This weekend I took on my spice cabinet. While it was in an organized state, there were some spices in there that looked a little less than fresh. According to food democracy:
Herbs- last 1 to 3 years
Ground Spices- last 2 to 3 years
Seasoning Blends – last 1 to 2 years
I had some spices that I could not remember the last time I used them. I don’t recall cooking with coriander or tarragon. I knew a few of my spices were old simply due to the fact that the packaging had changed. Now, spices are coming with expiration labels( Can I get an amen!!). The best way to determine if a spice or herb has lost its flavor is through appearance, smell, and taste. Yes, I tried my rosemary!!
So after determining what is good in the spice world, choose a method of storage. I have two shelves that I use to store my spices. I use the plastic steps so they all are visible. I also organize them by alpha order. This way I can find things as a quick glance. Some people organize them as to whatever they utilize the most is up front. Either organization method will work for you! Remember, to organize how you think!!
Another method of spice storage includes the pull out cabinet. This is great but not friendly to some of your smaller spices. Some custom kitchens, have a customized spice drawer with dividers. You can also buy drawer inserts as well.
And lets not forget about the waste aspect. To avoid as much waste as possible, buy smaller quanities for spices that you don’t use as often.