Can Dates Go Bad?

Since dates can be enjoyed in a variety of ways and incorporated into so many recipes, you might be wondering how long you have to eat or use them in a recipe after you buy them? The answer to that question is that is varies depending on factors like the type of date and how you are storing them. We are going to share some tips and information on when it is best to use dates by, and some storage tips! 


How long do dried dates last?

Dried dates are most likely the way you have been enjoying dates. When looking for dates at a store or making an online purchase, you will most commonly find them as a dried fruit. It is possible to find fresh dates at farmer’s markets and some grocery stores, but dried dates are going to be a more accessible option. So, after you’ve purchased your dried dates how long do you have before they expire or go bad? Typically, 1 to 3 months if you are storing them at room temperate. A nice characteristic of dates is that they can be stored at different temperatures, and still remain good. Commonly people store dates at room temperate in their pantry because of the convenience of being able to keep them in a sealable bag or container. Another option is to refrigerate your dates, doing this will prolong their shelf life and they will remain good to eat for approximately 6 months to a year. Freezing dates is another option if you would prefer that method. If you freeze dates they will still have a shelf life between 6 and 12 months long, but it might be a better option for you if you have extra freezer space! Since dates are commonly dried, they last longer than other fruits, giving you plenty of time to enjoy them and incorporate them into tasty recipes. With the versatility of being able to keep them at room temperature or chilling them, there will be plenty of opportunities to try them in new recipes or just enjoy a few every day for their amazing health benefits and super sweet flavor. 


How should I store my dates?

For room temperate or pantry storage, simply just make sure your dates are in a sealed container. If your dates are not stored in an airtight container they could continue to dry out, which will make their shelf life shorter. When you buy dried dates they might come packaged in a resealable bag which is great for storage, but if not you can transfer them to a new bag yourself or another food storage container. Check out these reusable food storage bags for a more eco-friendly approach for storing your dates. Also, storing your dates in a cool, dark, and dry environment, like a kitchen cabinet, is going to be a good way of prolonging their freshness. 


If you decide to refrigerate your dates, just be sure to keep them in an air-tight container. Keeping your dates in a chilled environment like a refrigerator is going to be the best way to store them if you want to make them last a while. 

Freezer storage is similar to refrigerator storage of dates; all you need to do is keep them in a freezer-safe, airtight container and you are good to go! Some people prefer freezer storage because your darts should last the longest if you use this method. The colder the temperature that you are storing your dates at, the longer they should last. If you are freezing your dates though, consider that you will have to briefly thaw them out before eating them. To do this you can just set them on a plate or thaw the whole bag for about 30 minutes or less depending on the temperate of the room. If you are adding dates to a smoothie or blended ice cream recipe, keeping them frozen is a great way to add a smooth texture to your blended drink while not having to worry about thawing the fruit out. 


How do I know if my dates have gone bad?

Determining if your dates have gone bad is fairly easy, but takes some personal judgment. First of all, if your dates have molded in their storage container they are no longer good and should be tossed out immediately and not consumed. If you notice your dates have a thin white film over them, this is natural and it is called sugar specs. This is because the fruit contains natural sugars that sometimes migrate to the outside layer of the fruit. They are safe to eat this way, but if you want to remove this film just place your dates in sunlight until you nice the white film fading from them. Another way to determine if your dates are still good is to just smell and examine them to ensure they smell good and are not discolored or molded. If you have only been storing them chilled for a few months they should smell and look similar to when you first stored them, so if they appear the same, they should be good. If you notice them smelling unusual you can toss them out or taste them to determine if they are still good. After 12 months maximum of storing them though, you should toss them and buy new ones. 


How long does Dafero date spread last? 

If you are looking to try dates in a totally new way, try Dafero’s date spread! Since our delicious date spread is crafted with only 3 ingredients and no preservatives it is recommended to consume within 2 months of opening the jar. Once opened, refrigerate the date spread and start enjoying it on its own or add it into some recipes. Before the date spread is open you can store it at room temperate for 12 months before using it. Once you open it though, you should have no problem using it up quickly since it is so naturally sweet and can be incorporated into your diet in so many different ways! 


References:

Skrzypiec, M. (2019, November 11). Do dates go bad. Does it go bad. https://www.doesitgobad.com/do-dates-go-bad/