Can Powdered Milk Go Bad?

Can powdered milk go bad? Unlike fresh milk, powdered milk has a long storage life. The lack of moisture inhibits bacterial and mold growth, which could increase the risk of spoilage! This means if you have a sizable supply of powdered milk, you don’t have to worry too much about the product going bad at all. Still, you need to store powdered milk properly to extend its shelf life. If you don’t, the product could go bad much more quickly than it should.

Can Powdered Milk Go Bad?

Although powdered milk has a long shelf life, it is not impervious to spoilage at all. Just like any type of food, powdered milk will go bad at some point. That being said, the product’s shelf life will depend on the storage conditions. Always check the manufacturer’s instruction on how to store dry products like powdered milk for best results.

Image used under Creative Commons from cappi thompson

Do note that powdered milk is extremely sensitive to moisture and heat. When kept in a hot, humid spot, powdered milk will draw moisture in. This accelerates spoilage. Too much heat and moisture could increase the risk of mold growth too.

Signs that Powdered Milk has Gone Bad

It is rare for powdered milk to go bad simply because it is such a staple product. Usually, powdered milk is used up way before it spoils. Still, there are telling signs that powdered milk is no longer safe to consume. Check for slight or significant discoloration. If the product took on a deeper yellow color, discard the product. If the powdered milk has developed an unpleasant odor, discard it. If you’re seeing signs of mold growth or insects, toss the product in the trash.

How to Store Powdered Milk?

The best way to store powdered milk is to keep it in the pantry at room temperature. You can either use the product’s original packaging or transfer the product in an airtight container. Just place the container in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight. Never store the product near sources of heat or moisture. Remember, humidity is the enemy!

When kept at room temperature, powdered milk will stay fresh for up to 2 years or more if the storage conditions are ideal. In fact, powdered milk would keep fresh for 10 years when the airtight container is kept sealed. Refrigeration is not recommended because the moisture accelerates spoilage. Always close the lid of the container tightly after every use to extend the shelf life of the product.

Image used under Creative Commons from Andrew Magill

Can You Freeze Powdered Milk?

You’d be surprised but yes, powdered milk keeps so well in the freezer. This is a terrific storage method for powdered milk that’s nearing its expiry date! Just transfer the product to an airtight container and seal the container well. Write the storage date then stick in the freezer.

The freezing temperature won’t ruin the overall flavor of the product although the powder has the tendency to clump when being defrosted. Still, you don’t have to defrost the powdered milk, just pop it in a cup of hot water and it will dissolve on its own. When kept in the freezer, powdered milk will keep for 3 to 10 years.


Storing powdered milk is as easy as can be! You can take advantage of sales and buy powdered milk in bulk. No need to worry about spoilage at all, just keep these storage tips in mind to extend the life of powdered milk.

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