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8 things you should never keep in the pantry

8 things you should never keep in the pantry

VH-studio / Shutterstock.com Do you experience squatter shock in the grocery corridors? You do not imagine it. With inflation rising more than 8% o

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woman looking at pantry ingredients
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Do you experience squatter shock in the grocery corridors? You do not imagine it. With inflation rising more than 8% over the past year, we are paying more for almost everything.

While we can put off certain purchases, we can not go without eating. Rising inflation means that every grocery dollar matters and that we can not afford to waste food. This includes wasting food because it goes bad due to improper storage.

Here are some items you might like to keep in your pantry or in your kitchen cupboard. Stop doing that.

1. Neute

Walnut
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Pecans, walnuts, almonds and other nuts are high in protein and fiber, but they also contain oils that can become rancid if stored at room temperature. Food scientists at the University of California, Davis recommend storing nuts in the refrigerator, where they will retain quality for up to a year (two to three months for chestnuts). Or put it in the freezer, where they will last up to two years (one year for chestnuts).

Cold temperatures are especially important if you have grown those nuts yourself. Cooling or freezing will prevent any insect eggs from hatching.

2. Maple syrup

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There is nothing like a little real maple syrup on pancakes or waffles. Unfortunately, mold loves this light brown nectar just as much as we do. This is why an opened bottle of real maple syrup should be stored in the refrigerator, according to the Michigan State University Extension.

An unopened glass bottle or can can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to two years. Once opened, it can keep up to one year in the fridge.

3. Whole grain flour

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Whole grain flour is good for us, but they need a little more care than their refined cousins. The non-profit whole grain board recommends storing flour in an absolutely airtight container such as glass, aluminum or plastic containers or a plastic bag with a zipper.

After that, the flour technically could stay in the pantry for one to three months, if it is always cool and dry there. But if your pantry – like many – is even sometimes subject to heat and humidity, store whole grain flour in the freezer. It will be fine there for up to six months.

And what’s better on homemade whole grain bread or muffins than …

4. Butter

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Do you keep your butter dish in the pantry, cupboard or even on the dining table? Do not!

Unsalted butter (and whipped butter) should always be refrigerated, according to the National Dairy Council. Although salted butter is less likely to go bad, it should never be left in the fridge for “more than a few days”. And if your kitchen gets hotter than 70 degrees Fahrenheit, all butter is best stored in the fridge.

5. Cold pressed oils

Avocado oil
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If your pantry contains bottles of olive, sesame, sunflower or other cold pressed oils, move it to the fridge. Their shelf life will be greatly extended in this way, according to Food and Wine.

Cooling can make oils look cloudy or even solidify, but Clean Eating magazine notes that this is only temporary. As it changes as the oil warms up again, the magazine says, “a few minutes at room temperature should help them return to their natural state.”

6. Jams and jellies

jelly jam on toast
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Unopened, that jam or jelly will just be good in the pantry. However, once you have broken the seal, it should go in the fridge.

And it will not last there forever, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. They recommend six months, tops.

As for jelly’s favorite mate…

7. Peanut Butter

peanut butter
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Commercial peanut butter can be good in the pantry for up to three months, according to the National Peanut Board. If your household does not finish the bottle fast enough, store it in the refrigerator where it can last up to nine months.

“Natural” peanut butter, which has no chemical stabilizers, will not last long in the pantry. Its natural oils can quickly become rancid. However, it will get hard in the fridge, so if there is a sudden PBJ emergency in your home, the Martha Stewart blog notes that you can scrape out a bit and short microwave to soften the grease.

8. Toutsous

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Check a ketchup label and you will probably see, “For best results, refrigerate after opening.” The USDA says that ketchup will keep in the refrigerator for up to six months.

By the way, Heinz has fun with this topic in Canada, where cold-or-not-ketchup seems to be the topic of passionate national debate. In May 2022, the company introduced “Cold Ketchup” – the same spice, but in a bottle whose label “turns ice blue when cooled perfectly”.

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