Macadamia are a type of tree nut with a satisfying creamy texture and a flavor similar to butter.
They originate from Australia, but they are also grown in countries such as New Zealand, Hawaii, Costa Rica and Brazil.
Macadamia nuts are extremely nutritious and are linked to a wide range of health benefits such as blood sugar regulation, heart health, improved digestion and weight management.
If you want to know whether macadamia nuts go bad, keep reading.
Do Macadamia Nuts Go Bad?
Yes, like any other nut, macadamia nuts are going to go bad; this is especially true if they haven’t been stored properly.
There are several reasons why macadamia nuts might expire before the expiration date, you might have left the packet open or left them exposed to sunlight for too long.
Whatever the reason, if you are a lover of macadamia nuts, its important to understand more about how long they last and the best ways to store them.
How long Do Macadamia Nuts Last?
How long your macadamia nuts last will depend on how you store them.
Experts appear to have different opinions about their shelf life, but according to Australianmacadamian.org, they last for the following amount of time when stored in these conditions:
|Macadamia Nuts||3 Months|
3 to 6 Months
Basically, if you are planning on eating your macadamia nuts pretty quickly, then storing them at room temperature is fine.
If you want to keep them for slightly longer, put them in the fridge. For those who buy in bulk, put them in the freezer and you will have macadamia nuts readily available for a good few months.
Some macadamia nuts come pre-packaged and they will have an expiration date on the label. But if you store them properly, you can get away with eating the nuts past the expiration date.
5 Tips to Tell If Macadamia Nuts Have Gone Bad
You’ve decided to clear out your kitchen cabinets and found a packet of your favorite macadamia nuts stuffed way in the back. You want to rip the packet open and eat them immediately, but you are not sure if they are bad, how can you tell? Here are some tips:
- The Smell: Macadamia nuts should smell fresh, when you put your nose in the packet, you should want to eat them. If not, and the whiff you get is more off-putting than tantalizing, they’ve expired, and you will need to throw the nuts out.
- Mold: When nuts have really started going bad, they will start getting moldy. Mold develops on the surface of the nuts as white, green or black spots, and in some cases, the nuts will be covered in a white fuzzy fir.
- Texture: Macadamia nuts are smooth in texture, even though they don’t feel moist, they look kind of shiny. If your nuts have become shriveled or dry, they have passed their sell by date.
- Color: Macadamia nuts are light in color, if they have turned dark brown, they are no longer edible.
- Taste: Hopefully, you will never get to taste a rotten macadamia nut. However, if they don’t have their familiar buttery flavor, and there is no crisp to the bite, throw them in the trash.
The good news is that not all is lost if your macadamia nuts show signs they have started going bad. As long as the nuts don’t have any mold growing over them, you can restore your macadamia nuts by roasting them.
Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking tray, lay the nuts over the top, sprinkle them with salt and pepper and roast them in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes. They should become a golden brown color once they are done.
Finally, if you are not sure whether macadamia nuts are bad, make sure you check them properly before eating them.
7 Tips to Store Macadamia Nuts
Your aim is to keep your macadamia nuts as fresh as possible.
First, it is important to mention that once macadamia nuts have been dried, they need protection from two main components, moisture and oxygen.
Macadamia nuts are quite crispy, and moisture not only takes away from the crispiness, it also speeds up the expiration process. When macadamia nuts are exposed to oxygen for long periods of time, it causes them to go rancid.
Once the packaging has been opened, it’s essential that they are sealed in an airtight container to protect them from early expiration. Here are some tips on how to store macadamia nuts.
1. In the Pantry/Cupboard:
If you are going to eat your macadamia nuts within a week or two, you can store them in the pantry. Empty the nuts into a Ziploc bag, or an airtight container, plastic or glass is fine.
Once stored, if you don’t plan on eating the nuts in one sitting, make sure you seal the container tightly before putting them back in the pantry or cupboard.
2. Cool and Dry:
Due to the healthy oils present in macadamia nuts, it’s advised that you don’t let them sit out in room temperature for more than a couple of days.
It’s easy to leave food items on the kitchen counter and forget about them, the best thing to do is to store them in a cool and dry place as soon as you get home.
3. In the Fridge:
Your macadamia nuts will last approximately 3 months when stored in the fridge. Since they are no longer going to be in their original packaging, its important that you write the date of purchase on the container.
It is not advised that you use a Ziploc bag when storing macadamia nuts in the fridge; instead, use an airtight glass container as this will prevent any chemicals from finding their way into your nuts.
4. Keep Them Shelled:
Macadamia nuts are covered in a shell, don’t remove the shell before storing them or they won’t last as long as they are supposed to.
5. Keep Them Separate:
Nuts have a tendency to absorb flavors and smells, since there is a high chance you will keep your nuts in the fridge for some time, it is advised that you keep them separate from other foods such as onions, garlic, ginger and anything else that has a strong flavor or odor.
6. Don’t Roast Them:
Although roasted macadamia nuts taste delicious, it will reduce their shelf life if not eaten right away. If you are planning on keeping your macadamia nuts for a while, refrain from roasting them before storage.
Frozen nuts will last the longest, so if you are a bulk buyer this is the best way to store macadamia nuts.
However, don’t store the nuts in a glass jar because there is a possibility the glass will explode once it reaches a certain temperature.
Put the nuts into a plastic airtight container or a Ziploc bag; again, make sure you put the date of purchase on a label and secure it to the container.
The Risk of Consuming Expired Macadamia Nuts?
It’s never a good idea to eat foods past their expiration date.
However, unless the nuts are completely moldy, eating expired macadamia nuts isn’t going to pose a massive health risk.
Nevertheless, there is a chance that you will experience slight food poisoning and encounter the following symptoms:
- Stomachache: Mild to severe pain in the stomach
- Diarrhea: Going to the bathroom several times per day
- Nausea: Feeling the need to throw up
- Headache: Tension around the head area
- Loss of appetite: No desire to eat even if you’ve been without food for some time
If any of these symptoms become unbearable, or last for more than a few days, it is essential that you book an immediate appointment with your healthcare provider to avoid any further complications.
Can You Freeze Macadamia Nuts?
Like most nuts, macadamias contain several healthy oils, and if they are not stored properly, they will expire before the sell by date.
Yes, you can freeze macadamia nuts, by doing so, you can keep them fresh for 3 to 6 months.
Additionally, you don’t need to prepare the nuts for freezing, simply put them into a container and freeze them.
Once you are ready to eat the nuts, just remove them from the freezer and let them sit on the kitchen counter for a couple of hours to thaw. I
f you are planning on cooking with the nuts, thawing is not necessary, you can add them to the recipe straight from the freezer.
It is also advised that you store macadamias in small containers so you can eat them in one sitting, as refreezing diminishes the flavor.
Macadamia nuts are a nutritional powerhouse, packed full of everything you need to maintain a healthy diet. Having a full understanding of whether they have gone bad is essential.
By applying the recommendations set out in this article and storing macadamias the right way, you will have a steady supply of macadamia nuts for your enjoyment all year round.