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Storing powders in mason jars

A recent comment: "Please tell me your process for storing powders in Mason jars. I have been putting cake mixes in the wide mouth jars still in the bag. But I tried to do the same thing with Pancake mix and it would not go in the jar. I worry about the powder getting in my Food Saver and it suddenly stop working. That would be a terrible thing! Thanks for all you do. GRITS"

Great question.

First, I tend to use the larger wide-mouth jars... mason, ball, etc. Second, since I was talking about the small bags of gluten-free flours, they will usually fit.

However, I've found a resource for certified gluten-free oats and those bigger bags don't fit in my mason jars. Here's the 2 options I've come up with:

Option 1:
Freeze the product to kill any potential bugs (between 2-3 days). Open the original package, and divide into smaller portions using ziploc or other strong baggies. Squeeze out all of the air. Place in the mason "canning" jar. Add a dessicant package and a couple of bay leaves (to keep away critters). Apply lid then ring. No need to process. Mark with contents and any expire date that was on the original package. Sometimes I photocopy (shrink to 50%) the original package and wrap around the inside of the jar before applying lid.

Option 2:
There are other ways to do this one. Gather those large glass pickle jars. Except, well, not pickles because anything you store in those jars will smell like pickles. Go through Sam's Club or Costco or even Wal-Mart and look at the bulk condiment section... salsa, ketchup, mayonnaise, etc. Need not be glass. Place what you're storing in the big jar/container. Again, add dessicant packages and bay leaves, seal and mark.

I've even used a super-large plastic coffee container, emptied, cleaned, and loaded with small bags of coffee beans!

I recently found a huge bulk pancake mix (just add water kind of thing) in the bakery markdown section at my local grocery, for $3.00. I froze to kill any bugs, then scrubbed out an old huge mayo container. Perfect!!

Let me know if this answers your question, GRITS.


Anonymous said...

Bless you! I believe I will go with option 1. I don't feel comfortable using plastic even though there are some great containers out there. I will be filling those jars this weekend.
Any luck with the sale of your house?

ThrtnWmsFam said...

We're on our third contract - the first one wanted about $20,000 worth of work done before closing, the second low-balled us so much we rolled around laughing. This one ... well, we've done the inspection and are waiting for the results of the appraisal. Keeping our fingers crossed!

Glad I could help you, Grits. When you pack the ziploc and jar, try to get as little headspace as possible. And remember that almost everything, esp flours, have expiration dates.