Once you’ve started storing food, one of the most important tools in your arsenal will be a can opener. Without a can opener, you won’t be able to get in to your food.
Why is finding a good can opener so difficult?
“When it comes to can openers there are no universal standards. Like everything else in the kitchen (except maybe the wooden spoon), it's been improved upon and different variations have been made ...
“With so many different models to choose from it's hard enough to decide which type you want, let alone which brand within the idea. Can opener shopping is not unlike shoe shopping. Although some enjoy it, most folks define it as hell. All the good ones are too expensive and within the board definition of shoes there are dress shoes, athletic shoes, snow boots... well you get the idea. The only difference is when shoe shopping you at least get to try things on before you buy them!
“With can openers your purchase is always a shot in the dark (outside of reading online reviews). How do you go about finding the right one? Do you always end up disappointed?"1
Important can opener features
Since there are so many options with can openers here are some of the important ones:
• Stainless-steel blades and carbon content. Stronger blades and gears will make a can opener to last longer.
• Comfortable handles. Make sure that the can opener has non-slip, rubbery handles. Make sure you hold it before you purchase it.
• Long handles. Longer handles will provide you with more leverage and you’ll need less strength to grip the can.
• Side-cutting. When you purchase a side-cut can opener, it leaves smoother edges. Since the can opener cuts just below the rim of the lid, around the side of the can, it usually leaves no sharp edges.
• Manual can openers. Manual can openers can typically open any size of can. If you’re going to purchase an electric can opener, make sure that all of your cans work with the electric can opener.
Other features & options to consider
Built in features. Some can openers have knife sharpeners, bottle openers, knives, etc. There are a ton of other features available that are possible in can openers.
P-38s. These army-invented can openers are also known as “John Waynes” or “Dead Dukes.” They might be a little hard to come by but they are pretty small and simple. They also fold flat and are very easy to store. Here's a video of how they work:
1. The Kitchn. "Why is Finding a Good Can Opener So Difficult?" Available online at http://www.thekitchn.com/why-is-finding-a-good-can-open-141715