Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
Can you use canned food such as soups and vegetables past their use by date and if so how far past can you use them. How long does home canned fruits keep their nutional value?
Rate This FAQ
Shelf life dates are created for two reasons (a) safety and (b) quality. As long as the cans are sealed and have not been subjected to high heat or freezing, they will remain commercially sterile and safe. Quality is a different story. The quality shelf life is set by the manufacturer. It is usually the date when the food no longer tastes as good as the original. After the shelf life date certain foods will still retain quality and others will not. You will have to sample some to find out. After opening visually check the food and smell the contents. If anything looks out of the ordinary, discard it. I opened a five year old can of mushrooms packed in water and they smelled awful. It was a chemical degradation of the mushroom. Similarly, I opened a six year old can of pears in lite brine. They were exceptional. Most canned foods will retain all of their nutritional value (calories, protein, minerals), except vitamins. Most likely all of the vitamins degraded and will not offer nutritional benefit. Cooperative Extension recommends that you store canned goods for less than five years.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- How much food should I store?
- I just inherited a pressure canner. It's pretty well used and I'm a little nervous about using it. I've never done pressure canning before. Is there a place where I can get it checked out for safety, and how do I learn how to use it.
- Can I get my pressure cooker tested? When and where? Thanks for a great service! jh
- Can powdered milk have a problem with mold?
- I grew up eating green beans which were pressure-canned at home. When my mother heated them for a meal, she brought them to a boil then removed the lid and let them boil for at least a minute with the lid off. She said this was necessary to be safe. Is it necessary or was that just something passed down from before pressure canning was available?
- What protein content should my stored wheat have?
- I just prepared pesto today containing basil, pine nuts, garlic, italian cheeses, and lemon juice, pretty much in that order from largest quantity to smallest. For how long could I keep this in my freezer before the oil will go rancid or the pesto will otherwise be inedible. Seems to me that I kept some a while back for 6 months, and after eating it I got sick, though this could be coincidental.
- I would like to find a recipe for canning apple pie filling that is safe for my elevation. I have looked through your web sites to no avail. Please direct me.