How long does Almond Flour last? Can it go bad?
Almond flour has increased in popularity dramatically in recent years as an excellent substitute for regular flour. However, due to its relative newness, a lot of us don’t really know anything about it in terms of nutritional values and how to best store it. One could easily be led to believe that it would behave in the same manner as regular flour, but that sadly isn’t the case. In fact, it doesn’t really behave in the same way as whole almonds when it comes to storage either. Simply put, this is because it is ground, and as a result, a large portion of its surface area is exposed to the elements at any given point.
Almond flour is made by grinding up almonds to a very fine consistency which feels like a slightly coarse powder. As we know, most nuts possess a high oil content, which means that nut products are susceptible to go rancid relatively quickly. Thankfully, there are some tips and tricks which will avoid this happening. In general, if you are familiar with storing coconut flour, none of this will appear unfamiliar to you. But, there are some key differences between how to store wheat flour and how to store almond flour that are worth taking note of if this is new territory for you. After all, almond oil isn’t exactly cheap, so it would be a shame to see it go to waste. Fortunately, there are some methods of storing almond flour which can see your product surviving years past its sell-by date. These techniques are revealed below.
The Best Way to Store Almond Flour
Almond flour is by its nature incredibly sensitive to moisture, to the point where if even one drop of liquid gets in there, the whole bag may as well be considered waste. With almond flour in tis unopened condition, you don’t have much to worry about when it comes to storage. Most peoples’ natural instinct here would be to place it on a shelf in the pantry – and this would be 100% correct. So long as the area where an unopened bag is kept cool, dry, and dark, your almond flour will be totally fine.
However, everything becomes quite a bit more complicated the second the bag is opened. You see, almond flour really does not enjoy being exposed to the elements and will make its protests known very quickly. Normally, if we were dealing with wheat flour we would be transferring it into an airtight container and placing it back into the pantry. This is not what we’re going to recommend here. The first reason for this is that almond flour is notorious for its ability to attract all sorts of wildlife. You leave this unattended and it’s having a party! The second reason is that due to its oil content, it actually preserves much better in the fridge. Because fridges can tend to be a moisture-rich environment, which your almond flour won’t care for, it is best to first transfer it into an airtight container. Beyond this, there aren’t really any tricks of the trade, but what we can tell you is how long it will last and how to tell if it has gone off.
How Long Does Almond Flour Last?
Pantry or fridge
Almond flour, if stored correctly, can far surpass the sell-by date that is printed on it. In the case of an unopened bag of flour in the pantry or in a cupboard, you can expect that it may last for up to 3 months beyond its printed date. This same unopened bag could last for nearly a year past that date in the fridge. In the case of a bag that has been opened and then transferred into an airtight container in the fridge – somewhere in the region of 4 months beyond the sell-by date is the sweet spot.
As we have previously mentioned, almond flour can store pretty much indefinitely in the freezer. Well, this is true but after a certain amount of time, it will begin to diminish in quality and lose its flavor. At this point, though it will be safe to consume, it won’t be particularly enjoyable. Because of this, we have decided to put some definite use-by dates on frozen almond flour rather than just claiming it will last forever. In the case of an unopened and frozen bag of almond flour, you can expect that it will still be worth using up to two years after it has gone past its sell-by. For opened and repackaged almond flour this time doesn’t decrease too dramatically. In this case, the flour will still be viable up to one year beyond the indicated expiry date.
Signs That Your Almond Flour May Have Gone Off
Almond flour is one of the easiest products out there to tell if something has gone bad with the signs ranging from subtle, to disgustingly dramatic. Let’s start with the more dramatic side of things then. Almond flour, and indeed most other flours, have a tendency to attract a broad range of insect life. To check, pour some of the flour into a sieve. If there are any signs of any insect life or flour worms, don’t even try to save the remaining flour and just toss the lot of it out.
Mostly though, what you will be looking for is a flour which still has the texture of flour and smells like almonds. If it has gone bad, the nutty aroma will take on a more pungent and bitter smell which should let you know that it has expired. Apart from that, if you see that the flour has gone clumpy, this means that it has been exposed to moisture at some point and should also be discarded. At the later stages of exposure to moisture, the flour may begin to develop mold cultures.
Should Almond Flour be Refrigerated?
Once opened, almond flour is best stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. However, what might come as a surprise is that it also does incredibly well in the freezer. In fact, by doing so it can keep for pretty much forever. The best way to go about this is to chuck it into the freezer either unopened or in airtight freezer bags for use as you see fit. To protect against the dreaded freezer burn, we would advise double bagging it for peace of mind. Then, when it comes time to use the frozen product, simply leave it out for a while first to return it to room temperature. By doing so, you will avoid having to work with a flour that is clumpy.
Almond Storage, Sell-by Dates, and Other Related Questions
Can I make almond flour at home?
Making homemade almond flour is mind-blowingly simple. All you will need is one ingredient (you guessed it) and a blender. The whole process takes less than 5 minutes and if you use high-quality almonds, it can end up tasting even better than the store-bought version.
Is almond flour healthier than wheat flour?
For those of us who are aiming to have a keto diet or simply trying to lose a little weight, you can’t go wrong with almond flour. Though it is high in fat, it is remarkably low on carbs, possessing only 6 grams per quarter-cup serving – far less than coconut flour!