When creating an emergency stockpile, it’s important not to leave out your favorite staple foods like pancakes, but how do you store pancake mix in bulk?
To store pancake mix in bulk, use mylar bags, food-grade buckets, or plastic airtight containers. Keep the pancake mix in a cool, dry, and dark storage location that is away from direct sunlight and moisture. For the best results, add a desiccant dehumidifier to the container before sealing.
After extensively researching food storage techniques and practices, I have gathered enough information to determine how to store pancake mix in bulk. In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at the best methods for storing pancake mix to help you create a sophisticated and reliable emergency goods stockpile.
How Long Does Pancake Mix Last?
Unlike many of the other items in your system, pancake mix can be more challenging to store in bulk for the long haul. The ingredients of pancake mix contain leavening agents that cause the product to expire relatively quickly.
If left unopened in its original packaging, you can expect pancake mix to last for about as long as the expiration date indicates. For most pancake mix brands, that shelf-life is usually 6 to 12 months.
Due to leavening agents such as baking soda, dry yeast, and egg being used in pancake mix, most products are quite sensitive to the external environment and can easily become contaminated by heat, moisture, or air.
With that said, the shelf-life of pancake mix can be improved if you take additional measures to maximize the lifespan. By implementing certain storage techniques and adopting food-safe practices you can make pancake mix last for upwards of 2 to 3 years before it becomes noticeably bad.
How Long Does Opened Pancake Mix Last?
As soon as you open your pancake mix, the shelf-life will immediately become much less reliable. In general, you should expect pancake mix to be good for at least 6 months after you open it in its original packaging.
I recommend leaving the pancake mix in its storage container or original packaging until you are ready to use the product, as this will help secure the shelf-life and quality.
Is it Safe to Use Expired Pancake Mix?
Although pancake mix comes with an expiration date, the product doesn’t really go bad in the same way that other food items do in your stockpile.
Once the pancake mix is “expired”, what’s likely to happen is that the leavening agents will become inactive and unreliable. The leavening ingredients will not have the desired effect on your pancakes and they will likely not be as fluffy or as tasty when cooked.
However, the expired pancake mix should still be safe to use and should not pose any serious health risks. As always, you should confirm the quality of any expired food product before you consume it by inspecting it carefully for smells, discoloration, and mold
How to Store Pancake Mix in Bulk
Disasters tend to strike when you least expect them. Although you cannot predict when the next emergency will occur, taking precautions in advance is imperative.
The bulk of your emergency goods stockpile should consist of essential food items that are necessary for your survival. With that said, keeping a reasonable supply of your favorite staple foods at home can do wonders for diversifying your meals and help you keep your sanity in a disaster scenario.
Pancakes are a comfort food for many of us, and the most practical way to cook them is to buy a pre-made mix. The problem with pancake mix is that it does not have the most reliable shelf-life, with most products only lasting for 6 to 12 months.
However, by choosing the right storage containers and a reliable location to keep your pancake mix, you can significantly improve the shelf-life.
Best Storage Containers for Pancake Mix
There are plenty of food-safe storage containers that are ideal for preserving the quality of pancake mix for years. Consider using one of the following storage containers for your pancake mix.
When it comes to food storage, mylar bags are a prepper's best friend. These food-safe bags have been a game-changer for improving the shelf-life of food items, and they are ideal for maximizing the lifespan of your pancake mix.
Mylar bags are available in a variety of sizes and you can buy a set or choose a size that you want based on the amount of pancake mix you want to store. Simply pour pancake mix into mylar bags and seal the container based on the instructions provided.
The only downside to mylar bags is that they are not pest-proof. If you decide to use this method, I recommend placing your mylar bags inside additional containers that are durable and pest-proof.
Food-grade buckets are a key part of many stockpiles. These large food-safe containers are perfect for storing many different types of food items, including pancake mix.
I find that food-grade buckets are particularly practical given their large size. Most food-grade buckets come in a 5-gallon size, allowing you to store a huge load of pancake mix in a single container.
Food-grade buckets are also extremely durable. These containers can withstand most impacts and are even pest-proof. After you pour your pancake mix inside a food-grade bucket, seal the lid to prevent any moisture or air from contaminating the contents.
Plastic Airtight Containers
One of the most convenient ways to store pancake mix long-term is to place it inside a plastic airtight container. You may already have airtight containers for storing food laying around the house, and they should work fine for your pancake mix.
Make sure the airtight containers have a lid and seal to prevent air and moisture from getting in. Plastic airtight containers are durable, practical, and can deter pests from contaminating your food.
Best Places to Store Pancake Mix In Bulk
Given the leavening ingredients inside the pancake mix, it’s important to choose a stable place to keep the product. Pancake mix is particularly sensitive to heat, air, and moisture, which is why you should choose a storage location in your home that is cool, dry, and dark.
You want to keep the mix away from direct sunlight and humidity at all costs. Consider the following places to store pancake mix long-term.
If you want to get the best possible shelf-life from your pancake mix, the best place to store it is in the freezer. Frozen pancake mix can have an indefinite shelf-life, and can essentially last forever.
The pancake mix can be stored in its original packaging in the freezer, but long-term storage will be much more reliable in a food-grade container that is sealed and airtight.
With this method, you can even choose to freeze pancake batter instead of powder. Storing pancake batter in the freezer can result in an indefinite shelf-life. This is also an excellent storage method if you have extra pancake batter left over from cooking that you do not want to immediately use.
If you’ve chosen quality containers for your pancake mix, the product should have a very solid shelf-life in your kitchen pantry. In general, pantries are a very reliable place to keep emergency goods for the long haul.
The storage conditions are stable and balanced for long-term storage making this a perfect place to keep your bulk load of pancake mix.
Basements tend to be a go-to storage location among preppers who are survivalists. The storage conditions of basements are particularly known for staying cool all year round and there is usually plenty of space to fit an entire stockpile.
Before you commit to storing your pancake mix in the basement, confirm that the area is consistently dry, dark, and cool. In addition, inspect the area for cleanliness and signs of pests, as rodents and insects tend to be present in basements.
How to Test if Pancake Mix is Still Good
Pancake mix generally does not go bad in the same way that other food items in your stockpile do. Over time, the leavening ingredients of the pancake mix will simply become inactive and will not be useful for cooking.
Before you commit to making pancakes with old or expired powder, you may want to confirm that the leavening ingredients are still active first. You can test if your pancake mix is still good by following these steps:
- Mix a small portion of pancake batter (as instructed)
- Add 1 tsp of vinegar to the pancake batter
- Look for signs of bubbles forming in the mixture
If you see bubbles forming in your pancake batter, this will indicate that the leavening agents are still active and that the mixture is still good.
How to Improve the Quality of Expired Pancake Mix
Pancake mix that is past its prime will likely not be very tasty or satisfying to consume. While the leavening agents in the pancake mix will start to go bad, you can still enjoy delicious pancakes after they’ve expired.
You can improve the quality of the expired pancake mix by adding some leavening agents to the recipe yourself. Simply add a quarter tsp of baking soda to every cup of pancake mixture. Once you make the batter, add a splash of vinegar to the mixture before cooking.
Is Storing Pancake Mix In Bulk Worth It?
Pancakes may not be essential to our survival but many preppers simply can’t imagine an emergency without one of their favorite staple foods. One of the biggest challenges of incorporating pancake mix into a stockpile is that the product does not have a very stable shelf-life.
While most of the items in your emergency goods should be able to last for years or even decades, pancake mix has a shelf-life of just 2 to 3 years in ideal storage conditions. If you are not creating a food storage system for an extended period of time (5+ years), then keeping pancake mix in your stockpile is absolutely worth it.
However, if you want to include pancakes into your system but are not satisfied with the short lifespan of the product, you should consider an alternative to buying a pre-made mix. Instead of buying pancake mixes, simply store the raw ingredients needed in bulk to make your own pancake mix, such as flour, baking powder, dry dairy, and egg substitutes. This way you can make your own homemade pancake mix right at home.
Tips for Storing Pancake Mix in Bulk
If you want to get the best possible shelf-life from your pancake mix, it’s important to ensure the storage conditions are optimal for the long haul. While choosing a good location and food-safe containers is a must, the following tips can help improve the lifespan of your pancake mix.
1. Rotate Stock
When you buy bulk pancake mix, it’s easy to leave it in your stockpile for years, which eventually results in the product going off.
If you want to eat fluffy pancakes during an emergency, I highly recommend rotating your emergency goods with what you buy at the store for home-use.
2. Use Desiccant Dehumidifiers
Before you seal pancake mix in a storage container, I recommend adding desiccant dehumidifiers to the product. This will ensure the quality of the pancake mix is not affected by moisture.
3. Do Not Use Oxygen Absorbers
Oxygen absorbers are an excellent way to secure the shelf-life of various food products, but you should not use them with pancake mix.
Certain ingredients in the pancake mix such as baking soda can be affected by the oxygen absorber, deteriorating the quality of the product.
About THE AUTHOR
I have over a decade of experience in food and beverage management, including a ServSafe food safety qualification. As part of this qualification, I have been professionally trained in safe food storage.Read More About Mark Walker