How to Store Rice

As one of the most widely consumed grains, you may have some rice in your cupboard. And, if you're not a regular eater of the nutty grain, you may wonder how long you can keep it or if you're storing it in the right container. Proper storage not only keeps out unwanted critters, but also helps your rice last longer.

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The Right Container

Most rice you purchase at the store is in a bag or box. To improve the shelf life of your rice once you get it home, whether it's white rice, brown rice, jasmine rice or sushi rice, transfer the grain to a container that limits exposure to air and critters.

Container Options:

  • Safe plastic container with lid that provides a tight seal
  • Glass jar with lid
  • No. 10 can lined with food-grade enamel


Storage Conditions

Although it's a dry good, if you're serious about your rice you might want to store it in your refrigerator. This includes the different types of rice such as sushi and jasmine. According to the Utah State University Extension, the best temperature at which to store your rice is 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below. However, if your rice is in the right container and you're using oxygen absorbers, you can safely store your rice at 70 F in the cupboard.


  • Due to the increased risk of rancidity, store your brown rice varieties, such as your long-grain, jasmine and sushi rice, in the freezer.

How Long to Store

When dry long-grain, jasmine or sushi rice is stored at a lower temperature, it retains its taste and nutritional value for up to 30 years, according to Utah State University Extension. However, even at 70 F, each of these types of rice can be safely stored, and retain its value, for up to 10 years.

What About Cooked Rice?

Cooked rice, whether white, brown, long-grain, sushi or jasmine, does not last as long as dry rice. If you're not eating your rice immediately after cooking, put it in the refrigerator after it's cooked to cool it and prevent the growth of bacteria. Any type of cooked rice should reheated only once and discarded after 24 hours, according to NHS Choices.


  • Rice grains may contain spores of the bacteria Bacillus cereus, which can survive cooking. When cooked rice is left out at room temperature, the bacteria multiply and produce toxins that can cause vomiting and diarrhea.


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