Cooking with Spices 101: How to Store Spices

With limited kitchen space, the spice rack has grown in popularity. It allows you to take stock of your spices in a nice, neat order. When you’re ready to cook, simply grab, shake, and put the spice container back in its place. But have you ever stopped to wonder if this was good for the spices?

The reality of the matter is that the best place to store your spices all has to do with temperature, moisture, and sunlight. Let's take a look at the reasoning behind the ideal storage place for your spices.

Avoid The Spices Rack

For most of us, we have a spice rack siting on the kitchen counter or hanging on the wall where it is easily accessible. The problem with this is light leak. As light penetrates through the spice container, it diminishes the spices’ shelf life.

While it may be tempting to keep the spice rack directly over the stove, this is probably the worst spot. As the spices become exposed to heat and moisture, they begin to break down.

Refrigerator or Freezer?

The problem with resorting to the cold box for spice storage is the temperature change. Going from hot to cold or cold to hot can add moisture to the spices - and moisture for a spice is not good. In this case, it's best to avoid using cold storage.

The Best Spice Storage

The best place to store your spices is in a dry place away from sunlight, and at a constant temperature. If you have a spot in the house that stays at room temperature, that would be ideal. The less fluctuations in conditions a spice is exposed to, the longer its shelf life.

And remember, close the cap! Otherwise it won't matter where it is stored.