When you think of bouillon, broth, and stock you might think of a very salty product. And everybody knows that salt preserves things for a long time, right? Well, it turns out these flavor boosters don’t stay fresh as long as you might think.
I looked at many “Best If Used By” dates on popular bouillon, broth, and stock products. The longest shelf-life I found was 21 months for a jar of bouillon cubes. Some dates were as close as 4 months.
Of course, if the item has been sitting in the warehouse a long time, the “best by” expiration date will be closer than it was when it was originally manufactured.
For more information about “Best if Used By”, “Use By”, and expiration dates, see our article titled “Best If Used By” vs “Use By” vs Expiration Dates.
Shelf Life & Expiration Date FAQS
Should bouillon, broth, and stock be discarded after the “Best if Used By” date?
According to the Grocery Manufacturers Association, a “Best if Used By” date means that the product may not taste or perform as expected but is safe to be used or consumed. This means the product does not necessarily need to be discarded once the date has passed.
When should you discard bouillon, broth, & stock?
This FDA food label article states “If the products have changed noticeably in color, consistency or texture, consumers may want to avoid eating them.”
Does canned bouillon, broth, and stock have a longer shelf life than boxed varieties?
Yes. Based on use-by dates I have observed in my area, the cans stay fresh an average of about 10 months longer than the boxes.
Any More Questions?
Do you have any more questions about bouillon, broth, or stock shelf-life or product dates?
Please feel free to ask questions in the comment area below.