Jars of preserved foods
14 Foods You Should Stop Keeping In Your Pantry
1. Nuts & Seeds
Many of us store nuts and seeds in the pantry, since they're generally seen as non-perishable. However, warm temperatures can cause them to go rancid over time.
Storing nuts and seeds in cooler temperatures slows down the oxidation process, so they'll last much longer in the fridge or freezer, which also keeps them away from light.
2. Maple Syrup
Unopened, pure maple syrup will keep for up to one year in the pantry, since most brands are heat-packed during bottling, keeping the syrup free of contamination.
However, once you open the bottle and the syrup is exposed to air, move it into the fridge. You can even freeze the syrup, extending its shelf life almost indefinitely.
3. Mustard
Plain yellow mustard won’t suffer much if stored in the pantry, but Dijon, honey mustard, and horseradish-based mustards are better stored in the fridge.
Mustard brand Gulden’s suggests refrigerating these mustards after opening. Refrigerated Dijon and yellow mustards last about a year, while honey mustard can last two years.
4. Jam or Jelly
Opened jams and jellies, especially homemade ones that haven't gone through the whole canning and sterilization process, should not be stored in the pantry.
The preserves' acids and sugar only provide temporary protection. Opened jams and jellies last about a week at room temperature, but will last up to six months in the refrigerator.
5. Bread & Tortillas
Supermarket breads and tortillas are full of preservatives to keep them from going bad. However, without enough moisture, the starch crystallizes and makes them stale and hard.
The solution is to store bread and tortillas in a moist environment. Rather than the pantry or fridge, store them in the freezer in an airtight bag for up to six months.