15 helpful ways to Store Chip Bags (with or without a pantry)

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Do you need some ideas on how to store your bags of potato chips? Storing those bulky bags can be tricky. In this article we’ll look at 15 potato chip storage ideas.

Most of the ideas involve storing chips in a pantry, but the ideas can work for kitchen cabinets and there are some unique hanging options.

Potato chip storage ideas - 15 ways to store potato chips. These ideas will help you organize your pantry and keep your chips fresh
Potato chip storage ideas

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How to store Potato Chips?

To store an opened bag of potato chips for maximum freshness you need to prevent air, moisture and light from getting at the leftover chips. Therefore, you should store potato chips in a cool, dry and dark place in an airtight container (or remove as much air as possible).

More on this below.

Keep air and moisture away from your chips

Tips on how to store potato chips bags for premium freshness

When you buy a bag of potato chips the bag feels puffy with air, but that isn’t regular air. It is mostly nitrogen gas. The manufacturer puts Nitrogen in there to help keep the chips fresh and tasting the way they are supposed to.

They don’t use regular air because the air we breath contains water vapor and about 21% oxygen. (Reference) That is great news for us…so we can breath the oxygen to live. But contact with oxygen isn’t good for food packaging or freshness.

Oxygen is a ‘feisty’ atom and likes to interact with others. It can cause chemical reactions that can spoil or taint our food and can cause the oxidation of fats in the chips. (Reference) And water vapor also affects food quality and stability. (Reference)

Nitrogen on the other hand doesn’t react as much…it is more even-keeled and ‘stable’ than oxygen.

So when manufacturers package potato chips they want to keep oxygen and water out of the bag, and they put nitrogen in instead.

Keep light away from your potato chips

And you have you ever noticed that potato chips bags aren’t transparent? That is because light – particularly ultraviolet light – can trigger the oxidation reaction of fats. (Reference)

To prevent light from getting at the chips, manufacturers put a thin layer of aluminum overtop plastic as one of the layers in the bags. This metalized coating stops light from getting at the chips. (Reference)

Potato Chip Bag Science

It may not be something you’ve really thought about it (I know I hadn’t), but there is a lot of thought that goes into creating the multi-layered plastic bags specially designed and created to store potato chips. (Reference)

Therefore, when you store an open bag of chips you may want to consider just keeping the chips inside the manufacturers bag.

Storing leftover chips

Remember oxygen and water vapor are the enemy of a fresh and crispy chip. So when you’re sealing up your bag after a snack attack, you want to remove as much air from inside the bag as possible.

This can be achieved by flattening the bag (not the chips), then start rolling the bag from the top towards the bottom (where the chips are located). Squeezing out the air then rolling it like this displaces the air from the bag and helps keep it out.

folding the top of the chip bag prior to rolling it closed
Get the air out then start rolling from the top of the bag down (Photo credit: LearnAlongWithMe.com)
Rolling up a bag of chips to try and remove the air inside the bag
Continue rolling towards the bottom (Photo credit: LearnAlongWithMe.com)

Then you can either use a clip to create an airtight seal, or wrap an elastic around the entire bag (like the photo below).

Putting an elastic band around a bag of chips that have its top rolled down will help keep air and moisture out of the bag to maintain freshness.
Elastic band keeps the rolled-top in place. (Photo credit: LearnAlongWithMe.com)

If you do take the chips out of the manufacturer’s bag and place them in something like a Ziploc bag, mason jar or other clear container, make sure to store them in a dark place to prevent light from triggering oxidation reactions.

Where should I store potato chips?

If you’re going eat your leftover chips within a couple of days of opening the bag, then storing them in the kitchen pantry will be fine. They’ll stay crispy and fresh if you remove the air from the bag and if the chips aren’t exposed to sunlight.

But interestingly, if you want your chips to stay fresh for a long time, you can put your chips in the freezer! (Reference)

Potato chips have very little moisture in them, so they don’t freeze like you may think. Instead, they just get really cold.

We want to avoid moisture contacting our chips, and freezers are not humid like fridges are. (The higher humidity of fridges may be great for some fresh produce, but it isn’t good for potato chips.)

And then once you take them out of the freezer and they warm up a bit, they’ll still be crunchy.

How to Store Chips in Pantry – 15 Ideas

Above, we went over the important factors for keeping your leftover potato chips crunchy and fresh.

You want to keep air, moisture and light away from the chips.

So keeping those basic principles in mind, we’ve listed some chip storage ideas below that may help you.

Many of these ideas are for storing opened bags of chips, but some of these ideas are for storing UNOPENED bags of chips as well.

There are lots of different ways to store bags of chips but the best way for you will depend on several factors such as how many bags of chips you have in your house at once and how much space you can dedicate to them.

For instance if you have a small pantry versus a large walk-in storage room, your needs will obviously differ.

So make sure to scroll through all these ideas and hopefully at least one of them will work for you.

1) Hang chip bags using a bag clip (Chip clips)

You can use chip clips or bag clips like this to clamp on the top of chips
Bag clip used to seal a bag of tortilla chips (Photo credit: LearnAlongWithMe.com)

Squeeze out the air from the bag, roll down the top of the bag of potato chips or tortilla chips then clamp one of these clips over the top. (Like I did in the picture above.)

The rolling process removes air from the bag and then clamping the top will help prevent air from seeping into the bag.

Just ensure that the chip bag doesn’t have holes or punctures where air can get in and spoil the chips.

Then you can hang your bag of chips (or snacks like in the picture below) from a hook inside your pantry or on the back of the cabinet door.

If you do hang the chips from the door, just make sure you can close the cabinet door without crushing the chips against other stuff inside the cabinet.

storing bags of potato chips and snacks by using a bag clip and then hanging the clip from hooks on the back of your pantry door or inside a cabinet
Hanging snack bags and chips inside pantry or cabinet

2) Use a Vacuum Sealer to seal the chip bag

FoodSaver Vacuum Sealer Machine with Automatic Bag Detection, Sealer Bags and Roll, and Handheld Vacuum Sealer for Airtight Food Storage and Sous Vide, Silver

Ignore the chicken and lemons in the picture above…just imagine your bag of chips there.

We don’t have one of these – so I haven’t personally tried it – but many people use vacuum sealing machines like this Foodsaver to seal the chip bags to maintain freshness.

The key is that you don’t use the vacuum function because that sucking action could break the chips.

Instead you personally remove as much air from the bag as possible then use the machine’s seal function to create a new heat seal.

Here is some more information on the Foodsaver website explaining this further.

I don’t think anyone is going to buy a vacuum sealer just to seal their bags of chips at home, but if you already have a food sealing machine at home then this is another use for it. Or if you have been thinking about getting a Foodsaver for other reasons, add this to the list.

3) Use Children’s Clothes Hangers or Pants Hangers to clamp the bag

You can hang potato chips from a pants hanger (a type of clothes hanger that has clips)
Using a pants hanger (clothes hanger) to store chip bags

Here is a unique way to store potato chip bags that may work for you… if you have space for them in your pantry.

Get the air out of the bag, roll the bag of chips, then clamp these pants hangers on top to prevent air from getting back into the bag.

Our pantry is a converted coat closet so we still have a closet rod in there, but if you don’t, don’t worry, there are other options.

You could hang the hanger from Command Hooks adhered to the side of the pantry wall, or you could install a tension rod between the sides of your pantry cabinet. Then you could hang the bags from this tension rod.

A positive thing about elevating the bags like this is that it frees up shelf space. You’ll still have room for other dry goods and food items on the pantry shelf.

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4) Hang Chip Bags using Curtain Clip Rings

You can put a curtain clip with a ring onto your closed chip bag and hang it from a wall hook.
Take advantage of vertical space

If you have tension bar, closet rod or wall-hooks in your pantry, then hanging your chip bags from curtain clips is a unique way to store them.

They’ll be within easy reach yet hung up high so you’ll still have room to store other stuff on the pantry shelves.

You may want to roll the chip bag and put a couple of rubber bands around it first since clipping just one clip onto the bag may not maintain a nice airtight seal.

5) Hang chips on Command Hooks using chip bag clips

OXO Good Grips All-Purpose Magnetic Clips - 4 Pc Assorted

I initially came across this idea on the blog Fennel Seeds.

The site owner stuck Command Hooks on the wall just insider her pantry and then used these OXO good grips clips to hang the chips from the hooks.

There are a lot of other bag clips out there, but to hang the chips like this, make sure you get clips with a large hole at the top.

6) Get a high-sided Lazy Susan

mDesign Lazy Susan Turntable Divided Spinner for Kitchen/Bathroom, Pantry, Fridge, Cupboards Organizing, Fully Rotating Organizer for Food, Spices, Condiments, 11.5" Round, Lumiere Collection, Clear

A lazy susan with high sides and compartments like this one from mDesign can help you store your chip bags and organize a corner cabinet or pantry.

It would work best for small bags of chips, or opened bags that have had air squeezed out.

7) Organize chips in your pantry with clear bins (mDesign)

mDesign Plastic Wide Food Storage Organization Container Bin w/Handles - for Kitchen, Pantry, Cabinet, Fridge/Freezer, Countertop - Long Organizer for Refrigerator Snacks - Ligne Collection - Clear

The company mDesign makes a lot of highly-rated home organizers. Many people use these clear bins to store bags of chips in their pantry.

It provides some structure to contain the bulky bags. But due to their size (12-inches by 10-inches) they’ll probably work best for small bags of chips or large, opened bags without many chips remaining.

I haven’t tried this particular option, but will this work in your pantry?

Click here for more details.

8) Store small bags of chips in plastic totes on a shelf

storing small bags of chips in a plastic tote with a lid inside your pantry or cabinet can help you organize your pantry because the tote is stackable

This isn’t exactly Fort Knox, but it is a little harder to access the chips when you put them in a tote with a lid.

This could be a good option for people who want to cut down on how many chips they eat. The extra step of getting the stuff off the lid could be enough of a delay for your willpower to kick in and choose something else to eat.

But besides that, it can help you organize your pantry because it is stackable.

9) Store small bags of chips inside a magazine holder

to help provide some structure in your pantry you can store small bags of chips inside magazine holders

If you need to store small bags of chips (like snack-sized bags) you can try putting them inside a magazine holder and then placing the holder onto a pantry shelf or inside cabinet.

This is a good idea for someone looking for simple pantry organization ideas. You may already have magazine holders at home.

The magazine holder provides more structure than just tossing the bags in on their own.

Give this is a try and see if you like it. If you don’t like it, well you can still use the holder for other things.

As you can see by the picture above I tried this option. I found it a little too jumbled when you have different flavors of chips, but it would be better if you had all the same flavor.

10) Use a Drawer Organizer inside your pantry or cabinet

you can actually use a drawer divider box to store bags of chips

You could use a drawer organizer cube (like the IKEA SKUBB organizer shown above) to hold small bags of chips, or large, opened bags with the air squeezed out.

Using organizers like this can help you tidy up your pantry or cabinet and make it easier to find stuff.

11) Empty the chips into Mason Jars (probably pass on this one)

This is a decorative way to store potato chips. But it isn’t really a great functional option.

You could empty the chips into a mason jar or other wide-mouthed glass jars, but remember that light is the enemy of chip freshness.

So if the chips are subjected to the UV rays of sunlight it can promote the oxidation reactions that we want to avoid.

And since we can’t remove the air from a mason jar, the oxygen and water vapor inside the jar will react with the chips resulting in a loss of crispiness, taste and freshness of the chips. Not a big deal if you plan on eating them in a couple days, but not great for longer term storage.

So I’d pass on this one unless you have friends coming over in a couple of hours and want your display of snacks to look fancy.

12) Empty the chips into airtight food storage containers (maybe if…)

Airtight Extra Large Food Storage Containers - Set of 4, All Same Size - Kitchen & Pantry Organization - Cereal, Spaghetti, Noodles, Pasta, Flour and Sugar Containers - Plastic Canisters with Lids

These containers from Chef’s Path are highly-rated and probably some of the best airtight containers for food out therebut they may not be the best for chips.

Sure the seal may be airtight thus preventing more air from getting at the chips, but since you can’t remove the air from inside the containers, that air is going to affect the freshness of the chips.

I don’t know how much it’ll affect the taste or crispiness of the chips, or how quickly, but it is something to keep in mind.

You may be better off keeping the chips in their original packaging, roll the bag to remove the air, then place the whole chip bag inside one of these containers.

It’ll help keep your pantry organized and your chips should stay fresh for longer.

13) OXO Good Grips Pop Container (maybe, if…)

OXO Good Grips POP Container - Airtight Food Storage - 6.0 Qt for Bulk Food and More,Transparent,6.0 Qt - Square - Bulk Food

The OXO Good Grips Pop container is another popular food storage container.

And like I mentioned above, the airtight lid will prevent more air from coming in, but the air inside the container will be in contact with the chips if you just dump the bag of chips into the container.

If you like using these to organize your pantry, you may want to consider leaving the chips in their original bag then place the bag inside the container.

But if you’re going to be eating the remainder of the chips within a couple days it shouldn’t be a big deal.

14) Seal chip bags using IKEA bag clips

Using IKEA bag clips to close up the end of a bag of Doritos chips.
Bag clips

Get the air out of the bag, roll down the top (or fold it down) and then put one or two IKEA bag clips to maintain the seal.

Then you can place this on your pantry shelf, inside a lazy susan, inside a magazine holder, hang it with a curtain clip, or just store it on your kitchen counter.

15) Place Small Bags of chips in a Hanging Over the Door Organizer

You can store small bags of chips inside the pockets of an over the door shoe organizer.
Using a shoe organizer to store small bags of chips

Using an over the door organizer is a great way to use the “wasted space” at the back of the pantry door or a full-size door.

These are often called “shoe organizers” but you can put lots of different things into the pockets. They are super versatile organizers.

(I dedicated an article to them if you want to read more shoe organizer storage ideas.)

You can tuck small bags of chips (like the ones given out at Halloween) into the pockets of the organizer then hang the organizer from a door or cabinet door. And because they’re inexpensive you can cut them to match the size and length you need.

Thank you for checking out this list.

This has been an interesting article to write.

On one hand I learned that it takes a lot of science to package up potato chips and keep them from going stale.

But on the other hand, I also know that I rarely have a bag of chips go stale at my house. They don’t have time to. I eat them way before then.

Whether or not you’re the same, I hope you’ve enjoyed list. I hope it has helped provide you with some pantry organization ideas that you can use.

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Build up a sweet coffee bar with these Coffee Bar Accessories.

Thank you.

Tim from LearnAlongWithMe.com

Tim worked in construction for a few years before going to university. Then he worked as a community pharmacist for 10 years and now works as a full-time writer and online publisher. He has experience in several different, far-reaching lines of work.
“I sincerely hope you find the articles helpful and informative.”
Tim from LearnAlongWithMe.com

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