What is the average shelf life of buckwheat? How long does buckwheat last in the pantry, refrigerator, or freezer? What is the best way to store buckwheat to increase its shelf life? Find out the answers to these questions and more below:
Shelf Life of Buckwheat
|Cooked||N/A||3-4 Days||3-4 Weeks|
Buckwheat is a healthy grain even in comparison to members of its family. It is a grain that can act as a wheat substitute especially for those who are sensitive to protein gluten found in wheat and other grains. When it comes to the fiber content buckwheat is a good source of slightly less fiber than wheat.
Buckwheat has a shorter shelf life than wheat. In flour form, the buckwheat needs refrigeration and can have a life of three months. Whole buckwheat stored properly lasts around six months. The freezer is the best option to prolong the shelf life of buckwheat. It is highly unlikely that the grain will last longer than six months.
To get the fresh buckwheat see the use by date on the packaging. As with other grains, buckwheat can be bought in whole, pearled, or refined from. In terms of nutrition and taste, whole buckwheat is the best option. Pearled or refined buckwheat has a milder flavor profile and is easier to cook. As the husk is stripped, it makes for easy heat and moisture exchange reducing the cooking time.
Buckwheat needs to be stored away from sunlight. Light can cause the grain to sprout. Moisture is another problem as it allows for bacteria to grow. The grain provides the perfect nutrition for the bacteria or fungus to grow. A good indicator will be a change in smell before you can see visible mold.
Another cause of spoiling is air. More precisely, oxygen; the grain should be sealed in an airtight container. In the freezer, condensation is a big risk to the shelf life of the buckwheat. In colder climates, it can be stored in the pantry if there is no light with preferably cool dry air.
How to Handle Buckwheat
Buckwheat is a grain, and for simply transferring it, any bowl or measuring cup can be used. For transfer from one container to another use a dry bowl because moisture can cause it to spoil.
As it comes in whole grain, pearl, refined and powder form the weight of the same volume will be different. Whole grain will have the lowest weight, and the flour will have the highest. The difference in weight is not immense, and depending on the processing some kitchen scales won’t be able to notice the difference. Buckwheat flour can be made in a blender at home.
Cooking With Buckwheat
Buckwheat is a nutritious grain and a good choice for those with gluten sensitivity. Buckwheat is used as a flour to make bread and noodles, waffles and acts as a natural thickener for soups. In soups, buckwheat can be used to add flavor to soups as well. It has an almost bitter taste similar to that of very toasted bread even sharing similarity to beer. Boiled Buckwheat can be used as a side dish with a meal, and that means extra fiber. Buckwheat already has a strong flavor and not having enough water in the pan can cause it to burn. In the case of buckwheat, the flavor profile is completely ruined, and it will start tasting like charcoal.