Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
Dec 19, 2009 05:41 PM


Most of my canisters (6) are made of ceramic, but one is plasitc. It is the ClickClack.

My ClickClack makes a better air seal, is lighter to move around, and is see-through. What is the rationale for getting a ceramic canister? Is it purely artistic? I was thinking about ceramic canisters do not release plasticizers and therefore may be healthier, but then given that plastic is everywhere and many of our foods are already wrapped in plastic bags/package when we bought them, does it really matter any more?

For those of you who prefer ceramic-based canisters? What are your reasons?

I am plannin to buy a few more canisters, so I want some inputs to decide if I want to go for plastic-based canisters or ceramic-based. Thanks.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Chemicalkinetics: "For those of you who prefer ceramic-based canisters? What are your reasons?"

    They have mass, and do not tip over easily.

    That, and, secondarily, "ceramic canisters do not release plasticizers and therefore may be healthier."

    1. My canisters are vintage metal, into which I put multiple sugar and flour bags. I like them.

      2 Replies
      1. re: foiegras

        Dp you put multiple sugar and flour bags into one canister or do you put one bag per canister? Thanks.

        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

          I put multiple bags. My organic sugar comes in smaller bags, and for flour, it will fit a standard bag + one or more smaller bags of specialty flours from the bulk section.

      2. Plastic is quite a bit more air permeable than ceramic, glass or metal. Air is not much of a threat to some ingredients (sugar and salt), but it's very bad for others:

        Spices/dried herbs- spices/dried herbs stored in glass will retain their potency far longer than spices stored in plastic.

        Dried beans- Dried beans begin their life cycle with about 10% to 20% moisture content. If exposed to air, this moisture content drops and they become harder to cook all the way through.

        Rice (especially Arborio)- similar to beans, to a lesser degree. With rice it's not a matter of whether or not the grains will soften completely, but more about changes in cooking time.

        Whole wheat flour- air quickly turns the oils in whole wheat flour rancid. As far as I'm concerned, you should never be storing WW flour in any container, but if you take this direction, definitely go with something other than plastic. Unbleached white flour, is not quite so cut and dry. Oxygen helps unbleached flour age/develop better bread baking properties. Although unbleached flour does contain trace fat that most likely will go rancid during this aging process, imo, it's such a small amount that it's undetectable. Long story short, unbleached a/p flour that will eventually be used for bread likes air permeable packaging- although in this instance, I'd probably go with something really air permeable such as paper.

        Brown sugar- air isn't really detrimental to brown sugar, but it does cause clumping. Everyone has their brown sugar softening tricks, but, as far as I'm concerned, the easiest and most foolproof way to softening brown sugar is to never let it occur in the first place. A glass container will achieve this.

        Whole grain crackers- most whole grain crackers contain a preservative of some kind (beyond the salt), but, like ww flour, air is the enemy.

        Butter based cookies- cookies don't last for long in my household, but if you plan on storing them, I'd make sure it's a metal tin and not a plastic one.