Types Of Airtight Storage Containers For Your Kitchen
There are a lot of things you can put inside in an airtight container. You just need to know which food products need to be kept away from the air, and you are done with your homework.
A lot of times, it happens that you open up a packet of chips, but in the middle of it, you feel like you don’t want to eat it anymore. Well, what should you do now? Either you have to eat the whole thing. Or you have to throw it. But what if we tell you there is another way which will make sure your chips stay crispy, even after they are out of the packaging? Well, an airtight storage container can help you solve your storage problem, and will keep your food fresh and away from air, so it won’t get oxidized any soon.
There are several food items you can put inside in an airtight container for the kitchen. We are going to help you find out which food products should not come in contact with air, and needs to be stored in airtight containers.
Which Pantry Items Should I Keep in Airtight Containers?
Before we find which airtight container set will be best for us we need to solve this mystery of pantry items first. People make mistakes when putting a food item in a glass container without actually knowing whether the items need to be stored in a jar or not?
Flours: Flours are quite essential; they are the base of most of your cooking. When you are making sweets, you need to use flour to bake it in an oven. When making pasta or pizza, you need flour for your dough.
Thus, flour is one pantry staple that needs to have its dedicated airtight container. Another option to choose if you don’t have an airtight container is to use a plastic zip-top bag. It won’t be aesthetically pleasing to secure your flour, but it will get the job done. Also, this option is only viable when you have a small out flour to store, for a short period of time. Taking out any kind of flour, be it gluten-free flour like besan, or regular wheat flour, for regular use from a zip lock bag is very tedious.
Sugar: Whether it’s a chocolate pudding or a pastry we love everything that has sugar present in it. But, sugar is hygroscopic, meaning it attracts moisture, which is present in the air. Sugar forms a clump when you leave it in contact with air; the reason for clumping is moisture. Thus, sugar needs to be stored in an airtight container.
Rice, beans, and whole grains: Eating food that contains beans and grains in high amounts are good for health, as they provide necessary nutrients. Beans, whole grains, and your rice all have different flavors and odors. Smelling beans to differentiate them is quite common, as a lot of them are of the same size and color. So, in order to retain its taste, you need to keep them in the airtight containers.
Spices: Spices help in enhancing the flavor, but they need to be stored in an airtight container. If you won’t do that they have a risk of losing the flavor and aroma.
Also, keeping spices in the open will end up getting them mixed in the air causing respiratory issues. Spices have potent flavors; as a result, if you keep them open, it may even be dangerous for your eyes while cooking.
Dried Fruits: Dried fruits when kept in the open, start dehydrating; thus, they will become harder, and you won’t be able to cook, consume, or digest them properly.
Storage mistakes you’re making that are ruining your leftovers
When it comes to storing food in a proper way, most of us are making mistakes, which makes food non-edible even if we put them in the airtight storage box. It doesn’t matter if you have a terrible habit of overstocking your fridge and leaving no space inside of it. Still, there are chances that you might be committing some of the most common mistakes when it comes to storing food in the fridge. We are going to show you some of the common mistakes that even a mature cook makes when they are storing their food after cooking it.
Best Food Storage Tips
Plastic is not good
A lot of us have stopped using plastic bags as they are not suitable for the environment, and we can’t use them again and again. But have you ever thought about the adverse effects of using a plastic storage container? See when you are using the same plastic container for a long time, you are running with the risk of chemicals leaching on your food. Some of the most harmful chemicals for your food are BPA, which is used to make plastic containers.
When using plastic containers for a long period of time, BPA starts to leak from inside walls; thus, it gets mixed up with food that is present inside that container, and cleaning them in the dishwasher won’t help. On the other hand, it will increase the decaying process of a plastic container. It’s best to go with airtight glass containers as chemicals won’t leak in your food.
With airtight glass containers, you don’t need to take food out from it to heat them in the oven.
Opaque containers are not suitable for your food items
For this, we would like you to do some activity. Go to your kitchen and search for the containers. Most of the vessels you have in there are opaque, meaning you can’t see the food in the container. On the other hand, people will forget about the food which is present in opaque, airtight food containers. Because if you can’t see it, it’s almost as if it is not there at all.
Here again, we are asking to use glass containers to store food. When you are using an airtight glass container, you can see food that is inside of it, but your fridge will look more organized and pleasing.
Storing food on the incorrect shelf
If you are always in a hurry to put food items in your fridge, we are sure you are not putting everything in its right place. When the refrigerator is full, you just throw your fizzy drink bottle in the freezer, no big deal, right? But when you want to drink/serve this to friends, you realize the drink is all frozen. As a result, you have to put it out, so it can melt. In some cases, when the soft drinks are stored in the freezer, their plastic bottle breaks, resulting in leakage of the drink, and potentially making them unfit for consumption.
This is one of the examples of why you must be careful while putting food items in the fridge. Be it a mini-fridge, or an expensive 2-3 door fridge, every refrigerator has compartments in it that are designed to keep the food items fresh. Here’s one more tip, always store ready to eat food at the bottom of your refrigerator away from meat products.
Don’t put everything inside the fridge
In India, people have the misconception of putting every food item into the freezer. Whether it’s the spices, dry fruits, or uncooked Maggie. People use the fridge as a storage cabinet, rather than storing necessary food items that need to remain fresh.
When you fill-up your fridge to the max, you are decreasing the airflow that moves around. The airflow helps in keeping your food fresh, and if the temperature in the fridge will be different in different sections, your food won’t stay fresh. Thus, it can allow bacteria to multiply inside your food items, making it unhealthy to eat.
Stock only those things in your fridge that need to be stored in the cold temperature, such as fruits, veggies, and dairy products.
Direct sunlight is harmful
It doesn’t matter if you put the food in the best airtight container, you need to keep it away from the sunlight. Sunlight can warm your airtight container, making food inside hot and inedible.
Also, you might be thinking, why is it so hard to open the airtight container? Well, oxygen can ruin your food and lower its nutritional values by oxidizing it.
Separate raw food from cooked items
This is one of the most important tips we can give you. People store uncooked food along with cooked food; thus, it leads to cross-contamination, causing both food items harmful to consume. Create space for your cooked and raw food items separately in the fridge. In case you have raw meat, you need to put it in the airtight container and away from the cooked food items.
Veggies and Fruits are not the same
Yes, both of these are plant-based food products. But that doesn’t mean you should store them in one place. Also, some of the common fruits, such as apple, mango, green beans, etc. produce ethylene gas, which is harmful to vegetables resulting in spoilage. So store your veggies and fruits in different compartments.
Benefits of having top quality airtight containers in your kitchen
Now we know the mistakes that we were making, it’s time to know why you need to keep your food items away from getting in contact with air. Also, why do you need to use an airtight container to keep them safe?
Airtight containers keep your food fresh
Air is the main problem for every food item you have in the kitchen, whether it’s a fruit such as a mango, or cooked pasta. If you put it out in the air, it will spoil, and you won’t be able to eat it. Air can quickly dehydrate food items and take away all the moisture. So, keeping your food in the airtight container will help in the prevention of sogginess.
Don’t worry if you don’t know what rancidity means, it’s just another way of saying that the food item you have smells unpleasant and unhealthy. Rancidity is common in food items with lots of fat and oil present in them, meaning rancidity occurs in your stored, cooked food. On the other hand, if you store cooked food in an airtight container after it cools down. You are making sure that it doesn’t come in contact with the oxygen, saving it from being oxidized and rancid.
Also, when you keep food in the container, you can eat it after several hours of cooking. It will taste and smell the same, but make sure you heat the food first.
Makes your food safe from microorganisms
You might have heard the word spoilage when people talk about food. Well, the main culprits behind the spoilage are the microorganisms that form inside food if you keep it open. These organisms can be of any type such as bacteria, germs that are present in the air.
The most common example of this type of spoilage is the growth of fungi on bread when you keep it out in the air.
Liquid food items are safe
You had made soup for the family, but the kid isn’t interested in finishing his bowl. So, you end up with the soup, which has all the nutrition and veggies to make a human body healthy. Instead of throwing it away, you can use the large airtight containers to keep your soup safe and ready to eat the next day.
Airtight containers are durable
You know this one point yourself, you have to buy containers that are not airtight quite often. But your airtight food storage containers will even assist you in storing food items for years to come. That’s because they are made from such high-end material, which gives them higher durability than any other container.
Also, durability helps in preventing any kind of leakage, such as odor and oil.
Instead of eating and finishing up the food when you are feeling full now, you can store the food that remains good to eat and has every nutrient present in it.
Food containers come handy
There is no denying in the truth that you can’t hold your kids from playing games when you are out for a picnic or accompanying you to the market next door. A food container in this situation can help you store leftover food, which you can re-use later.
When you are on the go, you won’t need disposable trays or paper plates to serve food. You can use containers for serving the food to your family, and that’s what lots of Indian families do when they are traveling on trains.
They increase your food portability
We all want to take our food with us, whether from the kitchen to the bedroom or our office. Airtight food storage containers help us in carrying our food with us and eat them when we want, without worrying about losing any flavors from food.
Keeping your food safe is most important, as there are lots of things which can quickly spoil your food and make it unhealthy to consume. For example, a housefly sitting on your food can quickly fill it with germs when you are not near. But if you have a container, no-fly or germs can come in contact with your food. Thus, when you open the airtight box, you get to eat healthy food without any problem.
Types of Airtight Containers
Now we know why airtight containers are essential and why we need to keep our food in these containers. Well, you will be surprised to know, but there are multiple containers available in the market that can help in storing your food in an airtight lock. Below, we have named all the sealed containers and their benefits so you can choose which one is best for you to use.
Plastic airtight containers are the most common ones, and we are sure if you go to your kitchen, you are going to see some of them holding your food products inside them. An airtight plastic container gives you the most of the durability. You can toss it off the shelf, and it won’t break. They are made to withstand pressure and drops quickly. Just make sure you use BPA-free plastic containers only.
If you made a huge quantity of food and different dishes, you could use these containers to store your food on top of each other. Thus, it will save a lot of space, and you don’t have to worry about the plastic container buckling one another. Depending on the thickness, you can find out which container will be suitable for what food substance.
Furthermore, plastic is cheaper than other conventional storage materials that you can find in the stores. Some of the other standard containers are made from glass, metal, and wood that are costlier than plastic. Also, the airtight plastic containers are made in bulk; as a result, their cost is much less. You could buy a new one anytime if the previous one broke due to uncertain reasons.
On the other hand, the harmful effects of using airtight plastic containers are that they are hard to recycle. Some cities do provide plastic recycling, but it’s a costly process. Thus, most of the people and states don’t consider recycling plastic a good option. So, try to keep the number of plastic containers low. They will last you quite a while, so you don’t have to buy many of them frequently.
We have already told you a glass is much better when it comes to heating the food in the microwave, due to the absence of any harmful chemicals that aren’t leaching into your food.
In addition to this, when using glass containers, you are using a nonporous surface; thus, it does not absorb flavor and smell from your food, keeping it just the way it is.
Moreover, when it comes to cleaning glass container, you can put it in the dishwasher, and it will come out clean, as it can stand high temperature without breaking and melting. You can use glass containers for an extended period, so you don’t have to buy a new one very often.
Likewise, the most significant difference between plastic containers and glass airtight containers is their ability to be recycled. It’s a regular glass that can be recycled endlessly without any loss of purity and quality. This is one of the essential properties of a glass container, which makes it stand tall from other materials.
You can store the food which you have just cooked in the glass container without any worries. Glass is transparent, meaning you can see what’s inside, so you can have a better idea of how much food you are left with, and how much more you need to restock.
Another significant advantage of the glass container is, you will be able to see the food when you are reheating or cooking it in the microwave. Thus, it won’t get burned, and you can take it out from the oven at the proper time.
These are old school food containers which you might have in your home even before your birth. There is no denying they provide superior seel than any of the two vessels. Stainless steel is used quite a lot by our grandma’s because they know it is suitable for food and doesn’t have any toxic and reactive material which can reach to acidic food items. The main reason for you to shift to a stainless steel container is only because of the safety it provides to food items.
We know how lousy glass is when it comes to absorbing the impact of a drop, and when you are in the kitchen, it is most likely you have broken a few glasses and containers by dropping. Well, that’s not the case with stainless steel. Even if you drop it from a great height, it won’t break, and you can still use it to store your food items.
Besides, steel is a hygienic material, as it does not house any kind of bacterial growth inside its container. Moreover, it will prevent the transfer of the odor onto the food content, which is quite common when you are using plastic containers to store food items. The locking mechanism in lots of stainless steel containers uses silicone to make the container airtight. Well, the steel container is undoubtedly going to cost you more than glass and plastic containers. However, when you look at the durability and safety they provide, there are no questions that need to be answered here.
Lastly, steel is highly recyclable as it’s a sustainable material. You might not know, but every new steel product has 75% of recycled steel present in it, making it good for both the environment and for your pocket.
Plastic food pouch
Last on our list. We have plastic wraps; they are helpful when it comes to storing food items. Surely they do not come in the container segment; still, they will provide you the same quality of airlock that your plastic container offers.
In addition to this, plastic wraps are reusable, and you can store the liquid in it without having to think twice, as the locking system is the zip lock. Furthermore, they are easy to carry around with, and you can fold them.
Plastic food pouches are great to help those who love to travel and go into the wild. You can store lots of things in these pouches if you are not using them for storing food items. And you can carry several of these in your backpack, as they weigh almost nothing, compared to plastic, glass, and stainless steel containers. These are for short term usage only.
There you have it, all different types of airtight storage containers you can ask to store your food items. We hope you now have a better idea about which vessel suits your requirements, and which one you need to buy for yourself.
Make sure you check the storage container thoroughly before buying it for yourself as it can have some cracks and small holes that you might not be able to see in your first glance. Other than this, there are no disadvantages related to storing your food in containers. But remember to wash them now and then, and keep their lid on if you are not using them.