Feb 15, 2008 at 4:27 am #1227312
I'm thinking about making tons of granola and energy bars before I leave for the PCT in April, then have that food shipped to me in mail drops. My question is, do these freeze well? I've read conflicting opinions on the internet about freezing granola, and storing nuts in general. This food would have to stay fresh for over 5 months, and I'd prefer not to make my mail drop person make food for me while I'm gone.Feb 15, 2008 at 7:39 am #1420695
I dont know about freezing, but another option is to vacuum seal packs of your bars. The machines that do this are not too expensive.
I know this would keep granola bars "fresh" for several months…Feb 15, 2008 at 2:22 pm #1420764
I've considered using a vacuum sealer, but have read horror stories about their reliability here and elsewhere. Also, i'd prefer not to spend over $50 for a sealer if I can avoid it.Feb 24, 2008 at 11:16 am #1421845
Unfortunately when it comes to food sealers/vac pac systems you get what you pay for.
I generally freeze my granola and bars for up to 6 months and haven't found any issues. They are packed in ziploc freezer bags with as much of the air removed as possible.Feb 24, 2008 at 11:31 am #1421848
@steveLocale: Eastern Washington
More of a question–since I haven't tried this.
Since oxygen is one of the culprits to spoilage, why not add an activated “hand warmer” (iron, sawdust type) packet to the package. Since these absorb O2, in theory this should increase the shelf life. Thoughts??Mar 1, 2008 at 9:02 am #1422624
I would think that it probably isn't food safe. You can buy oxygen absorbers from Walton Feed and I think Sorbent Systems.Mar 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm #1425319
I just ran across someone stating on another forum that they just store their nuts and granola in ziploc bags, making sure all air was pressed out of them, for weeks or months on end, then pick them up in their mail drops, and everything is fine. Everything I've read though seems to indicate that nuts go rancid quickly when not vacuum sealed or frozen. Is this a bit overstated? The argument is that these bulk foods just sit in an un-vacuum sealed bin in the store, and were probably stored loosely before being put on the shelf as well.
Just trying to decide if I should waste the time with a vacuum sealer and their heavy/awkward bags to pack.Mar 24, 2008 at 6:15 am #1425375
"I just ran across someone stating on another forum that they just store their nuts and granola in ziploc bags, making sure all air was pressed out of them, for weeks or months on end,"
Yeah, that's going to oust most of the oxygen and / or moisture that can ruin this type of stuff.
BTW, the reynold's handi-vac is a pretty inexpensive upgrade from this technique… really sucks all the air out and is just as reliable as any zipper bag you're going to find.
I believe Sarah, of freezerbagcooking.com, reviewed one of these on her blog.
Yup… I remembered right… Reynolds Handi Vac Review er… check that… the link expired with one of Sarah's updates… I can email it to you if you'd like… just PM me with your email address…Apr 10, 2008 at 5:13 pm #1428046
vacuum sealing doesn't provide 100% protection from them going rancid either… many times the rancidity (I think that is a word -lol) is caused by them being in a warm place too long. Same as with things like Olive Oil.Apr 10, 2008 at 5:38 pm #1428052
Yes, I picked up the Reynolds Vacuum sealer a few weeks ago. So far I'm pretty happy with it. I did have a problem with one bag of granola loosing it's air tight seal after a few minutes, which I believe was due to a hole in the bag caused by sharp granola. I have since been really careful, and all bags are staying sealed.
I've sealed up about 8 lbs of granola, and am storing them in a dark place. Hopefully it's cool enough in my room (~70 deg) to avoid rancid behavior.Apr 12, 2008 at 5:23 am #1428270
speaking of energy/granola bars… I just found out my recipe for bars is in the May 2008 issue of Backpacker
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