Do Cashews Go Bad? How Long Do Cashews Last?

Cashews are bundles of nutty goodness. They are inexpensive, taste good and offer tremendous nutritional value. According to Healthline, they have a plethora of benefits, from improving blood and eye health to lowering cholesterol levels.

Just by reading this, you might have the urge to try some cashews you bought a while back. However, it is possible that the packaging says best by 4 weeks and it’s already been more than 4 weeks.

After all, we don’t usually use nuts frequently. Plus, the nuts look just fine, which makes you question the validity of the label and ponder, do cashews go bad?

This definitive article is sure to answer any queries you have about the expiry of walnuts so you can get to that delectable nut-munching ASAP. So, without further ado, continue reading.

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Do Cashews Go Bad? How Long Do Cashews Last?


Cashews last for a fair amount of time, but they do go bad over time. Nuts not only go bad but turn rancid. Rancidity occurs because the oil molecules in nuts tend to oxidize, which gives them strange flavors and pungent odors.

As explained by the experts, consuming rancid nuts may prove to be detrimental to your health (source). This also applies to cashew nuts.

Cashews are somewhere in the middle in terms of shelf life. They stay good longer than pine nuts and walnuts but not quite as long as almonds. Their exact life depends on their processing and storage conditions.

Both opened and unopened store-bought cashew nuts last for:

  • 2-4 weeks in the pantry (away from sunlight)
  • 6-9 months in the fridge
  • Over a year in the freezer

Cashews never come fully raw with their complete covering because the covering contains ‘urushiol,’ the same substance found in poison ivy, according to LiveStrong.

However, a few manufacturers provide raw cashews for culinary purposes. Their Best By date is roughly equal to that of processed cashews:

  • About 1 month in the pantry
  • 4-5 months in the refrigerator
  • Up to a year in the freezer
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How to Tell If Cashews are Bad? Cashews Shelf Life!


Fortunately, it is incredibly simple to tell whether or not cashews have gone bad. This is because all the fats and oils present within these nuts deteriorate while giving very obvious indications:

  • Mold growth
  • A paint-like odor
  • Appearing shriveled and darkened
  • Bitter taste

As mentioned previously, the prime cause of rancidity is heat and air. These two ingredients oxidize the fat chains present in cashew nuts, forming new chemicals that are harmful for health, as stated by eHow.

As time passes, the minor oxidization of cashews continues and causes the nuts to darken and deteriorate, emitting a paint-like smell.

According to the online mold encyclopedia Moldpedia, mold grows due to oxygen and moisture. Hence, in humid locations, mold is more likely to grow on your cashews unless you freeze or refrigerate them.

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To extend the life of your cashews, keep them in a cool and dark place sealed in an airtight container. A little effort can go a long way in improving its shelf life.

Now that you are all caught up with the preservation guidelines, make use of them and go enjoy some delicious cashews!

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