People and Pets

ACES-2243
PREPARATION

Food Storage Charts

Pantry Storage Chart

Store foods in your coolest kitchen cabinets, not over your range or near the refrigerator’s exhaust. Dry foods keep fresh the longest in airtight containers, which also keep out insects. When shopping, choose fresh-looking packages; avoid cans with swollen ends or dents. Date your purchases; then check your kitchen cabinets every six months or so to be sure you use the oldest items first. With longer storage, flavors gradually fade and nutrients can be lost.

Food Time Special Handling
STAPLES
Baking powder, soda 18 months Keep all dry foods in original package or tightly closed airtight containers in dry spot unless otherwise directed on label.
Bouillon cubes, powder 1 year
Bread, rolls 3 days
Bread crumbs, dried 6 months
Cereals
ready-to-eat
ready-to-cook
Check date on package.
6 months
Chocolate
premelted
semisweet
unsweetened
1 year
2 years
18 months
Coffee, vacuum packed
instant (closed)
1 year
6 months
Refrigerate after opening.
Keep 2 weeks after opening.
Coffee lighteners, dry (opened) 6 months  
Condensed and evaporated milk 1 year Refrigerate after opening.
Flour
cake, all-purpose, rye, whole-wheat
1 year Keep refrigerated.
Gelatin, unflavored 3 years  
Honey, jams, syrups 1 year  
Molasses 2 years  
Nonfat dry milk 6 months  
Oil, salad 3 months Refrigerate after opening.
Pasta 2 years  
Peanut butter 6 months Keep 2 months after opening.
Potatoes, instant 18 months  
Rice
brown, wild
white

1 year
2 years
 
Salad dressings 3 months Refrigerate after opening.
Shortening, solid 8 months  
Sugar
brown, confectioners’
granulated

4 months
2 years
 
Tea, bags, loose 18 months  
Tea, instant 2 years  
PACKAGED FOODS AND MIXES
Cakes, prepared 2 days  
Cake mixes 1 year  
Casserole mixes 18 months  
Cookies, packaged 4 months  
Crackers 3 months  
Frosting, can or mix 8 months  
Hot-roll mix 18 months  
Pancake mix 6 months  
Piecrust mix 6 months  
Pies and pastries 3 days Refrigerate cream, custard, chiffon fillings.
Pudding mixes 1 year  
Rice mixes 6 months  
Sauce, gravy, soup mixes 6 months  
Toaster pop-ups 3 months  
CANNED AND DRIED FOODS
Fruits, canned dried 1 year 6 months  
Gravies, canned 1 year  
Meat, fish, poultry 1 year  
Pickles, olives 1 year  
Soups, canned dried 1 year 15 months  
Vegetables, canned 1 year  
Whipped-topping mix 1 year  
HERBS, SPICES, AND CONDIMENTS
Barbeque sauce, ketchup, chili sauce (opened) 1 month  
Herbs and spices
whole spices
ground spices, herbs

1 year
6 months
Keep in cool spot. Replace if aroma fades.
Refrigerate red spices.
Hot pepper sauce, Worchestershire 2 years  
MISCELLANY
Coconut, can 1 year  
Metered-calorie products, instant breakfasts 6 months  
Nuts 9 months  
Parmesan cheese, grated 1 month  
Pasteurized cheese food and spreads 3 months  
Soft drinks 3 months  
Vegetables
onions, potatoes, rutabagas, squash (hard-shelled), sweet potatoes
1 week at room temperature For longer storage, keep at 50°F to 60°F. Keep dry, out of sun, loosely wrapped.


Food Storage Charts Home  |  Pantry Chart  |  Refrigerator Chart  |  Freezer Chart  |  PDF Document


Jean Weese, Professor, Auburn University; Extension Specialist for Food Safety


This document is part of a larger publication titled Emergency Handbook: Preparation and Recovery (ACES-2168).

The Emergency Handbook is available digitally as an iBook and on the web. Use the left-hand navigation bar to access all topics and pages. This publication is not available in print. To download or print the pages you need, please look for Printable PDF Download this information.


For more information, contact your county Extension office.