4 Best Tips for Cereal Storage And Longer Freshness

Cereal is one of the healthiest foods available, but it’s not always clear how to keep it fresh for a long time. With cereal, you only have a few weeks to make sure it isn’t affected by moisture or insects; otherwise, you’ll have to spend money on a new box.

Storing cereal is an important step in planning a healthy diet. To learn more about how to keep cereal fresh for a long time, read this article.

About Cereal

Cereal is a type of grain grown from the seed of cereal grasses, which include wheat, rye, barley, oats, and maize. Cereal grains are produced only for their grain; they are typically heavy in carbs and low in protein content.

The two most significant cereal crops are rice and wheat, which account for over half of all cereal crop production around the world. [1]

Cereal can be prepared as a stand-alone food or used as an element in other processed foods. It is a popular nutritional food source in many nations all over the world.

Did you know the term ‘Cereal’ is derived from Ceres, a Roman goddess of agriculture?

How to Keep Cereal Fresh

So, how to keep cereal fresh for a long time? Let’s dive in!

1. Store Cereal In a Cool Environment

Cereal should be kept between 40℉ (5℃) to 50℉ (10℃). Your cereal will get too dry if kept at higher temperatures. On the other side, it might become moldy if it’s kept at lower ones.

The cereal should also be kept in an airtight container and away from direct sunlight. The starch granules in the cereal could discolor or turn brown due to exposure to sunlight. Even though the color does not change, it is still thought to be harmful to your health.

2. Use the Right Type of Packaging

The market offers a wide variety of containers of different kinds and sizes. Make sure the container you choose has enough space for all the ingredients without any extra space for air.

Additionally, make an effort to purchase containers with tight-fitting lids to prevent any leaks.

3. Keep the Cereal Covered

By covering the cereal, oxygen is kept out of the container. You can wrap the cereal in aluminum foil, wax paper, or tissue paper.

Each one has advantages of its own. Aluminum foil holds heat, whereas tissue paper absorbs moisture. Wax paper functions similarly. They are all excellent at holding moisture. To prevent odors, cover the cereal with aluminum foil.

Top Tip- Put bay leaves in with the cereal to keep bugs away.

4. Always Check the Expiration Date

Before using cereal, you must always check to make sure it is of the highest quality. The amount of time the cereal can remain fresh after opening is indicated by the expiration date.

Your cereal is probably no longer fresh if you open the box and it smells. The recommended course of action in this situation is to throw it out as soon as possible.

Can You Keep Cereal in the Fridge?

Yes, you can store cereal in the refrigerator, but whether or not you should depends on where you reside.

Cereal should only be kept in the refrigerator if you live somewhere with high humidity levels or if pantry bugs are a concern. The cereal can absorb moisture from the air and get soggy under humid conditions.

Putting it in the refrigerator will prevent this. In addition, there won’t be any weevils in the refrigerator!

Additionally, whole grain cereals should be kept in the refrigerator longer because they have higher natural fats. At room temperature, fats get rancid more quickly than they do in the refrigerator.

However, there’s no need to store your cereal in the refrigerator if your surroundings aren’t humid and bugs aren’t a problem.

Your cereal’s shelf life won’t be extended, and the box will take up valuable space. In fact, improper refrigerator storage might reduce the shelf life of your cereal.

Interesting Fact-  A total of more than 2.7 billion packages of cereal is sold annually.

Best Storage Containers For Cereals

All cereal containers may appear to be the same at first glance, but some do a far better job than others, which is why they all have different costs and ratings.

The best advice I can give you is to never choose a container based on appearance. One container may be more effective than another due to specific characteristics.

Containers for cereal are typically made of plastic. However, confirm with the manufacturer that their plastic is food-grade and BPA-free. Additionally, that plastic needs to be microwave and dishwasher-safe.

Top Tip- Use transparent containers to easily grab your cereal with just a glance.

Depending on the climate, your breakfast cereal may go mushy in a day or two. Because of this, I believe that the ideal cereal containers are those that have a proper silicon or rubber seal on the lid.

And finally, the size. The ideal size cannot be determined with certainty. Choose the option that best meets your needs for how much cereal you should stock up on before your next trip to the shop. Additionally, take into account the pantry’s available space.

Interesting Fact– The American cereal industry consumes over 400 million kg of sugar annually.

How Long Can You Store Cereal?

The biggest factor determining how long your cereal lasts is how properly you store it. An unopened box of cereal can be stored for one year in the pantry, while an opened box can be kept for one month. Cereals kept in an airtight container can be stored for 4-6 months.

These timescales are merely estimates. The components in your cereal, for example, can determine how long it stays fresh.

Never ignore your gut feeling; if you think the cereal may not be safe, don’t eat it.

FAQs on Keeping Cereal Fresh

In this section, I have answered some of the most frequently asked questions.

What Is the Best Way to Keep Cereal Fresh?

Cereal should be kept in an airtight container after opening the bag. The containers should then be kept somewhere dry and cool.

Does Cereal Last Longer in the Fridge?

Cereal does not do well in the refrigerator unless it is stored in an airtight, watertight container. If not, the air inside the fridge can be too damp for the cereal. It should only be kept in the fridge if the climate is humid.

Are Glass Storage Containers Better Than Plastic Containers?

Cereal does not do well in the refrigerator unless it is stored in an airtight, watertight container. If not, the air inside the fridge can be too damp for the cereal. It should only be kept in the fridge if the climate is humid.

Does Cereal Go Bad?

Cereal does not go bad in the conventional sense; it might get stale. Cereal will spoil faster when exposed to oxygen and moisture.

Summing Up

The quality of the cereal will decline the longer it is stored. However, the storing techniques I’ve described in this post will slow this process and aid in keeping your cereal as fresh as possible.

In essence, as soon as you open the box, put the cereal in an airtight container to keep it fresh. It should also be kept in a dry and cool location, like the pantry. Avoid keeping the cereal in the refrigerator unless you live in an extremely humid climate.

[1] Cereal Crop – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics