Does Brown Rice Go Bad? How Long Does Brown Rice Last?

Brown rice is a healthier choice than white rice, and for that reason, many health-conscious foodies prefer it when cooking. You may have a bag of brown rice in your pantry and ask, how long does it last?

Quick Answer

An unopened bag of brown rice will last about six months past its best-by date without compromising quality. Stored in a pantry, brown rice will only last about 6 months. An unopened package of brown rice will last 6 months in the fridge.  It will last a year in the freezer.  


Understanding how long rice will last when properly stored will keep you healthy and ensure the quality of the rice is good.

Does Brown Rice Go Bad? How long Does Brown Rice Last?

Storing rice is easy. It can be kept for months when kept properly. Read on to find out about the different storage options for your rice.

How Long Does Brown Rice Last Outside?

Outside storage is okay for rice as long as it is done correctly. Here is some information about the best way to keep your rice outdoors.

Rain and other moisture are detrimental to the rice. The wetness will cause the rice to become clammy and will be difficult, if not impossible to use. When storing your rice it is best to keep it in an airtight container or freezer bag.

Pests and other insects are bad for the rice. If you are storing your rice outdoors, make sure you keep it in a sealed container so is not contaminated with bugs.

How Long Does Rice Last in the Fridge?

Rice can last for months in the fridge without going bad. Here are some ways to keep your rice in the fridge.

The fridge can be a pretty moist place. To ensure that moisture does not ruin your rice, store it in an airtight container or a freezer bag.

The date you put the rice in the refrigerator should be marked on the packaging. Because rice is only good for about six months in the fridge, it is best to date it so you do not forget how long it has been there.

How Long Does Brown Rice Last in the Freezer?

Brown rice will last the longest in the freezer. Placing the rice in the freezer will also prevent rodents from destroying your rice. Here are some things to remember when freezing your rice.

Air is bad for rice because it will dry it out. Also, moisture will destroy your grains of rice. To keep air and moisture out, store your rice in an airtight container or a freezer bag.

Lastly, date the container of the freezer bag to ensure you do not freeze longer than one year. After a year in the freezer, the brown rice is unsafe to eat.

How to Tell if Brown Rice has Gone bad / How to Know if Brown Rice is Fresh?

Brown rice is unlike white rice because it goes bad faster. Here is how to tell if your rice is good or bad.

Smell:  Brown rice does not have a smell. However, if your rice has gone bad, then there will be a strong odor to your rice. If you notice a rank smell, throw the rice away.

Appearance: Rice should be separated and dry. If your brown rice is sticking together, feels moist, or clammy, do not eat. Also, discoloration is a sign your rice is no good. The rice should be brown all over and have no spots on it.

Mold:  Mold is dangerous and can cause you to get sick. If you notice your rice has signs of mold, such as dark spots or furry growth, do not eat. Do not try and pick the moldy parts out, throw the whole bag away.

Pests:  Insects and other rodents are bad for rice. They can leave behind droppings and eggs. If you notice signs of pests such as droppings, throw the rice away. Also, if the packaging looks chewed or has holes, discard it.

How to Store Brown Rice?

Properly stored, brown rice can last for a long time. Here are some ways to store brown rice.

Avoid Air: Air is bad for rice because it causes the rice to oxidize and go bad. To stop air from damaging your rice, place it in an airtight container or a zip-lock plastic bag.

Avoid Moisture:  Moisture is bad for rice because it causes mold to grow. Moldy rice is no good to eat because it can cause you to get sick. Also, moisture will cause the grains of the rice to stick together or become clammy. Store your rice in a dry location such as the pantry.

Can you Freeze Brown Rice?

Brown rice can be frozen. Freezing your rice is the best way to go if you want to keep your rice for a long time. Here are some tips for the safe freezing of your brown rice.

Use a freezer bag: Place rice in a freezer bag to prevent air from drying out your rice and turning it stale. Also, a freezer bag will prevent ice and freezer burn from forming on your rice.

Use wax paper:  Line the freezer bag with wax paper before placing the rice in the bag. This helps to prevent the rice from sticking to the bag and makes removing easy.

Date the bag:  Place a date on the freezer bag to make sure you do not store rice longer than six months.

How to Thaw Brown Rice?

Thawing brown rice is simple. Here are a couple of ways to thaw brown rice.

Thawing the rice at room temperature is an easy way to go. Simply place your rice on the countertop and let it sit for about five hours.

Another way to thaw rice is to place the rice in a bowl of warm water. Remember not to get the grains wet. Keep rice in an airtight container and place the container in the water. Do this for about two hours.

Frequently Asked Questions About Brown Rice

My brown rice looks spotty is it safe?

Discolored rice is a sign that your rice is no good to eat. White spots are a sign of oxidation. Using stale rice will compromise the taste of the rice. Good rice should be brown on the outside and have no spots on it.

How to tell if this is mold on my rice?

Eating mold is bad for your health. Mold can make you sick if ingested. If you think your rice has molded, do not eat. Dark spots and furry growths are signs of mold.  If your rice has these spots on it, throw them away.

Wrap Up

For its high nutritional value, brown rice is a preferred food. If you have any tips or ideas about brown rice leave a comment below.

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