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16 Surprising Foods/Ingredients That Will Never Expire

Instant Coffee

Aside from potentially being a welcome little boost to the nervous system, instant coffee can just be a warm and comforting drink during difficult times. Available in every form of packaging from single-serve packets to gallon cans, instant coffee is one of the most conveniently available forever foods. Green non-roasted coffee beans can also last indefinitely if stored properly, but have the obvious need to roast, grind, and brew.

Raw Honey

Raw Honey

Raw honey will crystallize as it ages but will never spoil. Not only is honey a great natural sweetener, it can also be used to treat a number of health issues. The key is to check the label and only stock up on raw honey, as cooked varieties will eventually spoil.

Salt

Sea salt, table salt, and iodized salt will keep forever. Seasoned salts, however, often contain ingredients that can spoil in a year or so. While in time, salt can absorb moisture and become clumpy, it never actually spoils and can just be broken up and used as normal.

Soy Sauce

Thanks in large part to its sodium content, soy sauce will last forever if stored in a sealed container. Soy sauce is a tasty condiment to have on hand for direct use or in a variety of sauces. Similarly to spices, low-quality sauces can come partially contaminated and have a shortened shelf-life, so it’s advised to spend a little more initially on quality products.

Sugar

Sugar

No matter how they are stored, white and brown sugars will both clump and harden over time. However, hardening does not imply spoilage! Just like honey, sugars can be a forever food that can sweeten up even the bleakest of survival situations.

Uncooked White Rice

Uncooked white rice can last forever as long as it is protected from moisture and insects. Packed with calories, carbs, and protein, rice can be a filling meal by itself or coupled with herbs and spices to boost the flavor and nutritional value.

White Distilled Vinegar

White Distilled Vinegar
buy here

This forever food is useful for more than just pickling, canning, and preserving other foods. In fact, white vinegar can also be an effective antiseptic, cleaning agent, and deodorizer. Simply store in a cool dry place indefinitely.
Wine

Similarly to hard liquor, wine can be a highly valuable barter resource to have on hand not to mention a lively libation. Wine will keep indefinitely if stored in a cool, dark place and consumed within 3-5 days of opening. Only wine bottles with real corks will keep indefinitely, so no need to stock up on champagne or sparkling wines.
Proper storage requires positioning of the bottle so that the cork doesn’t dry out, as well as the proper environment. For best results, keep the bottles on their sides or tilted slightly toward the neck so the liquid is in constant contact with the cork. Store only in a cool, dry, and dark area. Bottles should be checked a few times a year to make sure corks aren’t overly dry and the bottles aren’t damaged.

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7 comments

  1. I did wonder why wine was stored on its side! Great list, would definitely stock up on liquor, honey, vinegar and beans!

  2. Carolyn stanford

    Liked your website.

  3. If wine is sealed with a cork, you keep the bottles on their sides to keep the cokes moist. Dry corks allow air to penetrate and that’s a problem. New screw tops and plastic corks are not affected.

  4. I disagree about beans — I have used different varieties of longtime stored beans and when they get old, they never soften no matter how long you soak or cook them. If I remember correctly, you can grind them and use as a flour (have never done that because I have never been in the position to need to do it!)

    • True! Dried beans, even properly stored, will get to the point that they cannot be softened. It is best to use them within the first or second year after harvest. Making flour from uncooked beans can be problematic… it can be difficult to digest the flour, if not cooked long enough. Lentils, however, do store very well, as do a few other high protein items like dried split peas.

    • I can my dried beans – so much easier to use and it softens old beans.

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