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Dried Pasta....what happens after "sell by" date?

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I have a bag of cut pasta from Puglia that I purchased in Italy a few years ago. It is now past its sell-by date by (gasp..) a few years. OK..three years. What exactly happens to dried pasta when it gets old? Should I throw this out, or can I use and just cook for a longer time? It is the tri-colored pasta that I thought was so cool when I bought it and now know better..that it loses its' color when cooked....

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  1. It just takes longer to cook. (There are no food safety issues to worry about since there isn't enough moisture for anything to grow in/on the pasta)

    1 Reply
    1. re: Eat_Nopal

      Yes, it will take longer to cook - to rehydrate. It's been "drying" for a real long while. The pasta should be fine otherwise. Check for any Grain weevils just to make sure. [If you're going to keep *any* dried pasta around for a really long time, like three years, Bay leaves will help keep bugs away]. Other than that, you should be fine with your "aged" pasta.

    2. Shouldn't make any difference at all....dried pasta has an infinite shelf life if kept dry and relatively cool. Eat up!

      1. The only thing I've ever had happen to me with really old pasta is that it disintegrates while cooking.