Most food storage companies that sell in the gallon sized #10 cans also have a smaller can size available. They are known by various names and are actually slightly different sizes depending on the company you purchase from. The smaller cans are called Pantry Cans at Thrive Life and The Ready Store, MyChoice at Emergency Essentials, Everyday Size at Augason Farms, and CAN (as opposed to LARGE CAN) at Honeyville Food Products.
Why buy a smaller can?
1. They are a great size to fit in your kitchen pantry. I have some that I use and refill from larger cans or containers so I don’t have to pack my limited cupboard space with the larger #10 cans.
2. Product testing. If you’re not sure you’re going to love a particular brand of sour cream powder or freeze dried pineapple, try it out in a small can first before you spend the money on a larger container.
3. Cost. The price per pound is generally higher with a pantry can, but if you have a set dollar amount to spend, pantry cans will get you the greatest variety of food for that money. Or if you want some freeze dried chicken but can’t shell out the #10 can price, a pantry can will get some in your storage for less.
4. Shelf life. The unopened shelf life is the same as a #10 can, but once a product is opened, it usually needs to be used within a certain amount of time (one year opened is about as long an open shelf life as you’ll find). If you are storing food for a smaller family or just yourself, a pantry can helps you be able to use it all while it’s still fresh.
Pantry cans aren’t for everyone, but they may work for you. Check out the photos below to see the sizes of small cans from various food storage providers and how they compare with the larger #10 can. All of the small cans are 4″ in diameter and either 4 11/16″ or 5 7/16″ tall.