Oatmeal is indeed one of the must-have pantry staples that every kitchen should have. It is common to store oatmeal for the long term, but what is the best way to store bulk oats?
To maintain freshness, bulk oats should be kept inside a sealed airtight container and placed in a clean, cool, dark and dry storage area. The pantry, fridge and freezer are the best places to store bulk oats.
Light exposure and temperature above 60 degrees Fahrenheit increase the risk of rancidity in the uncooked oats. If you question how long you can keep bulk oats and what is the best way to store bulk oatmeal, everything you need to know about storing bulk oats is covered below.
What are bulk oats?
Needless to say, there are many types of oats, such as rolled oats and steel-cut oats to name a few. Oat groats are harvested, hulled to remove the inedible outer layer and then processed into other forms. Are you looking for a quick comparison between steel cut oats and rolled oats?
Rolled oats: In the case of rolled oats, the grain is steamed and pressed in such a way so that it gets a flat texture. The process is carried out by large steel rollers that flatten the flakes. That’s why this type of oats are termed as rolled oats. Rolled oats are also known as old-fashioned oats, or further processed into thinner disk shapes referred to as quick oats, and instant oats.
Steel cut oats: Also known and pinhead or Irish oats, do not have a flat and rolled texture. Instead, the oat groats are cut in half by large steel blades. Steel cut oats retain a similar shape to whole groats, which significantly extends the cooking time because they are minimally processed.
Oats are a naturally gluten-free whole grain that provides you with a myriad of nutritional compounds including healthy fats, plant based protein and soluble and insoluble fiber.
The benefits of oats are far reaching, for example oatmeal is essential when it comes to ensuring a healthy heart, skin, and gut. In addition, oats even lowers down the cholesterol level of your blood. Plus, it is even great for diabetic people who are having blood sugar problems.
So, you have already reveled the health benefits of oatmeals. Are you now planning to buy and store them in bulk? If yes, then you have surely come to the right page. Please keep reading and reveal how to store bulk oats.
Storing Bulk Oatmeal
Compared to rolled oats, steel cut oats need slightly more time to cook and prepare into an edible meal. However, irrespective of whatever kinds of oatmeal you are using, they are incredibly nutritious and offer many health benefits, that’s why oatmeal is an integral staple to store in bulk and must be added to any balanced diet regime. In addition, bulk oats are easily available and priced quite cheap.
What’s more, it’s worth mentioning that oatmeals are a key ingredient of many heavenly delicious recipes. Especially, breakfast recipes, as well as snack preparations and baked goods, oatmeal is a core ingredient because of its innumerable nutritional values and positive health benefits.
Buying oats in bulk is easy, but how do you keep them fresh for the long term?
How do you store bulk oatmeal long term?
Oatmeal can be stored for the long-term, however you will want to ensure that it maintains freshness so that the nutritional values are preserved. Here are a few tips and simple guidelines to extend the shelf life and preserve the best outcomes.
For started, there are three ways that are recommended to store bulk oatmeal, such as pantry, fridge, and freezer. Let’s discuss the longterm potential of each storage area:
Pantry: Does bulk oatmeal need to be refrigerated? The dry storage area is the is the most common place to store bulk dry goods.
A pantry is one of the best and most reliable ways to store bulk oats. Before storing for long term, please find out a suitable space in your pantry that is cool, dry, clean, and dark.
Place the oatmeal in a sealed airtight container. You can preserve freshness even better by removing excess oxygen from the container before storing oats.
To ensure the long-lasting value of these bulk oatmeals, the container should not allow the passage for air and oxygen to flow freely, therefore it should be completely airtight.
Furthermore, it is recommended to store oatmeals in a cool area that should not get direct sunlight. UV exposure can degrade the quality, freshness and nutrition.
In addition, you must ensure that it does not attract pests and unwanted visitors. Rodents and vermin can be disastrous if they find their way into bulk dry goods.
Fridge: A fridge is a common preservation tool in the modern day household. So, can you store bulk oats in the fridge?
If your fridge has enough area, then please feel free to store bulk oatmeal inside your fridge. It will be safe and will preserve the freshness of the stored oatmeal for a long time.
How do you store uncooked oats in the fridge? Before storing bulk oats in the fridge, make sure to use either an airtight container or resealable freezer bags for keeping long term. Note, the ideal temperature for storing uncooked oatmeal is 65-degree Fahrenheit.
Freezer: The fridge and pantry are indeed a good choice when it comes to storing uncooked oatmeal in bulk. However, that is not the only option.
Can you store bulk oats in the freezer? The freezer is an option, however it is not the most efficient use of energy and storage space. If you use a freezer, it will maximize the shelf life.
When bulk oats are stored properly, you can easily keep them up to thirty years. Use airtight oatmeal storage containers and make sure the storage are is clean, cool, dark, and dry in order to maintain the quality and freshness for as long as possible.
How long does bulk oatmeal keep?
If you are planning to keep bulk uncooked oatmeals at room temperature, then you can easily store them between 6 to 24 months based on the type of oats you selected.
Bulk instant oats can be stored 6-9 months, bulk rolled oats can store approximately 1-2 years and steel cut oats can last up to 3-5 years. When commercially sealed in airtight storage containers like plastic buckets or #10 cans, bulk oats can last up to 30 years.
How long do bulk oats last in fridge? If you are storing it to a fridge, then the storage time will be further extended more months. However, the fridge is an expensive place to store oats for that long.
Furthermore, if you keep it inside a freezer and use a good-quality freezer bag along with an oxygen absorber, then you can expect a storage time of up to thirty years.
Can bulk oatmeal go bad?
Exercise caution because the quality and condition of unprocessed oatmeal may go bad, turn rancid and decay over time. Therefore, a cool, dark and dry pantry is the most economical storage area for long term usage.
If you follow the above storage guidelines, then you can store bulk oats without any worry! Rest assured that they won’t go bad.
How to store bulk oats for long term storage?
In the previous sections, you have learned three ways to store bulk oats. Now, here are the best oatmeal storage containers to consider when it comes to selecting the ideal for storage for bulk oats.
Plastic is a cheap, easily-available, airtight, and durable option. However, plastic containers often retain bad odors so they are best when only used for storing dry goods.
Glass is airtight, reusable, and does not keep any bad smell locked into the hard surface. However, it's heavy, fragile, and breaks easily, which is concerning for storage over the long term.
Mason jars are an affordable solution for long term storage. From 8oz to 1 gallon, there is guaranteed to be a mason jar that fits your oatmeal storage containers needs.
Please note that the freezer bag is also a convenient storage option. It's durable, stackable, and semi-permeable. Again, it retains bad odors and is recommended as single use when storing for the long term.
It's one of the best storage options. Mylar bags with sufficient oxygen absorbers can help oats last as long as twenty years.
10# cans are also useful for storing uncooked oats. It's airtight and stackable. When properly stored, #10 cans of dry oatmeal can last up to 30 years. However, 10# cans are just for one-time use and cannot be reused as a food storage receptacle.
Storing Bulk Oatmeal: Final Thoughts
Oatmeals are really great for having a balanced and nutritious diet. You can store dry oatmeal including instant oats, steel cut oats, rolled oats, and more.
Instant oats are easy to cook and they are rolled out, cooked, processed, and then dried. However, instant oats have the shortest shelf life because they are highly processed.
Speaking of shelf life, steel cut oats last longer than rolled oats and instant oats. Hence, steel cut oats are the best option when it comes to long-term storage.
The dry storage is the most energy efficient, therefore its the best place to store bulk oats. Based on your convenience and personal preference, you can use any of the three available storage options (dry pantry, fridge, and freezer) for keeping and storing bulk oats for long term.