Choosing the best can, jar, bottle, or wine opener may seem like an easy task, but it is almost as if the producers of these products try to make it more difficult than it needs to be.
There are a host of different brand out there and innumerable no-brand products, all competing for precious space in your kitchen drawer.
Like a carpenter, for everything to go smoothly in the kitchen, it all about having the right tool for the job. There is nothing worse than getting ready to prepare a big meal or host a party and remember the terrible can opener or wine opener you have waiting for you, mocking you, in the kitchen.
That is why we have put together this handy guide and list to help you navigated through all the jetsam of kitchenware, so you can find the best can, jar, bottle, and wine openers on the market.
I. Best Can Openers
A good can opener is more or less a staple of the kitchen, much like eggs, butter, or milk. Chances are, you will find yourself regularly returning to it day after day. Even if you are not preparing a large meal, you will still likely need to open a can or two just to feed a family.
Which is why it is so infuriating to have own and use a can opener of poor quality. Whether the teeth simply will not catch the lip of the can, the clamp will not bite into the top, or the clasp will not hold the can in place to properly and completely open the can, a bad can opener can be a real headache.
That is why it is in your best interest to shop smartly ahead of time and purchase the best can opener on the market.
1. Zyliss Lock N’ Lift – Best overall
Though the price is about the same as our best cheap can opener, there are a handful of features on this model that make it stand out.
First, the grips come with a lock, so you do not have to tire your hands holding the teeth and cutter in place. The grips themselves also have a soft, rubber coat to provide additional comfort.
Second, this can opener also includes a magnet to keep hold of the top once you have cut all the way through. This is actually somewhat rare on a non-electric can opener.
Finally, the product comes with a five year warrantee, so you will not have to worry about buying another one again. The only potential issue is that the handle is not metal, but the teeth and cutter are making it a non-issue if used properly.
2. Hamilton Beach 76606ZA – Best electric can opener
Hamilton Beach is known for producing kitchenware products that are not only affordable but top performing as well. This electric can opener is no different. With a sleek black and chrome design, this can opener will look chic and stylish while providing one of the most effective and hassle free can opening experiences.
With a magnet to hold the top in place, you will not have to dig for the top again. Moreover, using the Hamilton Beach is as simply as positioning the can and pressing down on the level. The grip will hold the can in place, so you do not have to. You can also avoid sharp lids by cutting the can from the side.
3. 1 Rated Made in USA – Best cheap can opener
This can opener can probably be referred to as “old reliable” since it is the most common can opener you are likely to find.
Made in the USA, this can opener does not come with too many bells or whistles, but if used and cared for properly, will likely last decades.
Almost all of this can opener is made out of metal except for the handle which is fashioned from molded rubberized plastic.
The grip pads have also been thickened to provide additional comfort. The frame and gears are made from 1008 carbon steel while the open metal are coated in zinc to safeguard from rusting.
Moreover, the metal has been heat treated, so there is concern of high temperatures affecting its effectiveness.
There are a number of features that can make one can opener better than another, but most of the best can openers have a select few features in common:
- Composition – the more metal parts to the can opener the better. Except for the handle, most of the ideal can opener will be one hundred percent metal.
- Tooth to Guide Gap – a can opener can only function if the distance between the teeth and the gap are exact enough to bite and still turn. If the gap is too large or too small, the can opener will either not function as well or potentially at all.
- Motor – this is explicitly for electric can openers. Sometimes a high price and elegant exterior hides shoddy materials underneath. Of course, it can be difficult to tell just by looking whether the motor is adequate or not. Steer clear of motor that use nylon in their gear works as that is likely to fray and break.
- Magnetic – this is not a deal breaker, but it is still extremely convenient if the can opener keeps hold of top with a magnet.
- Cut Position – standard can openers will cut exclusively along the top. A better can opener will often give you the option to along the side of the can as well as the top.
Finding the best can opener really depends on what you need it for and what, if any, limitations you have. If you have arthritis, it might be a better idea to get an electric or a locking can opener. If the arthritis is severe, electric is the only way to go.
However, if you have a firm grip and are looking for something simple yet reliable, our cheap option is tough to beat. It has been designed in almost the same way since 1954, and there is a reason it has not been changed too terribly much. Moreover, it is the only option where all relevant parts are metal. Still, if properly used and cared for, all of these can openers will work perfectly for years to come.
II. Best Jar Openers
Jars can be notoriously difficult to open. A Seinfeldesque joke would ask who they are trying to keep out. Regardless, people have struggled with difficult jars often enough over a long enough period of time that they have wormed their way into our culture such that various comedic premises are based on sealed jars.
That is why having a good jar opener can be a god send. This is even more relevant if you have arthritis and cannot comfortably open jars on your own. Not everyone has someone to simply hand the difficult jar to for opening.
This is why we have assembled the best jar openers for you—in both manual and electric models. However, depending on your need, preference, and ability, you may find that a different type of product altogether better suits your purpose. These are for consumer jar openers, not commercial.
1. EZ Off – Best Jar Opener
This is a classic design that is unlikely to ever go out of style. It uses simple physics to do a big and frustrating job.
Much like the lever is a rudimentary tool for increasing your strength when lifting things, this jar opener accomplishes its task by leveraging isometric pressure against the lid.
This jar opener is used across the country in numerous situations where people have difficulty with jars like hospitals, nursing homes, or retirement centers. The double-sided adhesive allows you to place this jar opener on almost any surface, while the triangular opening is large or small enough to accommodate virtually any size jar.
Made in the USA, this jar opener will also hold onto the lid after you have opened the jar, so you do not have to worry about it falling onto the ground just to have to be picked up. This jar opener is perfect for anyone whose grip has suffered limitations.
2. Black & Decker JW200 Lids Off – Best Automatic Jar Opener
First, the jar can be no taller than eight inches. Unfortunately, there are many people who produce preserves in Mason jars much larger. Also, the jar’s lid can be no more than four and a half inches in diameter. This latter limit should be less of an issue, but it still may prevent you from using the Black and Decker for all of your needs.
Still, with a simple lifting and lowering mechanism, a single touch of the button will open the most stubborn jars for the vast majority of consumer scenarios you will encounter.
Finding the best jar opener is a bit less complicated of a task than for the other types of products on this list. Unfortunately, most this comes due to a lack of design options. This is not to suggest that these two products are the only two types of design out there for jar openers.
However, there are not really that many different kinds of products explicitly designed to open jars to choose from. Still, one of the primary variables to look for is lid utility.
What we mean by this is how many different sized lids will the jar opener fit? The more the better. Another important factor to consider is the type of seal.
Most jars are simply screwed on and, depending on their contents, gases can build the pressure which makes opening them difficult. However, more and more jars are being sealed on purpose and, depending on the person or institution sealing the jars, the seal may unintentionally be made too tight to open by hand. In this.
With an absence of variance, the task of selecting the best jar openers is made much simpler. Of course, the specifics of what you need the jar opener for will have a huge impact on which of the two you choose.
If you find yourself struggling with a great many lids of varying sizes, then the manual jar opener is probably the best choice for you. However, you will want to make sure it is positioned in a convenient location, as it is not portable.
If, on the other hand, you find most of your jar opening needs to be rather pedestrian and predictable, the electric jar opener is easy and effortless. Though, the electric jar opener does come with a fairly significant price hike compared to the manual–something you might want to keep in mind.
III. Best Bottle Opener
Whether it is a child’s soda or a more adult beverage, having a bottle opener around saves a lot of trouble. Technically, you can use a variety of flat surfaces to leverage the the top of the bottle from its body.
However, this can result in a mess, a broken bottle, or injury. While it may be a neat trick to open a bottle with the edge of a counter, a lighter, or you own teeth, it is hardly recommended.
That is why we have put together a list of the two most common types of bottle openers out there–mounted and hand held–and the best in their class. Due to the fragile nature of many different types of bottles, electric versions of bottle openers are less common.
It really would not do for an electric bottle opener to regularly break the bottle or even accidentally mix a few shavings of glass into the drink just because you placed the bottle slightly off- center.
This bottle opener’s message may be a bit too cheeky for everyone’s taste, but its effectiveness cannot be denied. It is mounted into a flat vertical surface using screws, so you do not have to worry about the bottle opener coming loose.
Still, beyond the jovial “Beer Thirty” etched into the lip, the rest of the design is a sleek brushed steel. The lip itself is finished in a shining nickel matte. But this bottle opener does pretty much all of the work for you.
Once the opener lifts the cap from the bottle, it deposits it into a bin that can hold around seventy five tops. The holding bin itself is tapered with a wide-mouth top to make collecting and disposing the caps easy as well.
This is a fairly standard bottle opener that you will find in many restaurants and professional bars across the world. Though, in fairness, most of those locations will likely use a slightly cheaper, slightly more poorly made version. Still, the functionality will remain the same.
This bottle opener is made almost entirely out of sturdy, brushed stainless-steel. You will not have to worry about it rusting, assuming you wash and dry it after use. Even better, that is not an issue as this bottle opener is dishwashing machine safe–unlike many of the other products on this list.
This grip to this bottle opener includes a non-slip rubberized surface, so you will not accidentally lose grip of the opener if struggling with a difficult bottle top.
This bottle opener also includes a “church key” which you can use to puncture the tops of cans or add an extra bit of leverage if the bottle top itself is more pressurized than normal.
There are very few differences between bottle openers that will really set them apart. However there are a handful of things to look for, to help you find the best one, and some things to avoid.
While technically, bottle openers can be made out of a great number of materials, the product itself will regularly be placed under a fair amount of stress and pressure. As such, you will want to make sure your bottle opener is composed of a material that can regularly handle this pressure. Most commonly, you will find the best bottle openers to be made of metal.
Moreover, the metal itself should be a hard metal–as opposed to brass, silver, or gold–so that the lip which the bottle top is leveraged against does not bend.
Other features that you might look for in the best bottle opener include a curved point to puncture the top of cans–especially those that hold juice used for making mixed drinks. If this point can double as an opener itself, all the better. Sometimes, a bottle’s top may not fit the standard bottle opener lip.
There is really only one reason not to purchase a handheld bottle opener for primary use: grip strength. If you suffer from arthritis, fibromyalgia, or some other hand muscles weakening condition, a handheld bottle opener might be difficult to use.
In this case, a wall-mounted bottle opener would serve better as the ability to simply position the bottle and tilt it to open is much easier than a handheld version.
Of course, the hand held bottle openers are generally more versatile, working on a wider variety of bottles and potentially offering other functionality as well–like a can puncturing tip. Moreover, a handheld bottle opener by its very nature is portable, while a wall-mounted bottle opener generally is not.
IV. Best Wine Opener
Wine is an incredibly complex substance that has been perfected over millennia. People write books about it and debate on the best ways of making it, drinking it, and caring for it.
However, no one can enjoy that first sip without opening the bottle. Unfortunately, to ensure that the wine maintains its composition without being tainted while simultaneously allowing that composition to slow evolve in planned stages over time, this means placing the wine in an air-tight bottle and putting a cork in the bottle.
While this works wonderfully for preserving the wine, it can make opening the wine a real pain. That is why we have assembled the best wine openers, manual and automatic, to help make your enjoyment of vino a much quicker and easier process.
Most manual wine openers will come in a compact package that has various utensils that can be unfolded. This is as much for convenience as it is utility. This wine opener follows the most basic design with a slight twist.
The tools and most of the casing itself is made out of stainless steel, so you do not have to worry about the parts rusting or breaking. However, this wine opener also comes with an inlaid wood finish to give it a touch of class that pairs nicely with the elegance and complexity of wine itself.
Though, it should be noted that if you are not careful, you may end up bending the corkscrew.
Which brings us to the next observation: the components. All manual wine openers will come with a corkscrew – which is a general staple of most wine openers, whether manual or not–an adjustable fulcrum to provide leverage, and a foil cutter.
This wine opener’s fulcrum is double hinged for additional positioning and the foil cutter is serrated to more easily cut the foil without slipping along the glass. To top it all off, this win opener is guaranteed with a lifetime warrantee.
Electric wine openers do not have too much variance in terms of design or mechanism. They all generally look fairly similar to one another and all accomplish their task in pretty much an identical way.
What sets one electric wine opener apart from another will deal primarily with the motor, the durability of the uncorking mechanism, and the precision of the alignment. If any of these factors are off by too much, the electric wine opener is liable to fail and may even ruin the wine.
With a housing unit and its own base, this product will not have anything to worry about when it comes to precise positioning. Though it only accommodates bottle of three inches in diameter or less. While this is the most common wine bottle size, you may find specific brands that do not fit.
As an added bonus, the compartment is see through, so you can monitor the opener as it works; and the base lights up with a blue LED.
Wine openers can be tricky to buy. There are actually a wide variety of types available–as opposed to some of the other product categories on this list. However, as with the other product categories on this list, it is often best to go with a simple design that has few moving parts.
The more simple the design and few the moving parts, the less that can go wrong and often more durable the wine opener.
There are some wine openers that can actually open the bottle without using corkscrews and some that do it without even removing the cork. However, these products are not always consistent in how they work and neither are the bottles or corks themselves.
Manual wine openers should always include a fulcrum, corkscrew, and foil cutter of a metal composition. Electric wine openers should always have a strong, reliable motor as well as a way to ensure the bottle is positioned properly.
Like with all products on this list, which is the best wine opener depends on what you need. If you find that you favor a particular brand that uses an unusually large bottle size, then the electric wine opener is not really an option.
However, you might just think about switching brands, because manual wine openers–even the best ones–are generally a bit of a pain to use. It takes a while to drill into the cork, and can be a bit of a delicate process getting the cork out without making a mess.
For those with arthritis or other conditions that affect grip strength, you will almost certainly want to get an electric wine opener, and save yourself the pain.
There are a number of ways to close things, but that does not mean that opening those things later is an easy task. There are numerous products out there to help make this task easier, but you need to know what you are looking for to choose well.
Generally, there are standards of design that have remained effective for decades, and those are safe bets. Also, you will want to make sure that most of these products are either completely metal, or metal in the important parts.
Electric version of these openers can make things easier, but unless your grip is compromised, it is often more reliable to simply use the manual version. Regardless, you now have all the information you need to make an informed purchase and find the best opener for whatever task you have.