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See-Through Containers

Martha Stewart Living

Airtight (well-sealed) containers made of plastic or glass let you see quickly how much of one ingredient you have left. These containers also protect dried goods from humidity and pests. Whether they match or not, containers can be displayed on the counter or up on open shelves in attractive ways that can actually decorate a corner of your kitchen.

Comments (24)

  • jtal 11 Nov, 2011

    Another advanatage of using these containers is that it cuts down on the number of store-bought boxes with a myriad of ads blaring at you whenever you open your cabinet. I use only glass, not plastic to store food. Since glass is a little heavy, I store the filled containers on a cart with strong chrome shelves placed alongside a portion of the wall in the kitchen.

  • rock63roll64 10 Nov, 2010


  • rock63roll64 10 Nov, 2010


  • ThatDamnRedhead 9 Nov, 2010

    Go for glass only!! The OXO brand and many others use plastic types that leach chemicals into your food. Be especially wary of plastic type 5 (it will say this on the bottom in the recycling symbol).

  • sew 9 Nov, 2010


  • ClanCavan 9 Nov, 2010

    Clear containers are the best! I use my collection of aqua and clear vintage Mason Jars and attached tags that I write contents on using my calligraphy pens. Not only can I see the amounts but they also look fabulous on either my counter or on open shelves in my 300 year old house.

  • anniequinn 12 Dec, 2008

    When I used plastic containers to store food I use a permanent marker and write directly on the container. If the marker doesn't come off in the dishwasher, I use dish soap or some vegetable oil and scrub the area, the marker usually comes right off.

  • ivahays 5 Dec, 2008

    I cut off the box info /or flour label etc, and use shipping tape to secure it to the container so I always know what's in there and the "mix" to use.

  • berinna 5 Dec, 2008

    I think its best to put everything in glass. For some reason when you put things in plastic the food takes on a plastic taste and or odor. Just a suggestion

  • rucamaar 5 Dec, 2008

    I save Valaasic 1/2 gallon pickle jars .I must have saved 30 in the last 3 years. My sister taught me anything that seals up You can use to put food in.
    If your dish washer don't get the pickle smell out of the jars use windex. Then wash again.
    And to get the labels off the jars soak in warm water.after it has soaked for a few hours then take the sticker off with some steel wool.

  • Sillys 4 Dec, 2008

    These ideas are super. Note: I use clear plastic juice bottles (with those "indentations" that make them easy to hold) to store sugar, flours and cornmeal. Easy to pour when measuring for recipes. Easy to store.

  • trishbaucom 4 Dec, 2008

    Boy some of you have the greatest ideas!!! :0) Love them! You can be Martha's elves!

  • Kris2 4 Dec, 2008

    I wash

  • blaukehlchen 4 Dec, 2008

    Restaurant supply companies sell square and rectangular containers. Most suppliers will allow small retail purchases in addition to bulk wholesale. The containers also are usually marked with measurements on their sides. The lids snap tightly. I think you'd also be able to find the containers on the web, but I just buy them locally and save on shipping.
    Another idea: I know someone who has access to a lot of empty liquor bottles, and she stores dried beans and pasta in them. So pretty.

  • thistleneedle 4 Dec, 2008

    I believe that the problem with plastic arises when using it in the microwave for heating food. Storing food in plastic shouldn't pose any health problems. If you are wanting to play on the safe side, use clear glass containers. Many food products are sold in glass, making for good recycling re-use. Also, wide mouthed canning jars work very well for storage containers. They are relatively inexpensive, and are often free if you participate in a Freecycle program in your community.

  • lmarshal 4 Dec, 2008

    I'm just plain cheap: I save the clear plastic containers from nuts(squared with wide-mouth lids) and mayo (tall and round with wide-mouth lids) for storage. I also cut out instructions from the original paper containers or bags and tape them to the lid or slip them down inside the clear plastic containers. I have quite a collection by this point, and they seem to work very well (for Bisquick, dry pastas, brown sugar, marshmallows, rice, barley, etc.).

  • Kaco 4 Dec, 2008

    Euni, Tupperware sells oval, rectangular and square containers called Modular Mates. Round Modular Mates are also available on a seasonal basis (usually in January). Visit; click 'Shop Product Gallery' and 'Storage'.

  • TriciaJay 4 Dec, 2008

    I am confused. I threw out all my plastic containers when I read that Martha Stewart said chemicals attach themselves to the food. Why this twist?

  • euni 4 Dec, 2008

    Seasons greatings from snowy Colorado Springs I have used this idea for many years, but wish I could find rectangular/square shapes as there is less wasted space on the shelves. Four 5 pound bags of flour/sugar, etc., one of the big-box stores sells round stainless steel canisters with clamp-type lids and a bail handle.

  • ViAnBa 4 Dec, 2008

    I agree with the comment about cooking instructions and also you may want to tape the use by date to the lid also so you don't end up eating food out of date!

  • ViAnBa 4 Dec, 2008

    I agree with the comment about cooking instructions and also you may want to tape the use by date to the lid also so you don't end up eating food out of date!

  • efds 4 Dec, 2008

    A helpful hint - cut cooking directions from the package and place in the container with the product so you'll remember how to prepare - how long to cook, etc.

  • emilyteagarden 4 Dec, 2008

    Seasons Greetings Everyone!
    You can also place dried bay leaves at the top of your containers of grain to discourage food moths.
    One more great tip for Bulk Shopping:: when shopping for your usual bulk goods, save TIME and bring your own ziplock bags with the number in magic marker already on it. It's a breeze to shop in this way and saves me alot of time and frustration!!

  • lindadev 11 Jun, 2008

    I've also started using plastic shoeboxes in my pantry to store all sorts of things! Tea, spices, etc - you can see inside what is there, and I even put labels on the outside saying "cooking chocolate", etc ...they stack neatly and are easy to pull in and out when needed.