6 Easiest Ways to Open a Can Without Can Opener

open can of spaghetti

Remember!!! Following Skills Are Really Easy to Learn and May Save Your Life in Critical Situation! Technique #5 Requires Just Your Hands!!!

You are out in the wild or in a survival situation with canned goods, but suddenly you realize you are missing proper tool to get inside it.

  • Click Here to learn how to open one with just your hands

This poses a dilemma for most people because without the common luxuries found in your home, you probably don’t know how to open a can without a can opener.

Let’s take a look at a few ways you can implement to get to your canned food. Some require specific instruments while with others all you need are just your own bare hands.

Simply go through 6 simple and easy to do ways I explain below and do not forget to watch instructional videos as well!

Technique #1 – Using Just a Regular Spoon


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Possibly the safest method of opening a can is using a spoon. Unlike a knife, spoon generally does not have sharp edges that could pose any risk of injury. First, you will want to find a spoon that is made of metal. Now, you all you need to do is to follow these 4 steps:

  1. Lay the can on a flat, even surface.
  2. Place the spoon head on the inside of the can (where you would normally use a can opener).
  3. Grasp the spoon tightly and apply pressure using a rocking motion. You will eventually wear through the can’s metal and pierce a hole through it.
  4. Continue using the above method until you have removed the lid completely.

Please note:

When the can is 90 percent penetrated, you can use the spoon to pry it open.

Technique #2 – Penetration by Chef Knife

This article will help you a lot:

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Using a chef knife is one of the fastest and easiest ways to get into a can. In fact, it is also very safe and little to no damage is done to the blade itself. As long as you maintain a firm grip, you should not get cut in the process.

You will need to do the following:

  1. Grab a chef knife.
  2. Hold the knife with your fingers on the top and your palm between the handle and curve of the knife.
  3. Use the square edge (where the handle meets the blade) to pierce the lid.
  4. Push into the can and tilt the blade outward to pry it up a little at a time.
  5. Repeat until the lid is completely open!

This method is very simple and safe. Advanced users will be able to open a regular-sized can in just 30 seconds!

Technique #3 – Rubbing on Flat Concrete or Rock Surface

This may always come in handy:

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This method is so easy that I was surprised it actually worked. In fact, I am not even sure why it works, but it does every time! The only chance of injury during this process is if you rub your knuckles on the concrete!

You may also want to shield your eyes during the final step so that no juices get into your eyes!

  1. Grab your can and flip it upside down.
  2. Rub the can on the concrete for 5 – 10 seconds. At this point, you will notice that the can’s metal is starting to fray. Essentially, you will be loosening the sealant that was put on the can.
  3. Once you notice this fraying, you will need to squeeze the can tightly in hopes of popping the top lid off.

That is it! You can even do this on bigger rocks if there is no concrete surface nearby.

Technique #4 – Using Hammer & Chisel

You should definitely learn this skill:

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The hammer and chisel method is simple and easy, but you need to be cautious. The tools you use won’t be damaged, but if you hit the chisel too hard, it may go into your food.

Now, let’s get started:

  1. Place the chisel on the inside of the can against the metal lid.
  2. Tap the top of the chisel with a hammer (start lightly).
  3. Continue until you have pierced the lid completely.

The trick is to tap the chisel lightly and increase the pressure until you have pierced a hole in the can.

Keep in mind: If you hit the chisel too hard, it may go into your food.

Technique #5 – Use Just Your Own Bare Hands

While not the easiest method listed, you can use your bare hands to get into canned food. Just remember that the can is very sharp when pierced, so you will need to be extra cautious of where you place your fingers!

A) Tall Cans

This video is in foreign language but visual instructions are more than clear!

You have to see and learn these:

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Tall cans are quite easy to open, but it does take some patience. Here is what you will need to do:

  1. Apply pressure to the middle of the can making an indent.
  2. Flip the it and make an indent on the other side.

The goal is to weaken the middle of the can enough that you can hold both edges and easily flex the middle part back and forth. You need to repeat this until you have worn down the metal enough that the contents start to come out!

Please note:

You may need to place a hand at both ends of the can and squeeze for the indent to be made appropriately! Just see the video above.

B) Shorter Cans

Again this video is in foreign language but visual instructions are more than clear!

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Shorter cans are a bit harder to open, but you can still get into them with your bare hands. Let’s take a look at how this is done.

  1. First, hold the can against your body and use your fingers to make an indent in the side of the can.
  2. Repeat step one on the other side.
  3. Now, squeeze the top on each of the dented sides.
  4. Repeat until the can’s metal starts to wear down and contents come out of it.

You may want to use a covering on the can to catch the food that is coming out and to protect your hands. Once the can’s center weakens enough, you can carefully pull it apart.

Please note: Be extra cautious during this step as it is very easy to cut your fingers!

Technique #6 – Use Ordinary Knife

These are free and easy to follow:

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The final technique to open a can I am going to explain to you will require an ordinary knife. You need to take care to avoid cutting yourself during the process. Also note that you may break the tip of your blade or completely dull its edge.

To get inside your can, do the following:

  1. Place the tip of the blade on the inside of the lid.
  2. Pierce the can with the tip of your blade and slightly pull back to make a bigger hole.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until your lid is completely open.

Pay attention!

It is much easier to use a smaller knife with this technique as you will have more control and leverage over it.

Further Resources

About Jim Worthersky

Hi, my name is Jim and my motto to live by is: Hope for the best while prepare for the worst. My hobbies are swimming, hiking, hunting, scouting & crafting.

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