What is a #10 Can?

Written by The Ready Store

When you search for emergency food you will find the majority of vendors sell their goods in a variety of container sizes like a pouch, bucket, and the #10 can. Here are a few frequently asked questions regarding the #10 can and I hope it will assist you with getting prepared.

What is #10 can?
When referring to #10 can, think of a metal can of coffee that you might see at your local grocery stores or if you ever worked in the food industry you might have had the opportunity to see a #10 can in the back room.

What does #10 can mean?
The term “#10″ does not mean that the contents will weigh 10 pounds, the #10 refers to the type of can. The actual weight and volume of the contents will vary depending on the product. On average, the #10 can will hold 109 oz. To help you visualize, your average soup can is #2 can. To get the same amount of food as one #10 can you would have to have a total of 5.32 soup cans to have the same amount of volume as the #10 can.

How big 10 can

How Big is a #10 can?
I always get asked this question on the size of a #10 can because people are wondering about storage. Depending on how your house is set up you might have the ability to store 7” tall cans in your cupboards, but many people will need a dedicated shelf in their basement or storage room that can fit the #10 can.

What is a #10 can

Do you  have to eat all the contents of the can soon after you open it?
That is a great thing with the freeze dried food; You don’t have to worry about eating everything in a day or weeks. With our #10 cans you will receive a lid that will assist you in prolonging the shelf life of your food.

How long does it last once it is opened, and will I need to be stored inside of a refrigerator once opened?
Once you do open your #10 can it will still render an amazing open shelf life. We have recommended having the contents consumed within a 6-12 month period. When the contents are hydrated you will have to treat it like your standard leftovers, but if the food is not hydrated then you could keep the contents in the can with the provided lid for 6-12 months.

Updated December 29, 2009


  1. Leslie wrote:

    So these #10 cans have multiple servings in them – the ones, like the strawberries, are something like 28 servings – which for a single person is a 1 month supply of strawberries! :)

    Question is, though, once the can is opened, do the products start going bad? I have no experience with freeze-dried products and am starting the process of storing items in case of disaster – these seem like good products with the 30 year shelf life (no need to worry about rotation) but I am concerned about the shelf life after the can is opened.


    December 31st, 2009 at 9:51 am
  2. Pat B wrote:


    Reading through the previous posts will answer many of the questions that may come up. But in answer to this question: 2-4 weeks.

    Once opened the freeze dried food start to rehydrate from the moisture content in the air. As they start to rehydrate they can start to spoil as well. Once you open the can, pull out your contents and then place the lid on the can to limit the esposure to fresh air…While this does limit the variety of your menu at the time, at least you are eating ;)


    January 10th, 2010 at 11:19 am
  3. dana f wrote:

    thx did not know can size.

    January 9th, 2013 at 10:29 am
  4. Pearl wrote:

    Thank you for giving the actual can size in volume and especially in inches. It helped with planning where to store besides under my bed. #10 cans will fit in the back of my kitchen base cabinets, too.

    February 26th, 2013 at 12:31 pm
  5. richie wrote:

    thanks–I had no clue what size this was.Now I know.
    thanks to this web site.

    September 6th, 2013 at 1:24 pm
  6. Cheryl wrote:

    I would like to know how many cups are in a #10 can.

    November 29th, 2013 at 10:07 pm
  7. Mary wrote:

    re: how many cups are in a #10 can.
    There are 8 ounces in one cup and there are
    109.43 ounces in one #10 can. Therefor, 13.68
    cups in a #10 can, approximately 13 cups 5 ounces.

    December 5th, 2013 at 3:13 pm
  8. Jessica wrote:

    Damn why is the video set to private?

    January 2nd, 2014 at 4:02 pm
  9. Douglas wrote:

    Can I get longer shelf life on an opened #10 can if I re-seal the product in mylar pouches with oxygen absorbers? I would like to buy a big can (because it’s cheaper per serving) and subdivide it into single-serving pouches. Would it keep for many years like that?

    June 4th, 2014 at 8:27 am
  10. Jan wrote:

    Yes you can. This is the perfect course of action to take. If you promptly put the food under vacuum seal with one oxygen absorberr, you have no change in shelf life from when it was in the number 10 can.

    August 15th, 2014 at 2:13 pm
  11. spotmagicsolis wrote:

    Thanks very much for this info.

    December 3rd, 2014 at 12:24 pm
  12. Yeet wrote:


    February 27th, 2015 at 6:10 pm
  13. OS wrote:

    How many quart sized mason jars would I need for cotets of a #10 can once opened? Would they still hold up without vacuum sealing? Would one oxygen absorber be enough? If I have several #10 cans open, this would require a llot of mason jars. Do mason jars work better than mylar bags? I would think they are better to avoid pests , but then thhere is light issue– unless put them in dark cabinet. I would appreciate your thoughts. Olga

    March 16th, 2015 at 8:50 am
  14. Hazen wrote:

    Is the #10 can made of tin or aluminum?

    March 19th, 2015 at 5:03 pm
  15. Jacob van Kogelenberg (Jacob) wrote:

    I think metric dimensions could be usefull.
    The diameter is 158,75 mm and height 177.8 mm.
    The volume in ounces, cups, pounds etc. is no good as that is weight and depends on the density.
    The calculated volume (with the dimensions above) is 3.517 dm³ = 3.517 liter.
    Possible error here is that it is not clear whether the indicated dimensions are external or internal (after closing the can)

    March 21st, 2015 at 6:08 am

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