If you are a parent, the chances you have lots of boxed snacks in your pantry is pretty high. I know my kids love their cereal and crackers — and so do I. Especially during times like this when we can’t leave our house and are stressed about the state of the world. Stress-crunching is a thing.
My kids love pouring themselves a nice snack and leaving the box wide open so its contents go stale and no one else can enjoy it after they’ve put their mitts on it. I’m tired of having my late night craving for Froot Loops go unsatisfied because they can’t scrunch the plastic bag inside and fold the flaps down so they stay in place.
Now that they’ve gotten older (and have more dexterous fingers that can manage the task), you’d think they’d get better at wanting to keep their Wheat Thins and Cocoa Pebbles fresh and crunchy — but alas, it’s gotten worse. I blame teenage laziness. They claim that they close these cardboard boxes and they mysteriously pop open.
Every time I look in the pantry, at least half the boxes have tabs that are erect and standing at attention. Either their contents go stale almost immediately or I never save them on time; regardless, we’re left with stale cereal that’s just not the same. Believe me, I’ve tried to choke it down. I love how Froot Loops turn the milk colors and morph it into this sweet, magical nectar, but stale loops don’t do it for me.
I was beginning to lose hope of ever eating fresh cereal while my kids are still at home, until I saw a TikTok video demonstrating the correct way to close a cereal box and my mind was blown. How have I gone almost forty-five years of my life without knowing the right way to close a box of Cheese Nips?
Katy Bee is a TikTok user who set me straight after posting a video showing us all we’ve been wasting our time and really don’t know how to properly close a box to ensure freshness. And my life will never be the same.
Maybe the boxes do pop open by themselves in the night because I’ve been teaching my family the incorrect way to close them and really, I am the one to blame for all the staleness floating around in my kitchen?
All this time I thought the slot in the top flap was there to insert the tab on the opposite flap. I’m sure you did too, but that is not the case.
If you want to keep your goods fresher longer, this is how you do it (watch the video for a helpful visual):
-Pull out the cardboard tabs and fold one of the longer flaps back inside.
-Tuck the smaller side tabs inside, folding the box in half on each side, creating two cardboard V shapes.
-Fold the second long flap over the other side of the V to hold it in place. Give the sides a squeeze and a pinch, which will make the box stay closed. As an added bonus, it looks rather fancy and a bit complicated to guests who open your pantry and don’t know about this slick trick.
I cannot stop watching, and I’m so happy to know that even if the top of the box gets ripped as you are busting into it, it literally doesn’t matter at all.
Why did it take us so long to figure this out?
This is the perfect time to make sure all of our pantry items stay fresh and last as long as possible. It’s also nice to have another pastime while we are cooped in our house. I should also add, it made me feel like a badass to pass this technique onto my family and friends because I knew they were doing it wrong and I like being the first one to show them ways to improve their quality of life.
The video has gone viral, and we can only hope it will lead to fresher cereal and crackers. It’s a reminder that the simplest things in life are the ones that catch our attention more than anything. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to fold all my boxes the right way and line them up in my pantry like so … and then stress-crunch through them all, reveling in their freshness every damn time.
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