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Thread: Do dried herbs and spices really expire?

  1. #1

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    Default Do dried herbs and spices really expire?

    I was suddenly inspired to clean out my pantry today. OMG - 2 garbage bins later!! LOL.

    Anyway, I was just sorting through my big box of herbs & spices, and noticed they all expired YEARS ago! Do they really expire? I've been using them now & then!

    Oh - and it's interesting doing a stocktake of the pantry - I have SEVEN gravox tins LMAO (I tend to grab them when I can coz whenever I need it they're out of stock.. guess I can stop buying it now. And I have about 8 tins of tomatoes - another thing that I grab coz I figure I'll use em. LOL.



    There were so many open packets of doritos and crackers and cruskits and stuff. I now have two completely empty shelves in the pantry, and I was actually excited to have somewhere I can put the bread LOL - instead of having it out on the bench!

    Anyway - yeah.. back to my original question herbs & spices - anyone know?

  2. #2

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    ooooh I read about spices and storage just yesterday in a dentist waiting room LOL - the mag would have been about 1yr old! They said that spice powders can be kept for up to 4yrs, but then on cooking shows I've seen they say that they loose their potency after a while so they are no good? So I have no idea now.

  3. #3

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    They don't really go 'off' but I think they lose flavour...

  4. #4

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    Dried herbs will go stale the fastest, so like Trillian said, they'll lose potency. Ground spices will go stale much quicker than whole spices, and the more airtight the container, the longer the spice will last.

    There are few spices that actually go rancid, but you'll know if a spice is too old because it just won't smell as strong. You can still use it, but you won't get much flavour.

    I buy spices whole from an Indian grocery and either grind as needed, or with the more commonly used spices I grind enough for a few months. They are much more flavoursome than the pre-ground supermarket spices, and cheaper too!

  5. #5
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    I also was inspired last weekend to clean out freezer, pantry cupoboards and spices etc and also have very little left!!

    I chucked out spices that expired in 2003!!!!! So i am left with curry powder, gravox, salt and pepper, orgegano, chicken stock powder and oxo cubes!!!

  6. #6

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    Thanks guys - that makes sense about losing potency.

    LOL Feeb - I had some expired in 2000!! OMG that's 8 years ago! LMAO. I've got others that expired last year, so I might hang on to those They're expensive to replace. I'll check them first tho I guess.

    Thank you!

  7. #7

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    If you store then correctly in a cool and dark place and properly sealed then they keep longer. But they definitely do lose their potency after a while.

  8. #8

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    I did see a cooking show that said you should replace them every 12months!! LOL that doesn't happen here. But they did say the if you take the lid off & hold away from your nose & can't smell the aroma very well then it's prob time to get new ones.

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