Rice is a staple food that can be prepared in different ways and served with literally any stew or vegetable.
As a staple food, you may be tempted to store it in bulk.
Generally, rice is considered a non-perishable food and can last for several years if stored in the eight conditions. However, if not stored properly, it will eventually go bad.
Rice can be stored as whole grain brown rice or white rice, dried or even cooked rice.
Knowing the best conditions to store rice is the key tip to having it stay in good condition over time.
In This Regard, Can You Store Rice In The Basement?
Well, a basement can serve as a storage space for dried brown white rice. However, you need to seal the rice in containers, bags, or cans that do not allow oxygen, moisture, water, or heat to penetrate. You should also stack the rice on raised boards or drawers or cabinets to keep it safe in case flooding occurs in the basement.
Does Rice Go Bad?
When subjected to unfavorable conditions, ice will go bad.
These dire conditions include moisture, oxygen, heat, and light.
Moisture is the most problematic for the storage of large quantities of rice. If the storage space has high moisture in the air, the rice will absorb it and eventually get moldy.
Light, heat, and oxygen are problematic for brown whole grain rice because of the rice’s reactions when in sunlight or exposed to heat.
The healthy oils in brown rice can go rancid very quickly when exposed to oxygen, heat, or light.
White rice can also go bad when exposed to light, especially if the temperatures are extremely high.
The ease of rancid is a feature in brown rice that makes it relatively hard to store the brown whole grain rice for a longer time.
How Long Can You Store Rice?
You can only store rice for a long time if you store it in good storage conditions.
The white rice can generally be stored for 4-5 years in the pantry of storage bags. It can remain in a good consumable state even after the BEST BY date.
The case is quite different for brown rice since it can get damaged easily. You can still store it for a relatively long time, up to 6 months past the expiry date.
However, if you do not take precautions, the rice storage place can easily get infested by insects and other small bugs.
Surprisingly, with proper storage methods and containers, rice can be stored for over 25 years without being damaged.
Five Rice Basement Storage Tips
If you opt to store rice in a basement, it is important to repackage it into quality containers first.
Storing rice in plastic containers will significantly increase the risk of insect infestation and damage from other elements.
Here are some of the best methods to store rice:
1. Use Airtight Containers
White rice can stay safe for about 4 years when stored in airtight containers, while brown rice can be kept for 8 months.
The main purpose of packaging rice in airtight containers is to keep insects at bay.
Even if a few insects get in the container and hatch eggs, they will not escape and infest the entire basement, pantry, or storage room.
Keep the sealed air-tight containers with rice in a dark, cool, dry place at room temperature. High temperatures can reduce the shelf life of brown rice.
2. Use Myler bags With Oxygen Absorbers
Myler bags with oxygen absorbers are the best bags for repackaging rice if you wish to store it for long. It can store rice and other dry grains for several decades.
For instance, white rice has a shelf life of over 30 years, while brown rice can be stored for 5 years.
Put rice in the Myler bags with oxygen absorbers and seal the bags for better results.
Since the Myler bags are metallic and impermeable, there will be no damage from insects, light, heat, or oxidation.
However, brown rice will still get damaged even in Myler bags due to the high oil content found in the brown rice grains. White rice can stay in the Myler bags for over 30 years without getting damaged.
3. Use A Freezer
Repackage your rice in sizable containers before storing it in a freezer.
White frozen rice can last for an indefinite number of years, while frozen brown rice has a shelf life of 2 years.
Freezing also helps kill pests and insects that might have invaded the rice grains before storing them in other containers.
However, putting rice grains in the freezer is not a long-term storage method due to the unpredictable power supply patterns.
In case of a power outage, condensation occurs very fast in the freezer, and the rise will get damaged. Only freeze rice for a few hours or days and then restore it to a cool, dry place.
4. Use Containers With Oxygen Absorbers
The easiest way of storing rice is by repackaging it to clean glass or plastic jars or food-grade buckets.
You can then add an oxygen absorber packet to absorb oxygen and keep the rice safe for a longer time.
Additionally, the absence of oxygen prevents the hatching of insect eggs and controls the infestation of pests in the rice grains.
Containers with oxygen absorbers can store white rice for over 5 years, while brown rice can stay safe for over one year. You need to add oxygen absorbers to the containers every time you open them.
5. Consider Vacuum Sealing
Vacuum sealer bags are a good option for repackaging rice for storage. White rice can last for over two years, while brown rice can be kept in vacuum bags for 2 years.
However, this method is not the best for storing rice because the bags are not airtight. After some time, the bags will allow moisture which will in turn damage the white rice.
Got brown rice, vacuum sealing helps extend shelf life by removing air that could contain oxygen particles in it.
Brown rice is susceptible to air damage, especially oxygen. When kept in a container with no oxygen, it can stay long.
For extended shelf life, always package rice in airtight containers and store them in an area with lower humidity, moderate temperature, and minimal light.
If storing in the basement, check the state of the basement after short intervals to ensure it is safe from moisture, basement floods, and fluctuating temperatures.
You can use a dehumidifier to drive away moisture and an AC to control the temperatures in the basement.