How to Use a Can Opener

When it comes to canned food there is a variety of what you can open, regardless of where it comes from. The market for canned food is wide open to limitless flavorful possibilities. The more you investigate the further it will send you on a canned food flavor frenzy.


Let’s explore the perfect can opener experience. Included in every professional kitchen, a can opener is a must-have utensil. Exploring the can opener is just a small step toward becoming a ‘know-how’ chef.


The following is a brief history of important moments in can opening ingenuity. Mr. Ezra Warner patented the first can opener in the 1850s. We can thank William Lyan for his great contribution to the canned food industry, with the improvement of the turning wheel, just around thirty-plus years later. Making sure that innovation would make way for canned food was a company named Udico. In the 1950s they introduced the first electric can opener to the world. Since then the technology has been improved, helped the company Ermal Fraze push its limits and invent the easy-to-pull-open can more than a decade later.


Essentially, without the correct can opener, or knowing its proper use, an unopened can will stump any of us trying to cook something fast and delicious. It’s just thin metal being punctured for the top to come off.

Piercing through this easy, thin aluminum top makes that simple process smooth and effortless.


The difference between a pro can opener and an well used one has a lot to do with how sharp it is. Every different type of opener has a unique way to complete its opening process. Making sure that you have chosen the correct can opener to make for an effortless, clean job.


We are all familiar with the classic cranking motion that is used with the can openers that most everyone grew up with. Some of us have also been lucky to own an electric can opener that, if used correctly, opens any can in just seconds. Here are some examples of different can openers below.


Openers that are talon, or claw-type


A lever-type opener usually has a claw-type form and it used to be the most often used one. It is a clever classic design that, as soon as the blade is in, a small plate that stops it from going too far into the can. This is crucial in that neither the blade nor the can hurt you while it turns and opens the can.


How to use: Make sure you are very careful once the can is opened since the container and lid will be extremely sharp. While the blade makes a small hole into the can, it will make a spinning motion so it will cut around the lid.




This type is commonly used with prying open glass bottles that come with a crown cork, as well as flat top beer cans. A single pressed piece of steel allows the edge press on the can open. It is very simple to use mechanism that will have you serving everyone in no time.


How to use: Using the edge of the opener you can make a puncture on the can while holding it with your left hand. Quickly and firmly while lifting the opener, it will open the top of the can. Making it easy to pour its contents.




With its key-shaped apparatus this can opener is very practical. Most key openers have the key-shaped piece of metal already included or attached. Making it very easy and convenient to open anywhere.


Ho to use: All you need to do, with a particular spinning or unwinding motion to cause a small strip on one of the sides will tear. Once that happens you should be able to see the key or keys included on the can in order to create a rolling motion from one edge to the next.




With this can opener, you should be able to only use one hand. It has a serrated wheel that is powered by a crank moving a key that is firmly held by the bunker.  It makes opening a can very easy. They are made with a plier-type handle, serrated wheel, and the aforementioned keys that all work very well together to make this can opener fast and convenient.


How to use: The serrated wheel will have no problem cutting through the lid. As long as you have a strong firm grip on the plier-type handle you can turn the knob key with no effort, opening the can quickly.




You can compare this opener to the last one that was mentioned. To puncture the can, it uses the same church-key method. The same is true of the serrated wheel that helps puncture the lid of the can easily. 


How to use: Using the church-key end is needed to make a hole on the lid. The plier-type handle is what keeps a firm hold. The serrated wheel will quickly and easily puncture the lid.




Sticking this opener directly to a countertop is just one very special feature this type offers. It slices the can open with the help of the groove holding to the lip that sticks out of the opener. It has a very strong grip making sure that it does not move or you accidentally slip.


How to use: First, place your holder on a well-secured surface. Turning the knob with one hand while securing the tin with the other will open your can without any effort. This opener creates a neatly placed cut on every can.


Electric & Automatic


Not requiring the use of one’s hands while holding something that is potentially sharp is ideal for everyone. With powerful magnets to hold it in place, these electric can openers make for a great show when opening any can. A small blissful moment whether you’re in a hurry or not.


How to use: Finding a good sturdy surface will make sure that your electric can opener won’t move or slip using its powerful magnets. Placing the can on the blade will automatically rotate it, opening the lid in the process. It has other magnets that help separate the can from the lid.


Instant Opening


Think about every soda or instant soup in a can you’ve ever had. When most of us were young, some saw our older siblings, and friends making that loud snapping sound with a can in their hand. Thinly manufactured cans make for a much easier opening motion than any other can opener.


How to use: On top of these types of cans there is a piece of metal that you simply pull, creating a snap that pulls open the can revealing its contents. Pushing in the lid will help make pouring the contents easier.


Different Varieties of Openers


Hand-held opener


Bunker bottle


Bottle with a Church key


There are many more different types of can openers that are not mentioned. That being said the ones we focused on are the most common can openers that you should have at home. You can go ahead and look up battery-powered openers, or even mini handhelds to make the job that much easier and convenient.

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