Shelf Life of

How Long Do Beans Last?

How Long Do Beans Last?

Shelf Life of Beans

How long do beans last? The shelf life of beans depends on a variety of factors, such as the sell by date the preparation method and how the beans are stored. Beans are classified as legumes – not technically a vegetable. They are technically seeds, although sometimes, as in green beans, the whole pod can be eaten. Because of their relatively low cost, low fat, low cholesterol and low maintenance – balanced with high protein, high fiber, high vitamins and high versatility – beans are a great addition to any meal.

So, how long do beans last?
When properly stored, the shelf life of beans past their best before date is approximately …

Unopened Pantry Fridge Freezer
Past Printed Date Past Printed Date Past Printed Date
Dried Beans last for Indefinite
Canned Beans last for 1 Year
Fresh Green Beans last 1-2 Days 7-10 Days Cook first
Lentils (Dried) last for Indefinite
Opened Pantry Fridge Freezer
Canned Beans last for 5 Days
Cooked Beans last for 5 Days 1 Year
Bean Sprouts last for 1 Day 3-4 Days
Hummus lasts for 4-5 Days

Of course, all foods last for a shorter period of time if they are not stored properly.
Dried beans are listed as indefinite, but they will begin to loose their moisture after 1-2 years in the pantry. They will need to be soaked and/or cooked for a longer amount of time than is on the directions if they are older than 2 years from the best by date. However, dried beans do not loose any of their nutritional value with age, so their shelf life is classified as indefinite. Because of this, they have always been a great survival choice.

But remember, beans, like a lot of other proteins, usually have a sell by date and not a use by date or expiration date. If there is a date on your beans, it is the manufacturer’s recommendation for best quality – not safety. Because of this distinction, you may safely use them to compliment your favorite meals even after the sell by date has lapsed.

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

Practicing proper hygiene and food safety discipline will help prevent food borne illness.
Although not a perfect test, your nose and eyes ares usually the most reliable instruments to tell if your beans have gone bad. Signs of bad cooked beans are a sour smell and a white colored liquid surrounding the beans.
There are, of course, certain health risks associated with spoiled beans, so always remember to practice food safety and enjoy your food prior to its eat by date.

How to store beans to extend their shelf life?

Proper food storage is the key to extending the expiration date of food.
You can help dried and canned beans stay fresh longer by storing them in your pantry (a cool, dark place) at a temperature under 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fresh beans are best kept in the refrigerator in an airtight container and frozen beans should remain frozen in the freezer.

Once cooked, beans should be stored in a tightly closed container to keep out moisture and other contaminants and placed in the fridge. Never store an opened can in the fridge, always place leftover product into a proper airtight container before storing in the fridge.

For a long-term option, you can freeze your beans while preserving their taste if you use a freezer safe container. Some benefits of proper food storage include eating healthier, cutting food costs and helping the environment by avoiding waste.

Any interesting facts?

  • “Green” beans are named so because they are “unripe”, not all of them are the color green.
  • Beans are one of the hardest foods for your intestines to digest, if your system has trouble with them try a Beano tablet before eating – it works.

  • How long are beans good for when prepared in a dish?

    How long do beans last? That depends. How long does chicken last? In general, foods last 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 do beans last information 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 the shelf life of beans.

    *An important note about expiration dates …

    Although the bean shelf life 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 and not a replacement for your health care professional. So, how long will food last? Let’s find out!