It is crucial to learn the simple and convenient tricks on how to open a can without a can opener. You may find yourself without a can opener and desperately need to eat your canned food. What will you do and how do you access the contents of the can?
There are several reasons why people buy canned food, especially when travelling long distances or camping out with friends or family. Cans are usually accompanied by their specific openers to help you remove the lid and enjoy your meal. So, what happens when you misplace this useful tool? You will need some creativity to get a solution.
How to open a can without a can opener
Generally, can openers are designed to help us peel back the lid efficiently, but what happens when you cannot find the tool? Good news is that they are not the only solution to accessing the content in the tin. There are several alternative methods that guide us on how to open cans without a can opener, so that next time you do not have to scratch your head for a solution.
Opening a can without a can opener: Top 10 methods
Discover the ten simple methods you could use to access your canned food without that special tool.
1. Pocket/kitchen knife or screwdriver and a hammer
It is one of the simplest ways to apply in opening a can without a can opener. Remember to be careful when using the knife since it can accidentally cut you. The following procedure will guide you to get the job done using these tools:
- Place the can vertically on a hard surface like a table, bench or ground.
- Hold a knife and place the tip on top of the can on the sealed edges.
- Striker the can's edge gently until the blade pierces through the top.
- Position the knife again a few centimetres away from the first hole and repeat the procedure to expand the gap.
- Continue the process until you make enough opening around the edge of the lid.
- Use the tip of your tool to peel back the top.
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2. Chef's knife
Unlike the kitchen knife, a chef's knife is large and heavy, therefore, suitable in this process.
- First, position the heel of the knife against the raised lid at the edge of the can. Ensure the tin is placed on a hard surface and the blade if firmly positioned to prevent it from sliding.
- The next step is to press the heel of the knife with slow, steady pressure using both hands until it creates a small hole on the can.
- Use the same technique to create another hole next to the first one. Join the holes to form an extended opening.
- Continue puncturing holes around the edge until you circle the top of the can.
- You can now use a knife or spoon to peel back the lid and access your content.
Do not use the sharp edge of the knife when making holes on the can. The heel is more stable and also less likely to slip.
3. Metal spoon
You can also use a spoon to open a can. It is one of the safest methods to use as compared to a knife.
- Place the tin on a hard surface and grip it with hand one. Use the other side to hold a metal spoon.
- Make punctures on the lid using the spoon, and use it as an opener to peel back the top.
- Alternatively, position the tip of the spoon against the edge of the lip.
- The inside of the bowl of the spoon should be facing the lid.
- Rub the tip of the spoon quickly back and forth repeatedly over a small area at the crimped edge.
- The friction from the spoon will weaken and breakthrough the lid.
- Continue the process around the lead to enlarge your hole.
- Once you have made a large hole, now easily remove the cover using the spoon.
4. Using a fork
A metal fork can easily be used to open a can without can opener by following the procedure below:
- Position the metal tool such that one prong is on the outer edge of the can.
- Gently press down the fork until the prong penetrates the top of the box.
- Move the fork up and down to tear the metal, while slowly turning the can. The prongs should be facing away from you during this process.
- You can also flip the folk or use the handle in the process until your work gets done.
Some people would fear this process because it may end up ruining your fork and even bruising your hand at the end.
The technique involves using flat-nose pliers to pinch the lid until it opens.
- Use the pliers to pinch and twist the outer rim of the can.
- Carefully work your way in a circle around the tin to break the seal.
- Finally, use the pliers to pinch the edge of the lid and pull upwards.
It is as simple as that, and you will have your content ready to consume.
6. Tin snips
It is, perhaps, the easiest and safest way to open a can. Tin snips are similar to scissors. They usually are used to cut sheet metal and other tight webs, unlike scissors used for cutting thin materials. So, how do you use a tin snip to peel back the lid of your tin?
Use the tin snips to cut the outer rim off the can. It should take less of your time to get rid of the cover and have your meal finally.
7. Concrete/rock/ flat stone
Concrete or rock with a rough surface is recommended here since it will create enough friction to puncture the lid. The idea here is to loosen the top of the seal by rubbing it against the rough surface.
- Position the can upside down against a rock.
- Rub the top of the can back and forth gently over the rock to create friction.
- Continue rubbing until moisture/liquid appears on the rock or the lid, an indication that the top of the can is beginning loosening up.
- Remove the loosened lid using a spoon or pocket knife, and you will have succeeded in opening a can without a can opener, but with a rock or concrete block.
Note that rubbing the can over the rock so hard may cause the food to spill.
8. Metal file
Do you know how to open a can using a metal file? Well, it is a simple process, the same as using concrete that only needs a little energy to loosen the lid.
- Place the can in an upright position.
- Rub the file on top of the can back and forth to create friction.
- Continue the rubbing for some time until you loosen the top rim.
- You can now quickly remove the lid and consume your food.
Take caution when using this method since there are chances some metal shavings/particles could enter your food when rubbing the can.
9. Axe blade
Another simple way to open a can without an opener is by using an axe blade.
- Use the axe blade to pierce the side of the can.
- Strike the box with the corner of the axe while holding the can on its edge.
- Slowly cut through the can around the circumference using the edge of the blade.
- The lid will finally peel back with ease.
10. Using your bare hands
In case you cannot access the above tools, do not worry about how to open a can without opener wherever you are. Your hands are there to bail you out. The technique requires more strength, but finally, the content will be accessible. So, how do you go about it?
- Dent or bite the can on each side by using enough energy. Both dents should be large.
- Place the heel of each of your hand on each of the two circular ends of the can and squeeze it back and forth.
- You can also place the tin on a firm flat surface on the ground and press down on it with your hand or knee.
- Continue by bending the two sides back and forth until it rips in two.
- Be careful not to pour the food during the process accidentally. Remove metal particles that may have entered the food during the ripping process.
This method works easier on larger or taller cans, although it is also possible with small ones.
You now have the best tricks on how to open a can without a can opener. Next time you have your canned food but cannot locate the special, it should be an easy task to lift off your lead and enjoy the food content. Try each of the methods at your free time and acquire excellent skills in opening a can without a can opener, and become a real survivor.
DISCLAIMER: This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
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