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How Old Are Your Spices?

By ashleyhackshaw |

(photo from 20 West Euclid Vintage on Etsy)

Have you checked your spice cabinet lately? If any of your spices look the one above, they are from the 1940′s and could be in a museum.   If your cabinet looks like mine did before my last move, you probably have spices in there in the back that are over 10 or 15 years old. Before you get sad about throwing out old spices, think about this: old spices won’t even spice up your food….why would you want to sprinkle your yummy recipe with dried up, unflavorful 10-year-old herbs and spices?

Spices only last about 1 to 4 years. McCormick guidelines for shelf life are:

Ground spices: 2-3 years
Whole spices: 3-4 years
Seasoning blends: 1-2 years
Herbs: 1-3 years
Extracts: 4 years


(more after the jump)

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How Old Are Your Spices?

Checking the Age of McCormick Spices

To check the age of McCormick spices, you can plug code from the bottom of the bottle into the decoder on the McCormick website.



About ashleyhackshaw



Ashley Hackshaw is the editor, designer, and DIYer behind the wildly popular Lil Blue Boo. She runs the successful Lil Blue Boo clothing line, clothing pattern line and DIY website, and she’s written The Cancer Chronicles, a detailed journey of her battle with a rare cancer Choriocarcinoma, intertwined with her creative lifestyle. Ashley also writes daily for Babble Home. Read bio and latest posts → Read Ashley's latest posts →

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3 thoughts on “How Old Are Your Spices?

  1. Jen says:

    Good to know! Thanks for the info!

  2. Karen says:

    Why do they make the packages so big if the shelf life is that short?

  3. Adriana Phillips says:

    I go through so much seasoning in a year. I don’t think I have eve kept any thing for more then 3 years. Maybe my pumpkin pie seasonings, but that would be the only thing.

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