can you store dried beans and grains in the freezer?

I have a horrible problem with pantry moths.... They have even hit my secret chocolate stash!

barbwyre19
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11 Comments

chef O. July 18, 2012
Dried beans should last forever in the freezer. Whole grains can get soggy in the fridge or Even rancid.
 
lsnider59 July 25, 2020
Do I need to put the beans and rice in canning jars in the freezer or can I just toss the bags in there?
 
kbckitchen July 18, 2012
I read/heard somewhere that after purchasing grains, pasta,etc. items that are susceptible to weevils that if placed in freezer for 48 hours they should be okay in pantry. In other words that
freezing kills any live bugs or larvae. anyone. else
 
threefresheggs July 18, 2012
Grains at least, are better stored in the freezer/'fridge than in the pantry; like nuts, they can go 'off'. I am throughly jealous of anyone who has space in either place. I only do it for the most expensive and/or least used.
 
Nozlee S. July 18, 2012
I store mine in the fridge/freezer because you only have to lose a 5 lb bag of grains to moths/weevils once to be cautious forever! If you buy grains in small-ish portions and keep them well-wrapped, you shouldn't have problems in your pantry. For a large bag of rice, though I would play better safe than sorry and keep any open bags in the fridge.
 
Doro W. April 23, 2020
FYI, once moths lay eggs -- and they lay them everywhere, not just in food -- it's incredibly difficult to get rid of them, even with many traps.

I moved in Aug. 2019 and set out traps immediately; they drew several moths and I thought I was in the clear -- but c. Feb. 2020, I saw a few moths again, despite having put *everything* they might want to eat in the fridge or freezer.

So, keeping even small quantities, even well-wrapped small quantities, in the pantry won't protect your food, or home, from pantry-pest moths. Fridge or freezer always.
 
Sharon July 7, 2020
Out of nowhere, I'm having the same problem with pantry moths, for several months now. Don't know where they came from or how they got in. I scoured the pantry from top to bottom and threw everything out that they could feed on. I now store all grains, beans, noodles, etc., in glass jars or my chest freezer. That definitely put a hurt on 'em but, STILL, another one pops up every couple of weeks. I slaughter it immediately so it can't reproduce. A friend, who works for an exterminating company, said I MUST go in with a vacuum wand and suction out every nook, cranny, corner, shelf (especially underneath), baseboard, etc., because that's where they lay eggs, which are impossible to spot with the naked eye. They can also eat through plastic bags and lay eggs in the contents. I'm careful to keep the pantry door shut to at least contain them to that one area, and make it easier for me to go in and hunt them down. Oh yeah, it's WAR! Good luck to both of us.
 
lsnider59 July 25, 2020
I love you slaughter them! This is year #3 trying to get rid of them. And there is nothing out they can get into, everything is bug proof, in fridge or freezer. Year one and two I would find them all over the house and you can see where I would smash them with the end of a cane on the ceiling. Now they are mostly in the family room, where they started coming out of bird seed and peanuts for the squirrels one winter night I took them out of my car. I have traps every place, even been getting them with fly paper. The room has popcorn ceiling and panelling, I may never get rid of them until dad sells his home
 
Nozlee S. July 18, 2012
I'm so sorry about your moth problem! They're the worst.

Yes, you can absolutely store them in the freezer without damage, just make sure they're well-wrapped to prevent them from absorbing smells. I store all of my grains and beans in the fridge as a matter of course, just because there's more free space there than in the freezer.
 
Louisa July 18, 2012
Nozlee, is it better to store grains and beans in the freezer than in the cabinet/pantry? I have large bags of rice and wonder if they get old?
 
Doro W. April 23, 2020
She didn't reply, so I will. Fridge or freezer *always* -- not just to prevent eggs hatching into bugs, or to prevent bugs from having a food source, but bc anything with any oil content will turn rancid over time, and usually sooner than you think.

My mother bought nuts in bulk and stored them in an extra fridge/freezer she had just for that purpose. Nothing ever went bad, and because nothing went bad, there were no food odors to disrupt the items she stored there.

I use clean glass jars that I've saved (from mayonnaise, pasta sauce, peanut butter, etc.); if you have none, it would be worth it to buy a few -- cheaper than throwing out food, plus ecologically better.
 
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