The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Shelf Life of Stored Flour

CountryBoy's picture
CountryBoy

Shelf Life of Stored Flour

 

Flour from all the major producers is Really cheap in the Nov.-Dec. time frame. Does any one know how long I can store those KA 5 lbs. bags? I can not buy flour in the big bags and store it, but I can do so in the 5 lbs. bag, but I have no idea how long it will last.

Please advise.

country boy

 

cranbo's picture
cranbo

You can store flour a long time (probably a year, maybe more) if it's in an airtight container, like a food-grade bucket with a gamma lid and an oxygen absorber packet. 

Temperature matters too: it will last longer stored in a cool place (basement, fridge, freezer, etc.) than at room temp. At room temp, maybe use within 6 months.

Type of flour matters too: whole grain flours (which have more oils) spoil more quickly. 

 

 

CountryBoy's picture
CountryBoy

Does the storage have to be "air tight"? Can I just wrap the flour bags in plastic bags?

How long have you kept flour?

cranbo's picture
cranbo

I find airtight is best, otherwise bugs can get in and survive (that's a risk of not having it airtight). 

I go through flour pretty fast, although some of my rye flours I've kept for about 1 yea with no problems. 

CountryBoy's picture
CountryBoy

Many thanks for your guidance.

cb

pjaj's picture
pjaj

Sadly some mills from time to time produce batches of flour that already have the bug eggs in it. Even keeping each bag in a separate airtight container won't prevent the development of extra protein in the affected bags, but at least it will prevent cross contamination to other bags. I believe that keeping the bag plus container in the freezer for a day or two will kill any potential eggs and, providing the contents is not exposed to further contamination, all should be well.

Mustang 51's picture
Mustang 51

Actually the bug eggs are dsigned to overwinter, so freezing them will not kill them. (Depending on the bug.) Keeping the flour frozen should delay hatching along with keeping the oil in the flour from going rancid. If I had that much freezer room I would do so myself.

Paul