How Long Do Tortillas Last? Everything You Need To Know
Tortillas dishes are very easy to make, and they can be prepared in different ways, making them a favorite among many. With the various flavor variations of tortillas available these days, it can be difficult to determine how you are supposed to treat them differently from your typical purchase.
But before we go further, let us first describe what tortillas are.
So, what are tortillas?
Tortillas are famous Mexican cuisine that comprises of a thin piece of unleavened bread. The bread is made of finely ground wheat or corn flour, salt, and water. They are typically white or yellow.
Traditionally, tortillas are made of maize corn. Maize corn is grounded and cooked. The grounded maize corn is kneaded to form a dough. The dough then is pressed and flattened to make a flat patty.
Tortillas are typically used in quesadillas, tacos, tostadas, enchiladas, chalupas, and tortillas among others. Corn tortillas are often cooked with grilled meat or used to compliment stews. On the other hand, wheat tortillas are typically associated with burritos and quesadillas.
You can even turn corn tortillas into chips through deep frying them and sprinkling them with salt. Then, with your favorite dip, you can heartily enjoy your delicious snack.
Tortillas Shelf Life – How Long Do They Last?
Now that we know what tortillas are let us determine their shelf life. So, how long do they last?
Contrary to popular belief, like any other food, tortillas too can go bad. However, if you store them carefully and correctly, they will last longer.
There are various factors that can affect the shelf life of tortillas, including the type of tortillas that you have, the storage place, and whether you have opened your tortillas or not.
Unopened flour tortillas, spinach tortillas, and whole wheat tortillas can last for about a week when stored on the countertop, about three to four months in the fridge, and about six to eight months in the freezer. Corn tortillas, on the other hand, when unopened can last for about seven to 10 days on the countertop, six to eight days when stored inside the refrigerator, and six to eight months when stored in the freezer.
Lastly, homemade tortillas can last for about two to three days when stored on the countertop, five to seven days when stored in the refrigerator, and six to eight months when stored in the freezer.
How to Determine if the Tortillas Have Already Gone Bad?
Since tortillas are the type of snacks that you store in the fridge for the next time you feel like snacking on them, you can easily forget that they have an expiration date, too. There are times when we find it difficult to distinguish a rotten tortilla from a perfectly eatable one.
To determine if the tortillas have already gone bad, you should rely on your sense when you make such decisions. If your tortillas look bad or when it already smells bad, you should automatically discard it and get a new and fresh one.
Different types of tortillas have different shelf lives, as this would depend on the preservatives incorporated in commercially prepared tortillas.
As tortillas get old, they often begin to stiffen and crunch up. However, this visible sign does not necessarily indicate that you need to discard them. That said, if your tortillas have become stiff and crunch up a bit, they are no longer as fresh as they were a couple of days ago.
However, if you notice that they start to develop moldy spots, you should not second guess yourself and just through them out and get yourself a new one. Also, as tortillas go bad, you will notice that they will change in texture and color.
Storing them the Right Way – How Can You Store Tortillas Properly?
If you want to keep your tortillas fresh for a longer time, you should learn how you can store them properly.
You should store tortillas in a cool, dry place to ensure that they are not exposed to any form of condensation or water droplets. Also, you have to make sure that your storage place is not susceptible to temperature changes. If your tortillas are exposed to any form of moisture, it can grow bad and may develop mold.
Tortillas are often stored in three familiar places, which are the pantry, countertop, in the fridge, and in the freezer. If you store them in the freezer, while this may be ideal, you should not open your freezer too often, as this would cause heat to enter, causing them to spoil.
You should store your tortillas using an airtight container to make sure that air will not enter the container, making your tortillas stale and spoiled. You also have the option to use airtight ziplock bags to prevent your tortillas from hardening.
The Bottom Line
Like any other food, tortillas too can go bad, especially if they are not stored properly. Eating spoiled tortillas should be avoided, as they can cause food poisoning and harm your health.
While you may be able to prolong their shelf life, it is still important to note the type of tortillas that you have and your storage area, as these factors affect the shelf life of your tortillas. Tortillas can remain fresh for a long time if stored properly.
The ideal place where you can store tortillas in the freezer. However, you just have to make sure that you do not open your freezer often as this will allow heat to enter which will spoil your tortillas.
You should rely on your senses to determine if your tortillas are eatable. If the tortillas show apparent signs of being rotten like molds and foul smelling odor, you should refrain from eating them and throw them out. If you are in doubt, it is best just to throw them out and get yourself a new pack to avoid any possibility of food poising.