I think canned food gets a bad rap. Canned foods used to be lined with BPA and BPA has been linked with certain diseases and ailments. However, over 90% of canned foods are moving away from BPA and lining their canned foods with safer alternatives.
Nutritional content is also a lot higher than people realize. Through the canning and heating process, companies try to retain as much nutrition as possible.
No, it’s not fresh food. Canning is a way to preserve food for an extended period of time. Commercial canning is a bit of a different process than canning at home, though still just as good, in my personal opinion. Botulism is always a concern, though has been less of a concern with commercial canned foods.
Each can will have a ‘best buy’ date on it, though some types of canned foods can last anywhere from 5-10 years past the ‘best buy’ date.
Keeping canned foods in cool, dry, dark places will extend the shelf life. However, rotating often is highly recommended. Each time you head to the grocery store, grab an extra can or two, move the old ones up front and the newer ones towards the back.
Look out for cans that have been dented, keep those up front and eat them first. Cans that look like they’re bulging, throw away. They may not safe to consume. Pop top cans may not last as long, but they still have a good shelf life.
In general, canned goods can last quite a while, especially if kept in ideal conditions. I’ve kept canned goods 5 years past the ‘best buy’ date, opened them and they were perfectly fine.
Of course, in the end, trust your gut. Getting sick is never in anyone’s best interest.
Here are the top 50 canned foods to add to your food storage:
- Chicken/beef/vegetable broth
- Roast beef
- Pulled pork
- Vienna sausages
- Potted meat
- Beans; black, kidney, refried, pinto, baked
- Pie filling
- Condensed/evaporated milk
- Tomato paste/chunks/diced
- Green beans
- Baby corn
- Cream corn
- Mixed veggies
- Mixed fruit
- Cranberry sauce
- Corned beef hash
- Alfredo sauce
- Spaghetti sauce
- Coconut milk
- Brown bread
A few last bits of advice:
- Store what you eat. If you don’t like spam, then don’t store spam.
- If you are going to try something new, try it before storing it.
- Some of these items need extra rotation, such as high acidic foods like tomato sauces.
- Cook with your food storage! Get creative with these items and learn how to use them in everyday meals.
- Consider getting some of the fish items in oil and use that oil in the meal you cook with to get those extra fats.
Browse your local grocery store and discover the plentiful abundance of canned food items!