Does Tahini Go Bad? Know about Shelf Life & Storing

Does Tahini Go Bad

Homemade hummus with pita sounds delicious, and you’re planning to serve it to the guests. Luckily you found the main ingredient, tahini, for your hummus, but it has been sitting in your pantry for too long. So, you think, “Does tahini go bad? How long does tahini sauce last?”

You must know if expired tahini is good, so your guests stay healthy. Usually, tahini can last for a couple of months, even after its expiry date on the package.

However, you must check for spoilage before adding it to anything. Let us help you get all the answers related to tahini so you can enjoy this delicious condiment safely.

What is the Shelf Life of Tahini?

The shelf life of tahini depends on the production, whether it’s homemade or store-bought. Usually, due to the absence of preservatives, homemade tahini won’t keep as long as store-bought varieties.

If you have made some, use it within 2 to 3 days if kept in the pantry and at most a week if in the refrigerator.

However, store-bought tahini can last you way longer, about 8 to 12 months in the pantry and 12 to 16 months in the refrigerator.

How to Tell If Tahini Has Gone Bad?

If your tahini has gone bad, you can easily tell if you know the signs of spoilage. Here are all the signs to help you identify spoiled tahini.

1. Mold Growth

You will not usually see any molds in tahini because of the oil in it. However, molds can still form around the oil, contaminating the whole jar. So, if you find any molding in tahini, throw it out!

2. Tastes Weird

We know eating spoiled tahini isn’t a good idea, but a little taste will give you an idea if it’s rotten or not. It will be very sour if your tahini is spoiled; however, most sour-tasting tahinis aren’t rancid. You can safely use it for a few days, but who wants to have bitter tahini?

3. Smells Rancid

You can take a whiff of your tahini if you don’t want to taste it. You cannot use it if it smells paint- or petrol-like. However, many tahinis can still be used, but the smell may be overwhelming.

Not Signs of Spoiled Tahini

Not every sign is a sign of spoilage because many are just the tahini’s characteristics. Here are some characteristics you don’t need to worry about.

1. Tahini Texture

Tahini primarily consists of oil which helps the mixture to remain soft. However, if it is untouched for a long time, the oil will settle on the top, and the bottom will dry. So, if you see this, give it a good stir.

2. Dark Spots

As you know, tahini is made up of sesame seeds, which can have color variations. If you find a dark spec or two, there is nothing to worry about, as it might be an unblended sesame seed. However, if you feel like the dark spots weren’t there before, it might be mold formation. Just throw it out, then!

3. Separation of ingredients

Separation is inevitable in tahini because it is made with oil. If you don’t use it for long, the oil will settle on top, just like peanut butter. Many people have the idea that this separation is a sign of spoilage. But this is the case for everything with a lot of oil.

All you need to do is stir that oil back into the tahini, which will help keep it homogenous and soft. However, if the bottom is too dry to mix, let the jar sit in hot water for about 2 to 3 minutes and then stir it.

Does Tahini Need to be Refrigerated?

You can keep tahini in your pantry or the refrigerator; regardless, it will not last forever. However, if you have an already opened jar of tahini, it is better to keep it in the fridge to extend its shelf life. But if you haven’t touched it yet, then the pantry shelf is just fine for your tahini.

How Long Does Tahini Last in Fridge?

Opened, unopened, and homemade tahini have a different shelf life, depending on how they are stored. So, here is a chart with the shelf life of tahini for your understanding.

Types of TahiniPantryFridge
Opened and Store-bought Tahini4 to 6 months6 to 12 months
Unopened and Store-bought Tahini6 to 12 months12 to 18 months
Homemade Tahini2 to 3 days7 days

(Homemade tahini has no preservatives, which makes its shelf life very low.)

How to Store Tahini Correctly

Tahini doesn’t require storage in the fridge, but it will last longer when stored in the refrigerator. You can easily use opened or unopened store-bought tahini from the pantry because it has preservatives to last longer. But, you must refrigerate homemade tahini, or it will spoil in some hours.

a jar of Tahini

Here are some ways to store your tahini safely so it lasts longer.

1. Pantry

If you have an opened jar of tahini, you must remember to close the lid properly; otherwise, your tahini will spoil sooner than expected. Moreover, ensure your pantry is not in contact with direct heat or sunlight because it will create a suitable environment for bacterial growth. Always make sure you scoop out tahini with a clean and dry spoon to avoid moisture and microbial growth. All these are still mandatory for unopened jars of tahini because those can also grow bacteria.

2. Fridge

Refrigerating tahini isn’t necessary, and most people don’t prefer a thick consistency. But the refrigerated texture works best for spreading onto crackers or toasts and even adding to your breakfast.

However, storing tahini in the fridge can make it last longer and keep your delicious condiment fresh even after its expiry date. You may need to soak the jar in hot water for a few minutes to liquefy it, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

You must remember to close the lid properly and use a clean spoon every time to scoop tahini to avoid any microbial growth.

You may also like: Does Rice Vinegar Go Bad

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Tahini Good for You?

Tahini is a very healthy condiment because it contains various minerals and vitamins. It also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which reduce heart diseases and help to safeguard your brain.

Why Does Tahini Last So Long?

As mentioned, tahini has natural oils and preservatives that help it last longer.

What Recipes Can I Make with Tahini?

Tahini goes well with sweet and savory dishes. Here are a couple of ideas for tahini-infused recipes: Salted Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookies, Tahini swirled tea cake, Baked potato with tahini, Tahini tiramisu, Roasted broccoli with tahini, etc.


You are now an expert on tahini if you have reached the end. Here is a brief of everything you got to know. Tahini lasts very long, even when kept in the pantry, and it can be a great addition to savory and sweet dishes. Moreover, now you know more about storing tahini and its properties. But to be on the safe side, buy it in small portions, so you can have a fresh batch occasionally without having to worry about spoilage.

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