Cornmeal is an important ingredient for various delicious foods such as pizzas, porridge and bagels. It contains a good amount of vitamins and minerals, as explained by the health site Healthline.
It is present in kitchen cabinets in almost all homes. Even though it is used in a lot of food products, only a low quantity is required for every recipe.
This the reason why one package lasts for months and even years at times. As a result, you might be wondering, does cornmeal go bad?
This question is often asked. Before we dig deep into it, you must know that there are two types of cornmeal: whole-grain cornmeal and degerminated cornmeal.
Here’s all you need to know about the shelf life of both types of cornmeal, signs for spoilage and the major causes for that.
How Long Does Cornmeal Last? Does Cornmeal Go Bad?
Dried corn is grinded to produce a coarse flour, known as cornmeal. It is different from corn starch. Corn kernels have an important constituent called germ.
As it is rich in oil, it has potential of going rancid. That’s the major difference between whole-grain cornmeal and degerminated cornmeal, according to Fine Cooking.
Regular cornmeal is degerminated and is devoid of germ. It has a low nutritional value and the taste isn’t very rich. On the bright side, the lack of oil adds to the shelf life of degerminated cornmeal.
Like coconut flour, cornmeal has a specific shelf life. The shelf life of degerminated cornmeal is up to a year.
In order to extend the shelf life of regular cornmeal, you can store it in the refrigerator. This way, it will stay in a good condition for 18 to 24 months. Even after that, it will remain safe to consume, but the quality level might degrade.
On the other hand, whole-grain cornmeal lasts well until its Best By date + 3 months when unopened. Once you open it, you need to store it in the refrigerator to keep it safe for 3 to 6 months.
How to Tell If Cornmeal Is Bad?
There are several signs of bad cornmeal. In order to tell if cornmeal has gone bad, remember the following signs:
- 1The presence of insects and bugs including dead insects, alive insects and their eggs
- 2Moisture or mold growing in the cornmeal package
- 3Change of odor. A bitter smell tells that the cornmeal has gone bad
- 4The taste also determines if the cornmeal has expired
Insects get into the package when you store it improperly and leave the storage bag open. Also, when you keep it on the shelf for months, insects are more likely to make their way in.
The odor changes due to not storing it in a cool place or at room temperature. This is also the case when the cornmeal has moisture in it. Thus, it is important to keep cornmeal in a dry place.
Cornmeal comes in two types and both have different shelf lives. How and where you should store cornmeal is the same in both cases. You must discard it when you see the signs of it going bad.
On the bright side, keeping in view the causes, you can prevent cornmeal from going bad quickly, but it will ultimately lose its quality.