The Life of a Spice

by Landis Carey on October 10, 2011


It was over the weekend while cooking and baking up a storm that I realized mid-recipe our spice cabinet is a little out of date and missing essentials like cinnamon and coriander.

I haven’t always agreed that everything needs to be rotated out every year, so I searched and found a little helpful information about the life of a spice that will help keep your cabinet up-to-date.

  • Ground Spices: 2 to 3 years
  • Herbs: 1 to 3 years
  • Seasoning Blends: 1 to 2 years
  • Whole Spices: 4 years
  • Seeds: 4 years with the exception of poppy and sesame which last 2 years
  • Extracts: 4 years
It makes me curious since, if whole spices last 4 years, shouldn’t we all purchase those and grind our own? Or is that too complicated? I guess it depends on how much you cook and use what you have. Tell me, friends, how do you keep your spice cabinet up-to-date?

(Image via Pinterest)

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Emily October 11, 2011 at 10:18 am

hmmm, based on these guidelines I need to do some cleaning out – and then get more creative with my cooking so that I can use them more frequently!


Landis Carey October 11, 2011 at 12:35 pm

That’s pretty much what I thought when I started poking around for the information! And maybe in the future I’ll rethink purchasing that one spice for that obscure recipe before I look into substitutions.


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