Shelf Life of

How Long Does Pasta Last?

Pasta Shelf LifeShelf Life of Pasta

How long does pasta last? Dried pasta is made from seminola flour and water. Fresh pasta (homemade or purchased in the refrigerator section) usually includes eggs. The shelf life of pasta depends on a variety of factors, such as the best by date, the preparation method and how it was stored. Because of its relatively low cost and major versatility, it is one of the most popular food items in the world. Pasta comes in all sorts of shapes and sizes with some of the most popular being spaghetti, macaroni, and rigatoni.

So, how long does pasta last? When properly stored, the shelf life of pasta past its sell by date is approximately …

Pantry Refrigerator Freezer
Past Printed Date Past Printed Date Past Printed Date
Dry Pasta lasts for 1-2 Years
Dry Noodles last for 1-2 Years
Fresh Pasta lasts for 4-5 Days 6-8 Months
Fresh Noodles last for 4-5 Days 6-8 Months
Cooked Pasta lasts for 7 Days 6-8 Months
Cooked Noodles last for 7 Days 6-8 Months

Of course, spaghetti, noodles and macaroni last for a shorter period of time if they are not stored properly. But remember, noodles, like a lot of other grains, usually has a best before date which is simply the last date the manufacturer will vouch for the product safety and not an expiration date for the product. Because of this distinction, you may safely use pasta even after the best before date has lapsed.

How to tell if pasta is bad, rotten or spoiled?

Practicing proper hygiene and food safety discipline will help prevent food borne illness. Although not a perfect test, your senses are usually the most reliable instruments to tell if your pasta has gone bad.
Some common traits of bad fresh or cooked pasta or noodles are a discoloration and a dull, slimy appearance which appear before the formation of mold.
There are, of course, certain health risks associated with spoiled pasta, so always remember to practice food safety and enjoy your pasta prior to the eat by date.

How to store pasta to extend its shelf life?

Proper food storage is the key to extending the expiration date of food.
You can help pasta keep fresh longer by storing it in its original packaging in your pantry. Once cooked, pasta should be stored in a tightly closed container to keep out moisture and other contaminants.

For a long-term option, you can freeze your pasta while preserving its taste if you use a freezer safe container. Just remember to cool your pasta (preferably run under cold water to stop the cooking) without a lid before you freeze it or it will be very mushy when thawed. Freezing is an indefinite type of storage, but cooked pasta begins to dry out when frozen too long.
Some benefits of proper food storage include eating healthier, cutting food costs and helping the environment by avoiding waste.

Interesting Facts about Pasta

  • Pasta may have originated in Italy, but many countries have their own version of the spaghetti noodle. China has Mein, Japan has Udon, the Philippines have Pancit, Poland has Pierogi, and Germany has Spaetzle to name a few.

  • How long is pasta good for when prepared in a dish?

    How long does pasta last? That depends. How long does chicken last? In general, pasta lasts only as long as the quickest expiring ingredient in the dish. 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 resources?

    Our how long does pasta last content incorporates research from multiple resources, including the United States Department of Agriculture and the United States Food & Drug Administration. In addition, we scoured the web for informative articles and reports related to food safety, food storage and shelf life.

    *An important note about expiration dates …

    Although the shelf life of pasta information on Eat By Date is generally reliable, please remember that individual cases will vary and that our advice should only be taken as an opinion. Please eat responsibly!
    So, how long will food last? Let’s find out!