How Long Does Quinoa Last In The Fridge?

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How Long does Quinoa Last in the Fridge

One of the best storage methods for quinoa is to keep it in the fridge. How long does quinoa last in the fridge depends on if it is stored properly, if it is just plain cooked quinoa or if it is combined with other ingredients.

quinoa in red dish clos up

In the details to follow we will take a deep dive into this topic and outline the best storage practices for both uncooked and cooked quinoa. 

What is Quinoa?

Quinoa is a type of food that is often thought to be a part of the green family, however, it is actually a seed. Quinoa has been used and enjoyed around the world for a while, however, it is recently gained popularity in the United States because of its health benefits. This seed is often used as a rice substitute and can also be used in a variety of ways. 

This little seed can be stored for a while, in the pantry, still raw, and after it has been cooked, can be made into many delicious dishes, and stored in the fridge or freezer.

Let’s look at the different storage methods for raw or dried quinoa and cooked quinoa. 

Storage Methods

How to Store Dried Quinoa

Quinoa has a long shelf life and can be stored in a dark dry location for a long time. This nifty little seed is best when it is stored in its original packaging or transferred to an airtight container once opened.

Storing quinoa in an airtight container, in places such as your cupboard or pantry where the temperature is usually the same, and it’s dark and dry is an ideal climate for the best storage. 

quinoa with wooden spoon

How to Store Cooked Quinoa

Cooked quinoa on the other hand should be stored at room temperature for a short amount of time, or in the fridge or freezer after that.

Room temperature. Cooked quinoa can be left at room temperature for no more than two hours when the room temperature is between 40°F and 90°F. If the room temperature is above 90°F you should not allow quinoa sit out for more than one hour. 

Refrigerator. Cooked quinoa that has cooled can be transferred to an airtight container and placed in the refrigerator at 40°F or below for up to seven days.

Keep in mind that the time quinoa is estimated to last in the fridge may vary depending upon how the cooked quinoa is used. Typically cooked quinoa no matter how it is used can last between three and seven days in the fridge. 

Freezer. Although quinoa can last for a very long time in the freezer, we recommend for the best results you place your cooled cooked quinoa into an airtight container or seal it in a plastic freezer bag.

Label and date it, then place your cooked quinoa into the freezer at 0°F or below for 3 to 6 months. Quinoa will keep best in the freezer when it is not frozen for more than 3 to 6 months. After that time the taste and texture of your cooked quinoa may change. 

How Long is Cooked Quinoa Good For

How long does cooked quinoa last?

Cooked quinoa can sit out at room temperature for approximately two hours before going bad. After that your cooked quinoa should be refrigerated.

When stored in an airtight container, in the fridge, your cooked quinoa will likely last between 3 to 7 days in the fridge depending upon how it is incorporated into your dish. If it is just plain cooked quinoa, it will likely last the full seven days in the fridge. 

raw quinoa in red mini dutch oven

How long does quinoa last in fridge?

Typically, it is only cooked quinoa that is stored in your fridge. Cooked quinoa can last between three and seven days when stored in an airtight container, or sealed in a plastic storage bag and placed in the refrigerator at 40°F or below. 

Please note that if you are refrigerating only cooked quinoa, it will likely last the full seven days in the fridge. However, if your quinoa has been made into another recipe or combined with other food it will likely last fewer days, typically between three and four days in the fridge. 

You can also refrigerate opened packages of uncooked quinoa if desired. To do this transfer your raw quinoa to an airtight container, then place it into your fridge. Your uncooked quinoa will likely last between two and three years when stored in an airtight container and stored in your fridge.

Can you freeze quinoa?

Yes, you can freeze cooked quinoa for later. Freezing your cooked quinoa is a great way to make it last longer than a few days. 

Freezing Quinoa

How to Freeze Cooked Quinoa

To freeze cooked quinoa you are first going to want to allow it to cool then transfer it to an airtight container or seal it in a plastic freezer bag. Be sure to label and date your package before placing it in the freezer. Then place your container with cooked quinoa into the freezer at 0°F or below for 3 to 6 months. 

How to Freeze Uncooked Quinoa

You can also freeze uncooked quinoa if desired. Is not typically necessary because uncooked quinoa has a long shelf life in general, you can freeze raw quinoa in an airtight container or plastic freezer bag for up to 12 months. 

How Long Does Dry Quinoa Last?

Typically, raw dry quinoa that is sealed in an airtight container, and stored in a dark, dry location, that has a stable temperature will likely last between two and three years.

To determine how long it’s good, it’s always wise to consult the best by date on your packaging as you can determine how long it has been sitting on the shelf before you purchased it. 

For best results, consult the best by date, then determine how long it’s good. It’s always wise to consult the best by date on your packaging as you can determine how long it has been sitting on the shelf before you purchased it.

To have the best quinoa that lasts a long time, use the best by date on your packaging, and store it properly to maximize shelf life. 

Does Quinoa Go Bad

How do you know if quinoa has spoiled?

Yes, quinoa does go bad, so it is important to know how you can determine if the quinoa has spoiled. It can be very difficult to determine if cooked quinoa has spoiled.

Typically, your quinoa has to be cooked in order to tell if it is good or has gone bad. Below are some signs you can use to determine if you are quinoa that has been cooked is good to eat or has gone bad and should be thrown away. 

Please note that the following signs can be useful to determine if quinoa has spoiled. 

quinoa in a mini dutch oven being pored

Signs that Quinoa has Spoiled

Smell. Smell your quinoa. Typical quinoa has a slightly nutty flavor and smell to it. If it smells sour at all this is a sign that your quinoa has spoiled.

Runny. Another way you can tell your quinoa has spoiled is to look at the texture of your quinoa. If it is excessively runny, this is another sign it has spoiled. 

Discolored. You can also examine your quinoa to see if there is any discoloration in your quinoa seeds. If there is any kind of odd colors, which should not be there, throw your quinoa away. 

Mold. The final sign you could use to determine if your quinoa has gone bad is to examine your quinoa whether raw or cooked for signs of mold. If there is any mold growing on your seeds, they need to be thrown away. 

How to Reheat Quinoa

Microwave. One of the fastest and easiest ways to reheat quinoa is in the microwave. To do this you will want to transfer the cooked quinoa to a microwave-safe bowl and fluff it with a fork.

Sprinkle a little bit of water in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp paper towel and microwave for a minute or two until your quinoa is warmed. 

In A Pan. You can also reheat quinoa in a pan on your stovetop. To reheat quinoa in a pan on your stovetop again by placing your pan over medium heat.

Add a little bit of water, then add your quinoa. Stir continually, and cook over medium-low heat until your quinoa is warmed all the way through. Then remove and serve.  

In The Oven. You can also reheat your quinoa in the oven if you wish. To do this, transfer your quinoa to an oven-safe dish and fluff with a fork.

Add a little bit of water to your quinoa to keep it moist. Cover your baking dish and place your dish into the oven, at 350°F. Bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until your quinoa is warm. 

What to do with Leftover Quinoa

There are so many different things you can do with leftover quinoa if desired. One of our favorite ways to enjoy quinoa is to mix in vegetables and add a sauce. Here’s one of our favorite recipes.

Cook your quinoa and allow it to cool. Then slice up a small zucchini and quarter the pieces. Cut a tomato into small bite-sized pieces and cube your favorite cheese. Combine beans with your cooked and cooled quinoa, season with salt and pepper if desired, then add Italian dressing to your mixture and stir to combine. Serve this delicious quinoa salad chilled. 

raw quinoa in a dish

FAQs

What is the shelf life of quinoa?

The average shelf life of quinoa that is properly stored in an airtight container in a dark, dry, moderate climate is likely to last between two and three years for raw uncooked quinoa. 

Does quinoa expire?

Yes, quinoa does expire. Although quinoa has a long shelf life, it can go bad and does have an expiration date. 

Can you eat quinoa raw?

No, you should not eat raw quinoa as it could cause problems for your health and well-being. 

How Long is Quinoa Good for in the Fridge

When stored properly in an airtight container or sealed in a plastic storage bag, cooked quinoa will likely last between three and seven days in the fridge at 40°F or below. The time it will last in the fridge may depend upon if your quinoa is just plain cooked quinoa or if it is mixed with other foods. 

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