Does Pillsbury Dough Go Bad Or Expire?
Cookies, pizza, crescent rolls, oh my. It seems there’s nothing you can make with Pillsbury dough. From pie crust to pigs in the blanket. This delicious dough is iconic.
Right down to their little pastry-making mascot, the “Doughboy“. If you’re a person of a certain age, you may remember saving those Pillsbury labels to get a free Pillsbury teddy bear. It’s name was Cupcake.
The Dough seems to have been around forever. In fact, Pillsbury was started in 1869, on the banks of the Mississippi. The goal was to make life easier for families, who until then had to make their own dough. If you’ve ever made dough, you know the struggle.
So, with a few grist mills and a package that would keep the dough fresh, Pillsbury has become synonymous with baking. It’s always there for us, or is it? Does it go bad or expire?
Yes. Pillsbury dough does expire and will go bad. All packages of their dough have an expiration date.
However, it’s usually OK to use your dough if it’s a few weeks past the expiration date if it has been frozen and is unopened. Opened dough should be used as soon as possible. Within 3-5 days of being opened.
How Can You Tell If Pillsbury Dough Has Gone Bad?
Good dough will have a good scent. Aromatic, like a fresh loaf of bread. If it smells otherwise, particularly like beer or alcohol. That means it’s been fermenting with other unhealthy microbes. Other signs that your dough is dead include:
- discoloration ( especially gray, this means the yeast has literally died)
- moisture (condensation)
How Long Does Pillsbury Dough Generally Last?
Generally, an unopened package will last 2-3 months past the expiration date if it’s kept in the freezer. An opened package will last, at maximum, 4-5 days in the refrigerator. It will then start to get dry, crumbly, and may start to grow bacteria.
Can You Store Pillsbury Dough In The Fridge?
According to Pillsbury, once the container is opened, you really should use the dough within a few hours. This is when it will be at its freshest. Once opened, the yeast will activate and begin to rise. Yeast is a living organism and only has so much energy. Once it loses its energy, the dough will lose its freshness and dry out.
If you need to put it in the refrigerator, place it in an airtight bag or container, with a few drops of water. It will stay edible for about 2-3 days. If you are putting an unopened container in the fridge, it should be OK for about 1-2 weeks.
What Is The Best Way To Store Pillsbury Dough?
If it’s a leftover dough situation, where you just have unused extra, then a plastic ziploc bag and a few sprinkles of water will keep them in the fridge for a few days.
If your not going to use your newly purchased dough for a while, it should be placed in the freezer. If you plan on using it within the next few days, you can store it in the refrigerator.
Can I Still Use Old Pizza Dough?
You should not use old pizza dough. Uncooked dough will start to grow bacteria quickly after about 4 days. If the dough has milk or egg, it can start to go bad even faster.
By the time the dough is a week old, the yeast will have died and the dough will no longer rise. So, at best, you’ll have a flat, cracker-like pizza dough. At worst, you’ll end up with salmonella or food poisoning.
Can You Eat Raw Pillsbury Dough?
Remember your parent’s (or maybe your grandparent’s) warning about not eating raw dough? I believe it went something like, “you’ll get worms.” Well, the good news is, you will not get worms. The even better news, is that Pillsbury now makes their cookie dough in edible form.
After all these years, they listened and assuaged our fears of those loathsome dough worms. They pre-bake (sort of) the dough so that the flour and eggs are cooked, so there’s no fear of salmonella or e-coli. Always check the packaging for the “safe to eat raw” label.
But not all Pillsbury products are made to be eaten raw. Biscuit, pizza, pie, and other doughs are still a big NO when it comes to uncooked indulgences for several reasons.
The first being the uncooked egg. Raw eggs can carry the salmonella bacteria. The next is, that bacteria and other germs could possibly get into the package at the plant or during transport. The third is disturbing as it is interesting.
When you ingest raw dough, it obviously goes into your stomach. The stomach is a warm, moist environment, perfect for allowing the active yeast in the dough to expand.
Luckily, the acids in your belly will kill off the yeast eventually. However, before that happens, you may experience bloating, gas, and even some other intestinal disturbances. So, while you won’t get worms, the other alternatives are not much better. Just say no to the raw dough.
What Is Salmonella?
There’s been mention of the dreaded salmonella throughout the article, so let’s take a moment to discuss it. Salmonella is a heavy duty bacteria that packs a whole lot of sickness. It can be found in:
- processed foods
The CDC estimates that every 1 in 25 packages of chicken contains the salmonella bacteria. That’s why it’s vital to properly clean, separate, and store food. Also, clean the counters and your hands after preparing all food, especially chicken. Symptoms of salmonella include:
- fever of 102 degrees or more
- bloody stools
- vomiting that won’t stop
- dry mouth
These symptoms may present themselves as soon as 6 hours after contamination, but could take up to 6 days.