You’ve discovered an old pack of shelled almonds in the pantry and aren’t sure if they’re still edible. Is it possible for almonds to spoil? The nuts are past their sell-by date, but they appear to be in good condition. You’d probably eat them right away if the date weren’t there, but now you’re hesitant. That’s when learning how to distinguish between excellent and bad almonds comes in helpful. Continue reading to learn about deterioration indications, shelf life, and suitable storage techniques. After reading this article, you should know what to do with the old pack. Also, how should almonds be handled in the future?
Almonds Nutrition Facts
How To Tell If Almond Is Bad?
- insect infestation (possible if you have insect issues in your pantry)
- dried out, discolored kernels
You should get rid of those nuts if either of them is present.
If you’re unsure, let me explain how to differentiate excellent almonds from rancid almonds. When it comes to rotting almonds, there are two things to keep an eye out for:
- The nuts are rotten if they smell bitter, sour, or like paint, and they aren’t if they have a mild nuttiness to them.
- If the nuts have a harsh or bitter flavor, their fats have gone rancid, and you should toss them.
Remember that altered taste is a more common indicator, so even if your almonds smell fine, you’re still not out of the woods. Before using them in a cake, salad, or giving a handful to your kids as a snack, you should still take and consume a couple. The good news is that almonds survive a long time (more on that in the next section), so unless you store them improperly, they should be fine for months after their expiration date. To summarise, eat one or two almonds if they look and smell good. If the taste is acceptable, you have perfectly edible nuts on your hands.
How Long Do Almonds Last?
The shelf life estimates you’ll read online aren’t uniform when it comes to almonds, but they’re all quite close. According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), you can store:
- 20 months at 0°C (32°F), 16 months at ten °C (50°F), and eight months at 20°C (68°F) in-shell almonds
- Almonds that have been shelled will last about half as long.
I always buy shelled almonds and anticipate six months in the pantry, 12 months in the fridge, and 18 months in the freezer. And that suits my needs well. If you buy pre-packaged almonds, the label will almost certainly have a date on it. Please remember that this date is simply an estimate, and the almonds should keep in good condition for much longer. As I mentioned initially, even very old almonds are frequently edible. Let’s speak about how to maintain your almonds in the most satisfactory possible condition for as long as feasible.
How To Store Almonds?
We have the same three alternatives for storing almonds for peanuts or pistachios: the freezer, the refrigerator, and the pantry. And, as you may be aware, the colder the environment, the longer the nuts will last.
If you’ve ever stored almonds at room temperature and they’ve gone rancid, cold storage is the way to go because it prevents lipid oxidation (fat rancidity) (USDA). The pantry or kitchen is usually adequate storage facilities for most of us who don’t keep the almonds for an extended period. The kernels of in-shell almonds don’t require much protection because the shells provide it.
All you need are some containers or freezer bags, as well as a well-ventilated bag (for room-temperature storage) (for cold storage). Because shelled almonds lack the protective coating, you must intervene. It would help to store them in an airtight container or resealable bag. T
his treatment prevents oxidation and eliminates smells, which almonds can absorb due to their high-fat content (USDA). If you’re going to store your items at room temperature, make sure they’re dry, dark, and away from any heat sources. A cupboard in the pantry or kitchen (but not near the stove) should suffice.
In a Nutshell
- Almonds go rancid, get moldy, or dry out and change color. If either is present, discard them.
- Almonds last longer than most other nuts, so your old pack might still be good enough to eat.
- Cold storage is best for long-term storage. A dark cabinet in the pantry or kitchen works alright if you need to store almonds for a couple of months.
Health Benefits Of Almonds
Here are some health benefits of almonds:
Almonds Are Loaded With Antioxidants
Almonds have a lot of antioxidants in them. Antioxidants aid in the prevention of oxidative stress, which damages molecules in your cells and contributes to inflammation, aging, and diseases such as cancer. Almonds’ potent antioxidants are contained mainly in the brown layer of the skin. As a result, blanched almonds (those that have had their peel removed) are not the healthiest option. Over four weeks, a scientific experiment in 60 male smokers revealed that eating around 3 ounces (84 grams) of almonds per day lowered oxidative stress indicators by 23–34 percent. These findings back up a previous study demonstrating that consuming almonds with main meals lowered several oxidative damage markers.
Almonds Are High in Vitamin E
Vitamin E belongs to the fat-soluble antioxidant class, and these antioxidants accumulate in your body’s cell membranes, protecting your cells from oxidative damage. Almonds are one of the most significant sources of vitamin E globally, with just one ounce supplying 37% of the RDI. In several studies, a higher vitamin E intake has been related to a lower risk of heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Almonds Can Assist With Blood Sugar Control
Nuts are high in healthful fats, protein, and fiber but low in carbohydrates, making them an excellent alternative for people with diabetes. Another advantage of almonds is their high magnesium content. Magnesium is a mineral that plays a role in over 300 biological functions, including blood sugar regulation. Magnesium’s current RDI is 310–420 mg. 2 ounces of almonds supply nearly half of that – 150 milligrams of this essential mineral. Surprisingly, 25–38 percent of persons with type 2 diabetes are magnesium deficient, and correction of this deficit decreases blood sugar levels and increases insulin action considerably. Magnesium supplementation also reduces insulin resistance in people who do not have diabetes.
Almonds Can Lower Cholesterol Levels
High blood levels of LDL lipoproteins, generally known as “bad” cholesterol, are a known risk factor for heart disease. LDL levels can be influenced significantly by your diet. Almonds have been demonstrated in several trials to decrease LDL cholesterol effectively. A diet containing 20% of calories from almonds decreased LDL cholesterol levels by an average of 12.4 mg/dL in 65 adults with prediabetes over 16 weeks. According to another study, eating 1.5 ounces (42 grams) of almonds per day reduced LDL cholesterol by 5.3 mg/dL while preserving “good” HDL cholesterol levels. Participants also saw a reduction in abdominal fat.
Almonds Prevent Harmful Oxidation of LDL Cholesterol
Almonds do more than only lower your blood LDL levels, they also protect LDL from oxidation, an essential stage in the progression of heart disease. In test tubes and animal tests, almond skin is high in polyphenol antioxidants, protecting cholesterol from oxidizing. When paired with other antioxidants like vitamin E, the effect may be more substantial. According to one human study, eating almonds for a month reduced oxidized LDL cholesterol levels by 14%. Over time, this should result in a lower risk of heart disease.
Almonds May Be Effective For Weight Loss
Nuts include several nutrients that are difficult for your body to break down and digest, and your body does not absorb about 10–15 percent of the calories in nuts. Furthermore, some studies suggest that consuming nuts can marginally increase metabolism. Nuts are a terrific complement to an effective weight loss diet because of their satiating capabilities, backed by solid human research. In one study, a low-calorie diet including 3 ounces (84 grams) of almonds resulted in a 62 percent increase in weight loss compared to a diet high in complex carbs.
Glycoside amygdalin is a toxin found in bitter almonds. When this toxin is consumed, it breaks down into various chemicals, including hydrogen cyanide, a poisonous substance that can kill you. Consuming rancid or stale nuts like almonds, walnuts, or cashews in tiny amounts may not make you sick right away. Still, it’s typically not a good idea because it might impede digestion or have other long-term adverse effects on your body.