Flax seeds are known for their extremely nutritious and medicinal nature. They are a great source of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, dietary fibers, protein, vitamin E, magnesium, and phosphorous.
Besides being an excellent food for nutrition, flax seeds are great for food as well. Flax seeds are often used as a binding agent for baked goods because of their ability to act as a binder without having an overwhelming taste. While some use them to create bread with healthier ingredients by using flaxseeds instead of flour.
In this article, we will find out if flaxseed goes bad and how long it will last.
Does Flax Seed Go Bad?
Flaxseed does go bad. The seeds usually last for a very long time, but they can go bad due to several reasons.
Here are the common reasons why it might go bad:
– When stored in an air-tight container, the flax seed oxidizes, making it lose its nutritional value.
– If it is not stored in a cool dry place, mold can grow on the seed.
– If there is too much moisture inside of the container, pests like insects or rodents could contaminate it.
– If too much time has passed since you bought your flax seeds to when you need them for cooking/baking/etc., then they might be past their expiration date and have lost their freshness.
How Long Does Flax Seed Last?
Where it’s stored also plays a vital role in how long the flaxseed will last.
When buying flaxseed, it will usually come with an expiration date. If it’s stored at room temperature, the flaxseed will have a shelf life of 6 to 12 months past the printed expiration date.
In the fridge, flaxseed will last for a year after the printed date.
How to Store Flax Seed
Flaxseed can be stored in your freezer, refrigerator, or pantry. Wherever you store them, flaxseed should always be stored in an airtight container to maintain freshness.
To store flaxseed at room temperature, it is recommended to keep them in a cool and dry location. This includes any location below 70 degrees Fahrenheit with low humidity levels. Places like the pantry and cupboard provide the best place to store flaxseed.
It is also suggested that you remove any moist or wet substances from the area because these materials will lead to mold growth.
Storing Flaxseed In the Refrigerator
Another great option for storing flaxseed in the refrigerator, especially if you need to store them for a long time. However, it has a low oil content which makes it difficult to store without spoiling.
To maintain its freshness, you can keep flaxseed wrapped in paper towels or foil and place them in the crisper drawers of your fridge. You can also wrap flaxseeds in plastic wrap or store them in a sealed bag before placing them in the refrigerator.
Storing Flaxseed In the Freezer
Storing flaxseed in the freezer is another great way to extend their shelf life and also prevent them from going rancid.
To store flaxseed in the freezer, all you have to do is transfer them to an airtight container. Then secure the lid to the container, label it with the date of the freezer, and place it into the freezer.
How to Tell If Flax Seed Is Bad?
Flaxseed is a popular ingredient in many different foods and supplements.
However, if you have it in your pantry, avoid buying or eating products that contain it if you notice any of these signs:
– Seed doesn’t smell fresh.
– Color of the seeds changes from light to dark green or black.
– Flaxseed smells sour.
– The seeds are mushy.
– Mold appears on the ground around where flax has been stored.
If you notice any of the signs above, it’s best to discard the entire content of flaxseed.
How To Keep Flax Seed Fresh Longer
Flax seeds are a great source of fiber and omega-3 fatty acid as well as being easy to store. But they can quickly become rancid if you don’t handle them properly. Here are a few tips on how to keep your flaxseed fresh longer.
Quality: How long flaxseed will last will depend on its quality of it. If it’s high quality, the flaxseed can last for up to 2 years. Lower quality flaxseed tends to only last for 6 to 1 year.
Storage: Flax seeds should be stored in the refrigerator or freezer so it doesn’t go rancid before you use them up. This will also keep bugs from contaminating the seeds.
Can old flaxseed make you sick?
Old flaxseed will not likely cause you to get sick. If you consume it, the flaxseed will not taste good.
However, if the flaxseed has been exposed to air, it could get contaminated with harmful bacteria and mold. By consuming flaxseed that has mold, it will cause you to become sick.