Does Cornmeal Go Bad: Why Need To Be Aware?

Does cornmeal go bad? If you are in doubt about what to answer to this question then continue reading this post to learn more about the shelf life of a cornmeal.

Have you found yourself asking “does cornmeal go bad”? From among the pantry items, cornmeal is considered as a perishable good that comes along with a limited shelf life. You might think that it could last for a long period of time in the pantry or at the kitchen cupboard but you should be aware of the fact whether it does go bad.


Cornmeal Defined

Known as a common pantry item, cornmeal is a flour simply made by grinding up dried kernels of corn. There are numbers of recipes that might call for the use of cornmeal as for adding a bit more of texture.

Like for example, numbers of pizza recipes would have both cornmeal and flour on the surface once the dough is being shaped. This will not just keep the dough from the idea of sticking, however, will add some crunch into its crust. Indeed, cornmeal is considered as a staple food in almost everyone’s kitchens.

Does Cornmeal Go Bad?

Does Cornmeal Go Bad

Like some other food products, it is so unfortunate that cornmeal does go bad eventually. It would be inevitable that the texture, quality, and flavor wouldn’t be the same for a long period of time. In most cases, cornmeal doesn’t have its expiration date instead it has a “best before” date.

In addition, if you are to store the cornmeal past the expiration date or best before the date on its package, you might end up having some changes. Like for instance, the cornmeal will lose some of the natural corn flavor as well as the natural oil in it that acts as the natural preservative which turns rancid and could lead to an off flavor of the cornmeal.

Aside from that, once properly stored in airtight containers, cornmeal might hold the color and texture. But, if you choose to leave it in the original packaging and store it in the pantry wherein you might forget it for a long period of time then it might have a different texture or color. The color could be moldy along with black spots as well as clumpy texture.

So, like all flours and some other food products, cornmeal can go bad.

Spoiled Cornmeal: Here Are The Signs

Here Are The Signs

After knowing the fact that cornmeal could go bad, there is a need for you to be aware of the signs of spoiled cornmeal. There are certain steps that you should consider as for verifying whether the cornmeal is already bad.

First, consider checking the cornmeal in order to see whether it has bright yellow or beige appearance. Once it does, then there is nothing to worry about however if you see some discoloration in different parts of the container or bag, you might want to see if there is also some noticeable bacteria or mold that develops at the same time.

  • Once this is the case, it is best that you send the cornmeal to the trash can already.

Next, you might as well open up the container or the bag of the cornmeal to smell the contents.

  • Once the odor is off or once it smells pungent in particular, then it is a clear sign that something is already wrong with your cornmeal.
Spoiled Cornmeal

And lastly, once you not yet convinced, the best option to consider is to do a small taste test. You shouldn’t worry since a small taste test will not make you sick and it’s a guaranteed way in order to tell whether the product has gone bad or not.

  • In a case wherein the cornmeal smells, tastes and looks nasty, you should throw it out then pick a new package at most local grocery stores. Indeed, it is better to be safe than to be sorry.

Cornmeal And Its Shelf Life

The way you store the cornmeal will determine its shelf life. Once you buy from the whole food store or grocery store, it would usually come packaged in plastic bags, cardboard containers or paper bags. The said packaging forms wouldn’t keep the cornmeal fresh and they might allow moisture as well as insects to get into it leading to mold and bacteria growth.

  • If you buy cornmeal on a grocery store, it is advised that you place it in airtight containers or even at glass jars having a sealable lid at home as for keeping it fresh for around 2 to 3 years.

So, How To Properly Store Cornmeal?

How To Properly Store Cornmean

Since the way you store cornmeal affects its shelf life, you should be wary of whether how to store it properly. As for maximizing its shelf life, you must transfer the cornmeal from the original packaging upon bringing it home from the local store.

If you are to store cornmeal in the sealed glass container, it would be protected from certain contaminants. And make sure that you mark the best before date on the jar.

It would also be of great help if you will choose to refrigerate the cornmeal in a tightly sealed container. As long as there is no additional moisture that enters the container, the idea of freezing the cornmeal could preserve the shelf life for almost over a year.

Along with that, there is a need for you to remove only the needed amount from the container if you will use the frozen cornmeal. Then after that, immediately seal and replace it in the freezer. If there are too many changes in temperature, spoilage of cornmeal will definitely be promoted.

How To Properly Cornmean

But if in cases that you don’t want to refrigerate or freeze the cornmeal, you simply have to keep it in a tightly-sealed container in the pantry or kitchen cabinet. There are also numbers of home cooks that would use bay leaves in extending the shelf life of grains and flours.

It would keep the weevils and moths away if you put a few bay leaves in the sealed container of cornmeal. Or you might choose to use garlic as it has the same effect only that it has a stronger flavor.

Final Thoughts

There you have it! Your doubt to answer the question “does cornmeal go bad” is now answered by the above-given information. Indeed, cornmeal is a corn-based flour which is used by many in certain recipes. There could be many uses of this food product.

However, making sure that it is still safe to use is important so being aware of its shelf life and proper storage should be considered.

If you like this post and you like to know more, please leave your comments below! Happy reading everyone!​

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Hi there! My name is Cindy Mari and cooking is definitely my passion. I love looking for interesting topics about cooking and share them with everyone. Aside from being passionate about cooking, I am also a foodie at heart.

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