Best Manual Can Opener

After nearly 22 hours of research and testing, it’s safe to say that the KitchenAid KC130O is the best manual can opener, and with good reason. It’s easy to operate, provides a sure grip, and is made with high-quality materials. Keep reading to learn more about our highly-recommended manual can openers. TEST TEST

To help you find the best manual can opener out there, we’ve checked out 21 of the highest-rated products available on the market today. We sought out can openers that leave smooth edges on cans—ones that are safe and easy to use for anyone in the house. We considered products based on the quality of the materials used, their design for maximum grip and comfort, and if their wheels and handles are rust-resistant.

Top 7 Best Manual Can Openers

 #1  KitchenAid KC130 Manual Can Opener

Award: TOP PICK

WHY WE LIKE IT: This top-rated manual can opener is made of high-quality steel that easily punctures every single can in the kitchen. Its well-thought-out features such as the big nozzle and lock mechanism set the bar high for the best manual can openers on the market.

Pros
  • Very easy to use
  • Comes in different colors
  • Comfortable to hold
Cons
  • Hand-wash only

This KitchenAid KC130O classic can opener weighs only 8.8oz, which is pretty lightweight for a heavy-duty can opener. Its handle is large and provides a steady grip when opening ingredients, making it the best manual can opener for seniors.

Its wheel is very sharp so you can open your cans without creating crooked edges, and it’s made of stainless steel that won’t rust through time. This can opener comes in nine fun color designs so that you can have an opener that’s equally functional and fashionable in the kitchen. To round out your kitchen appliances, consider picking up the best toaster oven too.

 #2  Zyliss Lock N’ Lift 7″ Handheld Manual Can Opener

Award: HONORABLE MENTION

WHY WE LIKE IT: This manual can opener has a secure locking mechanism that allows for consistent cuts and reduced strain on your hands. It has a built-in magnet that latches onto can lids for easier disposal once you’re done opening them.

Pros
  • Excellent locking mechanism
  • Stylish modern design
  • Convenient built-in magnet
Cons
  • Handle is made of plastic

This 7” manual can opener automatically locks onto the can for an easier cutting process. Its knob is smooth yet has a good grip, which was designed for less hand strain while you’re turning the can opener.

With its instant lock option, you wouldn’t have to hold both handles together. The soft-touch handle makes for steady, more controlled movement while you’re opening cans. It’s also easy to clean and dries fast so that you can use it to open another can in no time. Take a look at the best toaster too, for a kitchen that’s ready for any meal.

 #3  OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Manual Can Opener

Award: BEST GRIP

WHY WE LIKE IT: This classic-designed can opener has a large handle, which makes opening cans more comfortable, and a built-in bottle opener conveniently placed on its steel end. It also boasts a non-slip grip so that you won’t miss any spots on your cans even when they’re wet.

Pros
  • Built-in bottle opener
  • Ergonomic design
  • Sharp-cutting wheel
Cons
  • Hand-wash only

The OXO Good Grips Can Opener is a little bit heavier than our top pick at approximately 9.1oz, but its handle is just as soft and cushioned. With the oversized knob, you won’t have to put much effort when opening your cans.

This can opener’s cutting wheel is so sharp that you’ll be able to cut the entire lid with ease. It’s also very strong and sturdy that it can plow through whatever you want to open. Plus, it has a built-in bottle cap remover, which is very convenient and easy to use. Speaking of convenience, nothing beats the convenience of the best speed cooking microwave.

 #4  Swing-A-Way 407BK Portable Manual Can Opener

We're sorry, this product is temporarily out of stock

Award: BEST BUDGET

WHY WE LIKE IT: Swing-A-Way’s portable can opener is an all-steel opener that can pierce through any type of metal that you need to open. The handle stays folded when you aren’t using it, making it easier to store.

Pros
  • Longest handle
  • Easy grip
  • Easy to store
Cons
  • Wheel should be securely locked

The Swing-A-Way can opener has an extra-long handle that takes away the strain from your hands while opening cans. Just like item #3, its handle is cushioned to allow for more comfortable usage.

As this product’s design is very traditional, it also has a built-in bottle opener. It’s very easy to clean and weighs 10.4oz, which means you’ll have no problem bringing it to camping trips or outdoor barbecues with the family. The crank handle is metal, so you should always wipe it clean after washing the can opener to prevent it from rusting.  Pair this with the best chef knife to make all parts of meal prep convenient and easy.

 #5  Good Cook Manual Can Opener

Award: SAFEST

WHY WE LIKE IT: You’ll be able to make precise and worry-free cuts on your cans with this manual can opener’s safe-cut design that leaves zero sharp edges.

Pros
  • Longest handle
  • Easy grip
  • Excellent for left/right-handed
Cons
  • Handles are plastic

This can opener has a unique patented design compared to other openers, and with good reason—its blade never touches your food to avoid cross-contamination. It’s very easy to use, and its handle doesn’t have to be gripped tightly.

Its body is made of heavy-duty plastic, which avoids rusting and makes it highly easy to clean. It doesn’t look like a traditional can opener, but this heavy duty opener comes with clear instructions from Good Cook. It weighs only 4oz, but built to resist tarnishing, warping, and breaking. If you’re thinking of hosting a party this summer, you might also want the best oyster knife, for appetizers everyone will rave about.

 #6  Kuhn Rikon 2262 Auto Safety Master Manual Can Opener

Award: BEST QUALITY

WHY WE LIKE IT: This unique can opener hinges and cuts the outside portion of the lid instead of the top part, leaving a smooth finish on the can’s rim. It has a lock-on feature that makes it easier to grip and open.

Pros
  • Doesn’t leave sharp edges on lids
  • Very hygienic
  • Multi-purpose
Cons
  • Over-turning can create sharp slivers

Kuhn Rikon is a Swiss brand, and it’s evident in the way this can opener was built like a Swiss knife—it functions as a bottle opener, soda tab opener, and a pull-ring opener.

It’s uniquely designed to open cans on their sides. Once you lock it in and turn its knob, the wheel starts cutting the outside rim instead of the top part of the lid. This manual can opener is made of stainless steel and polished with textured, durable plastic so that the knob has a nice feel to it. If you like quality kitchen utensils you might want to also take a look at some of the best salt and pepper shakers for your kitchen.

 #7  Made in USA Manual Can Opener

Award: BEST HEAVY-DUTY

WHY WE LIKE IT: This no-frills, traditionally-designed can opener was built to last a long time and has cushioned handles, just like all the best manual can openers on the market.

Pros
  • Excellent lock mechanism
  • Easy to hold
  • Very sturdy grip
Cons
  • Can rust through time

The parts manufacturer of the Swing-A-Way brand created their own can opener line: the Made in USA Can Opener. The difference is that they’ve made several improvements such as the materials used in both the steel end and its plastic handles.

Designed more than five decades ago and improved in recent years, it combines a charming vintage look and functionality that fits recent times. This old-fashioned manual can opener also offers more durability. If you wash and dry it properly after each use, this can opener will have no problem lasting decades in your kitchen. With this can opener, your best lunch box will begin to have the premium of canned fruits.

How We Decided

We’ve hand-picked the best manual can openers based on their value for money, materials used, blade sharpness, design, and additional features that some can openers might not have. Preferring those with a premium build, we excluded items with materials that didn’t match the quality we looked for.

Another important feature is the blade; we opted for products that could cut through can lids in one easy go. We also chose manual can openers that have cushioned handles over can openers that are made of pure steel.
Furthermore, we chose can openers that can last longer compared to their counterparts that tend to bend and break over time. The OXO Steel Can Opener for example has some plastic material on the handles that isn’t very durable so it wasn’t included. We included some openers that have additional functions, but excluded some can openers with too many functions that consequently diminished the performance of the can opener itself.

We also listed products that ensure safety even as you’re discarding the lid, such as the Zyliss Lock N’ Lift that cuts cans smoothly and instantly latches onto the lid with its built-in magnet so that you won’t have to worry about accidentally cutting your hand when you’re taking out the trash.

Best Manual Can Opener Buyer’s Guide

The Most Important Factors to Consider

  1. Durability and Materials
    A manual opener is usually much more durable than an electric can opener, but you should still check the materials used and the quality of the steel ends. Also, check if the can opener is rust-resistant because once it rusts, you won’t be able to use it again. Go for an opener that’s easy to clean with soap and water, since most manual openers are not dishwasher safe. Lastly, choose a product whose manufacturer offers a good warranty deal.
  2. Smooth Cutting Wheel
    You should have a can opener with a cutting mechanism that leaves safe edges so that you won’t accidentally cut yourself when you’re removing the lid of metal cans. The best manual can openers have sharp cutters that are easy to turn and won’t make you go back and forth trying to pierce through the can. An example of an opener that leaves a smooth edge is the OXO Good Grips Smooth Edge Can Opener.
  3. Cushioned Handle
    Opening cans can be strenuous to the hands, so you want one that has a good grip. All of the manual can openers listed above must be handheld, so look for one that has cushioned handles for ease of use.

Manual Can Opener FAQs

How do you open a can with a manual can opener?

To carefully open cans:

  • Take both handles of the manual can opener apart
  • Place the metal cutter on the lip of the can
  • Squeeze the handles together to make it sturdy
  • Rotate the wheel until the entire lid is detached from the can

What’s the best can opener to buy?

The best can opener, electric or manual, should be durable, safe, and conveniently cut your cans for you. For this reason, KitchenAid’s classic can opener remains popular and highly-rated for its easy function and fun designs. Another well-known can opener is Kuhn Rikon’s auto-safety master can opener because of its unique style and versatility. Although both of these manual can openers are very different in terms of design, they offer the most efficiency and safety among can openers available on the market. KitchenAid’s can opener has two handles as opposed to Kuhn Rikon’s can opener that only has one, but both have strong and easy grips. Moreover, they have big knobs that open cans faster. Both knobs can turn clockwise and counterclockwise just in case you miss a spot, but that’s highly doubtful because these openers latch onto cans very strongly.

Can openers that don’t leave sharp edges?

For lids without sharp edges, you can choose Good Cook’s safe-cut manual can opener. Another item that ensures smooth can lids is the Kuhn Rikon can opener. The Good Cook Safe-Cut Manual Can Opener has no exposed blades, and the Kuhn Rikon can opener safely cuts the outside rim of the can without leaving any sharp edges. These can openers will pierce through lids of cans safely while creating a smooth finish to the cans.

Can openers that last?

For long-lasting manual can openers, you can go for the Swing-A-Way and Made in USA Can Opener. These two brands are known for their extremely durable construction. With high-quality materials and comfortable grip designs, both openers can last quite a long time in your kitchen.

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Geri Mileva

Based in Prague, CZ, Geri is a freelance writer with nine years of experience. Technology, marketing and finance are among her favorite topics to write about. She's also a strong advocate of plant-based and ethical living.

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