Brownies are arguably one of the most popular snack options. Many people enjoy it as a desert while others just bake one out whenever they crave a hot cake dressed in chocolates.
But, do you know what the key to a perfect batch of brownies is? You guessed it right. It's a brownie mix!
A good pack of brownie mix will give you that perfect texture and consistency you need for a smooth and melting pastry you have been craving for.
The problem is you will most likely end up with some brownie mix leftovers whenever you bake.
So, is it safe to store them away? Will they go bad once you use them or even an unopened package of that matter?
The short answer? Yes, your extra brownie mix might go bad, but not in a way that it can harm you.
The correct answer is not as simple or straightforward as you might imagine.
So, if you want to find out exactly how long does brownie mix lasts, read on!
How Long Does Brownie Mix Last? Does Brownie Mix Go Bad?
As revealed earlier, brownie mixes will (indeed) go bad.
The main reason is that they contain saturated fats that can go rancid over time. In addition to that, the baking soda present in the mix can decompose if not stored in proper conditions.
Simply put, a brownie mix (boxed or unboxed) will last up to 12-18 months.
But, that does not necessarily apply to all brownie mixes. The truth is: there are several factors that help determine how long they will last.
Usually, when you buy any brownie mix, you will notice a "best before date" label on it. Now, a lot of people might think the label is the true indication of how long it will last. But it isn't.
In fact, in some cases, you can even use your brownie mix beyond the expiry date.
Experts suggest you can use the mix for about a month or two past its due date. The only downside is that you may notice a significant dip in their authentic quality.
The crucial part is to understand what factors help in keeping your brownie mix fresh.
For one, it is important to store them in a cool and dry place. You could also keep them in the fridge, but that is rather unnecessary. A cabinet in the pantry should work just fine.
It is also important to remember to keep it away from heat (that includes sunlight).
Next, the brand of the brownie mix may also play a crucial role. After all, there are a lot of substandard brownie mixes that may contain high sugar percentage.
The ultimate key is proper storage! If you can nail that part, your brownies will last longer than you might expect.
How to Tell if Brownie Mix is Bad?
If you are concerned about using a bad brownie mix for baking your next pastry batch, look for these signs:
Does it smell unusual (sour)?
Normal brownie mixes tend to have a neutral smell. At most, they might give a slight hint of sweet aroma due to the presence of sugar. That, however, changes if you store them for long periods.
The leavening agent (baking soda) may decompose, which will give off a distinctive sour smell.
Does it lack consistency?
Normally when you combine the brownie mix with other ingredients like water, eggs, and oil, they are supposed to give you that perfect fluffy and thick consistency.
The baking soda should also make your cake puff up, giving it a soft and airy consistency. However, that will not be the case if the mix has gone bad.
Instead, you may see a runny mixture, and your brownie will also not be as fluffy as you would normally expect.
Do you see a change in its appearance?
Another way to tell if your brownie mix has gone wrong is by looking at its appearance. If you notice any inconsistency in the way the mix looks, it may be due to mold and mildews.
So, if you see any slight changes in its appearance, it is best to get a new brownie mix pack.
Contrary to what many might believe, brownie mixes can lose their authentic state after some specific duration.
But, they will still be 'safe' for use. The only downside is you might not get the same batter consistency as you would typically expect.
If you want to whip out the best brownie batch, we suggest you use only fresh pastry mix. You could still use the old mix, but we recommend you do that as a last resort.
The ultimate answer is proper storage. If you can store the mix with proper care, you can extend its shelf life by a considerable degree.