Do you have a box of coconut flour you plan to use for your baked goods? Or maybe, you’re starting to follow a paleo or keto diet, with coconut flour being a great alternative to the usual flour. But wait, if it’s been sitting in the kitchen cabinet or pantry for a while, you might be wondering, ‘does coconut flour go bad?’
Coconut is not your usual kind of flour, so it has different expiry dates than other flour types.
We delve into whether or not coconut flour goes bad and storage tips to retain freshness.
Read on to learn more.
- Does Coconut Flour Go Bad?
- So, How Long Does Coconut Flour Last? Its Shelf Life
- Signs Your Coconut Flour Has Spoiled
- Storing Coconut Flour
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Wrapping It Up
Does Coconut Flour Go Bad?
Coconut flour’s an excellent alternative to all-purpose and wheat flour, which has grown in popularity for a good reason. It has no gluten or allergens, making it a kitchen staple among allergy sufferers and those following gluten-free diets. Coconut is also great to use as a substitute for all-purpose flour if you’re on a special diet. (*)
As the name suggests, coconut flour’s made of fried, ground coconut milk, rich in healthy nutrients and good fats. It’s also known for stabilizing our blood sugars, making it a must-buy for health enthusiasts.
Unfortunately, there is a catch. Coconut flour goes bad over time, and it oxidizes and gets rancid faster than regular flour, like almond flour.
Because of this, coconut flour won’t last longer than all-purpose flour. Not to worry, though, as it won’t experience spoilage right away.
So, How Long Does Coconut Flour Last? Its Shelf Life
Here is its shelf life:
- Opened coconut flour lasts up to its best by date if kept in your pantry. When stored in your fridge, it lasts for 3-6 months after its best date. When in your freezer, it lasts for 6-12 months after its best by date.
- Unopened coconut flour lasts up to 3-6 months after best by date if kept in your pantry. When stored in your fridge, it lasts 6-12 months after its best date. When in your freezer, it lasts for 1-2 years after its best by date.
Take note that these dates are merely estimates based on when you store coconut flour properly. Various factors affect coconut flour’s shelf life, with the temperature being the number one factor. The lower the temperature, the slower coconut flour will deteriorate.
Signs Your Coconut Flour Has Spoiled
There are times coconut flour goes rancid quickly, or if it’s stored way past its expiration date.
If you forgot when you bought your coconut flour without a best by date to refer to, here are signs which tell your coconut flour has gone bad:
Look at your coconut flour, checking for any clumps. It’s normal for there to be a few small clumps, which you can sift. But if it’s too clumpy and looks wet or hardened, throw the flour away.
Big and/or wet clumps mean moisture exposure, indicating that your coconut flour spoiled.
Also, check if there are any signs of mold or discoloration. Coconut flour should have a light cream to ivory color. If you spot any molds or it dons a different color than when you first got it, chuck it out. (*)
If your coconut flour package looks damaged with signs of spoilage, it’s best to dispose of it to be safe.
Coconut flour would have a sweet and nutty aroma. If it smells off or even vile, it’s a clear sign to throw this bad coconut flour away.
3. Taste Test
Only taste test coconut flour when push comes to shove! Like its smell, good coconut flour should taste slightly sweet nutty. If it has a sour or slightly bitter taste, don’t try salvaging it.
Certain issues with coconut flour would be noticeable right away, such as insect infestations. Of course, if you see even just one insect or a few insect eggs, don’t pick them out and use the flour. Throw the entire package away.
We suggest purchasing a new bag of coconut flour rather than risking your health with bad coconut flour that tastes off or has insects.
Storing Coconut Flour
If you want to extend this flour’s shelf life, follow these efficient storage tips:
1. Store in Pantries
We don’t recommend keeping the flour in your pantry once you opened it, though it’s still possible. Just make sure that you transfer it into your airtight container, and it stays tightly sealed when not in use.
That said, we suggest you store opened flour in your refrigerator or the freezer. You can keep unopened flour in your pantry or kitchen cabinet, provided it’s in a dry and dark place away from heat sources.
2. Refrigerate It
Whether opened or unopened, we strongly recommend keeping your flour in your fridge. Colder temperatures reduce any risks of spoilage and oxidation, prolonging coconut flour’s shelf life.
As mentioned, the store opened flour in your airtight container once you open it to prevent it from absorbing any fridge odors, affecting its flavor. Also, it will prevent coconut flour from spoiling quicker.
3. Freeze It
If you don’t think you will use your coconut flour within a few months, we recommend placing flour in your freezer to prolong its shelf life further.
For coconut flour packaged in plastic packs and cardboard containers, it’s possible to place it in your freezer on its own. Please place it in its original container for opened coconut flour, seal it, and place the package in your clean freezer bag.
Frequently Asked Questions
There’s more to learn about coconut flour! We show you frequently asked questions from our readers:
1. Can I use expired coconut flour?
It’s possible to use coconut flour even beyond the expiry date, provided you test for its quality beforehand. Best by dates are only estimates from the manufacturer to guarantee their product maintains prime quality prior to its expiry date.
Beyond the expiration date, most food products, like coconut flour, are still safe to consume unless spoiled. That said, expect its quality to decrease.
2. Is coconut flour a grain?
It is not a grain and is made of coconuts, so it’s naturally gluten-free. Coconuts aren’t from tree nuts either, so it’s free from any tree nut allergens unless the manufacturer states. Nut tree allergens could enter coconut flour if companies used production lines to process other products that contain tree nuts.
3. Is coconut flour a good thickener?
Yes, you can use coconut flour to thicken soups, gravy, stews, and desserts. It’s made from by-products from coconut milk or cream production, which has a thickening agent.
Use coconut flour as a thickener by diluting it with water until your dish reaches the desired consistency.
Besides using it as a thickener, there are many other ways to use coconut flour, such as cookies, banana bread, pancakes, bread, and more!
Wrapping It Up
Coconut flour lasts for up to a year after opening it, but it all depends on your storage method. Keep it in a cool, dry area in your fridge, and it can stay fresh for a long time.
Hopefully, we helped you answer the question, ‘does coconut flour go bad?’ Make sure that you store your flours properly to keep them as fresh as possible for future baking.