Does Parmesan Cheese Go Bad? Fresh Storage Guide

How long does parmesan cheese last

Written by Elisa Chan. Updated on old parmesan cheese

Parmesan belongs to hard cheeses produced of cow’s whole milk. It is usually aged from twelve to thirty-six months and this cheese is widely famous as an ingredient in soups, pasta, and pizza topping, and salads. And of course, we enjoy eating it as it is!

Does parmesan cheese go bad? How to make it last longer?

These and other questions will be answered below.

Related: Fresh Cheese. Useful Tips About Cheese

6 Parmesan Top Useful Qualities You Didn’t Know About

Like any cheese, parmesan has plenty of beneficial qualities. Unless you’re allergic to cheese or dairy products, consuming this natural product will improve your state of health significantly!

So what are those mysterious benefits this cheese possesses?

  • Parmesan is a lactose-free cheese
  • It contains very little fat like all hard cheeses do which makes it perfect for dietary eating
  • This cheese is free of carbs
  • When eating parmesan regularly, we provide our body with the necessary protein
  • This cheese includes many vitamins such as vitamins A, B6, and B12
  • It is a source of minerals including calcium, zinc, copper, and phosphorus

Of course, after learning about these benefits a simple cheese has, everyone would like to know how to prolong the lifespan of such a treasure!

Related: Can You Freeze Cheese?

How Long Does Parmesan Cheese Last?

Since this product belongs to hard sorts of cheese, it is pretty long-lasting just like its other “comrades”.  

Normally, parmesan cheese shelf life lasts for approximately seven to nine months if the packet is unopened (that’s if we mean a store-purchased foodstuff). An opened packet will remain fresh for up to six weeks. 

However, certain variations may take place so let’s consider some of them.

How Long Does Parmesan Cheese Last

Product Pantry

Parmesan (unopened)

7 – 9 months or Use-by + 1 month

Parmesan (opened)

1 – 2 months (best quality)

Shredded/grated parmesan (sold refrigerated, unopened) Use-by + 7 days
Shredded/grated parmesan (sold refrigerated, opened) 3 – 7 days
Grated parmesan (sold unrefrigerated, unopened) Best-by + 1 month
Grated parmesan (sold unrefrigerated, opened) 4 – 6 months

Parmigiano Reggiano with the maturation of 12-18 months and higher Use-by + 15 days
Parmigiano Reggiano with the maturation of 24 months Use-by 1 months
Homemade parmesan Use-by + 15 days

The Risk Of Consuming An Expired Parmesan Cheese

Parmesan is a sort of hard cheese that is pretty long-lasting, and if properly stored, it can remain edible for quite a long period of time.

An unopened package of this cheese can last for as long as seven months and up to nine months.

As for the opened packet, its lifespan is, of course, shorter and consists of one or two months at most.

However, such durability does not mean parmesan can’t spoil. If we store the cheese improperly, it can develop various signs of spoilage:

  • mold
  • rind color change
  • off smell
  • texture
  • rancid or sour taste
  • clumping

Mold is especially dangerous since quite many kinds of it are rather harmful and can cause serious diseases. And even if in most cases we can cut the moldy parts of the parmesan block and safely eat the rest of the cheese, there is always a chance that the spores of harmful mold can also spread over the surface of the cheese.

If you eat spoiled parmesan that has mold on it, you take a huge risk since harmful bacteria can get into your stomach, such as:

  • Salmonella
  • coli
  • Listeria
  • Brucella
  • Penicillia
  • P. Roqueforti

This is why, in order to avoid severe food poisoning, always check your cheese carefully for any signs of quality decay before tasting it

How long is grated parmesan cheese good for?

Grated parmesan cheese shelf life is shorter compared to the one of the whole piece since crumbled product degrades faster. Anyway, it must stay edible until the expiry date set on the packet plus seven days more if we keep it refrigerated.

expired parmesan cheese
Photo by Jamie Goodwin on Unsplash

Once the packet is opened, the crumbled product must be consumed within the next week. 

How long does parmesan cheese last in the fridge?

Science: How to Buy the Best Parmesan CheeseScience: How to Buy the Best Parmesan Cheese

That hangs upon what type of cheese we are talking about. The whole piece can stay edible for up to nine months whereas an opened packet of shredded foodstuff won’t last more than a week.

How long does parmesan cheese last unrefrigerated?

How To Store Cheese At HomeHow To Store Cheese At Home

The product sold unrefrigerated, as well as the kraft parmesan cheese will stay consumable for thirty more days past the expiration date. An opened packet will expire within four to six months.

As you see, this sort of cheese is quite durable, however, it doesn’t mean that we can neglect the basic storage rules.

Related: Tips for How Can You Freeze Cream Cheese at Home

does parmesan go bad
Photo by Alice Donovan Rouse on Unsplash

How to Store Parmesan Cheese

How to properly store fresh Parmesan cheeseHow to properly store fresh Parmesan cheese

Storing cheese is a bit tricky. We guess quite many of us had to discard the leftover cheese because it became slimy earlier than we expected. That’s because the proper conditions were not provided for the product.

Parmesan cheese expiration strongly hangs upon where and how we keep it.

The cheese will stay fresh if we wrap it tightly into a plastic cover and refrigerate.

If any air reaches the foodstuff, it will start drying: its rind will harden and the cheese itself will start turning white.

To reanimate the cheese, wrap it in a damp cloth, cover with a plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, take off the cloth and re-wrap the product with a new cover again.

Do you have to refrigerate parmesan cheese, people often ask? Of course, otherwise, it will spoil much faster being exposed to air.

Should you refrigerate grated parmesan cheese?

Again, yes. Refrigeration protects parmesan from drying and hardening keeping the cheese fresh longer.

parmesan cheese shelf life
Photo by Erik Dungan on Unsplash

Does Parmesan Go Bad?

That’s what everyone is curious about most of all! For some reason, people tend to think that hard cheeses are eternal and won’t spoil, no matter what.

Unfortunately, it’s only a dream of lazy consumers!

Expired parmesan cheese is a real thing and it’s quite simple to define.

Mold is the basic sign of spoilage, nevertheless, it doesn’t make cheese harmful!

Just cut off the molded area, and consume the rest safely.

Parmesan style cheese made at home.Parmesan style cheese made at home.

How to understand whether you have some old grated or shredded parmesan cheese?

  • If the cheese is yellow or dark beige instead of white/light beige
  • If it smells weird
  • if you notice mold
  • if shredded cheese feels spongy or wet

discard the foodstuff without hesitation.

Even though parmesan is very durable and, like any hard cheese, it is pretty hard to spoil, we would not recommend you to risk and consume the spoiled foodstuff of the one that looks or smells weir since there is always a high risk of getting food poisoning or other unpleasant health issues. 

If the cheese doesn’t look trustworthy at all, you’d better throw it away. It is always better to buy a new fresh foodstuff than making yourself eat the food that might not be quite good! 

To be more informed about the specifics of cheese storage, look through our FAQs.

Frequently Asked Questions

⭐ How long does grated parmesan cheese last?

Unopened crumbled product sold refrigerated will stay edible for 7 days more past its expiry date. An opened packet must be consumed within a week.

⭐ How long does a wedge of parmesan cheese last?

A solid piece of cheese will stay fresh for 9 months unopened, and for six weeks when opened in the fridge.

⭐ Is grated parmesan cheese good after the expiration date?

If it’s sold refrigerated and the packet is unopened, it will be edible for a week after the expiry date. Sold unrefrigerated, the cheese can stay in a pantry for one month more past the best-by date.

⭐ How long is grated parmesan cheese good for after opened?

The refrigerated product will be good for a week, and unrefrigerated one will last for 6 months.
Make sure you keep your parmesan safe and sound since this cheese is worth being tasted and it can eliminate any dish on your table!

Read next: How Long Does Tofu Last?

Written by
Elisa is a passionate cook who will advise you on healthy and delicious food topics! With her help, you will discover how to properly store and freeze food, as well as learn important nuances about preserving vitamins in your meals to make them stay nutritious.
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here.
How to Properly Store Cheese at HomeHow to Properly Store Cheese at Home