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How Long Do Little Debbie Snacks Last After Expiration Date

With temperatures soaring across the country, now is the time any rational person would dig into their freezer to evaluate their ice cream inventory. While many of us enjoy things year-round (especially during a year that didn’t give us much else to do), there are definitely some people out there who see ice cream more as a summer treat.

So if you find yourself scroungeing up that freezer-burnt pint of Ben & Jerry’s, you might be asking yourself an important question: Can ice cream really go bad? The answer may seem counterintuitive, but hopefully, eventually, you can see the rationale behind playing (relatively) safe when it comes to ice cream expiration dates.


Is ice cream bad for you?

Yes, ice cream can go bad. Ice cream, despite living in the freezer, a place where seemingly no food can ever go bad, has a limited shelf life. It’s totally fair if it’s never occurred to you to look before, but your favorite dairy-based dessert has an expiration date.

Supposedly, the shelf life of ice cream is up to two months for an unopened tub, after which you don’t get it at its best. Once you open the ice cream, the clock starts ticking and you have about a month or two to polish it without running into problems.

With that in mind, it’s worth mentioning that “best before” dates can tend to be a little conservative. Some say you can truly eat the ice cream unopened for up to two to three months past the print date, then do with that information what you will.

Ice cream picks different flavor - strawberry, chocolate, creamy in clear glass ice cream bowl with pink color modern interior on white wooden table.
AlinaYudina/Getty Images


How does ice cream go bad in the freezer?

You’d think the freezer was some kind of fountain of youth that would keep food edible forever, right? Well, unlike science fiction, your freezer doesn’t put your foods in cryostasis. The freezer can slow down the growth of bacteria, but it doesn’t stop it completely.

For non-vegan, lactose-tolerant ice cream fans, it’s worth mentioning that there’s a whole host of frozen dairy in your typical ice cream, ranging from condensed milk to cream and even butterfat. There may also be eggs.

While all of that is ultimately pasteurized and frozen before going to the store, at the end of the day you’re still working with dairy products, and even storing your ice cream in a way that would give rise to severe freezer burn can’t stop the bacteria from spreading. satisfy their drive to promulgate.

If it helps clear things up, think of it this way: Ice cream is basically just like frozen milk that lasts a little longer, at least when it comes to their shelf life. After all, it’s not good cheese you’re trying to age.


How to know if your ice cream has gone bad

To figure out if your ice cream is officially past its prime, take a closer look. Usually, ice chips on top of the lid and under the ice cream are the surest sign of trouble. Sure, you can scrape them off and move on, but that’s a sign you’re about to encounter a weird frozen soup mix.

While this is important to keep in mind, there doesn’t seem to be much information out there about an association between expired ice cream and severe bouts of foodborne illness, but even a mild case of interacting with the wrong bacteria can lead to an experience unpleasant as far as your digestive system is concerned.


How to make your ice cream last longer

The best way to store ice cream is to store it in a tightly closed container inside a freezer set to 0 degrees F (-18 degrees C). If you really want to go all out, you can place plastic wrap over the ice cream — inside the container — to create a texture-retaining seal that slows the development of ice crystals. This will help you enjoy less “ice” and more “cream”.

Aside from that, take common-sense precautions like not leaving ice cream out of the fridge longer than necessary, both when you take it home and when you serve it. In addition to the more aggressive plastic wrap move, just making sure the lid is tight will also help.

So while you might want it to stay forever, ice cream is just as deadly as the rest of us. Of course, the simplest solution to your problems is to eat all the ice cream that worries you as quickly as possible, whether that means hitting the town with a whole pint by yourself or throwing an impromptu ice cream social to make sure everything gets eaten. We all have our part to play when it comes to reducing food waste, and eating ice cream before it goes bad ranks among the easiest ways to help solve this systemic problem. Do your part.

Related:

  • 18 fun ways to use up a tub of store-bought vanilla ice cream
  • We tried 16 mint chocolate chip ice creams and these were our favorites
  • What is the difference between ice cream and ice cream?


With temperatures soaring across the country, now is the time any rational person would dig into their freezer to evaluate their ice cream inventory. While many of us enjoy things year-round (especially during a year that didn’t give us much else to do), there are definitely some people out there who see ice cream more as a summer treat.

So if you find yourself scroungeing up that freezer-burnt pint of Ben & Jerry’s, you might be asking yourself an important question: Can ice cream really go bad? The answer may seem counterintuitive, but hopefully, eventually, you can see the rationale behind playing (relatively) safe when it comes to ice cream expiration dates.


Is ice cream bad for you?

Yes, ice cream can go bad. Ice cream, despite living in the freezer, a place where seemingly no food can ever go bad, has a limited shelf life. It’s totally fair if it’s never occurred to you to look before, but your favorite dairy-based dessert has an expiration date.

Supposedly, the shelf life of ice cream is up to two months for an unopened tub, after which you don’t get it at its best. Once you open the ice cream, the clock starts ticking and you have about a month or two to polish it without running into problems.

With that in mind, it’s worth mentioning that “best before” dates can tend to be a little conservative. Some say you can truly eat the ice cream unopened for up to two to three months past the print date, then do with that information what you will.

Ice cream picks different flavor - strawberry, chocolate, creamy in clear glass ice cream bowl with pink color modern interior on white wooden table.
AlinaYudina/Getty Images


How does ice cream go bad in the freezer?

You’d think the freezer was some kind of fountain of youth that would keep food edible forever, right? Well, unlike science fiction, your freezer doesn’t put your foods in cryostasis. The freezer can slow down the growth of bacteria, but it doesn’t stop it completely.

For non-vegan, lactose-tolerant ice cream fans, it’s worth mentioning that there’s a whole host of frozen dairy in your typical ice cream, ranging from condensed milk to cream and even butterfat. There may also be eggs.

While all of that is ultimately pasteurized and frozen before going to the store, at the end of the day you’re still working with dairy products, and even storing your ice cream in a way that would give rise to severe freezer burn can’t stop the bacteria from spreading. satisfy their drive to promulgate.

If it helps clear things up, think of it this way: Ice cream is basically just like frozen milk that lasts a little longer, at least when it comes to their shelf life. After all, it’s not good cheese you’re trying to age.


How to know if your ice cream has gone bad

To figure out if your ice cream is officially past its prime, take a closer look. Usually, ice chips on top of the lid and under the ice cream are the surest sign of trouble. Sure, you can scrape them off and move on, but that’s a sign you’re about to encounter a weird frozen soup mix.

While this is important to keep in mind, there doesn’t seem to be much information out there about an association between expired ice cream and severe bouts of foodborne illness, but even a mild case of interacting with the wrong bacteria can lead to an experience unpleasant as far as your digestive system is concerned.


How to make your ice cream last longer

The best way to store ice cream is to store it in a tightly closed container inside a freezer set to 0 degrees F (-18 degrees C). If you really want to go all out, you can place plastic wrap over the ice cream — inside the container — to create a texture-retaining seal that slows the development of ice crystals. This will help you enjoy less “ice” and more “cream”.

Aside from that, take common-sense precautions like not leaving ice cream out of the fridge longer than necessary, both when you take it home and when you serve it. In addition to the more aggressive plastic wrap move, just making sure the lid is tight will also help.

So while you might want it to stay forever, ice cream is just as deadly as the rest of us. Of course, the simplest solution to your problems is to eat all the ice cream that worries you as quickly as possible, whether that means hitting the town with a whole pint by yourself or throwing an impromptu ice cream social to make sure everything gets eaten. We all have our part to play when it comes to reducing food waste, and eating ice cream before it goes bad ranks among the easiest ways to help solve this systemic problem. Do your part.

Related:

  • 18 fun ways to use up a tub of store-bought vanilla ice cream
  • We tried 16 mint chocolate chip ice creams and these were our favorites
  • What is the difference between ice cream and ice cream?


Video about How Long Do Little Debbie Snacks Last After Expiration Date

Can you eat expired Little Debbie cakes?

How Long Cake • Can you eat expired Little Debbie cakes?

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