Pretty storage containers may look nice on your kitchen counters, but they may ruin your flour and other baking ingredients faster.
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Credit: Sur La Table

When I moved into my house, my very first order was a set of glass jars with lids. I had been eyeing them on Pinterest and in home decor magazines for years, but I'd never had any place to put them. The day I signed the (many) dotted lines for my house, I clicked buy on those glass jars, and I think it may have been more satisfying.

As soon as they arrived, I gleefully filled them with brand-new bags of flour, sugar, and beans. I had a smaller one for bags of tea. It was homemaker perfection. And then a few weeks later, when I went to use the ingredients, I discovered a horrible secret: they aren't airtight. My sugar had clumps, likely from a bit of moisture sneaking in around the lid. My flour was starting to smell a bit rancid. Yikes! My tea bags were stale and produced lackluster tea.

So, as much as I loved them, I had to replace them — or at least find safer things to store in them while I looked for better containers for my flour and sugar. And find something better I did.

The OXO Good Grips Pop 4.4-Quart Container holds an entire five-pound bag of flour. Is there anything more satisfying than emptying a full bag right into its storage container and not having to store half a bag or a quarter of a bag somewhere else — only to forget about it when you run out? I can answer that. No.

As we know from these tips on keeping flour as fresh as possible, air is the enemy of fresh flour. Air makes flour go rancid, and while you can still cook with flour that's starting to age, it's really not the best flavor experience. If you spend weeks priming a sourdough starter for a loaf, the last thing you want to use is flour that's less than stellar.

The entire OXO Good Grips Pop Container Line is made with BPA-free plastic. The lids are either stainless steel or plastic, both sleek and clean. Each container also has a large push button on the top of the lid, and with a simple press you can create an airtight seal to keep flour and other foods safe from air. A silicone ring around the lid also prevents any air from sneaking in after you seal it.

oxo good grips pop container with oats
Credit: Sur La Table

Buy it: $19;

The 4.4-quart container does hold an entire five-pound bag of flour. It also fits a five-pound bag or tub of oats.

If you want a matching set for all your baking ingredients, you're in luck. The 2.8-quart POP container is the right size for a four-pound bag of sugar or a four-pound bag of rice.

"It was the right size and look for my needs," wrote reviewer Sandra H on "I like that it is lightweight, better than glass."

Credit: Sur La Table

Buy it: $17;

Don't forget the brown sugar. Air is certainly the enemy of this baking necessity, too, turning it into a brick with even the briefest of air drafts. The 1.1-quart POP container fits a 16-ounce bag of brown sugar. It also fits a large container of salt.

OXO 1.1 quart container
Credit: Sur La Table

Buy it: $12;

You can also buy sets of the OXO Pop Containers. This 10-piece set has the two larger containers mentioned above (4.4 and 2.8 quarts), as well as one 2.7-quart rectangle container that holds an entire five-pound bag of rice; one 2.2-quart tall container that can fit two boxes of spaghetti or one tube of crackers; two 1.1-quart petite square containers that are great for storing loose leaf teas or dried fruit; two 0.6-quart containers that fit a bag of peas or a box of tea bags; and two 0.4-quart rectangle containers that fit a bag of quinoa or pistachios.

10-piece pop container set
Credit: Sur La Table

Buy it: $100;

Need to fit a certain food item? This handy POP Storage Container guide from OXO can help.

So now, my classic lidded jars house packages of crackers, individually-wrapped chocolates, and bags of cat treats, al things that don't require the airtight seal and also look beautiful when displayed on my counters. And my flour, sugars, and oats are happy (and fresh) in their new airtight containers.