How Long Does Pasta Last In The Fridge: Find Out The Important Stuff!

Jack's Guide To Healthy Eating & A Low-Fat Pasta Recipe!

Are you a pasta lover and tend to cook more than you can possibly eat? If so, you will want to know how long does pasta last in the fridge!

I am a true pasta guy! It might have to do with my Italian ancestors, but when I see pasta I get chills all over my body! It is a feeling a child has when it gets a new toy! Pure joy!

People ask me how a nutritionist can eat so much pasta when it is deemed so unhealthy. And I, in turn, ask them, is it really so? Is pasta really so unhealthy?

Well, for starters, Italians have been eating pasta for hundreds of years, and they are not famous for bad health or obesity issues. Nevertheless, many scientist and fellow nutritionist blame pasta for contributing to the obesity epidemic. Where is the truth? Read on, and you will find out.

However, my main topic for the day is not the question whether pasta is healthy or bad for you, but rather how long does pasta last in the fridge. My mind is already made up - I am never giving up on pasta!

Healthy Or Not? Pasta Analyzed

Pasta is mostly made up of processed carbohydrates, and this is the main reason why people consider it to be so problematic. If you have to mind your weight, almost no one will recommend eating pasta as it is believed to add the pounds as well. 

However, if you love the pasta as much as I do, you will try to find as many reasons why you should eat pasta, and believe it or not, you will be able to find support from some experts as well.

Namely, a recent meta-analysis that aimed to discover the answer to this very question that troubles us (or at least me) found that pasta does not compromise the loss of weight during the low-GI diet. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Pasta aided the loss of body weight and reduction of BMI.

The research exhibited that pasta, as a part of a low-GI diet, additionally reduced the body weight by 0.5 to 1.38 pounds. This is due to the pasta's lower glycemic response which it owes to the process techniques used when it is made. Pasta's compact structure slows down the starch absorption and keeps you satiated for longer.

That might not seem like much, but at least it shows that pasta will not cause weight gain as it is often believed. It is a surprising finding for a lot of people, even many of my colleagues, but I just see it as good news!

Of course, you should not read this and gorge yourself in pasta with calorie-packed cheese topping or heavy sauces. Remember that pasta can help you lose or maintain weight only as the part of overall healthy, low-glycemic index diet.

You, therefore, need to choose sprouted whole grain pasta, limit yourself to one cup of cooked pasta per serving and combine it with vegetables. It is also desirable to eat your pasta Al Dente, as such pasta impacts the blood sugar levels more slowly than mushy, overcooked pasta.

Pasta has always been a part of the Mediterranean Diet, which is deemed one of the best in the world. This diet is known to aid in the prevention of not only obesity but also numerous cardiovascular diseases, depression, diabetes, asthma, dementia, as well as some forms of cancer such as breast and colorectal cancer.

Good news for my fellow pasta-lovers, don't you think so? 🙂


Bonus: Jack's Healthy Low-Fat Pasta Recipe

Now that you know there is no need to be guilt-ridden when eating pasta, you can try one of my favorite recipes and enjoy it guilt-free!

You will need

  • 300g of whole grain pasta (preferably short)
  • 200g of prawns (precooked and halved)
  • Broccoli ( I use one pack of frozen broccoli, but you can use fresh broccoli head and cut it into small florets)
  • 3 tablespoons of double cream
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon juice

How to prepare

  1. Cook the pasta as usual. Remember to make it al dente.
  2. By the end of the cooking, add the broccoli and leave it to cook together for about three minutes more.
  3. Drain, return into the pan, and place on low heat.
  4. Gently stir in the double cream, prawns and lemon juice.
  5. Season to your taste.
  6. Serve while it is still hot! Enjoy!

More Pasta Recipes: Try Barbara's Bolognese and Tuna Pasta!


How Long Does Pasta Last?

Now that you know pasta is good for you, and you have my great recipe at hand, you are sure to cook pasta more often. However, if you are very busy, you will want to know how long does pasta last in the fridge so that you can safely store it and enjoy it in the future without having to go through the tiresome cooking process once again.

1. How long does dried pasta last?

  • Dried pasta comes in many forms from macaroni to spaghetti, but it is always made from the same ingredients – water and flour. Most people buy dried pasta in the stores, and it is clearly labeled by a best by date. 
  • In general, dried pasta can last from one to two years from the production date. As the expiration date set by the manufacturer represents how long the manufacturer vouches for the product safety, you can usually safely consume the pasta at least one month beyond that date. Use your common sense though!
  • It is also important to store dried pasta correctly - in a dry and cool place of course! The best way to keep it is in its original packaging and in your pantry. If you open the package and do not cook all the pasta at once, re-seal the opened package the best you can and store it in the same way.

2. How long does fresh pasta last?

  • Fresh pasta can be bought in a refrigerator section of some stores, but you can also make it at home (with a bit of skill and the right equipment, of course). Besides flour and water, it usually contains eggs as well which makes it a bit trickier to store.
  • The shelf life of fresh past will depend on more than one factor including how and when it was prepared and how it has been stored up to the moment you have bought it or decided to use it.
  • Normally, it has to be kept refrigerated at all times and can last up to five days stored in this way. If you choose to freeze it, you should best use it within six following months.

3. How long does cooked pasta last?

  • When cooked, pasta needs to be refrigerated or frozen. I am not a great fan of the latter option, so I stick to storing my cooked pasta in the fridge. So, the main question for me is how long does pasta last in the fridge?
  • If you store it properly - meaning in an air-tight container that will keep the moisture out, you can keep the pasta refrigerator for up to a week. This goes for pasta only, but if you have already topped it or mixed it with other ingredients, it will last you as long as the quickest expiring ingredient you have used for its preparation.
  • If you freeze it, you can eat it within the next eight months, but do not expect it to taste the same as fresh as it tends to dry out when frozen for long. To avoid pasta becoming mushy when you thaw it, you should store it completely cold and in a safe freezer container that closes tight.

You should also read our Food Storing Guide!

How to Avoid Eating Bad Pasta

Foodborne illnesses can cause you serious troubles, and therefore you need to put in some effort to avoid them whenever possible. Pasta is no exception, as it can go bad as any other dish you prepare. You must, therefore, practice proper hygiene and food safety techniques every time you cook pasta. 

If you doubt that pasta in front of you has gone bad, use your senses to determine if it is really the case. If it is discolored or appears dull or slimy - avoid it, it is sure to develop mold soon. Better be safe than sorry, and when in doubt best skip the meal and avoid health risks.


Jack's Final Thoughts

I am already mouth-watering, so I'll keep it short! Pasta is tasty and good for you, but you need to practice proper food storage techniques to keep it healthy. The good news is that food storage reduces food costs and helps preserve the environment by cutting down waste too.

Spread the word and help clear the pasta's name, but also share your thoughts or advice, please! Good pasta recipes are welcomed as well!

Jack Davidson
 

Jack went from part-time freelance tech assistant to a food blogger and all-things-tech guy for Barb and Catherine. He loves his dog and treats her like his own child. On the other hand, working on Kitchen Byte has awaken his love for food.

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