I have a jar of organic tahini which expired one year ago.

It smells good and tastes ok. I don't know how it was stored, it was however always sealed (but already opened).

Is it safe to eat in large ammount ?

  • How far past the expiry are you at the moment? Jul 19, 2010 at 17:49
  • About one year.
    – kevin
    Jul 21, 2010 at 17:26

6 Answers 6


For what it's worth, you can safely store opened sesame oil in a refrigerator for one year (stilltasty.com).

Peanut butter can be kept for 3 months in the cupboard, then another 3-4 months in the refrigerator.

To be safe, I'd say keep it refrigerated once it's been opened, and use it within 6 months. I've had some for about that long, and it's just fine still.

Remember: bad odors indicate bad food.

  • 1
    I've had the same giant can of peanut butter for over a year. I took it on a road trip for a month, and it has been sitting in my cupboard since. As best I can tell, nothing bad has happened to it. Jul 19, 2010 at 18:10
  • Oh, I personally have kept peanut butter for much more than 3 months in the cupboard... just quoting more official "safe" practices. I'm sure the temperature, quality of product, whether or not there's preservatives, etc. make a difference. Jul 20, 2010 at 1:10

To the best of my understanding, Tahini is a lot like honey in this respect. It has no moisture in it, and will therefore suck the life out of anything that tries to land on it. Theoretically, as long as there's no water there, it'll basically last forever.

I usually keep mine in the fridge, not for temperature control but to keep the humidity away. I do live in a swamp though. I'm still using some I bought about 7 months ago, and it's fine.

Once it's been prepared (i.e. mixed with water) it's good for 3-4 days.

  • 1
    It contains lots of unsaturated fats, which can go rancid if exposed to air, and will pick up 'fridge flavors'. Jul 19, 2010 at 18:11

Maybe. I don't think that it would support botulism, so you probably won't die (unless you have a deadly sesame allergy). I don't imagine a lot of bacteria will grow on it, either. The only thing I can think that might happen is that is oxidizes or picks up strange flavors, at which point it would just taste bad.

This is mostly guesswork. Proceed at your own risk (I'd eat it).


Tahini is sesame seed paste, which means it's mostly an oil emulsion. That much oil, without other preserving intervention, will harbor bacteria and oxidize. If it isn't giving off any funky flavors or odors, it might be fine. Still, tahini is cheap, why chance it?

  • I'm fairly sure that bacteria can't live solely in oil. It lacks any moisture, which I suspect is necessary for bacterial growth. Jul 19, 2010 at 18:12
  • Nothing is completely void of moisture. Still, even without the bacteria it will oxidize since it is mostly fat. Also the existence of an expiration date itself suggests that the product may contain an ingredient that has a finite shelf life. Lots of possibilities here, to which I reiterate that tahini is cheap. Jul 19, 2010 at 18:18
  • True why chance it ? Thing is I really don't like to waste food and am curious if it's really unsafe.
    – kevin
    Jul 21, 2010 at 17:25
  • 2
    Fats spoil by rancidity. They will smell and taste bad long before they (even if they really can) become unsafe. See: cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/45054/… In the case of a product that is virtually all fat, I'd go as far as to say that it's safe to "follow your nose". That's advice I usually consider very unsafe.
    – Jolenealaska
    Aug 31, 2014 at 15:03

As long as it's kept in an airtight jar, it can hold for more than one year after opening. However, as time passes Tehini tends to lose its flavor, so it's best used as soon after opening as possible.


Just tried some in a tightly sealed jar. Just as good as the day it was bought,except it was hard to scoop some out. Neede a fork. Jar was filled with oil. Delicious for 10 year old tahini. Price was 3.29 for about a 500 ml bottle

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