COVID-19 didn’t just put the economy on hold as it also impacted our food consumption. This is the case now since most countries are still on lockdown and we’re limiting ourselves trips to the grocery store.
To avoid spoiling our food and make the most of what we have in the pantry, we have to plan our meals ahead of time. With this comes the purchase planning and what food to store as we prepare for our next grocery trip. We’re here to help you plan your next food purchase with tips on what’s best for long-term storage.
Before you start adding frozen food to your list, you must understand that the quality and texture of the food will change over time. Don’t expect the food to stay fresh in your freezer.
Some of the food that freezes well include the following:
- Tofu and tempeh
- Read meat of veggie stock
- Cooked pasts and noodles
- Bread and other baked goods and tortillas
- Precooked soups, casseroles, and stews
- Portioned fruits and vegetables
- Fish fillet and chicken breasts
Almost all food can be stored frozen, and the most important parts are the preparation and the process of freezing it properly, and you can follow these steps:
- Prep food if it needs to be cooked or what we call blanching.
- Portion the food according to service size or use size.
- In freezing liquids, please don’t fill the container as it expands as it turns solid.
- Utilize your freezer space properly as some containers may take up more space than other containers.
- Label your containers properly, so you don’t have to freeze and unfreeze food items every time you want to cook a meal.
We’re sure that you’re stocking canned food in your pantry and that’s okay. It’s a myth that canned food is not nutritious because some canned food is healthier than others.
To know if your canned food list is healthy or not, make sure to look at the nutrition facts. For example, choose canned fruits that are canned in their juice. You can also purchase canned vegetables that have no added salt or are low in sodium.
For canned food, try storing the following:
- Read beans
- Tuna or salmon
Other food you can store in your pantry:
- Brown rice
- Whole wheat pasta
- Dried fruits
- Rolles oats
- Low sugar cereals
- Dried red lentils
- Salt-free species
- Whole wheat flour
- Pancake mix
- Extra virgin olive oil
Canned food and other pantry food that you can store have a longer shelf life compared to frozen products. This is because jars and steels are airtight that can seal the food from food-borne illness and contamination.
Don’t be afraid to stock canned food because (1) some food, such as canned tomatoes, have high antioxidants because of the canning process, and (2) canned food is as nutritious as fresh food, especially for fruits and vegetables.
Other Food with Longer Shelf-life
- Grains – The soft grains can last up to eight years, while hard grains can last up 12 years when stored properly. If you want to store grains, make sure that it is sealed and has an oxygen absorber.
- White rice – When stored properly, white rice can last up to 20 years in the best storage conditions.
- Dry pasta – This type of food can last up to two years, but make sure that you store it with oxygen absorbers.
- Oil and ghee- For coconut and olive oil, these can last up to two years, especially when stored in sealed jars. Ghee or butter can also last up to two years when left open and unrefrigerated.
Regardless of what food you’re going to store during the quarantine, you always have to follow the correct storage processes to ensure that their shelf life lasts longer. Don’t forget to add some of the foods when you go out for supplies this week!