How to Store Spices Long-Term

Learn how to store spices long-term for maximum freshness! Expert tips await. Dive in now for a flavorful future!

Where Should Spices Be Stored? 

To maintain fresh spice, store them in a cool, dark place away from heat and light. A pantry or cupboard is ideal. Avoid storing near the stove or in direct sunlight. Proper storage ensures long-lasting flavor. Want more tips? Keep reading!

Spices in jars

How to Store Spices Long-Term

When it comes to storing spices long term, the approach differs for fresh and dried spices.

For fresh spices like herbs, wash and pat them dry. Then, chop and freeze them in an ice cube tray filled with olive oil. This method preserves their flavor and makes them easy to use in cooking.

On the other hand, dried spices should be kept in airtight containers in a cool, dark place. Remember, heat, light, and moisture are enemies of dried spices. Proper storage ensures their longevity and potency.

Long-Term Storage Spices to Get

Understanding how to preserve spices is crucial, especially when considering which ones to buy for long-term storage. Here are some spices that store well:


Allspice retains its flavor well when stored whole. Grind it as needed for the freshest taste.


Cinnamon sticks can last for years when stored correctly. They can be ground into powder when needed.



Whole cloves have a long shelf life. They can be ground as needed to maintain their robust and sweet flavor.


Cumin seeds can be stored long-term and ground as needed. This spice is a staple in many cuisines.


Whole peppercorns can last indefinitely when stored properly. Freshly ground pepper always tastes better than pre-ground.


Turmeric powder can last long, but it’s best to buy small amounts as its flavor can diminish over time.

Remember, the key to preserving spices is proper storage. Keep them in a cool, dark place in airtight containers for the best results.


Can Spices Be Stored in Mylar Bags?

Yes, spices with a long shelf life can indeed be stored in Mylar bags. These bags are excellent for long-term storage as they are durable, light-resistant, and provide a sound barrier against moisture and oxygen, which can degrade spices over time. 

However, it’s crucial to ensure the spices are dehydrated before storing them to prevent mold growth. Also, remember to seal the bags properly and keep them in a cool, dark place for optimal results.

However, when considering how long will spices last in mylar bags, it’s important to note that these bags can significantly extend their shelf life. Mylar bags, when sealed properly, can protect spices from light, moisture, and oxygen, which are the main factors that degrade spices. 

Can You Freeze Spices?

Yes, you can indeed freeze spices. Freezing can help preserve the flavor of certain spices, especially those that are volatile or have high oil content. It’s an excellent method for storing spices long-term without losing their potency. 

However, remember to keep them in containers that are airtight or freezer bags to prevent freezer burn and absorption of other flavors. Also, it’s best to freeze them in small portions for easy use.

Can Spices be Stored Next to the Stove?

No, when considering how to keep spices fresh, storing them next to the stove is not advisable. The stove heat can degrade the spices’ quality, causing them to lose their flavor and potency faster. 

Instead, store your spices in a cool, dark place like a pantry or a cupboard. This will help maintain their freshness and extend their shelf life. Remember, proper storage is vital to enjoying the full flavor of your spices for a longer time.

Should Spices be Refrigerated?

Generally, when answering the question, ‘Where should spices be stored?’, the refrigerator is not the best option for most spices. Cold temperatures can cause condensation, leading to moisture in the spice containers, which can degrade the quality of the spices. 

However, some spices, like certain chili powders and paprika, can benefit from refrigeration to maintain their color and potency. As a rule, store spices in a cool, dark, and dry place for optimal freshness.

Why Should Spices Be Stored Properly?

Understanding how do you store herbs and spices properly is crucial because improper storage can lead to loss of flavor, color, and aroma. Spices and herbs are the soul of many dishes, and their freshness can significantly affect your cooking. 

Moreover, spices are often expensive, so proper storage ensures you get the most out of your investment. Lastly, some spices can harbor bacteria if not stored correctly, so proper storage is also a matter of food safety.

Can Spices Go Bad?

Yes, spices can go bad over time. While spices may not spoil in the traditional sense, they can lose their flavor and potency over time. Therefore, it’s best to use them within one-three years for optimal freshness.

Can I Eat Expired Spices?

Yes, you can eat expired spices, but understanding how to store spices long-term can help maintain their quality. While spices don’t spoil like fresh food, they lose their flavor and potency over time. 

Therefore, using expired spices won’t make you sick, but it may affect the taste of your dishes. Always check for changes in color, smell, and texture, as these can indicate a significant loss of quality. For the best flavor, replace your spices regularly.

How Long Are Spices Good for Once Opened?

Once opened, a fresh spice typically retains its best flavor for about a year. Ground spices can last between six months to a year, while whole spices can stay fresh for up to two years. However, these are just general guidelines. The shelf life can vary based on the specific herb and how it’s stored.

Our Tips and Tricks for Storing Spices

When it comes to how to store herbs long-term, here are our top tips and tricks:

  1. Store in a Cool, Dark Place: Heat, light, and moisture can degrade the quality of herbs. A pantry or cupboard away from the stove and sunlight is ideal.
  2. Use Airtight Containers: Oxygen can cause herbs to lose their flavor. Store them in sealable containers to keep them fresh.
  3. Buy Whole Spices: Whole spices last longer than ground ones. Grind them as needed for the freshest flavor.
  4. Freeze Fresh Herbs: If you’re wondering how to store dried herbs long-term, consider freezing. Dice them, place them in ice cube trays with olive oil, and freeze.
  5. Label and Date: Always label your containers with the herb’s name and the purchase date. This helps you keep track of their freshness.

The Bottom Line

In conclusion, understanding how to store spices long-term is essential for any home cook or professional chef. The correct storage not only prolongs the shelf life of your spices but also ensures they retain their flavor, color, and aroma, enhancing your culinary creations. Remember, the key factors to consider are temperature, light, and moisture. 

By following the tips and tricks we’ve shared, you can enjoy the full flavor of your spices for a longer time. Don’t let your spices lose their spark! Start implementing these storage strategies today for a more flavorful tomorrow.