef Todd Mohr
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