6 Best Manual Can Opener of 2021

The can opener: of all the appliances you have in your kitchen, it probably doesn’t get the attention that it deserves, but it really should. From canned corn to canned tomatoes, and from canned chicken to canned clam chowder, a can opener is probably one of the tools that you use the most in your kitchen. Imagine what a nuisance it would be to open up all of those canned items without one?

Manual Can OpenerWhile a can opener is supposed to make your life more convenient, it can make it pretty frustrating if it isn’t reliable. To avoid mishaps and ensure that you can get into those canned items with ease, you’ll want to invest in the best can opener possible.


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Keep reading for ten brief reviews that will simplify the process of elimination as to which brand gets the honor of becoming a useful investment for your kitchen.

1. ZYLISS Lock N’ Lift Can Opener

ZYLISS Lock N' Lift Can Opener with Lid Lifter Magnet Product Image

With the ZYLISS Lock N’ Lift Can Opener with Lid Lifter Magnet, you’ll be able to open up all of your favorite canned foods with ease each and every time. Not only that; but you’ll also be able to do it safely! That’s because this manual can opener locks right onto the lid, so there’s no need to worry about it slipping off mid-use. Plus, it can accommodate cans of all sizes, from small cans of sardines to oversized cans of black beans.

This cutting mechanism on this can opener is made of smooth and durable stainless steel, so it’s incredibly durable and will open up cans with pinpoint precision for years to come. The soft-grip handle allows you to get a secure hold onto the can opener; it also increases safety and comfort, and it minimizes hand fatigue. Once the lid is open, it will automatically stick to the magnet, which will lift it right off your can; talk about easy! Care is easy, too; just wipe it down with a towel before you put it away.

What We Like About It

  • Stainless steel cutting mechanism can accommodate cans of all sizes
  • Comfort grip handle ensures a safe and secure grip and reduces hand fatigue
  • Magnetic lift pulls opened lids right off the can for easy disposal
  • Very durable
  • Backed by a 5-year warranty

Reasons to Complain

  • Some users said that the product they received was defective

Final Verdict: The Zyliss Lock N’ Lift Can Opener with Lid Lifter Magnet will make preparing food a breeze. Thanks to the stainless steel cutting mechanism that can open cans of all sizes and the magnetic lid lifter, you’ll have no trouble getting into your canned goods.

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2. KitchenAid Can Opener

KitchenAid Can Opener

The KitchenAid Can Opener didn’t impress me at first since it looks like every other standard manual can opener, but sometimes looks may be deceiving. This unit is made of high-grade stainless steel that will puncture through all sorts of lids, but that is where its design features end.

The only way to wash it is by hand washing it with a solution of mild soap and warm water. To prevent the blade from rusting, you’ll need to dry it immediately afterward, so you should expect heavy maintenance.

The lack of user-friendly features and functions makes the KitchenAid Can Opener an ideal starter unit, but you’ll slowly want to switch it out for a new and improved model.

One perk the KitchenAid Can Opener provides is that it comes with a one-year hassle-free warranty that states KitchenAid will replace your device with no questions asked along with a lifetime limited warranty that will ensure the replacement of any damaged parts.

What We Like About It: This KitchenAid unit is available in eight colors, which gives you more room to choose a device that complements your kitchen decor.  The handles vary in color but not in design. In fact, we especially love how they all have the same ergonomic yet durable design that ensures a firm grip with each use.

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3. OXO Good Grips Can Opener

OXO Good Grips Can Opener

Even if you have arthritis but don’t want to spend money on an electric can opener, you still have the option to buy a manual can opener with a build similar to standard models but won’t negatively affect your hands as standard models commonly do.

What We Liked About It: OXO Good Grips Can Opener doesn’t require the countertop space most electric models do, so you can easily store this in your kitchen drawer and forgot about it till you need to open a can. This means you don’t have to worry about it matching your kitchen decor since it won’t be sitting on your countertop, which gave us a huge sigh of relief.

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4. My Cozy Home Can Opener

My Cozy Home Premium Can Opener

Another high-quality manual can opener, this option from My Cozy Home makes getting into those canned goods a cinch. The heavy-duty, stainless steel blade remains sharp use after use, so it will be able to open up cans with no problem for years to come.

Using this can opener is so easy! Just open up the large, ergonomic handles, attach your can to the cutting mechanism, close the handles, and turn the knob; that’s it! With one full rotation, this can opener will remove the lids off of cans of all sizes. While it’s super sturdy and durable, it’s also lightweight, which makes it even easier to use. This can opener also features a built-in bottle opener, so it’s really two appliances in one! Lastly, this can opener is backed by a lifetime warranty, so if you have any trouble with it, just contact the manufacturer and they’ll either send you a replacement or give you a full refund with no questions asked; the can opener doesn’t even need to be returned!

What We Like About It

  • Stainless steel blades are durable and remain sharp for years
  • Can be used to open cans of all sizes
  • The easy turn knob prevents hand fatigue
  • Large, ergonomic handles allow for easy operation
  • Features a built-in bottle opener
  • Backed by a lifetime warranty

Reasons to Complain

  • Some users said that it broke after only a few uses; however, they were able to get a replacement or a refund, thanks to the lifetime warranty

Final Verdict: The My Cozy Home Can Opener features a sleek, modern design and makes it easy to open up cans of all sizes. With ergonomic handles and an easy to turn the knob, you’ll have no trouble opening your canned goods with this device.

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5. GoodCook Safe Cut Can Opener

Safe Cut Can Opener by GoodCook 11834 Product Image

Safe Cut Can Opener enhances the overall build of a standard opener to result in a device that functions on a higher level so that you can eat your food in peace!

The Safe Cut throws food contamination out the window since it comes with a blade that never touches food, which translates to no cross-contamination between cans. Instead of having to wash it after every time you open a can, you can open several different cans and skip the washing part until the very end, which saves you time in the kitchen.

There finally exists a can opener that can be used by all ages. Ranging from children to seniors, the Safe Cut comes with a serrated edge cutting wheel that will accurately separate the lid without creating those sharp edges that most often cause injuries.

What We Like About It: We hate injuring our hands when opening a can of red sauce because we can no longer tell the difference between the sauce and our blood, so we were overjoyed to discover that the Safe Cut put our minds to rest with its serrated edge blade.

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6. XINHUO Safe Cut Can Opener

XINHUO Safe Cut Can Opener

Even though the matte all-black build of the XINHUO Safe Cut Can Opener is not a unique design, it is an improvement of the previous XINHUO Safe Cut model, so you can expect this device to function better than it could before.

The XINHUO Safe Cut functions manually, but you don’t have to worry about it negatively impacting your hands. It is built with ergonomically designed handles that come with a non-slip feature that makes hurting yourself out of the question and downright near impossible.

Following the footsteps of other innovative designs, the XINHUO Safe Cut also comes with a side cutting blade design that ensures no cross food contamination occurs and no sharp edges.

Easy to clean and wash, this model is also dishwasher safe, which means maintaining it requires no effort on your part. Washing it won’t diminish its high-grade build since it’s made with culinary-grade stainless steel that’s guaranteed never to rust.

What We Like About It: The XINHUO Safe Cut is simple to operate and will cut the lids off your cans every time you need it to, which is exactly what we want. We prefer how this device uses innovative technology to improve on the manual design rather than produce an entirely new model that runs on electricity.

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How We Choose the Best Manual Can Opener?

Creating a list of the ten best and continuing to write brief and to the point, reviews of their performances is a long and strenuous process that involves thoroughly comprehending the overall build of can openers.

  • Stainless-steel blades: A must-have since these blades resist rust and perform the best.
  • Comfortable Handles: Manual units should have handles that come with rubber grips and are non-slip.
  • Appropriate Size: In regards to electric units, they should measure tall enough to open the largest can you intend to use it for. Manual versions should fit in your kitchen drawer with no hiccups.
  • Easy Cleaning: Side-cut openers rank superior to top-cut models, but the handheld top-cut openers rank below the electronic version of the same thing.
  • Smooth Performance: Models that feature a no-slip design that will cut open a lid with one 360 degrees rotation are prime
  • Lid Magnet: High-grade models come with magnets to prevent the lid from falling back into the can

Best Manual Can Opener Buying Guide

Can openers seem like a dime a dozen, however, there is an unmeasured level of craftsmanship bestowed upon each type that differentiates them from the pack, for better or worse?  Even though it is an unassuming device, acquiring one that is not sound in its performance can provide endless frustration.  If you believe there is no gap between the functionality of a high-end can opener versus a bare-bones iteration, all you need to do is spend five minutes attempting to use the latter to experience firsthand the lack of effectiveness in its use.  There are a variety of can openers available to the masses (yes, even can openers have a market), and to discover the best one for you, it is wise to compare them based on the components they are made with and application.  Kitchen utensil sets are not complete without a working can opener.

What Are Can Openers?

As the name suggests, they are tools to remove the lids from containers that have been factory sealed.  This you likely already know, however not everyone can have the same circumference and size of lip (which the opener grasps onto).  This is pertinent when selecting a can opener because using a handheld device on a large can, for example, can be brutal on your fingers and palm, and may not even get the lid off effectively.

Why Does Quality Matter?

While can openers are by no means the sexiest item you will find in a kitchen, they are just like a cutting board in that they are most definitely a tool you will use frequently over the course of your life.  This goes double for those who enjoy cooking and prefer to put their culinary expertise to work.  No two can openers are alike because they are made from different materials, and this can affect the leverage produced and the overall success of its application.  Poorly made openers leave jagged pieces of metal protruding in every direction, making it a hazard to handle as they will easily cut your fingertips.  Moreover, some can openers cannot gain traction on the lip to fully unseal and remove a lid.  The problem that arises from this is you will likely be forced to clamp the can opener repeatedly over a dozen times to break the lid, instead of being able to turn it effortlessly.

Manual Can Opener vs. Automatic

Manual can openers, as you might have guessed, are models of the variety that require physical effort in your hand, as you would need with a pizza cutter or apple peeler.  Often, this is done by clamping the ‘teeth’ of the apparatus on the lid and turning clockwise to get the contents open.  Automatic can openers are machines that do the leg work for you and use electronic rotation to unseal the metal container.  They are not to be confused with a jar opener or pressure canners.  Keep in mind that automatic devices will need an electrical outlet, so if you have a blender or coffee maker there may simply not be enough power to go around.

Stainless Steel vs. Plastic Components

Metal will obviously be integral to all can openers, regardless of type or brand, but just how much is incorporated directly relates to how efficient it is for the task at hand.  Stainless steel is an alloy, meaning it is a mixture of metals.  They are advantageous in their use because they provide more durability and leverage in opening cans.  Additionally, stainless steel, or whichever metal you can opener may be comprised of, is also built to last for the long haul.  Conversely, even though you can opener likely has a metal frame, plastic covers and pieces may be part of its manufacturing.  With plastic, the adage is true, as you get what you pay for.  This is not to say that they cannot flawlessly remove a lid, but their execution will wane over time, and the material also lends itself to a bent device that will render itself useless eventually.

Lock Feature vs. Non-Lock Openers

Lock features on this utensil take the form of a button that can be pressed down to make sure the teeth do not stray after they have ‘bitten’ into the metal lid.  The importance of this feature cannot be understated, particularly if you have an unsteady hand, as it guarantees that you will have a firm grasp of the can and that ‘rolling’ around the circular area is flawless.  Having a lock is not the be all end all, but it certainly makes the process exponentially easier, if that is your primary desire.

Pros & Cons of Manual Can Opener

The most obvious upside to manual can openers is that for all intents and purposes they are more inexpensive than their automatic counterparts.  If you are on a budget and have spent your kitchen accessory funds on items like sous vide machine or egg cooker, an opener that will not break your bank is prudent.  Sometimes having a manual can opener can be beneficial when dealing with stubborn or awkwardly shaped cans because you have more freedom to angle the device as necessary to complete the opening.

First and foremost, manual can openers simply will not last if automatic can openers, as every time you clamp, force is placing resistance on the clamps and teeth.  Going the stainless-steel route, will of course, buy you time before having to purchase a replacement, but unless you have made can opening an art form, eventually, the teeth will wear and the clamps will become misaligned.  The functionality of a can opener depends almost entirely on how much force can be generated evenly.  When a manual can opener has reached its end, a telltale sign is when it is having trouble rotating cleanly on the lip.

Pros & Cons of Automatic Can Opener

Automatic can openers are a breeze to use and completely remove the physical component out of the task.  They are usually error-free and last for years, requiring little maintenance if used properly.  Furthermore, if you operate a busy kitchen, they offer a streamlined solution for you to multi-task and place your attention on other things in your prep area.  Finally, automatic openers are predicated on speed and handle each can swiftly if you want to throw something in the microwave in a timely fashion.

These designs will commonly be more expensive, but if opening cans is a regularity in your household, it can certainly be a wise investment.  Furthermore, though not frequent, automatic can openers, of course, can break, leaving you without a solution to the problem.  Another potential drawback is that most automatic devices cannot handle overly large or unusually shaped cans.  Their bread and butter are cans of standard size, so if you are routinely handling big circumferences, they may not be for you.

Why You Need The Best Manual Can Opener?

One thing I hate to do is spend money I don’t have on kitchen appliances that turn out I don’t even end up needing or ever using. There’s no worse feeling than realizing you just wasted your money, but I’m here to tell you that a can opener is not that type of kitchen appliance.

After you buy the kitchen items you deemed necessary; you’ll eventually realize you need one when you fail at an attempt to open a can of soup you’re trying to make for dinner because you lack the required tools.

Can openers are the type of device whose practicality extends past the kitchen since they come in handy during camping trips and hiking related endeavors?

A general rule of thumb that applies to find out whether or not you need one in your kitchen is to ask yourself, “Will I need to open a can more than once a month?” If you answered yes to that question, make sure to add one of the can openers review above into your shopping cart?

Keep in mind that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to ensure you buy the best functioning one because it depends on how much you’ll have to use it.

For low volume usage, a manual unit will work just fine. On the other hand, for mid to high volume use, an electric unit will perform to your standards.

Yes, it is possible to open a can without a can opener, but why put yourself through all the trouble when you have a device that can do it for you in a matter of seconds.

On average, it takes a person over three minutes to open a can without a can opener, while having one means you can complete the same task in under 10 seconds.

They make the entire process of opening a can safe because, without the device, you’ll need to use a knife to make the required cuts. Using a knife leaves your hands vulnerable to injuries, which is the last thing you need when you’re trying to make a meal.

Don’t make the same mistake I did and put off buying one till the day comes, and you’re was making nachos, and you have to leave black beans out of the dish since you have no can opener in your kitchen.


Ultimately what will help you decide on which type of can opener to embark upon will depend on budget, frequency of use, and how much personal labor you want to put into every opening, if any.  The most prudent decision is the one that weighs how reliable you’d like the utensil to be, and how long you would prefer it to last before replacement becomes a necessity.  Can openers make a great gift basket item, as it is one of the college kitchen utensils coveted most by students, along with measuring cup sets?