Shelf Life of

How Long Do Tortillas Last?

How Long Do Tortillas Last?

Shelf Life of Tortillas

How long do Tortillas Last?
The shelf life of tortillas depends on the best by date, the processing and how they are stored. Tortillas, a Spanish word meaning “torta” or little cake, are typically grilled on the stove top and consist of flour or corn, oil, and salt. Tortillas are gaining more and more popularity throughout the world as the variety of ingredients and variations have also grown rapidly in the last few years.

So, how long do tortillas last?
When properly stored, unopened packages last for the time periods beyond their best before dates as indicated in the table below:

(Unopened) Pantry Refrigerator Freezer
Past Printed Date Past Printed Date Past Printed Date
Flour Tortillas last for 1 Week 3-4 Weeks 6-8 Months
Corn Tortillas last for 7-10 Days 6-8 Weeks 6-8 Months
Spinach Tortillas last for 1 Week 3-4 Weeks 6-8 Months
Whole Wheat Tortillas last 1 Week 3-4 Weeks 6-8 Months
Homemade Tortillas last 2-3 Days 5-7 Days 6-8 Months

Of course, all foods last for a shorter period of time if they are not stored properly. But, like many other products, tortillas usually have a best by date which is simply the last date by which a manufacturer will vouch for a product’s quality, not its safety.  Because of this distinction, you may safely eat them after the best by date has expired, according to the above table, if they have been stored properly.

 How to tell if tortillas are bad, rotten or spoiled?

Beyond saving money, practicing proper hygiene and food safety techniques will help prevent food borne illness. Although not a perfect test, your senses are usually the most reliable instruments to tell if your packaged tortillas have expired and gone bad.
Since different companies use different preservatives, there is variation in how long they last. Tortillas, which begin very pliable, will begin to get stiffer when they are getting old. You can tell if tortillas have gone bad if you notice any spots of mold on their surface, at which point the entire package should be thrown away.

There are, of course, certain health risks associated with any spoiled food, so always remember to practice food safety and eat your food prior to its expiration.

 How to store tortillas to extend its shelf life?

Proper food storage is the key to extending the shelf life of the tortillas.

Packages of tortillas should be stored in a cool dry environment not susceptible to temperature change.  When items go through temperature changes of cool to warm and vice versa, the moisture in the air tends to condensate inside the packages.  This moisture allows mold to grow and tortillas to spoil. Thus, a refrigerator is highly recommended (but not required) to extend the shelf life of tortillas. Always store your tortillas in air-tight containers that help keep out moisture and other contaminants.

For Home made tortillas, you can also keep them fresh longer by storing them in your refrigerator below 40°F immediately after use.

For ways to re-heat them, see our page on how to warm tortillas.

Some benefits of proper food storage include eating healthier, cutting food costs and helping the environment by avoiding waste.

 Interesting facts about the shelf life of Tortillas

During the course of our expiration date research we came across some interesting facts about the shelf life of tortillas:

  • Although everyone associates tortillas with Mexico, it is the fastest growing sector of the U.S. baking industry.

 How long are tortillas good for when prepared in a dish?

How long do tortillas last? That depends. How long does flour last? In general, tortillas lasts only as long as the quickest expiring ingredient it is mixed with. To find out how long those other ingredients are good for, please visit the Dairy, Drinks, Fruits, Grains, Proteins, Vegetables and Other sections of Eat By Date or search below!

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 What are our shelf life of tortillas resources?

Our content incorporates research from multiple resources, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. In addition, we scour the web for informative articles and reports related to food safety, food storage and the shelf life of tortillas.

 *An important note about the expiration date of Tortillas.

Although the tortilla shelf life information provided by Eat By Date is generally reliable, it is a researched opinion and in no way intended to substitute for the advice of a qualified health care provider. Please eat responsibly!