For years now we have bought extra dry staples. Stored them in 5 gal buckets in the barn. Our house is way too small (500 SF) for long term storage.
Recently we converted a heated room out in the barn into a pantry. We love it! We now have room to really make use of our costco card! And we can store things that can't freeze.
For years any 5 gal bucket with a lid would do. Quite a few ended up being orange "Homer" buckets with lids from Home Depot. Of course Liz could not remove those lids with out asking for help.
One day I was filling a new bucket with salt. That particular bucket was originally filled with Honey. First I noticed the nice gasket on the lid... then I noticed the food safe label and BPA free on the bucket...HMMM , Sure enough the homer buckets were none of the above and the lids did not even have a gasket!!! Not all the buckets were that bad but none were food safe!
Boy do I feel dumb!
I went inside and informed the wife of my discovery! She was as horrified as I was!
A quick look on line showed that Home Depot of all places sells not just homer buckets but food safe 5 gal buckets ! Who Knew! They are less than $3 each!
While at the store I noticed that they not only had the buckets BUT they had gasketed lids that tightly snapped on plus they have a gasketed screw lid!!! Easy open ! YES ! I no longer have to be the official bucket opener! All food safe BPA free !
Cost with lid was 7-8$ Not cheap but how much is your health worth?
EDIT) For those rushing out to HD to look for these buckets and lids they are found in the paint department of all places!
Another source for snap on gasketed buckets is bakeries. They generally get their frosting in buckets and just throw them out. And they're food grade. But they're snap on so you still have to deal with that.
They also make a 5 gallon bucket opener tool. Depending on the actual style of the bucket lid's edge, they can make it much easier to get open.
Great Tip Mike! Thank you!
I had no idea they made a tool for bucket lids ... seems obvious to me, now that you told me!
Less than $5 on ebay! I have one ordered already!
Will come in real handy out in the shop for buckets of fluids.
If you want to get fancy for multiyear and anti-bug storage, filling the bucket from the bottom with Co2 will purge the oxygen and extend shelf life while at the same time killing off bugs. Bugs, unfortunately, come at no extra charge with many bulk products.
Bars use Co2 and it is usually available w/out too much trouble. Doing a search will turn up various techniques. For my small needs, I just hooked a rubber/plastic tube to the tank at one end and a 24" piece of pipe at the other and inserted the pipe into the bucket after filling it with product. Crack the tank valve _very_ slightly and allow a minute to fill the bucket. Remove the pipe gently and apply the lid.
+1 on bakery begging. It may take a couple visits to coordinate and make sure to get the lids. I believe they _must_ rinse the buckets thoroughly after use, so make sure that happens before you run off with buckets - save yourself some hassle.
There are food-type SQUARE buckets and those are way more space efficient if you find a source.
thomas rubino wrote:....A quick look on line showed that Home Depot of all places sells not just homer buckets but food safe 5 gal buckets ! Who Knew! They are less than $3 each! While at the store I noticed that they not only had the buckets BUT they had gasketed lids that tightly snapped on plus they have a gasketed screw lid!!! Easy open ! YES ! I no longer have to be the official bucket opener! All food safe BPA free ! Cost with lid was 7-8$ Not cheap but how much is your health worth?
Thomas, I had no idea Home Depot sold these. Thank you for the tip! Great prices for food storage peace of mind.