How To Store Flax Seeds Including Ground

Without having much experience with ground flaxseed or flaxseeds you may be wondering about the best way to store them. Look no further because here are the best ways to store flaxseeds.

7 ways to store flaxseeds:

  1. Purchase flaxseed with opaque packaging.
  2. Store flaxseed in its original container.
  3. Transfer flaxseed into a mason jar.
  4. Store freshly ground flaxseed in an airtight container.
  5. Store newly ground flaxseed away from light.
  6. Refrigerate flaxseed for up to a year.
  7. Freeze unused flaxseed.

As a Certified Health Coach I get asked all the time about flaxseed storage. I always have them at my home and have to store them properly. Keep reading for some background and tips on how to store them.

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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ground flaxseed on a spoon
Ground flaxseed

How To Store Flaxseeds

1. Purchase Flaxseed With Opaque Packaging

Did you know flaxseed products are light-sensitive? This raises questions for people as to how to store them. Look out for flaxseed in opaque packaging because this is the kind you want to purchase. 

The two basic flaxseed products are brown and golden. Some people prefer flaxseed oil, which is a concentrated version of the product extracted from flaxseed 1.

You can store whole flaxseed at room temperature for up to a year. In addition, you can store high-quality flaxseed in its original container for up to a year! 

2. Store Flaxseed in Its Original Container

In the short term, you can leave the flaxseed in its original packaging for up to a year. You can store a high-quality product at room temperature for this time. 

When purchasing flaxseeds, make sure they’re in opaque packaging. This suggestion goes for flaxseed, flaxseed meal and flaxseed oil. Flaxseed is light-sensitive and can go bad after overexposure to light. It’s also recommended to pay attention to the expiration date on the label.

If the package isn’t airtight, it’s more likely to go bad, therefore check up on its freshness. For flaxseed stored in a room temperature pantry, make sure it’s sealed in opaque packaging.

Ground flaxseed.
Ground flaxseed Pin to Pinterest

3. Transfer Flaxseed Into a Mason Jar

Once you open your flaxseed, you’ll want to transfer it to another container. The recommendation is to use a mason jar. 

A mason jar is made of glass and has an airtight screw top with rubber on its underside, perfect for keeping its contents fresh. You can also wash and reuse the jar as much as you can. 

In addition, the jar is transparent, so you can see what’s inside the jar. It’s a great way to remind you of what you have. Be sure to label the jar properly with the flaxseed’s expiration date.

If you don’t have mason jars, Amazon has a wide variety at affordable prices. Check them out here, Mason Jars. Also, check out the decent prices for ground flaxseed and flaxseed here, Flaxseed.

4. Store Freshly Ground Flaxseed in an Airtight Container

If you opted to use freshly ground flaxseed, you would want to consume it within 3-4 days. When flax seeds are grounded, they’re more likely to spoil at room temperature quickly than ungrounded ones. 

As mentioned earlier, an airtight mason jar works great for storing ground flaxseed. In addition, other kinds of airtight containers securely sealed will help maximize the ground flax seeds’ shelf life. Don’t open the container unless you are scooping some out. 

Airtight containers can be made of hard plastic or plastic food storage bags. Whichever one you decide to use, make sure to remove as much excess air as possible.

5. Store Newly Ground Flaxseed Away From Light

When using freshly ground flaxseed, you’ll want to protect it from light exposure when storing them 2. The longer it remains out in the light, the more likely it is to take on moisture. 

After portioning, make sure to return the ground flaxseed to the storage container used and placed back in the storage area you chose. I keep mine in the cabinet at home.

Grinding flaxseed with a hand grinder.
Grinding flaxseed with a hand grinder

6. Refrigerate Flaxseed for Up to a Year

Flaxseed does not have to be refrigerated after opening. To extend the shelf life of flaxseed, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a year. 

You’ll want to do this after using flaxseed from its original packaging 3. This method could extend the flaxseeds’ shelf life for six months longer than flaxseed stored at room temperature! Therefore, how do you refrigerate flaxseed?

This is how to refrigerate flaxseed:

  • If the original packaging is unopened, place it into the refrigerator.
  • If the original packaging is opened, transfer the flaxseed to an airtight container.
  • Remove as much excess air as possible.
  • Write the date onto the container.
  • Place the container into the fridge.
  • Store the flaxseed up to one year.

Will Freshly Ground Flaxseed Go Bad if Not Refrigerated?

Ground flaxseeds will go bad if not refrigerated. When flaxseed is ground, the fatty acids break down and can cause it to go rancid. However, you can stretch out its use up to three months past its expiration date by refrigerating.

7. Freeze Unused Flaxseed

If your refrigerator is running out of room or you want to make your flaxseed supply to last longer, try putting it in the freezer. Freezing is a good idea for those who buy bulk amounts and don’t use their flaxseed often. 

This option will keep it fresh until a year past the expiration date.

This is how to freeze flaxseed:

  • If the original packaging is unopened, date the package and place it into the freezer.
  • If the original packaging is opened, transfer the flaxseed to an airtight container.
  • Remove as much excess air as possible.
  • Write the date onto the container.
  • Place the container into the freezer.
  • Store the flaxseed up to one year.

8. Check Flaxseed Freshness Before Use

You’ll know your flaxseeds went bad from its rancid odor 4. Flaxseeds spoils when the fatty acids deteriorate, caused by light exposure or moisture 5. When flaxseeds are fresh, they’ll have a mild and nutty scent.

If they smell fresh, they’re good to go and enjoy!

Flaxseed has gone bad if it has a rancid, fishy smell. If the smell is questionable, it should be discarded. If the flaxseed has changed its taste and is more bitter, it is going bad. If flaxseed has been stored beyond its expiration date, it’s starting to turn and should be discarded.

If you have any questions to ask me about this article don’t hesitate to comment below or email us. You can find an email on our contact page.

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Read Next – More Food Storage Articles!

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Organic Flaxseed vs. Non-Organic Flaxseed: Which is Better?

  1. UFHealth: Healthy food trends — flaxseeds[]
  2. Flax Council of Canada: Whole Flax Seeds[]
  3. SFGATE: How to Store Organic Cold Milled Flax Seed[]
  4. Cleveland Clinic: Flaxseed: Little Seed, Big Benefits[]
  5. National Center for Biotechnology Information: Dietary Flaxseed as a Strategy for Improving Human Health[]

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