Most of us won’t hesitate to throw away food that has gone past the expiry date. We all know that once you’ve passed that date, you’ve virtually past the point of no return and have to toss it away so that you don’t risk having an upset stomach after eating it.
However, most people don’t know that kitchen utensils also have expiry dates that we all have to keep track of. Almost everything has an expiration date, and you shouldn’t wait until that utensil breaks before you replace it. Here are a few examples of kitchen utensils and their expiration dates:
Wooden Spoons, Spatulas, & Forks
Wooden utensils should be replaced every five years or so. This is because mold can slowly grow in wooden utensils. After all, they dry a lot slower than metal utensils after they are washed. Not to mention the scary E. coli and other bacteria you may be stirring into your sauces.
Wooden utensils should also be replaced when you notice that they’re developing cracks and are chipping because that’s a dangerous bacterial growth sign. Not to mention that wood may get into your food if you keep using cracked wooden utensils!
Plastic And Wooden Chopping Boards
Chopping boards should be replaced every 2-3 years or when they start developing scratches and deep cuts on the surface. This is because meat juices and bacteria can squeeze into those cuts and are incredibly tricky to clean out. Better safe than sorry, right?
Make sure to have separate cutting boards for meat and vegetables so that you don’t encounter nasty cross-contamination.
These should be replaced every two years. There’s nothing sadder than a rubber spatula that’s losing chunks, melted, or discolored. Although versatile, rubber spatulas aren’t going to last forever.
Non-stick pans can be unpredictable since these pans’ expiration date varies on how well it’s taken care of. If you use metal utensils when using Teflon pans and are generally just treating its stainless steel, it’ll probably last you a year before replacing it.
However, if you use wooden utensils and store them somewhere safe, it’ll probably last you around three years or so. Make sure to replace it when you notice scratches, chips, or flakes though, since it may release toxic chemicals when you cook with it and be less effective in the non-stick department.
Although blender blades should be replaced when they turn dull or rusty, the blenders themselves don’t have a definitive expiry date because blenders are built differently based on the manufacturers. However, if the wires start getting exposed, the base gets dropped or submerged in water, or when you start smelling burning plastic and noticing fumes when you blend, you should replace it immediately.
Blenders can also start becoming inconsistent as time goes on, so make sure to keep an eye on that.
Knives can last you a long time based on the quality and how you handle them. However, some knives such as cheap paring knives tend to chip, rusting, or becoming too thin to sharpen at around two years.
If you frequently sharpen a good quality knife and take care of it, you can essentially keep it for an entire lifetime, though. Especially good quality chef’s knives that you can buy in knife shops and butcher’s knives are essentially built to last. Just keep an eye on the blade itself and replace the knife only if it starts to chip or rust.