Using Purified Water When Canning: When I list purified water in my recipes, for instance, when canning chicken, I mean use water that has been purified to remove impurities. If you do not have filtered water in the house, boil your tap water for 5 minutes before using it when canning. If your home has a water softener, do NOT use soft water when canning – either filter it or purchase distilled or purified water.