Can You Eat Canned Food After Best by Date?

Canned food can be a great addition to any kitchen. It’s easy to store and can last for months or even years without spoiling.

But like any food, it does have a shelf life and will eventually expire. So, what happens when you come across a can of food that’s past its “best by” date? Can you still eat it?

The answer is yes, you can still eat canned food after its “best by” date – but with a few caveats. First of all, the quality of the food will decline as time passes.

The flavor may not be as vibrant and the texture may be slightly different; this is especially true for fruits and vegetables. Secondly, the nutritional value of canned food will also decline over time. Vitamins and minerals may diminish or become less potent.

Food Safety

The biggest concern when eating expired canned goods is food safety. The “best by” date on cans is an indication of when the product was at its peak quality, not necessarily when it becomes unsafe to eat. In general, if a can doesn’t look or smell right, don’t eat it – no matter what the expiration date says!

Storage Conditions Matter

It’s important to remember that storage conditions can affect the shelf life of canned foods. If they are stored in warm temperatures or in direct sunlight, they may spoil faster than expected.

Be sure to store canned goods in a cool, dry place away from heat sources.


In conclusion, you can eat canned food after its “best by” date – but with certain considerations in mind. Pay attention to how it looks and smells before eating it and make sure that it has been properly stored in cool conditions away from heat sources.