The Food Expiration Dates You Should Actually Follow - Deepstash
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The Expiration Date

The Expiration Date

The Lockdown has forced us to keep our Supermarket trips to a minimum, and finally check what’s been lying in our fridge/pantry for months, or even years.

Most of the stuff we have would expire soon, we would assume. But the truth is a bit more complicated. Expiration dates aren’t set in stone and are in fact the manufacturer’s calculated ‘guess’ as to when its product will not be of optimal quality. The good news is some of the expired stuff you may have with you is still edible.

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Vinegar, Honey And Oats

  • Vinegar, honey, vanilla and many other extracts, along with sugar, salt, corn syrup and molasses will last years after they are showing expired on the package.
  • Oats: Rolled and steel-cut oats will last for a year, while par-cooked (instant) ones can last even more than that.

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Flour And Nuts

Flour And Nuts

  • White Flour lasts quite long but whole-wheat and whole-grain flour start going bad after a few months. Anything refined and ‘white’ lasts longer than anything unpolished and brown. This is due to the presence of fats in anything which is unrefined.
  • Tree nuts can go bad in a few months if not stored in a freezer.

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Bread

Processed bread (with preservatives and oils) stays soft and fresh for a week, but real bread made in a real bakery will be stale in one or two days. It’s a good idea to keep your bread in the freezer.

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Beans And Spices

Beans And Spices

  • Dried beans and lentils can last for years but can be tough to cook if they are kept too long, especially with acidic ingredients like molasses or tomatoes.
  • Spices don’t go stale, and at most lose some of their flavor and potency while still being edible.

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Canned Food And Soda

Food packed in aluminum cans, if not punctured or spoiled externally, can be edible after their expiration dates in case of fruits, veggies, or meats, though you have to be cautious and check for moldiness, bad odors or cloudiness. Food packed in metal lasts longer than what is packed in a glass jar, while plastic-packed food spoils the fastest.

Soda cans stay fizzy for years, glass ones for a year, while plastic soda bottles lose their fizz in a few months.

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Oils And Ketchup

Oils And Ketchup

  • Oils remain usable for years, but one has to check for fishy, soapy or metallic smells. Touching a spoiled oil feels tacky, too.
  • Salad dressings last for months in a fridge, while mayonnaise and mustards can last even longer.
  • Ketchup can change color but still be usable for about a year. Pickles kept in their oil preservation last long even without refrigeration, while soy sauce is also usable for a good period of time.

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Milk And Eggs

  • Eggs can last up to 30 days more than the 30 days stamp on most of the cartons, and give off a distinctive rotten smell to warn you in case they turn bad.
  • Milk is trickier, but the ‘UHT’ labeled one lasts longer.

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Baby Food

Baby Food

Baby food, due to its sensitivity, carries a federally mandated use-by date. You may not feed it to babies after the expiration date, but you still can eat it yourself for some nutritional benefit, if needed.

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brianna_s

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