Teas are known to be forgiving in case of shelf life. Teas don’t expire but can weaken in taste and flavor after prolonged storage. So the answer to the question, does herbal tea expire, is No. Teas may become stale and brew a softer tea, but they don’t get expired.
Although tea doesn’t expire, it is best to drink it within 18-24 months from the day it is produced. Nobody likes a stale and flavorless tea even if there is no expiration date.
Let us learn how we can store the tea so it lasts longer without losing its flavor.
Does herbal tea expire?
The short answer to this question is No. Any tea does not expire as the tea has no expiration date. The best-before date on the tea pack indicates the day it will retain its flavors. After the best-before date, the tea may lose its taste and freshness.
Nobody likes to drink tea without any flavors or tastes. So it is best to use the tea within 18-24 months from the day it is packaged.
All teas, whether green or black, are made from the plant Camellia Sinesis. These teas are suitable for a very long time, and they will start losing flavor over time.
Black teas are oxidized and last longer than green tea.
Very rarely can tea go bad if the tea is not stored correctly and is exposed to moisture and humidity.
Herbal teas are made from dried flowers or fruits, so that have a long shelf life. If stored in good condition away from air, sunlight, heat and moisture, they stay fresh for long time.
How long does herbal tea bags last?
As we know, teas don’t have an expiration date. Herbal tea bags can be enjoyed even after the best-before date if they are correctly stored and still have flavors. The tea bags are good past their best-before date if kept in good condition.
While you can drink herbal tea past its shelf life, it will lose its flavor and freshness and may not give you the same taste and flavor.
To maximize the freshness of the herbal teas, store the tea bags in an airtight container away from sunlight, air, moisture, and heat.
If you feel like your tea has lost its freshness and flavor, it is a good idea to throw it away and buy a new one. I don’t like the tea that has no flavors, and I think you won’t like it either.
How long does loose herbal tea last?
If the tea is just a herbal tea, it is good to drink even after the best-before date. However, if the tea is made by mixing different fruits or berries, you should not drink it after the best-before date.
Always check the ingredients as some of the them may get expired after best before date. If you have a mixture of different fruits that are likely to expire, think before you brew your tea.
Is it safe to drink expired herbal tea?
Herbal teas are made from dried flowers and fruits, so they should be okay to drink after best before date. However, check if there is any mold or mildew before using an old or loose tea bag.
As we know, tea has no expiration date but comes with a best-before date. The best-before date means that the tea will lose its aromatic qualities and may not be as flavorful as it was packed.
It should be good to drink if you don’t see mold or mildew on the tea bags or tea powder. However, the lost flavor may make the tea stale and feel like a cup of hot water instead of tea.
How long does brewed herbal tea last in the fridge?
Brewed herbal tea can last in the fridge for up to 5 days if stored properly. However, holding your brewed herbal tea in an airtight container will help keep it fresher for longer.
When storing your brewed herbal tea, ensure it is completely cooled down and away from sources of light and heat. You should also avoid storing brewed herbal tea with strong-smelling foods, as the flavor of your herbal tea may be compromised.
For flavorful tea, drink your tea stored in the fridge within four days. If you plan on drinking your brewed herbal tea after more than four days, make sure it is still at its peak of freshness before you drink it.
The best time to drink the brewed tea is immediately after brewing it.
Cold brew your tea for maximum flavors
To make a flavorful tea, it is best to brew it in cold water.
While it may take more time than traditional hot brewing methods, cold brews produce a smooth and delicious cup of tea with a higher flavor concentration.
The cold brew process helps bring out the subtle notes within the tea leaves and provides a much more enjoyable drinking experience.
Also, if you add fruit or sweetness to tea, the cold brewing method is better than hot brewing.
Furthermore, the extended steeping process of cold-brewing yields a better flavor profile than that of hot-brewed tea, making it an ideal choice to enjoy the full taste of tea leaves.
How to store Herbal tea to prolong its shelf life?
If you love our teas, you should know how to store them properly to keep the flavors and freshness of tea intact. You can follow these tips to store your tea.
1. Airtight container
The best way to store herbal tea is by using an airtight container. This prevents the tea from absorbing moisture or odors from outside sources and helps preserve its freshness and flavor.
Moreover, the volatile compounds in loose herbal tea can lose their potency after coming into contact with the air.
Keeping herbal tea in an airtight container will ensure it remains at its best quality for as long as possible.
2. Keep away from sunlight
Sunlight can also damage the teas, so keep your tea in opaque glass jars or steel jars to avoid sunlight. Keep the jars in the dark place in a cupboard or pantry.
3. Keep away from heat
Heat can also damage the flavors of tea. It activates the enzymes in the tea leaves and causes flavor loss.
4. Keep away from other sources
Teas can absorb flavors from other sources. So it is best to keep them separate and away from other sources where they can absorb the flavors.
How do you know if the tea is expired?
Almost all of the teas come with a best-before date which tells us up to which date the tea will be flavorful. Herbal teas, whether loose or tea bags, do not expire but lose the flavor after the best-before date.
You can do the following tests to check if the tea is no longer good to use.
- The tea has lost its original flavor. If you feel like the flavors from tea are not as good as they were, stop drinking it. You want to drink a cup of tea, not a colorful cup of warm water.
- The tea looks discolored. If the tea has discoloration and doesn’t look the same, throw it and don’t use it.
- Tea is stored for more than three years: If the tea is opened and sits for more than three years, it is not suitable for use. You may not get the same freshness and aromas.
- Presence of mold or mildew. , If upon looking at the box or the tea leaves, you see any signs of mold or mildew, discard the tea and don’t use it; you may get sick after drinking tea that is infected.
- There is an odd smell coming from the tea. Don’t use the tea if there is some strange smell, as the tea may not be as fresh and good to drink.
Can expired herbal tea make you sick?
No expired tea can’t make you sick as the tea doesn’t have any expiration date. It can only make you sick if mold or mildew is present. Tea past its best-before date may not be as flavorful as fresh tea, but it will not make you sick.
If you have to lie in your pantry or kitchen for a long time, you should always inspect it for mold growth. Use your instincts to know whether or not the tea is good.
Discard the tea if you see any mold growth or bugs in the tea. You can get very sick from the tea infested with bugs or mold.
It should be good to use if the tea is stored away from sunlight in a cool, dry place. However, if you find your tea in a hot and humid place, be careful and check it before using it.
Does herbal tea expire, and can you keep it fresh for longer?
No, herbal tea does not expire if stored for a longer time. They lose their flavor and color with time. If stored in airtight containers away from heat, light, and moisture, teas should be good to use past their best-before date.
Always use your common sense while drinking teas that are stored for longer.
Hopefully, this blog post will answer your questions about the storage and expiration of herbal teas.
Does tea expire? How to tell if it has gone wrong?