Learning how to store your nuts and seeds correctly not only ensures that your ingredients remain fresh for your smoothie making but it also minimises wastage. Having a rough idea of storage times for different storage methods, means you won’t be throwing out stale nuts and seeds.
When making your smoothies you want to ensure that what you throw into your blender is the freshest, the tastiest and the best quality possible. To do this all your ingredients must be properly stored. Knowing how to store your ingredients and for how long, means you will always have fresh ingredients on hand.
Nuts are an absolute wonder food and really tasty when fresh. However they have a relatively short shelf life and become rancid quickly if not stored correctly. This is because of their high fat content. Storing them correctly means they will last a little longer.
To save money I would recommend purchasing your nuts in bulk. Keep a small amount in a glass jar in your pantry, then freeze or store the remainder in the refrigerator.
Nuts don’t like light and heat. So it’s essential you find them a cool, dark place in your pantry. Keep them stored in an airtight container so they are completely sealed. Glass jars are best. I love mason jars for this purpose. Nuts will keep for up to three months when stored this way.
The shelf life of your nuts will depend on how fresh they were when purchased. Where you live and the time of year can also play a part. If you live in a hot and humid climate or you are sweltering through the hottest part of summer, they will probably need to be refrigerated.
When storing nuts in the refrigerator it’s best to use air-tight containers that are moisture proof. If you have the room, I would recommend using glass jars with lids. Plastic bags are permeable and can easily absorb the flavors of other foods. Nuts will keep for up to six months in the refrigerator.
For longer term storage nuts can also be frozen and will last for up to a year. Place the nuts in a freezer or Ziplock bag and make sure they are completely sealed. Don’t forget to label them, including the type of nut and the date of purchase. To use, remove from the freezer and allow sufficient time to thaw.
Remember, these are just guidelines. Always test your nuts first and if in doubt discard and buy fresh. You’ll know if your nuts have become rancid, they have a very nasty taste.
Seeds transform smoothies by adding texture and protein. But like nuts, seeds contain high amounts of oils, making them fairly volatile which reduces their shelf life. When these oils are exposed to heat, light and oxygen they decompose and turn rancid which makes them taste rather horrid.
Store your seeds in a cool, dry place in a tightly-sealed covered container. Stored this way they will last for a couple of months in your pantry. As with nuts, I prefer to use glass jars. My kitchen cupboard is gradually being overtaken by glass jars.
To extend their shelf life seeds can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. To freeze place the seeds in a suitable container or a heavy-duty freezer bag. They’ll stay fresh for up to six months in the refrigerator and up to one year in the freezer.
Because of their high fat content sunflower seeds are the most perishable. Flax seed remains fresher for longer if left whole. I would recommend buying the seeds and grinding them yourself as and when needed.
Dried fruit is fresh fruit with the water removed. It is this process that prolongs the life of fruit, enabling us to enjoy its flavor and health benefits year round. The drying process can be done naturally by the sun or in a dehydrator. The shelf life of dried fruit depends on the drying method and the method of storage. When properly stored dried fruit can last for up to a year in the pantry, two years in the refrigerator or indefinitely in the freezer.
Store in a dark, dry place in a container with a close-fitting lid to keep out moisture. Glass is preferable as fruit can absorb plastic flavors when stored for any length of time. Dried fruit keeps very well in the freezer if properly stored with an air-tight seal.
Superfood powders such as cacao, maca should be stored in a cool, dry place in a tightly sealed container. A glass jar with an airtight lid is best. Powders should be stored at room temperature away from direct sunlight and kept well away from moisture.
Powdered green tea such as Matcha doesn’t like heat, air or light. So it needs to be stored in a sealed container, away from heat and light in your cupboard.
Flax seeds and ground flax are highly perishable so they need to be stored in the refrigerator. Store in a bag or jar with an airtight seal. Ground flax should be stored in the freezer to keep longer and retain nutrients.
Chia seeds store exceedingly well and rarely get rancid, even when kept at room temperature. They can be kept for months at a time. Store in a jar with a screw lid in the refrigerator.
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