Learn exactly how long parmesan cheese is good for (shredded, grated, aged, etc) and when to know if it’s gone bad. Plus other interesting tips and facts for using everyone’s favorite Italian cheese. This post includes a video with fresh parmesan cheese, too.
HEY THERE — I’m sharing tasty dinner ideas (many with DOP Italian parmesan cheese!) — on Instagram these days. Find me at @sipbitego.
Parmesan cheese tips and FAQ
Want to seriously immerse yourself in tasty pasta footage??
I’ve summed up the main things to know about using parmesan cheese and how long it’s good for in this video…
How to keep parmesan cheese fresh longer
Before I jump into how long it takes for fresh parmesan cheese to go bad, I want to share my favorite ways to keep it fresh longer.
Storing a block of parmesan cheese
I keep it in an air-removed plastic bag in the cheese drawer in the fridge. Whenever working with it, like grating it over a salad, I make sure to use a clean knife or grater that has not touched any food or surfaces with other food.
Some people will take this a step further and if they really want to make a block of parmesan last, they’ll wrap it in wax paper (to keep some humidity), then wrap it in aluminum foil. Finally, they’ll store it in the bottom of the fridge.
We go through it pretty fast in my house (within 1-2 months) so that’s not needed for my family.
Freezing parmesan cheese is only recommended if it’s already been ground.
Storing grated / shredded cheese
I keep grated and shredded cheese in completely sealed containers they came in from the store. When scooping out the cheese to add it to a dish, I always make sure to use a fresh spoon or tongs and never touch any other food, like pan grilled chicken I’m plating with fettuccine pesto pasta, with the spoon as I sprinkle it on the food.
Does parmesan cheese go bad?
There are so many different types of parmesan cheeses you can buy at the store, so here are a few things to note about each. Note: definitely check expiration dates over these general recommendations.
Does parmesan go bad if not refrigerated
Blocks of parmesan cheese sold in the non-refrigerated section are actually dehydrated and have a long shelf life. Some can stay out for about a year if unopened.
I usually put these chunks of parmesan in my fridge when I get home from the grocery store.
Does grated parmesan cheese go bad
There are two different types of parmesan cheese that come grated or similarly, powdered. There is the Kraft grated parmesan cheese (the canned one) which is usually shelf stable for a while and sold in the regular aisles in the grocery store. This kind of cheese is usually good for about a year.
Then there’s grated parm you’ll find sold in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. I find this fresher cheese to be much tastier, but it does go bad in the fridge sometimes within a week or two. Once you bring it home, it needs to be stored in the fridge until used.
Does shredded parmesan cheese go bad
Shredded parmesan cheese stored in the fridge usually stays good for about 8 months when sealed.
Can you use parmesan past the expiration date?
Personally, I’d only use parm past the best buy date if:
- I’m a little desperate
- The cheese appears safe to eat and isn’t *that* old (like, maybe 1 month or less over the expiry date)
- The cheese isn’t turning blue (don’t eat moldy parm)
- It’s not forming clumps (which come right before mold)
- It’s been completely sealed while in the fridge
- Has no odor other than you’d expect
Does parmesan cheese melt?
Fun fact about parmesan cheese: it melts at about 90°F.
Because it’s dehydrated and a harder cheese, it takes longer to melt than others like cheddar on this pepperoni pizza, or brie like in these smoked jalapeno poppers.
How to make it melt
To help parmesan melt, I finely grate it with a microplane. Thinly shaved parm melts easily over pasta with hot sauce, or hot out of the oven baked chicken thighs.
How do you serve parmesan for guests
Grating parmesan is one of the final touches on many of my pizza recipes and pasta salads.
If we’ve made homemade fettuccine and are serving guests, I’ll usually put half the cheese on the food for plating. And add a bowl filled with a heaping pile of the rest of the cheese so people can add more if desired.
How is parmesan cheese made?
Years ago, I had a wonderful day touring a parmesan cheese factory in Bologna, Italy. We were on a trip with family in Italy and saw every step. Let me tell you: it is a process! There is a man who lives at the cheese factory who oversees everything. He trains for decades. I will go into it in a video one day.
TIP: If you go to Italy, bring an extra piece of luggage to bring back a whole wheel of parmesan cheese.
Are you a foodie, too?
Hope that answers all your questions about how to enjoy and store a block of parmesan cheese, grated cheese, or whatever your favorite is.
If you don’t follow me on instagram you totally should @sipbitego. And for more deliciousness, subscribe to the Sip Bite Go channel and see the Sip Bite Go recipe collection.
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Meat thermometer recommendations
Every home chef needs a reliable meat thermometer to cook food perfectly.
On Sip Bite Go, you’ll often see me using:
- Meater thermometer – a fancy wireless thermometer that connects to a phone app – gifted to me from a Traeger partnership.
- ThermoPro digital thermometer – which has a wire that connects the thermometer to a display box outside the oven/grill.
It’s like being psychic! The great thing about either of the thermometers above is that I don’t have to take the food out of the oven to know the temperature.
How to use ‘em… What I do is stick the digital thermometer in steak, pork, chicken, whatever… Then put the food in the oven, on the smoker, or grill.
While the meat cooks, it reads the temperature so I know exactly what temp meat is as it’s cooking. Without having to take it out and check. It’s really difficult to overcook food when you know exactly what temp it is inside!
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