Do Raisins Go Bad? How Long Do Raisins Last?
Raisins are one of the most delicious and nutritious snacks. Whether eaten on their own, as an ingredient in those yummy oatmeal cookies, added to savory dishes or what have you, these dried grapes find many uses. This brings up the question, “do raisins go bad?”
Whether you need fridge space or simply want to know how much longer you can stretch your raisins, you need to know if they go bad. After all, whatever the case may be, you will still find yourself asking what to do with the package of raisins in your pantry (or in your fridge).
If you are concerned with these things, you’re in luck. This article will delve into the shelf life of raisins, how to best store them, and whether they actually go bad. To learn more, read on.
What Are Raisins?
Raisins are a type of dried fruit. They are made from grapes that have either been dried under the sun or through a food dehydrator. They normally come in brown or purplish color. The dark hue of raisins comes from the drying process which usually takes around three weeks.
Consumed on their own, raisins have a soft and slightly wrinkled texture. They have a naturally sweet taste and a high level of sugar and calories, making them the perfect addition to desserts or even protein shakes.
Raisins have tons of health benefits, including the ability to boost the body’s iron levels, improve bone density, and aid digestion thanks to fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They also help lower blood pressure while also improving blood sugar control. Due to their fiber-rich nature, they can also help increase feelings of fullness.
Shelf Life of Raisins
Most dried fruits, including raisins, can last for more than a year after their “best by” date, provided you freeze them. Their shelf life, however, depends on a number of factors, including storage and drying methods.
Unopened, raisins can stay in your pantry for at least six to 12 months past the printed date. In the fridge, they can even last for one to two years, and in the freezer, for an indefinite period of time.
Opened, however, they will only last in the pantry for three to six months, in the fridge for six to 12 months, and in the freezer for up to a year.
While raisins and other dried fruits have a longer shelf life, they are still considered perishable. Over time, their quality will degrade and this may affect their overall taste and texture.
Bear in mind that while they may harden over time, you can still revive them by rehydrating in hot or warm water. You can also try to rehydrate then in fruit juice or even liquor for added depth and flavor, especially for use in pastries and baked goods.
Do Raisins Go Bad?
In short, yes, raisins do go bad. However, much of the spoilage can be attributed to how and where they are stored. Signs that raisins have gone bad include mold or organic growth such as fuzz, a slightly sweet or tangy odor, and changes in color.
Other tell-tale signs include raisins that have become hard, chewier, and have lost flavor or juiciness. A bitter or sour taste also indicates spoilage.
If their appearance remains the same, you can taste one to two pieces to ascertain their condition. Should the taste, texture, and color change, throw them out immediately.
Proper Storing Techniques
Properly dried with little to no moisture, they are already shelf-stable. They can be stored in the pantry even when opened, provided they are in a cool, dry place rather than near a hot or humid area.
If humidity is a problem, you can also try storing them in airtight containers in the fridge or freezer. The more condensed the raisins are, the more moisture they’ll retain, preventing them from drying out and hardening over time.
The Bottom Line
At the end of the day, you want to use up your stash and avoid food spoilage and wastage. If you have tons of raisins on hand and do not know how to properly store them, make sure to take note of these tips to help prolong the life of these dried fruits.