Do it Yourself Long-Term Rice Storage

by G.K. Bayne

People store food for a variety of reasons. For some, it is in preparation in case of a natural disaster, such as an ice storm or earthquake. Others consider stocking food a prudent way to live in case of a financial disaster or other calamity. Either way, rice--especially white, milled rice--will keep for years in a cool area of your home or garage.

Buy only good-quality white rice for storage purposes. While you can store brown rice, it will not keep as well as white rice over time.

Secure enough five-gallon food-grade plastic buckets to store the amount of rice you wish to store. Each bucket will hold approximately 25 pounds of rice. If using glass jars, a gallon jar will hold approximately five pounds of rice.

Pour the rice into the buckets or jars. Rice should be removed from its original packaging.

Place the appropriate amount of dessicant packets into each container. These packages can be purchased from food storage supply houses or from bulk food sources online. Each manufacturer will have recommendations of how many packages to add depending on the storage container size.

Place the lid firmly on the bucket or jar.

Store in a cool, dry place. Rice will keep for up to 10 years if the temperature remains at approximately 70 degrees F. It will keep for up to 30 years at 40 degrees.


  • Rice is high in fiber and protein and has no known allergens, making it perfect for long-term storage.

    When using rice that is in storage, place a fresh dessicant in the container any time it is opened. This will keep the rice free from moisture, bugs and maintain the long storage times.

    You can often get food grade plastic pails and buckets for free by calling your local fast food restaurants and asking them to save a few for you.

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