Does Tofu Go Bad?

If you’ve been wondering “does tofu go bad”, this article will give you all the information you need. Just to clear things up, tofu can spoil. If you’ve bought tofu sold in the refrigerated area of the store, it goes bad quite quickly. The important information about tofu you need to know is how to store it properly, what is its shelf life and how to tell if it’s already bad, or it’s still edible.

How to store tofu

Tofu that is sold refrigerated should be stored in the fridge (it was in the fridge for a reason). As long as the package is unopened, you can leave it as it is in the refrigerator and it will be fine. Once the package is opened, you should transfer tofu to a container with a cover (possibly an airtight container) and submerge it in fresh water. Yes, fresh water means it needs to be fresh all the time. That is, you should change the water every day.

Tofu and Fish

(credit: star5112)

Freezing tofu

If you’d like to store tofu for an extended period of time you can freeze it. Freezing tofu is pretty straightforward. First thing you need to do is to drain the tofu. Once it’s drained, you need to cover it – you can use plastic wrap to do that or simply transfer tofu into a freezer bag. Freezing tofu allows you to store it for an extended period of time. After thawing its taste will stay pretty much the same, but its texture will become firmer.

Shelf life of tofu

When it comes to refrigerated tofu, the package should have the manufacture date somewhere on it. As long as the tofu is unopened, it should be fine for at least 70 days (a little over two months) from that date. Of course as long as it’s stored properly and the package is unopened, chances are it will stay fine for a longer period of time than that. Once the package is opened, you should consume tofu within 3-5 days before it will start to go bad.

If you know that you won’t use all the tofu you got within a couple of days, I suggest you freeze the rest of it. When frozen, it can be stored for a very long time (months and even years), but as in many other cases, it is suggested to not freeze tofu for longer than a couple of months (5-6 maybe). That’s obviously for quality reasons – the longer tofu is in the freezer, the lower its quality will be when thawed. Thaw it overnight in the refrigerator.

How to tell if tofu is bad

It’s not that difficult to spot spoiled tofu. When it’s spoiled, it smells sour and tastes sour. Often this smell is very strong, so you’ll notice it immediately after getting anywhere near that tofu. Also, it might get moldy and, as you probably know, mold is a sure sign of spoilage. If it looks flimsy or curdled, you should get rid of it as well.

As you should know by now, tofu does go bad and it goes bad pretty quickly after opening the package. If you’re looking for a way to store tofu for an extended period of time, you can freeze it.