Do tortillas go bad? Yes, tortillas go bad eventually. Store-bought tortillas last 2 days to 2 months, depending on how you store them.
Corn tortillas last longer than wheat tortillas, and homemade tortillas last shorter than packaged tortillas from the store. Their shelf life is about a week, depending on how you store them.
Tortillas are a staple of Mexican cuisine, and they are basically thin, unleavened bread made of corn or wheat flour. Corn tortillas are used for tacos, enchiladas, tostadas, tortilla chips, and chalupas, and wheat flour tortillas are used for burritos.
In this article, we will discuss whether tortillas can go bad and why, how long tortillas can be consumed after opening, and whether you should eat tortillas after their expiration date. Keep reading to learn more!
Do Tortillas Go Bad?
Tortillas are a versatile resource and necessary for many recipes. That’s why many people buy them in bulk, to always have them when needed.
However, tortillas can’t last forever, they have a shelf life that depends on whether those tortillas are made of corn or wheat flour, and whether they are storebought or homemade.
Corn tortillas stay fresh for longer, about one week in your pantry. Corn tortilla will stay fresh for 6-8 weeks if you store it in the fridge.
Whole wheat tortillas and wheat flour tortillas stay fresh for 1 week in the pantry, and 3-4 weeks in the fridge. Spinach tortillas have the same shelf life.
Homemade tortillas will last 2-3 days in the pantry before going bad, and up to one week in the fridge.
Why Tortillas Go Bad?
There are several reasons for fresh tortillas going bad after some time.
- Mold – When tortillas are stored in a place that provides good conditions for mold to develop, they will quickly become covered with mold. You will be able to notice green or blueish mold, but keep in mind that some molds might have the same color as tortillas.
- Humidity – Too much humidity makes tortillas too moist and prone to mold development. Tortillas will also start to develop an unpleasant smell, and that will be a clear sign that your tortillas have gone bad.
- Temperature – Optimal temperature for tortillas is lower than room temperature, and if you keep them at room temperature, they will either become dry and stiff, or they will become spoiled and full of mold.
- Insects – If you leave tortillas open when storing them in your pantry, they can attract insects and even mice. Not only will those pesky critters nibble on your tortillas, they will also carry harmful bacteria with them, which will spoil your tortillas.
Do Tortillas Go Bad In The Fridge?
It is important to refrigerate tortillas to keep them fresh for longer. But, no matter how you store tortillas, they will go bad eventually, even if you keep them in the fridge.
Corn tortillas will go bad after 6-8 weeks in the fridge. Whole-wheat tortillas, flour tortillas, and spinach tortillas will go bad after 3-4 weeks in the fridge. Homemade tortillas will go bad after 1 week in the fridge.
Do Tortillas Go Bad If Left Out?
To keep tortillas fresh for longer, avoid leaving them out of their original packaging for too long. The tortilla packaging protects them from drying out, but also from excessive moisture, mold, and insects.
If you threw away their original packaging, you can store leftover tortillas in an airtight bag or an airtight container. Place them in the fridge, and they will last you much longer than if you left them open.
Do Tortillas Go Bad After Opening?
Yes, as soon as you open them, tortillas will come in contact with bacteria and other contaminants from the air. That’s why unopened tortillas have a longer shelf life.
To prevent them from going bad too soon, you can wrap opened tortillas with aluminum foil, a zip lock bag, or plastic wrap. Place them in the fridge and use them within several weeks.
Do Tortillas Go Bad If Frozen?
You can also freeze tortillas when you want them to stay fresh for longer. Freezing tortillas will keep them good to use for a minimum of 2 months, but they will be just as good after several months.
Simply place them in freezer bags and in the freezer. Make sure that you don’t break frozen tortillas by placing other frozen food items over them.
Do Tortillas Go Bad Unrefrigerated?
Keeping tortillas at room temperature or higher is a bad idea because it allows mold on the tortilla’s surface to develop faster. When left unrefrigerated, tortillas will certainly go bad, and much faster than if they were stored in the fridge.
Do Tortillas Go Bad Fast?
If you keep them properly stored, they won’t go bad fast. However, if you leave them out of their packaging, in a hot and moist place, very soon they will not be edible anymore.
Also, homemade tortillas will go bad much faster than store-bought flour tortillas or corn tortillas. Keep that in mind when thinking about making huge amounts of your own tortillas.
How Long Are Tortillas Good For After The Expiration Date?
Store-bought tortillas usually have their best by date printed on the packaging. However, you can use them for 5-7 days after that date.
You shouldn’t eat expired tortillas that have long gone past their expiration date. Those tortillas are no longer good to eat, and might even show signs of mold infestation.
CAN Expired Tortillas Hurt You?
If you eat tortillas 5-7 days past the printed date, you’re probably gonna be ok, especially if those tortillas look fresh and without any signs of going bad.
But, if you eat expired tortillas that are showing signs of going bad, you might get food poisoning. We advise you to always check tortillas’ expiration date and if tortillas look and smell fresh before eating them.
How Long Do Tortillas Last Once Opened?
If you seal them tightly in their packaging and place them in the fridge, corn tortillas will last 6-8 weeks, and flour tortillas, wheat tortillas, and spinach tortillas will last 3-4 weeks.
If you fail to wrap them tightly and place them in the fridge, opened tortillas will last you only a few days before going bad.
So, do tortillas go bad? The answer is yes. No matter how you store tortillas, they will eventually go bad, due to various factors, such as mold, humidity, temperature, insects, and their expiry date.
However, when you store tortillas tightly wrapped and in the fridge, you will prolong their shelf life when compared to if you left them open and at room temperature. You can also freeze tortillas to keep them fresh for up to several months.
Also, corn tortillas will take longer to go bad than flour tortillas, as they will be fresh and good for use for 6-8 weeks, compared to 3-4 weeks with flour tortillas.