The Best Can Openers for Seniors of 2022

When muscle weakness, pain, and stiffness from arthritis become a factor in everyday activities, the best can openers for seniors provide assistance in the kitchen.

By Carol Benton | Published Apr 20, 2022 1:23 PM

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best can openers for seniors options

Photo: amazon.com

Many seniors experience the effects of arthritis or other age-related conditions in their hands. Symptoms include a loss of strength and dexterity along with difficulty in gripping or grasping objects. The best can opener for seniors’ arthritic hands minimizes the requirements for strong pressure and precise manipulation.

This guide investigates automatic and ergonomic can openers that help ensure seniors’ safety and self-reliance in the kitchen. Several electric and non-electric models offer helpful features for older cooks. Keep reading to discover the best can openers for seniors.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Cuisinart Deluxe Stainless Steel Can Opener
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Amazon Basics Electric Can Opener
  3. BEST HANDHELD MANUAL: Zyliss Lock N’ Lift Can Opener
  4. BEST COUNTERTOP ELECTRIC: Hamilton Beach SmoothTouch Can Opener
  5. BEST HANDHELD ELECTRIC: Kitchen Mama Auto Handheld Electric Can Opener
  6. BEST ERGONOMIC GRIP: OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Can Opener
  7. BEST SMOOTH EDGE: OXO Good Grips Smooth Edge Can Opener
best can openers for senior options

Photo: cuisinart.com

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Can Openers for Seniors

To find suitable can openers for seniors, shoppers may want to consider several factors. Based on individual needs and preferences, it might be advantageous to select an automatic device that runs on the household electrical current or on batteries. Alternatively, manufacturers offer non-automatic can openers that provide ergonomically designed features for users with arthritic hands. Ahead, find a summary of relevant shopping considerations.

Manual vs. Automatic

When arthritis or other health conditions cause pain, stiffness, and a loss of strength in the hands, seniors often struggle to perform daily tasks. Although opening cans often presents challenges, several types of can openers make the job easier for seniors.

Automatic electric can openers that operate on standard household current or batteries minimize the need for gripping and manipulating the implements by hand. Many automatic countertop can openers feature a one-touch operating procedure activated by light pressure on a lever. Some handheld can openers use batteries.

Other handheld, non-automatic can openers exhibit special features to accommodate seniors’ needs. The best manual can openers offer cushioned handles and oversized turning knobs to facilitate use by seniors with arthritic hands.

Oversized Features and Ergonomic Design

Many people notice a significant decline in manual dexterity and gripping strength as they age. They may find it difficult to exert pressure through their hands, grasp small objects, or make small, manipulative actions. A can opener with ergonomically designed features offers a suitable solution for seniors’ problems.

Ergonomically designed can openers feature broad, rounded edges for easy grasping. Their turning knobs are large, and their handles are cushioned and coated with non-slip material for easy gripping.

Minimum-Touch Requirements

Many openers offer one-touch operation, which users activate by exerting downward pressure on a lever. Release the lever to stop the device.

Many can openers solve the additional problem of grasping and disposing of the detached can lids by incorporating a magnet that holds the lid in place until it’s removed. Some models release the lid with the touch of a button, while others have small attached pliers for lid removal.

Safety 

Safety is an important factor when selecting any kitchen utensil or implement. In can openers, the sharp edges on the detached lids of the cans present a safety hazard. To alleviate this problem, some can openers include strong magnets that hold the lids until the user releases them. Magnets appear on both automatic and manually operated can openers. Because they remove the need to touch the detached lids, push-button releases and built-in pliers are safer.

Some can openers eliminate the problem of sharp edges with a side-cutting action. The rotary cutting blades slice into the side of a can just below the lid. When the lid is released, its sides are smooth, not sharp.

Additional Features 

High-quality can openers feature stainless-steel cutting blades, which are designed like rotary cutting wheels. The housings and other moving parts are made of stainless steel, metal, and plastic.

To clean a non-electric can opener, wipe it with a soft cloth or rinse it under running water and dry it by hand. Never submerge an electric can opener in water. Most can openers, even the non-electric types, are not dishwasher safe. Manufacturers recommend hand-washing only.

Our Top Picks

In this list, we recommend some of the best can openers on the market, with special attention to features that aid seniors, such as ergonomic design. We include automatic and manual operating mechanisms manufactured by well-known, reliable brands.

Best Overall

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: Cuisinart Deluxe Stainless Steel Can Opener
Photo: bedbathandbeyond.com

The trademarked Cuisinart Power Cut blade makes quick, clean work of removing lids from standard-size cans. This countertop electric can opener offers one-touch operation. A strong magnet secures the lid of any standard-size can. Moreover, the appliance has an extra-wide base to prevent tipping over.

Made from brushed stainless steel in a sleek design, this can opener looks attractive on a countertop. The activation arm is designed for easy removal, making cleanup a cinch. All parts of this appliance are free from bisphenol A, a potentially harmful chemical.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches by 9.75 inches
  • Weight: 4.9 pounds
  • Material: Stainless steel blade

Pros

  • One-touch operation
  • Power Cut blade
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Removable arm for cleanup

Cons

  • Requires electricity from standard outlet
  • Will not operate during a power outage

Get the Cuisinart can opener on Amazon, at Ace Hardware, or on Cuisinart.com.

Best Bang For The Buck

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: Amazon Basics Electric Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

For an easy-to-use and effective can opener for a senior cook’s kitchen at a budget price, this countertop electric model from Amazon Basics has a stainless steel blade that cuts smoothly through standard-size can lids without snagging. The strong magnet secures the lid to prevent it from falling into the can.

The handsome body of this appliance is made of stainless steel and black plastic to blend with most kitchen decor. Its wide base with non-slip coating helps prevent tipping or sliding during operation.

This can opener features automatic safety systems, including auto-stop, on-off, and release-locking mechanisms.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 4.4 inches by 4.35 inches by 8.04 inches
  • Weight: 2.03 pounds
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with stainless steel and plastic body

Pros

  • Stainless steel blade
  • Wide, non-slip base
  • Magnetic lid holder
  • Automatic stop, on-off, and release/locking mechanisms

Cons

  • Requires electricity from standard outlet
  • Will not operate during a power outage
  • Not tall enough for large cans

Get the Amazon Basics can opener on Amazon.

Best Handheld Manual

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: Zyliss Lock N’ Lift Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

A handheld, manual can opener that requires no electricity or batteries, this model from Zyiss operates efficiently on cans of all sizes.

The turning handle is coated with a soft, easy-to-grip material that provides comfortable operation for seniors with arthritic hands. The turning handle is large enough to facilitate ease of use by those who cannot grip small objects due to arthritis pain and stiffness.

The lock-and-lift mechanism locks the can opener on the can. When the lid is fully disengaged, the magnet lifts the lid from the can. Then, the user presses the release button so the lid can fall into a trash can.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 7.5 inches long
  • Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with nylon and thermoplastic elastomers body

Pros

  • Large turning handle
  • Locks onto the can
  • Strong magnet holds the lid
  • Easy-release button releases the lid

Cons

  • Requires hand operation
  • Non-electric
  • No one-touch operation

Get the Zyliss can opener on Amazon or Zyliss.

Best Countertop Electric

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: Hamilton Beach SmoothTouch Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

This countertop electric can opener from Hamilton Beach presents a realistic solution to seniors’ problems with arthritis. It features one-hand operation and requires minimal strength.

To promote safe operation, this can opener eliminates sharp edges by cutting along the sides of cans to disengage the lid with edges that are smooth, not sharp.

The side-cutting mechanism reduces the blade’s contact with food. The lid remains in contact with the can until the lid is lifted off, minimizing leakage from the can.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 4.67 inches by 5.01 inches by 10.2 inches
  • Weight: 3.1 pounds
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with metal and plastic body

Pros

  • One-touch operation
  • Side-cutting action eliminates sharp edges
  • Stainless steel blade
  • Magnet action secures the lid

Cons

  • Requires electricity from standard outlet
  • Will not operate during a power outage

Get the Hamilton Beach can opener on Amazon or at Walmart.

Best Handheld Electric

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: Kitchen Mama Auto Handheld Electric Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

For senior cooks who don’t want to clutter their countertop, this Kitchen Mama battery-powered can opener is compact, portable, and easy to use. It stores neatly in a drawer or cabinet.

Operating on four AA batteries, this handheld model doesn’t have a handle. At the touch of a button, the stainless-steel blade cuts along the side of the can slightly below the lid. Hit the button once to start the cutting action. After the blade completes one rotation around the can, push the button again to stop.

The side-cutting action prevents sharp edges on the detached lid. Moreover, the broad, rounded surfaces provide an ergonomically correct user experience for seniors with arthritis.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 7.09 inches by 2.76 inches by 2.17 inches
  • Weight: 8.5 ounces
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with metal components

Pros

  • Battery power facilitates operation during a power outage
  • Compact and easy to store
  • Side-cutting action to eliminate sharp edges
  • Push-button operation

Cons

  • Requires batteries (not included)

Get the Kitchen Mama can opener on Amazon, on Kitchen Mama, or at Walmart.

Best Ergonomic Grip

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

This OXO Good Grips soft-handled can opener is designed for ergonomic use by those with arthritic hands. The oversized turning knob helps eliminate the problem of grasping a small object. Moreover, the handles are large and cushioned to facilitate easy gripping.

Simply squeeze the handles together to lock the blade onto the top of a can. Then, hold the handles with one hand and turn the oversized knob with the other hand. After one rotation around the can, release the detached lid. This can opener doesn’t have a magnet to hold the lid.

The sharp cutting wheel is made of stainless steel, while other parts are stainless steel and plastic. OXO recommends hand-washing the can opener.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 7 inches by 1.88 inches by 2.75 inches
  • Weight: 1 pound
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with plastic body

Pros

  • Large cushioned handles
  • Oversized turning knob
  • Stainless steel rotary cutting wheel
  • Built-in bottle opener

Cons

  • Manual operation
  • No magnet to lift the lid
  • Doesn’t eliminate sharp edges on the lid

Get the OXO Good Grips soft-handled can opener on Amazon, Ace Hardware, or OXO.

Best Smooth Edge

The Best Can Openers for Seniors Option: OXO Good Grips Smooth Edge Can Opener
Photo: amazon.com

While traditional can openers leave sharp edges on can lids, the OXO’s patented side-wind mechanism features a side-cutting action that results in smooth edges.

This can opener doesn’t have a magnet to hold the can lid; instead, the opener features pliers to lift the lid from the can for hands-free lid disposal.

OXO Good Grips has a reputation for producing ergonomically designed kitchen implements that minimize stress on cooks’ hands. The large turning knob is easy to grasp, even for users with arthritis. Additionally, the handles are wide and rounded to present an easy-gripping surface.

Product Specs

  • Dimensions: 7.5 inches by 4.5 inches by 2.25 inches
  • Weight: 0.65 pound
  • Material: Stainless steel blade with plastic body

Pros

  • Leaves smooth edges on can lids
  • Lid pliers for hands-free removal
  • Easy-to-grasp turning knob
  • Easy-grip handles

Cons

  • Manual operation
  • No magnet to hold the lid

Get the OXO Good Grips smooth edge can opener on Amazon, Ace Hardware, or OXO.

Our Verdict

We recommend the Cuisinart can opener for its high-quality materials, design, and operation. The Amazon Basics can opener is a less expensive but useful alternative.

How We Chose the Best Can Openers for Seniors

To begin our research regarding the best can openers for seniors, we read 11 articles in which the authors explain the difficulties faced by senior cooks who experience pain, stiffness, and loss of strength in their hands. These experts provide descriptions and recommendations for can openers that provide quality, durability, and ease of use for seniors.

Next, we read the product descriptions for more than 15 can openers. Because seniors have a variety of needs and preferences, we looked for various types of can openers, including electric models for kitchen countertops as well as handheld battery-operated units. Additionally, we investigated non-electric, manual models that offer ergonomically designed gripping surfaces for comfortable manipulation.

FAQs

Many seniors experience a loss of strength in their hands along with pain and stiffness, which often lead to difficulties with daily tasks such as opening cans. Fortunately, several available types of can openers have features that make it easier for seniors to use them. In this section, we answer frequently asked questions about the best can openers for seniors.

Q. Are electric can openers worth it?

Yes. Electric can openers are easier to use than manual models; however, you may want to keep a manual can opener in case of a power outage.

Q. What are the best can openers for disabled hands?

Electric countertop can openers offer a one-touch operation that’s activated by pressing a lever. Cooks with disabled hands may prefer a battery-operated handheld can opener or a unit with easy-to-grip handles.

Q. How do you open cans with one hand?

Some countertop electric can openers provide easy operation by simply pressing a lever. Some battery-powered handheld can openers may be operated with one hand.

Q. How do you open cans with arthritis?

Use countertop electric can openers or handheld models that operate on batteries. Alternatively, look for manual can openers with easy-to-grasp handles and knobs.